Archive for
January 2021

Comments for Sunday, January 24, 2021, thru Sunday, Jan. 31, 2021:

January 31, 2021 - I usually write my Sunday comments on Saturdays, so that all I have to do on Sunday morning is look the comment over, polish it a bit, and upload it to this web site.  Yesterday, however, was a day I spent mostly just staring at my computer screen while thinking.  The weather forecast was:
Heavy snow expected. Total snow accumulations of 5 to 9
inches. Highest amounts likely towards Illinois border and
Lake Michigan. Winds gusting as high as 35 mph will lead to
some blowing and drifting.
The Illinois border is about 20 miles south of me, and Lake Michigan is less than 3 miles to the east.  So, nine inches of new snow was a definite possibility.

I wasn't disappointed.  At 10 a.m. this morning, when I shot the picture below, it seemed like there was already about 9 inches of snow on the ground, and it was still snowing, with the snow forecasted to continue until about 6 p.m. this evening.  It looks like there are about 9 inches of snow piled in one spot on my balcony railing, which is only about 1 inch wide.  The railing is blocked from the west wind by a wall, but there was enough of a shift in the wind to knock the pile over a few minutes after I took the picture.

Snow as
                    of Jan. 31, 2021

Fortunately, except for milk, for which I have only about a 4 or 5 day supply, I have almost enough food stocked away to last me the rest of the winter.  And my car is in a garage.

When I turned on my computer this morning, I found my inbox contained a long email by someone who had read my paper "Simplifying Einstein's Thought Experiments." Here's a small part of his email (I've highlighted some key sections in red and bold) :
Unfortunately, time dilation is an ad hoc invention, so it is illogical nonsense. This is why the whole subject is so confusing. If you would like to understand that time dilation is pure fiction, I would be happy to explain. In a nutshell: A rigorous mathematical physics definition of time can be derived from the speed formula: speed= distance over time. Therefore, time= distance over speed. Try 30 mph= 60 miles/2 hours. It is just make-believe to change the time in the speed formula. That is all time dilation is. There is no mechanism causing time dilation. It is just made up and ad hoc.
The questions now are: Should I respond?  and How should I respond?  He clearly believes that mathematics is infallible.  And to disagree with him would mean attacking his beliefs, which he will take as a personal attack.   

But, it makes me think once again about writing a paper titled "Motion Relative to the Speed of Light."  It seems like there should be some simple and undeniable way to explain how radar guns work, and how radar guns measure the speed of object relative to the speed of light. And, of course, I also want someone to demonstrate it via my proposed truck experiment, which requires building 2 radar guns that utilize the exact same photon frequency (or some totally new device that can measure a change in photon frequency due to motion).

I really want to work on that paper, but first I want to self-publish my sci-fi novel.  And I also want to discuss Marjorie Taylor Greene and how seemingly "normal" people can believe totally idiotic conspiracy theoriesSigh.  On the positive side, I seriously doubt the world has ever before been so interesting.

January 29, 2021
- Hmm.  It appears I was a little over-ambitious.  I do not yet have all the material I need to do my taxes.  The deadline for sending me such material isn't until February 15.  There's only one form that I still need, so it could arrive any day. 

Meanwhile, I decided to start preparing my sci-fi novel for publishing.  The last time I did such a thing was about eight years ago.  I learned today that a lot of things have changed since then.  So, I'm going to have to learn how to use the tools Amazon provides for formatting Kindle and print books.  This morning, my first attempt quickly hit a barrier when I learned that I first have to put all the chapters into one large file.  It was no big deal, but it took some time.  The book has 35 chapters, even though it only has 195 pages (which may be more or less when it is properly formatted.)

Then I learned that I'm supposed to create a Kindle version first, then the print  version.  Creating the text for the Kindle version was easy, and it looks very good.  I just need to add the cover, the title page, the copyrights page and an acknowledgement page.  As I was looking through the book to make sure I hadn't missed any chapters, I noticed that I mention that one of the villains drove "a Mercury Sable, maybe 2 or 3 years old."   Earlier I'd checked on the car the main character drives, a 6-year-old Chevy Camaro to make sure that they still make Camaros.  They do.  But this afternoon, when I checked on the Mercury Sable, I found that they stopped making them in 2009.  So, I'm going to have to find a different car and replace the Mercury Sable with it everywhere the Sable appears in the book.

It's all part of the process.

January 28, 2021
- Yesterday evening I finished listening to another audio book I'd gotten from my library a few days ago.  The book was "Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life" by Steve Martin.

Born Standing Up

It's only 4 hours and 6 minutes long (208 pages in print), but it's an excellent book.  It's also very serious in parts.  It's mostly about Martin's struggles to "find himself," i.e., to figure out what to do with his life.  He wanted to be an entertainer from about age 5, which would be around 1950, and he started getting paid for entertaining people when he was a teenager.  He was a banjo player and a magician, working at Disneyland, while also going to school and trying to be a comedian, too.  He spent years going from comedy club to comedy club at night, performing for free before audiences usually numbering less than a dozen.  But, he was "learning his craft."  In the 1960s he got a job as a writer for "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour" and then he appeared on Johnny Carson and other talk shows, and hosted some "Saturday Night Live" shows, which made him a public figure.  Suddenly he was one of the top standup comics in the business.  It lasted from the mid-1970s until about 1981.  In 1979 he made a movie, "The Jerk," which was a smash hit.  Then, in 1981, gave up doing standup comedy and switched to making movies, making one hit after another.  And that is about where the book ends.

The book has a lot about what it feels like to stand before an audience and totally bomb, getting no laughs at all, even having someone occasionally boo you and even throw something at you.  One club patron threw a glass of wine at him, ruining his white suit. 

I've heard a lot about the lives of standup comics on podcasts, particularly WTF with Marc Maron, who is a standup comic and who interviews a lot of standup comics.  It's a rough business, and if you fail you fail in public and you may fail a thousand times.  But if you really have a sense of humor, you can also tell a lot of funny and interesting stories about your life.  I have George Carlin's book on reserve at my library.  I look forward to listening to it.

Meanwhile, my next task is to do my income taxes.
  Nothing funny about that.

January 27, 2021
- I know there are a lot of other, much more important things I should be doing, but, at about 1 p.m. yesterday afternoon, I finished listening to an audio book I'd borrowed from my local library last week.  The book was "Is This Anything?" by Jerry Seinfeld.

Is This Anything?
It's a very recent book and is still one of the "Top 10" on some best seller lists.  It is also a fairly short book, even though it is 480 pages in the hardcover edition.  Those pages are double spaced and often only have a single word on a line.  As an audio book read by Jerry Seinfeld, it was only 6 hours and 19 minutes long.  I went through it in 2 listening sessions over 2 days.

While being very enjoyable and funny, it was also very odd.  It's a book of "joke notes" Jerry Seinfeld wrote down over the course of 45 years as he developed material for his stand-up performances.  It's odd because some of the material is very dated, yet he also mentioned the Corona virus a few times.  An example of some dated material under the topic heading "Time Save":
We all try and save time.

All our little shortcuts.

But no matter how much time you save,

at the end of your life, there’s no extra time saved up.

