Saturday, March 12, 2011

Captives in a Binary Mechanical Universe

As implications of the assumptions or postulates of binary mechanics (BM)[1] are explored [2] [3] [4], priority tasks include determination of fundamental constants such as the BM distance unit d in meters and time (tick) unit t in seconds, derivation of other fundamental values such as the proton-electron rest mass ratio and generally, experimental verification that BM postulates and bit operations are both consistent with well-known physical observations (e.g., extremely long life-time of protons and electrons) and indeed provide very low level explanations of these phenomena. This article discusses some issues which may be relevant to successful completion of these goals including a number of BM predictions which may make or break BM as a physical theory.

Boot-strapping a New Physics
All BM basics must be exactly correct in order to fully achieve these goals. One strategy is to isolate components to explore or test specific features of BM.

For example, a recent report [2] may have established the duration (84 ticks) of the central baryon bit cycle by using a single test bit in the HotSpot simulator program [5], which represents this cycle duration as 21 Ticks, each with four sub-ticks.

In that study, the veracity of present implementation of the scalar and vector bit operations was irrelevant, since these operations require at least one additional bit in the simulation to achieve scalar or vector potentials respectively. In addition, with only one test bit in the simulation, the strong potential is never blocked by a second bit in the test bit's destination location. Thus, the 84 tick cycle described depends only on the veracity of the unconditional and strong bit operations utilized.

In sum, this study may have achieved some success in factoring out aspects of BM, as presently conceived, which may not be fully correct.

Another example of this sort of leverage may be the updated simulation software [5] where the order of application of bit operations was edited to unconditional, scalar, vector, strong to achieve much better spatial symmetry in the time (tick) development of BM states from randomized, initial states. In this case, simple observation of the bit density distribution in the simulated cube of space appears to have been sufficient to select a bit operations order resulting in better spatial symmetry over time. Naturally, this edit of operator order which appears to be more reasonable does not guarantee its correctness or completeness. Nonetheless, this sort of experimentation with simulation may point in the right direction.

The Illusion of Mass
Another leverage strategy is examination of unitless ratios among physical constants, such as the ratio of proton and electron rest masses. An introduction to this subject probably requires some contemplation of just how captive we are in the postulated BM universe. For example, mass as reckoned in kilogram units is clearly an illusion, since in BM mass boils down to the difficulty (or probability) of a particle movement in the context of a particular bit distribution in the particle's rather immediate environment.

To make matters worse, many fundamental constants (e.g., Planck's constant h) and expressions (e.g., E = mc2) entangle the mass illusion with length and time parameters. The challenge, then, is to tease out individual components, such as length and time, in order to fix their values in terms of BM fundamental constants such as length d and time t.

The unitless proton-electron rest mass ratio may be helpful toward this objective since it represents a probability ratio in BM, as suggested above. That is, at presumably base energy levels (per rest mass), the probability that bits in the vicinity of an electron would cause it to move to an adjacent electron spot is about 1836 times greater than the corresponding probability for proton motion over the same distance.
This apparently fundamental fact is projected into our experience with all the baggage associated with the fact that the sensory systems in our bodies and the event detectors in our experiments are all confined to a world of particles with somewhat limited ability to measure background or subthreshold bit densities and patterns. In the BM simulator (HotSpot), such vacuum bit states may be seen after a simulated cube of randomized bits settles down to a base or low energy state, indicated in part by cessation of bits radiating (exiting) from the simulated cube of space.

Nonetheless, many ingenious investigators in physics have offered a wide range of concepts about what may fill the vacuum, from ether to electromagnetic or gravity force fields to virtual particles. More recently, the ideas of dark matter and dark energy have emerged as vacuum constituents, with some experimental verification. Although captives in a BM universe, very clever minds have found ways to make observations suggesting something is in fact present in the so-called vacuum.