You’ll be going,

“What do you mean I’m out of time?

I had a no-iron shirt,

Velcro sneakers,

clip-on tie:

Where is that time?”

It’s not there.

Because when you waste time in life, they subtract it.

Like if you saw all the Rocky movies, they deduct that.

So, you’ve got to be careful.

You can take the Concorde to Europe,

but if they show Porky’s on the plane,

you’re right back where you started from.

It's also odd because Seinfeld makes jokes about things he evidently doesn't like, but some of  which I like.  And example: raisins.  I eat raisins every day with my breakfast cereal.  And I eat Kellogg's Raisin Bran once or twice a week.  Here is what Jerry thinks about raisins:
I see the Raisin Bran people are still caught up in their own personal madness.

Still convinced that we’re not happy yet with the number of raisins in their product.

Every time I go in the supermarket there is a new announcement on the front of the box,

“More scoops.

Bigger scoops.

Deeper scoops.

Longer scoops.

All raisins, one flake.


And no one cares.

No one cares about the number of raisins in the god damn Raisin Bran.

If you’re eating Raisin Bran, you’ve given up on life anyway.

You hate yourself and everyone else.

99% of all Raisin Bran is eaten by people

who have slept over at somebody else’s house,

and that’s all they had.

No one’s intentionally eating this stuff.

“You got any cereal?”

“We got Raisin Bran.”

“… All right… (sigh)… just give me the Raisin Bran.”
Hmm.  I don't think eating Raisin Bran means that I've "given upon life."  I eat it because it's healthy food and I want to remain healthy so that I can continue to enjoy life.

There are a lot of funny things in the book, but I didn't make notes.  I found the material above by doing on-line searches as I was writing this comment.  Perhaps the best proof that I enjoyed the book is the fact that as soon as I finished listening to it, I began listening to another audio book by another comedian.  And it's only 4 hours and 6 minutes long.

January 25, 2021
- While eating lunch yesterday afternoon, I finished reading another science book on my Kindle.  The book was "How To Teach Relativity to Your Dog" by Chad Orzel.

How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog

While the book was - at times - very interesting and enjoyable, it was also another physics book with endless, mind-numbing discussions of mathematical models for how things are viewed in the universe when one person (or dog) is moving and the other person (or dog or cat) is stationary, or when both are moving.  What this book has that makes it sometimes enjoyable is funny back and forth discussions.  Yes, they are discussions between the author (Chad Orzel, who is a physics professor at Union College in Schenectady, NY,) and his dog Emmy.  Here's a passage from page 2:
Teaching physics necessarily involves translation. The natural way to express physics is through math, but most people don’t think in mathematical terms. So, a lot of the business of teaching physics is finding ways to translate physical ideas from mathematical equations into concepts drawing on everyday language and experience.”
That passage gives hope that the book will do what the passage says, and maybe it does, but there is also an endless supply of mathematical equations, and that sometimes turns into an endless stream of translations, particularly near the end of the book. 

The passage I quoted in yesterday's comment is from page 9.  Here it is again:

“Anyway, the answer is that there’s no physics measurement you can do to distinguish between sitting still and moving at a constant velocity, the way we are now. You can detect acceleration, like this”—I step on the gas and speed up—“but when we’re moving at a constant speed, all the laws of physics are exactly the same as when you’re standing still.” “So how do you tell when you’re moving?” “You can’t. All you can say is that you’re moving relative to some other object—which is why the theory is called relativity.”
And on page 20 you will find this:
This passage introduces a common formulation of the principle of relativity: there is no experimental way to distinguish between a frame of reference that is standing still and one that is moving at constant speed.
And at the top of page 53 there's this statement:
Principle of relativity: All of the laws of physics work the same way for any two observers moving with constant relative velocity.  
which is just a twisted version of Einstein's "Principle of Relativity":
the same laws of electrodynamics and optics will be valid for all frames of reference for which the equations of mechanics hold good.
It seems that all the passages I highlighted in red are twisted versions of Einstein's "Principle of Relativity."  They seem to claim something that Einstein didn't claim.  Einstein wrote only about "equations of mechanics," but Prof. Orzel (and countless others) change it to mean any kind of measurement of anything.
I looked up "equations of mechanics" and it seems to be just about how motion affects time and the speed of light. 

I totally agree that things appear to work the same way on a railroad station platform as they do on a railroad train traveling at some constant speed, but only a mathematician would argue that because equations work identically, that means that there is no way to tell if the platform is stationary and the train is moving or if the train is stationary and the station platform is moving. 

You can tell who is moving by using a "complex" radar gun which displays both the speed of a target and the speed of the gun (the "patrol speed").  When such a gun is on the platform pointed at an approaching train traveling at 60 mph, the gun will show a "target speed" of 60 mph and a "patrol speed" of zero, which says the train is moving and the gun is not.  When the gun is on the train and is pointed at the station platform, the gun will show a "target speed" of zero and a "patrol speed" of 60 mph, which says the gun is moving and the platform is not.   
The reason that is possible appears to be because the station platform is a quasi-inertial system, meaning that for most engineering and science tests, it is just like an inertial system.   The fact that the platform is moving in a circle around the center of the earth has no effect on what the gun measures.  The train, however, is NOT an inertial system nor a "quasi-inertial system."  It is a propelled system moving at a constant rate.   A gun on the platform measures its own speed as zero in an inertial system, and it measures the speed of the train as 60 mph relative to that inertial system.  A gun on the train measures its own speed as 60 mph in a non-inertial system, and it measures the speed of the station platform as zero because it is the local inertial system governing the speed of the photons.

There's probably a simpler way to describe that, but there seems to be no doubt that the speed of a moving truck can be measured from inside the truck because the truck is a non-inertial propelled system.

The book "How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog" also gets into General Relativity quite a bit and says this on page 192,
     “You can distinguish between accelerating motion and motion at constant speed, that’s still true. General relativity adds that you can’t distinguish between accelerating motion and gravity. There’s no detectable difference between being in a stationary elevator in a gravitational field and being in an accelerating elevator in the absence of gravity.”
     “So, wait, gravity doesn’t work in the magic closet?”
     “No, no—gravity works. It’s just that the sensation of an elevator accelerating is identical to a gravitational force. You know how when the elevator first starts up, you feel heavy for a second?”
     “Yeah, I think so.”
     “That’s the effect of acceleration, and what you feel is just like gravity getting stronger for a second.”
Would two identical radar guns (or a purpose-built single device) be able to measure the difference between constant acceleration and gravity?  Probably.  But I haven't given it much thought.   I think it is infinitely easier to do the truck experiment than some kind of elevator-gravity experiment.

While I can recommend "How to Teach Relativity to Your Dog," mostly what it did for me is make me totally fed up with reading books about relativity.  I'm still interested in time and time dilation, but I don't want to read any more about what Joe sees when Jill is moving faster than Joe or when Joe is moving at a different speed than Jill.

January 24, 2021
- Hmm.  Every morning, I check the statistics for my papers on  I maintain a spread-sheet of how many new "Unique-IP downloads" there were for each paper each day.  Since April 2016 there have been a total of 5,381 Unique-IP downloads.  One "Unique-IP download" means one person with an IP address that hasn't been recorded before has accessed a specific paper.  I have 15 different papers on, so if one person who has never looked at any of my papers before accesses all of the papers in the same day, that would register as 15 "Unique-IP downloads."  I don't think that has ever happened, however.  The average new reader probably reads just one or two papers.  And if he accesses any of them a second time, the statistics won't show it at all.

On an average day there are only about 3 or 4 new "Unique-IP downloads."  Sometimes, for unknown reasons there might be about a dozen.  On days when I load a brand new paper onto the site, and it is announced on Vixra's "Recent Submissions Page," I might get a surge of first-time accesses for that new paper.  On the morning of February 6, 2020, for example, they recorded 24 "Unique-IP downloads" for my paper "Logical vs Mathematical Universes," and a total number of 38 downloads for all my papers for that day, an all-time record since I began keeping score on July 29, 2019.

Yesterday morning, for some unknown reason, the total number of new "Unique-IP downloads" during the prior 24 hours was 56, a new all-time record.  It's doubly strange, since I had no new papers nor any mention of any kind on their "Recent Submissions Page."  It had to be solely the result of people talking about my papers somewhere.  Besides, the papers that got the most downloads were old papers.  My paper on "Variable Time and the Variable Speed of Light" got 9 of them, as did my paper on "Radar Guns and Einstein's Theories."  The next most downloaded were three papers with 5 downloads each: "The Reality of Time Dilation," "An Analysis of Einstein's Second Postulate to his Theory of Special Relativity," and the only relatively new paper in the bunch, "Relativity vs Quantum Mechanics Experiments."  My newest paper, "Relativity and Radar Guns" got 4 "Unique-IP downloads."  The others got two or three, except for my Covid-19 paper, which got none.

I checked every discussion forum I could think of where someone might have talked about my papers, but I found nothing.  So, I have no idea what caused the "surge."

Here's part of the spread-sheet I maintain (the headings are at the bottom).  You can right-click on it to view a larger version:

                    sheet of reads for my papers

The updated statistics for the past 24 hours became available at around noon today.  They showed only 7 new "Unique-IP downloads."  And that includes 2 adjustments where yesterday's totals were reduced by 1.  There's an example of that in red in the center of the illustration above.  On December 29 the total number of downloads for my "Radar Guns and Einstein's Theories" paper was 638, the next day the total was 637.  It's probably the result of some programming bug in the software they use at to update the statistics. 

Getting only 7 downloads today after getting 56 yesterday is a disappointment, but it is still a much-better-than-average number for a Sunday morning.

Groan!  Of course, all this means my work on my sci-fi novel has come to a screeching halt once again.

It seems the idea for the sci-fi novel first occurred to me in 2013, and I wrote a comment about it on July 14, 2013 on my anthrax site.  I wrote the first version of the book that year and I wrote a second book with a different story the next year, because I thought it would be easier to get a literary agent interested if I had two books in the series already written.  Then I discovered that agents aren't interested in any novels written by anyone over 65, unless it is someone who has been writing novels and getting those novels published for years and years.

Right now, I also have another problem in that, instead of thinking about self-publishing that science fiction novel, I keep thinking about a new science paper or about a book that summarizes all of my papers.  The new paper would be tentatively titled "Relativity without Relativity."  The idea came to me as a result of the science book I'm currently reading on my Kindle.  "Relativity" is all about what happens when you view things where one object is moving relative to another object, which may or may not be also moving.  That results is dozens of mathematical models, each showing the Relativity aspects for every different situation.  Example: Joe is traveling at 3/4ths the speed of light toward Bill, and Bill is traveling at 3/4ths the speed of light towards Joe.  Nothing travels faster than the speed of light, so they do not see each other traveling at 1.5 times the speed of light.  And time is slowed down for them both, so neither will appear to be traveling as fast as they are.  Yada yada yada.  It all ends up with a mass of equations to explain how things move and appear to move relative to one another.

Books are filled with stuff like that, but NONE seem to explain what "Time" is and HOW it is able to slow down.  They endlessly talk about the "consistency" of the speed of light, but NEVER mention that light photons from different emitters are traveling at different speeds because, while c is measured as being the same for everyone, the length of a second is different for almost everyone, and c is the speed of light per second.   

Here's a quote from the book I'm currently reading on my Kindle:
“Anyway, the answer is that there’s no physics measurement you can do to distinguish between sitting still and moving at a constant velocity, the way we are now. You can detect acceleration, like this”—I step on the gas and speed up—“but when we’re moving at a constant speed, all the laws of physics are exactly the same as when you’re standing still.” “So how do you tell when you’re moving?” “You can’t. All you can say is that you’re moving relative to some other object—which is why the theory is called relativity.”
Yes, when "moving at a constant speed, all the laws of physics are exactly the same as when you're standing still," BUT that doesn't mean "there's no physics experiment you can to do distinguish between sitting still and moving at a constant velocity." 

I could be wrong, but it seems there are no "laws of physics" regarding the speed of light.  Moreover, light seems to disobey most laws of physics. A photon of light always travels at "the speed of light," and a photon has no mass, so it has no inertia or momentum, which means none of Newton's laws seem to apply.  If you consider Einstein's Second Postulate to be a "law of physics," then all you are saying is that the speed of the emitter does not add to the speed of the light that is emitted.  That, in effect, seems to disobey Newton's First Law of Motion. 

But, I'm an analyst, not a physicist.  So, I could be totally wrong about a lot of things.  The problem is: It seems no "physicist" can explain to me what is "correct" without spouting an endless stream of mathematical equations.  And that includes physicists who write the books I read.

So, now I'm just going to sit down on my couch, listen to some jazz, and read one of those books.

Comments for Sunday, January 17, 2021, thru Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021:

January 22, 2021 - Just before lunch today, I finished reading another book.  I can't write a review for it, however, because the book was my sci-fi novel, and I finished proof-reading it.  I also can't show the cover for the book, because the next step is to create a cover for it, and then I'll send the whole book to the Copyrights office.  I also have to get an ISBN (International Standard Book Number) and a scanner bar-code.  Then I'll combine everything into one big file for printing, and I'll get a couple proof copies from Amazon to allow me to read it one more time before I make it available to the public in paperback and Kindle formats. 

The last time I went through all those steps was 9 years ago when I self-published "A Crime Unlike Any Other," my second book about the anthrax attacks of 2001.

I really enjoyed reading the sci-fi novel again.  I hope others will enjoy it, too.  I think it is very funny in parts.  And the sci-fi aspects are mind-blowing.  The big problem will be making people aware of the book.  I have a budget of zero dollars for advertising.  So, it will be a matter of finding ways to advertise it for free.  The hope is that when people start reading it, they'll recommend it to others. But I still need to find ways to advertise it.

January 20, 2021
- Hmm.  Trump is gone!  Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have been sworn in as President and Vice-President.  So, now we can all take a deep breath and wait to see what happens next.  Will some of the nut-job conspiracy theorists rethink their beliefs?   It's next to impossible to change the mind of a conspiracy theorist, but one would think that some conspiracy theorists might not want to be combined with Neo-Nazis, cop murderers and anti-government mobs. So they might do some re-thinking.  Hopefully.