As BM was formulated, the author defined a spot unit consisting of two binary bits, the mite thought to relate to "matter" with mass and the massless lites thought to relate to particles such as photons. These two spot unit bits were thought to correspond to the real and imaginary components of complex numbers routinely used in quantum mechanics (QM) expressions, such as its wave functions [1]. A crucial difference is that the complex value (amplitude) squared estimates a probability, whereas in BM there is no guessing. That is, the two spot unit components (mite and lite) are each definitely either zero or one. Further, there is no guessing (or Heisenberg uncertainty) regarding the time development of these bit states, given fully defined bit operations.

In this light, the manner in which QM attempts to represent physical states in continuous space and time is clearly an approximation or educated guess, rather than a basis for a precise physical theory. The author nor anybody else need make this assertion, since admission that QM is only a statistical approximation is formalized via its origins in statistical mechanics, advanced statistics and widely accepted concepts such as Heisenberg uncertainty.

Indeed, the author cannot recall reading any justification for quantization of a growing number of variables while space and time must be continuous variables. Not even the fact that quantum electrodynamic calculations have been typically conducted by parsing components into an orthogonal lattice of tiny cubes, seems to have inspired investigators to question the apparently sacred assumption of continuous space and time.

This QM situation goes from bad to worse when small distances or time intervals are considered. When the level of fineness approaches small multiples of BM length d and time t, what happens? Worshippers of continuous space and time might wish to process a point charge located at position (r1, r2, r3) = (3.6, 5.4, 2.2) at time 8.9. For the moment we can ignore the suspension of disbelief required to assert that something (a charge) is nothing (a point with no dimension), and then that this nothing might actually be something (a small charged sphere). Of course, the position and time above simply do not exist in BM, where integer multiples are used. For lattice calculations in QM, one might truncate the values to position (3, 5, 2) at time 8 or round the values to (4, 5, 2) at time 9. At this point, the accuracy of the resulting statistical approximation may be seriously compromised as well as its validity since entirely misleading or incorrect results might be obtained.

On the question of precision, there are no fudge factors in BM, no excuses. A result is either precisely correct or incorrect. In contrast, when a result in QM is not right, an infinity of alternate results may be trotted out using excuses such as "the event was actually elsewhere in the probability distribution" or the old favorite -- the uncertainty fudge factor: "Anything can happen as long as it does not take too long".

In this context, if the holy ground of continuous space and time was surrounded by a wall, one might be prompted to declare, "Mr. Physics, tear down this wall."

As described, historically, QM is largely a continuation of the mind-set of classical statistical mechanics, as the foundational math used is essentially identical, continuously adding new terms (spin, color and whatnot) to better model experimental data. In short, QM is a dead-end street. Stepping back for a view of the big picture, it might be evident that clever mathematicians will always be able to cook up expressions that fit experimental data. And then, the most simple irreducible form of these expressions is deemed to be the most acceptable physical theory.

In contrast, BM wins the simplicity game by a mile, as a criterion for a preferred scientific theory. What could be more simple than an entire universe built from a single fundamental object, a spot unit composed of two binary bits? Until such time as researchers attempt to peer inside the spot unit to apprehend its inner structure and workings, BM wins the gold metal for simplicity in theoretical physics. On a perhaps humorous note, one might rename BM as "2-bit mechanics" or the "25-cent theory".

The foregoing little commentary should not be construed as an attack on QM or the many, very smart people who developed or worked with it. Rather, the author tips the hat in gratitude to these dedicated investigators.
If one insists that the mite bit has mass as understood in conventional physics, there may be no end to problems and possible contradictions. For example, does an electron mite have a different mass than a proton mite? If yes, what would be the justification for such a proposition? The mite in BM is an abstract binary bit, period. Mass as such does not enter into any BM equation, such as those defining time development (bit operations) of its state vector (the bit distribution).