Meanwhile, I received the first comment about my revised papers explaining that a truck is not an inertial system, therefore you can measure the speed of a moving truck from inside the truck.  The response was posted as a comment after my paper "Relativity and Radar Guns" on  Here's part of that comment:
On page 9 the author claims that a truck is not an inertial system. The author does not tell what "inertial" means here so apparently he tries to use it in its normal meaning, and fails. By the normal meaning of the word, a truck is inertial if its velocity with respect to some is constant. But more important is the Galilean principle of relativity: laws of nature are the same with respect to each of two reference frames if the velocity of one with respect to the other is constant. Therefore, no experiment inside a truck moving with constant velocity (i.e., without acceleration or turning) cannot determine the ground speed of the truck or whether the truck is stationary.
In the part I highlighted, it looks like he meant to write "some object" but left out the second word.  And he used double-negative in the last sentence.  But, maybe I should have explained what an inertial system is.  I state that the International Space Station (ISS) is an inertial system, but technically it is not, since an inertial system must move in a straight line.   According to Merriam-Webster, "inertia" is defined as
"a property of matter by which it remains at rest or in uniform motion in the same straight line unless acted upon by some external force."
So, technically, the ISS is not inertial and neither is the earth's surface, which experiences the effects of gravity.  But, according to Encyclopedia Britannica:
Strictly speaking, Newton’s laws of motion are valid only in a coordinate system at rest with respect to the “fixed” stars. Such a system is known as a Newtonian, or inertial reference, frame. The laws are also valid in any set of rigid axes moving with constant velocity and without rotation relative to the inertial frame; this concept is known as the principle of Newtonian or Galilean relativity. A coordinate system attached to the Earth is not an inertial reference frame because the Earth rotates and is accelerated with respect to the Sun. Although the solutions to most engineering problems can be obtained to a satisfactory degree of accuracy by assuming that an Earth-based reference frame is an inertial one, there are some applications in which the rotation of the Earth cannot be neglected; among these is the operation of a gyroscopic compass
So, the idea that "a truck is inertial if its velocity with respect to some [object] is constant" is still total nonsense, but my thinking that an "Earth-based reference frame is an inertial one" needed some qualifiers.   Radar guns work as if the earth was an inertial system, measuring speeds relative to that "inertial system."   But maybe I should have explained more about inertial and non-inertial systems in my papers.  The problem is that you cannot know what it is that others do not understand or would disagree with until you have shown them your views and get back responses.  That is what "peer reviews" are all about.  I'll have to think about what to do next.  I certainly cannot hope to convince a mathematician that a truck is NOT inertial if its velocity with respect to some object is constant.  But maybe I can figure out some way to make it clear that my truck experiment is worth trying. 

January 19, 2021
- Ah!  At 11:05 a.m. this morning I received word that the 3rd version of my paper "Relativity vs Quantum Mechanics Experiments" is now on-line.  I'm no sure what the delay was, but it's the latest version.  When the version I submitted on Sunday didn't appear yesterday (possibly because Monday was a holiday), I made a few additional minor changes and resubmitted it on Monday.  I was half-expecting the Sunday revision to appear with the Monday version as versions #3 and #4.  But it didn't happen.  The version I submitted on Sunday just vanished into the ether somewhere.

The fact that the speed of a truck can be measured from inside the truck by using the speed of light as a reference seems undeniable to me.  It can be done because the truck is a non-inertial system.  It is a container that moves because it is being powered by a motor.  That fact that it is moving at a constant speed, making it appear inertial, changes nothing, it is still a non-inertial system.  If the power supply is cut, the truck will slow down and stop, becoming part of the inertial system that is the earth's surface. 

What the truck experiment appears to measure is the difference in speed between the non-inertial system (truck) and the inertial system (earth).  It has nothing to do with the energy that is being used to make the truck move.  If you applied the brakes and used more energy to achieve the same speed, the experiment would produce the same results.  The radar guns are simply measuring the speed of the truck relative to the speed of light.  The speed of the truck does not add to the speed of light emitted on the truck, but it moves the walls of the truck toward or away from the oncoming light.   I definitely need to find some better way to explain that.  The difference between the way light works in inertial and non-inertial systems is something that I would think every scientist needs to understand.  Maybe they do, but I do not recall reading about it anywhere.

Meanwhile, I've gone back to work on my sci-fi novel once again.

January 18, 2021
- Yesterday morning, I revised my paper "Relativity and Radar Guns" to correct the error I described in yesterday's comment.  To my surprise, Vixra put it on-line as version #3 within an hour.  I then looked through another paper, "Relativity vs Quantum Mechanics Experiments" to see if that paper also needed to be corrected.  It not only needed to be corrected, it needed to be overhauled.  It's only a 5-page paper, so while the changes were major, it didn't take much time to make them.  I removed a lot of extraneous stuff about different kinds of radar guns and went straight to the key issue: A moving truck is NOT an inertial system, therefore you can determine the speed of the truck from inside the truck, contrary to the unshakable beliefs of many many Quantum Mechanics mathematicians.

I submitted the revised paper at about 1:45 yesterday afternoon, but, for some unknown reason, it still hasn't been put on-line as of 10:30 a.m. this morning.

The truck experiment described in those two papers is also an important part of my paper "Radar Guns & Einstein's Theories."  However, that paper is also about a lot of other things, and it doesn't focus on how mathematicians view the issue.  So, if I change that paper, it will be just to add a sentence, or part of a sentence, stating that a moving truck is not an inertial system, nor is a moving railroad train, which is what Einstein used in his thought experiments. 

I recall arguing with mathematicians on the sci-physics.relativity forum years ago about how a moving truck is not an inertial system, but I do not recall exactly what their response was.  I saved copies of 84 of those debates, some of them requiring as many as 20 separate files.  I can go through them to see what their arguments were, but I'm not sure what I'd do with the information if I found it.  Right now I feel like I found the final piece to a puzzle that has been bugging me for 6 or 7 years.  I'm wondering what I should do next.  Should I put it all into a book?   My papers are all on line, available for free, why would anyone pay money to buy a book I wrote that covers the same subjects?  If I wrote such a book, it would be mostly to bring an end to the whole subject by explaining things as I now see them.

Interestingly, my book about the anthrax attacks of 2001 is suddenly getting a "surge" in sales.  Amazon sold an e-book copy on December 28, another on January 6, and another on January 16.  That's three copies in three weeks!  The last time I sold a copy prior to December 28 was in August.  I wonder what the cause was for the "surge."  I suspect it is all the talk these days about conspiracy theorists.  I've probably mentioned conspiracy theorists and their beliefs about the anthrax case a thousand times in comments on this site.

Perhaps even more interestingly, when I woke up this morning I was thinking about my sci-fi novel that I was going to overhaul for one final time, while turning it from manuscript format into book format, back in December of 2019.  All that month I moaned about how I wanted to work on it, but radar guns kept interrupting my thought processes. 

When I woke this morning I suddenly remembered what that book is about:  It's about some scientists using a very unusual time machine to uncover and track a planned attack by right-wing Neo-Nazis on the White House and Capitol Building in Washington.   Hmm.  If I ever do get around to self-publishing it, I'm definitely going to have to mention the events of January 6, 2021, somewhere in the book.  And I need to think about whether the book would give someone ideas.  The attack is more of a military attack than a mob attack.

Lots to think about.  Maybe I should just read a book or listen to some podcasts until I can sort things out.

January 17, 2021
- Among the personal matters that I had to deal with last week was the fact that I needed to get my driver's license renewed.  Because of Covid-19, I dreaded the idea of sitting in the crowded DMV for an hour or two while waiting for my name to be called, and for some reason I worried about the eye test, even though my eyesight (while wearing glasses) is probably better than 20-20.  

On Friday afternoon I went to the DMV.  No line at all!  No waiting!  At the entry desk I showed them the form I'd obtained via the Internet and filled out at home, and they told me to go straight to the booth where they took my photograph.  There, after taking my photo, they gave me a number, then my number was immediately called for the final step of handing over the form and getting my eye-sight checked.   No problem.  I was out the door in probably less than 10 minutes after entering.  I didn't even get a chance to count how many others were there, but I doubt it was more than three or four.

While driving home, I wondered why that day's happenings at the DMV were so different from past experiences.  I decided it must be the new rule which allows most people under 65 to renew their driving licenses on-line.  Whatever it was, I was glad to have my part complete.

On Saturday morning I awoke thinking about science once again.  It now seems to me that most of the disagreements about Special Relativity that I've been involved with over the past 6 or 7 years stem from different interpretations of just two fundamental ideas: (1) The speed of light as described in Einstein's Second Postulate, and (2) Time being what clocks measure, as stated by Einstein.

Einstein Second Postulate is:
"light is always propagated in empty space with a definite velocity c which is independent of the state of motion of the emitting body."
It's a very simple and straightforward postulate, yet, as I state in my paper on this subject, mathematician physicists insist on twisting it to fit their beliefs, and most college textbooks use some twisted version.

All the postulate says is that, regardless of how fast the emitter is moving (or in what direction), light that the emitter emits will always travel at c, which is 299,792,458 meters per second.  (That also says that "emission theory" is wrong, the speed of the emitter is not added to the speed of light that is emitted.)  What it doesn't say is what Time Dilation is all about: Light is actually emitted at different speeds depending upon the motion of the emitter, however the faster the emitter moves the slower time passes for the emitter, so the emitter measures the same speed of light per second regardless of how fast the emitter is moving.

The reason mathematician physicists alter Einstein's Second Postulate to fit their beliefs is because at creates a situation that mathematicians consider to be impossible.  That situation is illustrated in Figures 1 & 2 below.

                      trucks demonstrating Einsteins Second Postulate

In Figure 1 the emitter is a light being held by a man standing on the road as a semi-truck passes by at 50 mph.  The man shines the light through a hole in the side of the truck, and the light hits the rear wall of the truck at c+v, which is the speed of light plus the speed of the truck.  Since this is how radar guns work (although they wouldn't use any hole in the side of the truck) there can be no doubt that light is emitted at c and the light hits the rear wall of the truck at c+v.

In Figure 2 the emitter is a light being held by a man inside the moving truck.  The man simply shines the light at the rear wall of the truck.  Since the speed of the light the emitter emits is still c, per Einstein's Second Postulate, the light still hits the rear wall at c+v.

This is where mathematicians scream and yell and start calling me names, because the distance between the emitter and the rear wall of the truck doesn't change in Figure 2 as it does in Figure 1.  The rear wall is moving toward the emitter in Figure 1, but it is not in Figure 2.  There is no disagreement about that.  The disagreement is about the fact that in both Figure 1 and 2 the rear wall is moving toward the oncoming light, which is traveling at c.  The light hits the wall at c+v which mathematicians consider to be impossible.  They argue that it means that the light is actually traveling at c+v, which is absurd.  How can they believe such nonsense?  Because they twist Einstein's Second Postulate to fit their beliefs, and their belief is that light is always emitted and received at c

This morning I awoke realizing something else. It could be the final piece to the puzzle.  It's been knocking around in my head for years, but now I see where it fits.  

In Figures 1 and 2 the light is received at c+v.  Why?  Because the moving truck is NOT an "inertial system.  Experiments always work the same way in inertial systems where one is moving and the other is stationary, but a truck is a powered system, it is not intertial.  If you turn off the engine, the truck will slow to a stop on the road.  The road is part of an inertial system, the spinning earth, and the stopped truck becomes part of that inertial system. 

In Figure 1 above, the man with the light is standing in an inertial system and he is measuring the speed of a NON-inertial vehicle.  In Figure 2 the man with the light is standing in a NON-inertial system (the moving truck) and is measuring the speed of a NON-inertial vehicle (the moving truck). 

I could go on and on, but I'll save it for a paper.  However, the realization that the key to understanding how the speed of a truck can be measured from inside the truck results from the FACT that the truck is a powered vehicle, NOT an inertial system, means I have to correct an error in my paper on "Relativity and Radar Guns."  In that paper I envision a device that will measure motion relative to the local speed of light, and I wrote:
In theory, the device can measure its own speed relative to the local speed of light wherever it is located. It can measure the speed of a moving truck while inside the truck, it can measure the speed of an airplane while inside the airplane, and it should even be able to measure the speed of the International Space Station (ISS) from inside the ISS.
The part in bold letters is wrong.  The ISS is an inertial system.  You cannot measure the speed of an inertial system from inside the inertial system.

I also need to find the best and simplest way to explain all this.  I realize there is no way to penetrate closed minds, but there are a lot of people who haven't yet reached the point where they have closed their minds.  And by explaining things in the simplest way, I may even get a better understanding of it myself.

Comments for Sunday, January 10, 2021, thru Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021:

January 14, 2021 - It's a bit difficult for me to write comments for this web site right now.  I've got a lot a personal matters on my mind, including the death of a nephew.  Plus, it sometimes seems like I've reached the end of my science quest. 

The quest began six or seven years ago when I couldn't make sense of how so many scientists could disagree with what experiments demonstrated to be true and real - specifically time dilation.  The argument continues today.  I just visited a Facebook group I hadn't visited in at least 5 years, "Science, Technology, and Society Discussion Corner, and I found an article titled "Time Might Not Exist Outside of Our Minds, Propose Scientists: Researchers create a new theory of time that goes against established physics."  It's an article from 2016, but someone posted it a few days ago.

Interestingly, although it's a science forum with 32,500 members, I had to dig through many interesting posts about Trump to find that article about science.  So, the forum is mostly about "society" these days.  And it seems to me that society these days is showing the same two sides that a lot of scientists show: There are those who think emotionally, and there are those who think logically.  And we are all learning that while you can always use logic to change the mind of someone who thinks logically, there is no way to change the mind of someone who thinks emotionally.

And in 7 or 8 years of arguing, I found that there is no point to arguing with someone who thinks emotionally.  The only benefit that can come from such an argument is that you might learn more about the science by looking at things from different angles, even if the other side is incapable of learning anything.