If the idea that different mites in different spots (e.g., lepton, quark) have different masses proves to be absurd or without any reasonable justification, does one have to conclude that mass in our experience (and experiments) is merely a sort of artifact or illusion originating from the more fundamental underlying fact that the probabilities to accelerate an electron or proton are markedly different?

The good news is that mass, when considered in terms of unitless ratios, may well be extracted from BM simulations where these probabilities are itemized and their ratios computed. Frankly, such a demonstration would be sensational (pun intended) physics news, that this "2-bit theory" might both account for and explain observed ratios such as proton-electron rest masses. One might plausibly envision entirely feasible similar work that might simultaneously estimate and explain other unitless ratios.

Fences Help Maintain Captivity
A good fence may keep a dog in a yard. BM implies some definite borders in the world we experience which may be construed as theoretical predictions as well as upper or lower limits to BM constants such as length d and tick time t. Violation of even one of these predictions might well be fatal for BM as a physical theory.

1. Perhaps the most obvious prediction is maximum energy density, which is simply defined as all bits (mite and lite) in the one state in a selected volume of space. For high energy physicists, once this maximum energy density is obtained, one can go no further. Consider that additional bits cannot be forced into such a volume if there is no place for them to go.

2. At first glance, for workers in high temperature and high pressure states, one might assume that increased temperature or pressure is correlated with BM bit density over a wide range. These workers are invited to calibrate this supposed relationship. Therefore, BM would predict a definite physical limitation on how high temperature and pressure could rise. In short, maximum possible temperature and pressure are predicted.

To the extent that temperature is viewed as kinetic energy in particle motion, one might further speculate that maximum possible temperature is attained below maximum bit density at which one might imagine that particle motion is less than the maximum possible. At maximum bit density, consider that a particle has nowhere to move to.

In sum, a temperature of zero Kelvins is generally recognized as a lower limit. Now BM predicts an upper limit. At present, the temperatures of particular intermediate bit densities have not been calibrated in BM simulations. Concerning the lower temperature limit, it is well-known that matter does not simply disappear at or near zero Kelvin. That is, the low final bit densities observed in BM simulations might well be representations of very low temperatures.

3. For volumes with higher conventional mass density, such as black holes or atomic nuclei, one might expect that the corresponding BM bit density is in fact far below the BM maximum bit density, because simulation experiments starting with maximum density are seen to be highly unstable excited states (e.g., Fig. 1 in [6]).

In other words, the very dense, heavy particles represented have very short life-times, simply because the strong potential required for bit cycling is less likely if destination bit loci are already occupied. As a result, unconditional bit motion predominates resulting in dramatic bit dispersion. Also, at high bit densities, scalar potentials (justaposition of like-charged mites) are more likely which results in further bit motion to lite loci.

4. BM predicts a maximum possible frequency at or near 1/2t, where t is the tick duration in seconds and the factor 2 is inserted with the assumption that an order of magnitude of 2 ticks is required to realize an observable oscillation. Hence, the highest energy observed gamma rays may provide an upper limit to the BM fundamental constant t.

That gamma rays are deemed to be high energy is entirely consistent with BM, since such radiation would deliver more bits per unit time to a spatial volume.

5. One notices our captivity as denizens of a BM universe when frequency is routinely converted to wave length, thus entangling length and time parameters in the window of our perceptual capability. Nonetheless, redundant though it may be, BM necessarily predicts a minimum possible wavelength on the order of 2d based on considerations similar to those for maximum possible frequency.

6. BM predicts that bit velocity v equal to d/t is substantially greater than the observed speed of light c. Consider that all bit motion is along one of three perpendicular directions. However, over any larger distance at an arbitrary angle to the BM spatial reference frame [1], such as might be used to measure light velocity, the bits required to realize the measurement must most often travel a significantly greater distance, implying a greater bit velocity. That BM fundamental velocity is probably greater than the speed of light is another indicator of our captivity, since light velocity is commonly regarded as a limit in our experience and science.

This greater bit velocity v must be consistent with estimated upper limits for BM constants d and t.