January 12, 2021 - Just before lunch this morning, I finished reading another e-book I got from the library.  I didn't read it on my Kindle, although that was the expectation when I borrowed it early yesterday morning.  I assumed it would be in Kindle format, but when I was preparing to downloaded it, I saw that it was going to be in .epub format.  My Kindle can't handle .epub files.  But, I downloaded the starter file into my computer anyway.  When I did so, I was surprised to see that it was an .acsm file.  Having no idea what an .ascm file is, I double-clicked on it and the book was downloaded into my computer in .pdf format.  My Kindle can't handle .pdf files, either.  So, I started reading in on my computer, reading about 40% of it yesterday and the rest this morning (it's only 238 pages long). 

Anyway, the book was "Thirty-Three Teeth" by Colin Cotterill.

Thirty-three teeth

It's the second book in the Dr. Siri Paiboun mystery series.  I'd listened to the audio book of the first book in the series two months ago and enjoyed it very much.  I enjoyed this one, too.  I already have the third book in the series in Kindle format.  As of this moment, there are 15 books in the series.  The mystery series features Laotian coroner Dr. Siri Paiboun, who is 72 years old when the story takes place, which is in 1977, a couple years after the Viet Nam war ended.  The crime that needs solving is what appears to be three bear attacks, all on women.  They don't have many bears in Laos, so the crimes are immediately suspicious.  While the crimes are very grim, the book is very funny in parts.  The humor is mostly satire about how things work (or don't work) in a country that was recently taken over by communists and where nearly everyone with skills or an education has fled to Thailand.  Dr. Paiboun is the only coroner in the country, and he was put into the job even though had no experience as a coroner.  He was just a country doctor when the communists took over.  Oh yes, I neglected to mention that he is also a shaman, of sorts.  He gets weird visions which help him understand the crimes he is trying to solve.  And he has a nurse and some friends and relatives who also help.  Fortunately, they all have great senses of humor.  It all takes place in one of the most backward countries in Asia, yet it is very interesting and funny, like looking into a strange, alien world.  I'm looking forward to reading the third book in the series.

Meanwhile, the troll who posts insults to my log file was at it again yesterday with five new messages, all of which are screwball arguments over words. Sigh.    

January 11, 2021
- Sigh. I thought for a moment that my careful explanation of what time is and how time works might have made the troll who posts to my web site log file realize the error of his ways.  No such luck.  This morning's log file contained multiple copies of four wild rants which show that he not only didn't understand what I wrote, he isn't interested in understanding what I write.

The rants were posted via a web site in Amsterdam, Netherlands.  Here's the first one (highlighted in red) with most of its log file coding included: - - [10/Jan/2021:13:50:25 -0600] "GET /Imbecile Ed Lake is too stupid to realize that with his definition of Time he contradicts his previous claim that 'Time is a thing' turns out that he defines TIME AS A MEASUREMENT ... AKA, an idea, measuring is a human endeavour not 'a thing' HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/78.0"
No, I did not define time as a "measurement."  I repeatedly defined time as "particle spin," which is a thing (like a sub-atomic particle) going round and round continuously.  That sub-atomic particle goes round and round at a regular rate.  And that regular rate is a measurement of time.  I said it is a "thing" because its spin can be slowed down by motion and gravity.  It is the troll who views time as an "idea."  A idea cannot be slowed by motion or gravity.

Here's the troll's second post with all the extra coding removed:
Imbecile Ed Lake is too stupid to understand that his definition of Time is-CIRCULAR:'the measured or measurable period [OF TIME] during which an action, process, or condition exists or continues'---What a clueless moron!
Hmm. Yes, spin is circular.  But that doesn't make "time" circular.  It just means that spin is part of a process that repeats itself.

Here's his third post:
Stupid Ed Lake can define Time whichever way he wants---HE is still measuring MOTION...NOT TIME ITSELF-   and what he is stating is that the MEASUREMENT OF MOTION began at the Big Bang ...NOT TIME ITSELF
Ah!  That's hilarious!!  What he is saying is what I've been saying about how  NOTHING can change the troll's mind.  Here's the quote from Paul Davies' book "About Time" that I used in yesterday's comment:
The point is, rather, that the only meaningful way to measure physical change in Einstein's universe is to forget time “as such” and gauge change solely by the readings of real, physical clocks, not by some nonexistent notion of “time itself.”
The troll is using "some nonexistent notion of 'time itself'," and is arguing that that is the only correct way to talk about time.

I explained in detail, and included quotes from scientists, how his definition of "time" is meaningless when it comes to science.  In science "time" is defined as
The Merriam-Webster on-line dictionary defines "time": it is "the measured or measurable period during which an action, process, or condition exists or continues.

The fundamental and measurable unit of time is one particle spin.  We use clocks which measure that particle spin indirectly.  It is because sub-atomic particles spin at a regular rate that clocks of all kinds that are constructed of sub-atomic particles will also tick at some regular rate.

Here's the troll's fourth and final comment:
Imbecile Ed Lake is too stupid to understand that for Einstein Time is a DIMENSION--%3EA mathematical construct used to plot the MEASUREMENT OF MOTION-and Time Dilation is just a variation on said dimension
That is how a mathematical model of space-time is constructed.  It is one way of viewing time.  When you view time as a "dimension," you are not saying that time is a dimension, you are saying that time can be used or viewed as a dimension in order to construct a mathematical model.  When Joe traveled from Point-A to Point-B in space, he also traveled from Moment-A to Moment-B in time.  It takes time to go from Point-A to Point-B.  Duh.

What the troll has demonstrated is that he doesn't care how Einstein, scientists or dictionaries define time.  He's defining time the way he believes time should be defined by everyone.  And if anyone disagrees, then they are wrong, because the troll (like Donald Trump and so many other closed-minded people who think emotionally, not logically) considers any disagreement with his beliefs to be an attack on on him personally.  So, he responds to an attack with name-calling and other attacks.  Like Trump, it is the only way he knows how to argue.
                      example of Trump's logic.
Having confirmed that once again, I'm going to try to ignore any further crap the troll may put on my log file.             

January 10, 2021
- At about 2 p.m. on Friday afternoon, I finished reading another book on my Kindle.  The book was "About Time: Einstein's Unfinished Revolution" by Paul Davies.

About Time

It was a very interesting book, while at the same time being mindbogglingly tedious and boring in parts.  Of course, the tedious and boring parts were the parts where the subject was mathematics.  I just loathe going through page after page of discussions about all the various mathematical models of the universe.  Are there multiple universes or just one where everything is tied together with strings?  Are the past, present and future equally real and do they all exist at the same time?  Or is nothing real?  Is it all an illusion?  How many different mathematical fantasies about the universe can you create?

Fortunately, the interesting parts of the book made the tedious parts tolerable.  I have 30 pages of notes.  Looking over those notes, I see many pertain to something I mentioned in yesterday's comment.  If time began with the Big Bang, doesn't that mean that nothing can happen before the Big Bang?  There can be no cause for the Big Bang, because a cause comes before an event in time.