7. Anisotropy is predicted and indeed a number of physical observations, such as background cosmic microwave radiation, might be studied in the context of the seemingly fantastic BM idea that a particular spatial reference frame may apply to the entire universe and thereby play a significant role in some anisotrophic phenomena.

On the other hand, as conventional concepts in physics go, this may not require more suspension of disbelief than many other ideas in physics that have been widely accepted.

8. Another obvious BM prediction is that any postulated "particle" in the Standard Model and beyond may be represented as one or more bit patterns in BM space. If this cannot be done, either BM or the particle postulator is wrong.

In other words, BM appears to assert that all possible particles have already been discovered. Just open a laptop and play with bit patterns and observe all that can be, which can be well understood with no more math training than binary logic -- and, or, xor, if-then, etc, determining which bits will be set (one) or cleared (zero) in each tick. All possible particles can be rather easily observed, as well as all possible particle interactions, at an almost infinitesimal cost compared to all the real estate, copper and whatnot required to build high energy colliders. Sounds like a bargain.

The First Minutes
If BM were a movie, so far only the first few minutes have been presented, perhaps enough to decide if the rest is worth watching.

For example, the author is not yet prepared to offer a specific rule to define which bit patterns are observable particles, leaving the remainder in equally ill-defined categories such as dark matter and energy or EM force fields and the like. However, we do have a range to work with. One may stipulate that an observable particle -- a vague reference to items such as protons and electrons among many others -- must have at least one bit in the one state, else absolutely nothing is present. At the other extreme, maximum bit density in any set of spots appears to be an unstable high energy or excited state. Hence, one might guess that the specific rule for a particle might have an upper limit for the minimum number of bits required, probably well below maximum bit density for the spots used by a particular particle (see, e.g, Table 3 in [1]).

Considering a specific case, a spot contains 6 bits -- 3 mites and 3 lites. To keep things simple, consider the one-spot electron particle. It has been suggested that the lites might best represent lower excited states. Hence, our specific rule would seem to boil down to one to three mites as the choices for our particle threshold, where subthreshold bits are not experienced (detected) as particles.

This issue requires further thought and investigation. For example, it not yet known exactly how we experience underlying BM quantized space, time and events (by our sensory organs or detectors used in experiments). Do the bit states in all ticks enter into the picture or is our experience confined to an odd tick world or an even tick world, not to mention a n tick key-hole view? As in motion picture or computer animation, might it be that as BM bit operations churn away, our experience (perceivable world) consists only of frames selected at presumably equal intervals of n ticks? Indeed, the HotSpot simulator does exactly that, displaying bit density and histograms only at every fourth tick.

In short, a rule to define a particle may involve considerations involving both bit counts at one or more spots and time in terms of a tick count n, where n is one or more, possibly as much as 84 which was reported as the central baryon bit cycle time in tick units [2].

A possibly encouraging sign is an observation from the HotSpot simulator. Starting from randomized initial bit states, as bit density decreases due to bits lost by exiting the simulated space, one can see in the XRAY view that higher density sub-volumes are often evident. Are these our particles? As reported previously, both the electron and baryons contain bit loops which would tend to capture and hold incoming bits. Could there be one or more simple atoms there? There is always the next question.

[1] Keene, J. J. "Binary mechanics" J. Bin. Mech. July, 2010.
[2] Keene, J. J. "The central baryon bit cycle" J. Bin. Mech. March, 2011.
[3] Keene, J. J. "Physical interpretation of binary mechanical space" J. Bin. Mech. February, 2011.
[4] Keene, J. J. "Binary mechanics electron, positron and proton" J. Bin. Mech. July, 2010.
[5] Keene, J. J. "Binary mechanics simulator updated" J. Bin. Mech. March, 2011.
[6] Keene, J. J. "Binary mechanics simulation software" J. Bin. Mech. February, 2011.
© 2011 James J Keene