Things can still happen if there is no "time" as we measure it, there is just no way of knowing if they took ten seconds or ten trillion years by current methods of measuring time.  We can assume they happened in order, there was no effect before a cause, but there is no way to know how long it took for a cause to produce the effect.  Here's a quote from page 17 of the paperback book version's Prologue:
When scientists began to explore the implications of Einstein's time for the universe as a whole, they made one of the most important discoveries in the history of human thought: that time, and hence all of physical reality, must have had a definite origin in the past. If time is flexible and mutable, as Einstein demonstrated, then it is possible for time to come into existence—and also to pass away again; there can be a beginning and an end to time. Today the origin of time is called “the big bang.”
Here's a quote from the bottom of page 29 and the top of page 30 that fits well with the beliefs of the troll who posts insults into my log file:
For Aristotle, time was motion. This is hardly revolutionary: we perceive time through motion, whether the movement of the sun across the sky or the hands around a clock face. The concept of time as an independently existing thing, an entity in its own right, did not emerge until the European medieval age.
Time is not "motion," it is particle spin, which is a very specific type of motion.

The most interesting parts of the book for me were the parts where the author describes in detail how time and light work together.  This is the area where mathematicians (and their text books) get things totally wrong.  If light is emitted from the sun at 300,000 kilometers per second (kps), and if you are moving toward or away from the sun at high speeds, the light from the sun will still pass you at 300,000 kps.  Mathematicians argue that this means that light travels at c for all observers, but that is a very bad way to state things, since it causes crazy misunderstandings.  Here is how it is phrased in one college text book:
“The unusual properties of the velocity of light are: It is a constant for all observers, irrespective of how they are moving. It is a universal speed limit, which no material object can exceed. It is independent of the velocity of its source and that of the observer.”
That is greatly misleading.  It should probably say:
“The unusual properties of the velocity of light are: It appears to be a constant for all observers, irrespective of how they are moving. It is a universal speed limit, which no material object can exceed. It appears to be independent of the velocity of its source and that of the observer.”
The speed of the observer changes the length of a second for the observer.  So, when he measures light passing by at 300,000 kilometers per second while he is moving (assuming it were possible to do so), his second is longer than it is on the sun.  That means he is measuring a totally different speed than what was measured on the sun.  Therefore, it would have been even more accurate to say, "the speed of light can be very different for the emitter and receiver, since a second may be longer for the receiver, yet he will still measure the same speed of light per second."

In the book "About Time" it says this on page 52:
Let me try to illustrate this point in detail. Imagine switching on a flashlight momentarily, and sending a pulse of light off into space. The light will recede from you at 300,000 kilometers per second. Now jump into a rocket ship and zoom after it. Suppose the rocket achieves a speed of 200,000 kilometers per second relative to Earth. Common sense would say that the light pulse is now receding from you at only 100,000 kilometers per second. But, according to Einstein, this is not so: the pulse recedes at 300,000 kilometers per second both when you are standing on Earth and when you are zooming after the pulse at 200,000 kilometers per second. Whichever reference frame you measure the speed of the pulse from—Earth or rocket—you get the same answer! It doesn't matter how hard you chase the light pulse, you cannot reduce its relative speed by a single kilometer per second.
Speed is distance traveled per unit time, so the speed of light can only be constant in all reference frames if distances and intervals of time are somehow different for different observers, depending on their state of motion.
The "twin paradox" is also clarified in great detail, showing that there is no "paradox," since one twin has to accelerate to gain speed while the other twin stays on earth and does not accelerate.  So, contrary to the beliefs of countless mathematicians, we know who was moving.

Here's another quote from the book:

It is remarkable that, nearly a century after Einstein discovered the relativity of time, people are still thrown by the idea and keep raising the same objections. Even when they get a full explanation, many nonscientists simply don't believe it.
The book was first published in 1995, so now it has been well over a century since Einstein discovered the relativity of time.  And many nonscientists (and many mathematician physicists) still don't believe it.

Here's another quote that addresses the arguments I keep getting from the troll who posts insults to my web site log file:
The point is, rather, that the only meaningful way to measure physical change in Einstein's universe is to forget time “as such” and gauge change solely by the readings of real, physical clocks, not by some nonexistent notion of “time itself.”
Among the passages I copied into my notes file are some interesting quotes from other authors.  Here's a quote from the famous musician Hector Berlioz:
Time is a great teacher, but unfortunately it kills all its pupils.
I can highly recommend "About Time" by Paul Davies.  

Comments for Friday, January 1, 2021, thru Saturday, Jan. 9, 2021:

January 9, 2021
- Hmm.  The troll who posts insults into my web site log file really went on a rampage yesterday.  He posted multiple copies of 5 more messages filled with insults.  But what he was attacking me about is something that I realized I should have mentioned in the imaginary discussion I created yesterday.  So, I'll create another imaginary discussion to address that point:
Him:  Wait wait wait.  How can time have begun with the Big Bang?  There must have been something going on before the Big  Bang to cause the Big Bang.  So, how can time begin with the Big Bang?

Me:  Ah.  Yes.  We simply have different definitions of "time."  My definition is Einsteins' definition: "Time is what clocks measure."  You evidently have a more general definition that you cannot articulate.  Whatever happened before the Big Bang occurred when there was no time.  There were just events.  There was before and after, there was cause and effect, but there was no time.  That means we do not know how long anything took.  Whatever triggered the Big Bang could have taken 20 seconds or 20 trillion years.  There was no time, which means there was no way to measure how long it took for something to happen.

Him:  But things still happened!  And they happened in time!

Me:  Yes, things happened.  No, they did not happen in time.  Or more correctly, they may have happened in your general definition of time, but they didn't happen in Einstein's or my definition of time.  Your definition of time has no meaning: If something happened, it happened in time.  What is time?  It is where things happen.  Period.

Him:  And Event-A caused Event-B.

Me:  Yes.  We speculate that there must have been an Event-A to cause Event-B, because something caused particles to start to spin and measurable time to begin.  What is "unmeasurable time"?  It is your time.  It's time without meaning.  My idea of time begins when particles started to spin, creating measurable time that allows clocks to work.  It is time with meaning.

Him:  I think you are just making things more complicated than they need to be.

Me: Giving things meaning doesn't complicate them. It makes them understandable.  To define time as "when things happen" is just mouthing words with no real meaning.

Him:  I never gave that definition.  It is something you created.
Me:  Okay.  What is your definition of time?

Him: It's the dictionary definition.  I just looked it up.  It's "the indefinite continued progress of existence and events in the past, present, and future regarded as a whole."

Me:  That's your dictionary's definition.  My dictionary's definition is "the measured or measurable period during which an action, process, or condition exists or continues."

Him:  I like my definition better.

Me: Yes, and that is why people argue over the definition of time.  My definition is scientific, your definition is general and non-scientific. If you want to discuss science, you have to use my definition.  All your definition does is generate arguments.

Him:  I still like my definition better.

Me: If your goal is to generate arguments, your definition is definitely better.  My goal is to end arguments by determining what the facts are.  That's why I prefer my definition.

Him: It is not my goal to generate arguments!

Me:  Do you really want to start an argument about that?
No answer.  

January 8, 2021 - As expected, the troll who posts insults to my web site log file responded to the comment I wrote about him yesterday by posting more insults to my web site log file.  There's no point in showing what he wrote, since his attacks are basically the same as what he wrote the previous day.  When you argue with troll, or with conspiracy theorists and others with closed minds, all you do is cause them to close their minds even tighter.  You are challenging their beliefs, which they view as a personal attack.  So, they fight back with real personal attacks, typically in the form of name calling.

While there is no point in arguing with such people (except to help you organize your own thoughts), I can still imagine what a discussion would be like IF it were possible to discuss things with them.  It could be very informative for both sides.  Maybe it would go something like this:
Him:  What is time?

: Time is particle spin.

Him:  That cannot be.

Me:  Why not?

Him:  Because particle spin is motion, and motion occurs in time.  Therefore spin cannot be time.

Me:  Using that kind of reasoning, you are saying that time can only be a concept, it cannot be anything tangible that exists in time.  But we know time is not just a concept, since motion and gravity can slow down time.  We know that motion and gravity slow down particle spin, so time is particle spin.   We also know that photons are particles that do not spin, they oscillate.  And they can only exist in motion, traveling at the speed of light.  At the speed of light, they do not experience time.  You can argue that oscillations are motion, but oscillations are clearly not time.  So, motion and spin are not exactly the same.   

Him: But how can particle spin cause time?  Causes occur in time, they cannot be time.

Me: I didn't say particle spin causes time.  I said particle spin is time. Asking what causes time is asking what causes particle spin.  No one knows.  It appears to simply be how the universe is constructed.  It appears that the Big Bang produced particles which spin, and that started time.  Evidently, there was no time before the Big Bang because everything was so tightly compacted that nothing could spin.  When particles were released and able to spin, time began.  We can calculate how long it has been since particles began to spin by calculating how much time it must have taken for the expanding universe to reach its current state. 

Him: To me it seems that you are still saying that particle spin causes time.

Me: That is probably because you already have some idea in your head as to what time must be.  You probably believe that time is some kind of process, and you want to know when that process began and what caused it to begin.  Time is not a process.  It's not an idea.  It is particle spin.  Particle spin enables processes to happen, processes such as memory and aging and decay.  You can say that time "causes" memories, aging and decay, or you can say that particle spin "causes" memories, aging and decay.  Time and particle spin are the same thing.

Him: But particle spin is motion, and motion occurs in time, it cannot be time.

Me: Motion slows down particle spin, so they are not the same thing.  I suppose you could consider them to be two different "kinds" of motion.  And neither kind can exceed the speed of light, not separately nor together.  When a spinning particle moves through space it slows down.  The faster it moves, the slower it spins.  If it could reach the speed of light, the spinning would stop and time would stop.  Then we are once again in the realm of photons.  Photons are particles that do not spin, they oscillate.  And they travel at the speed of light.  They cannot go slower.  And they do not experience time.  They can travel though space forever.  Then we need to think about muons.  Muons are particles that are created when molecules in the air are hit by Gama ray particles.  Muons exist for only a very short time, but the faster they move, the longer they exist.

Him: Time might slow down for a muon, but we're talking about objects like humans and space ships. 

Me:  Muons are particles that spin.  Objects like you, me and space ships are constructed of atoms, which are in turn constructed of particles that spin.  If I am in a space ship, all the particles that are part of the space ship and part of me travel together at the same speed through space.  Our motion is nearly identical as we move through space.  So, we all experience time passing at the same rate - a rate that is slower than what is being experienced back on Earth.

Him:  Okay.  I can see that motion and spin are not always the same thing.  I
need to think this over.

Me:  You do that.    
Sigh.  If it were somehow possible to have such a discussion with a troll or a conspiracy theorist, how much more enjoyable this world would be!  

January 7, 2021 - We definitely live in very interesting times.  The election of those two Democrat senators in Georgia is like a great ending to a suspense movie.  And the "hero" of the movie is Donald Trump, since those two senators probably could not have won if Trump hadn't been supporting their opponents.  Voters turned out in record numbers to vote against the candidates supported by Trump. That is really a great ending to a suspense story.

And then we have yesterday's attack on and attempted takeover of the Capitol Building in Washington by Trump supporters, fully encouraged by Trump.  Four of the rioters died, including one woman who was shot by police.  And the end result, just like in a great suspense movie, was that Joe Biden was confirmed to be our next President. The only question now seems to be: Can we afford to leave Trump remain as President for another two weeks?  How much additional harm could he cause during that time?  Interestingly, it would be Republicans (Trump's cabinet) who would remove him and replace him with Mike Pence.  They're discussing it, but will it happen?  I suspect not.  Trump seems to have finally accepted that he won't be President after January 20, although he will undoubtedly believe for the rest of life that it was all the result of a conspiracy against him. 

It has also been a truly great demonstration of the idiocy of conspiracy theorists and how they think.  They are totally immune to logic and common sense.  I keep wanting to create a cartoon where Trump is ranting, "Everyone just needs to stop listening to people who disagree with me and listen only to those who agree with me, then you will see that I am right!!!!"

That is basically what his prime argument has been.  And his supporters agree.

Interesting stuff.  I imagine that in the next few months there will be dozens of books written about Trump's final days in office.

Meanwhile, the troll who posts insults via my web site log file posted six more of them yesterday morning via a location in Cheyenne, Wyoming.  Here's what the first one said: - - [06/Jan/2021:11:11:40 -0600] "GET /Stupid Ed lake does not understand that %22Time does not tick%22 it is highly illogical and it violates Causality HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/78.0"
Did I say that time "ticks"?  I said that "time is particle spin."  Particle spin is the cause of time, and time is the effect of particle spin.  Here's his second message, stripped of all the log file coding:  
Stupid Ed lake does not understand that Time Dilation only occurs in Relativity--alongside Length Contraction--   you can NOT have the one without the other
Time Dilation only occurs in Relativity?  That makes no sense at all.  Time dilation occurs virtually everywhere.  Relativity is just the theory that explains Time Dilation.  The third message:
Stupid Ed lake does not understand that in Relativity Time is a DIMENSION not a "thing"
I understand that "Relativity Time" is only a dimension if you want to build a mathematical model that works that way.  Fourth message:
Stupid Ed lake does not understand that Time Dilation is a MATHEMATICAL TRICK courtesy of that mathematical construct named SPACETIME
Hmm.  I agree that "spacetime" is just a "mathematical construct," but Time Dilation exists without mathematics.  Under the right conditions, Time Dilation can be seen.  You can see a pulsar flashing faster when you are moving faster through space.  No mathematics are needed.  It's flashing faster because your seconds get longer when you move faster, while one second at the pulsar remains unchanged.  Clearly the troll and I are not communicating.  Probably because of the stupid way he does his arguing.  His fifth message was:
Stupid Ed lake does not understand that Time Dilation is Mathematical Metaphysics    Its an AXIOM
Huh?  Metaphysics is the study of things that do not involve material reality.  Is he saying that Time is not real or that Time Dilation is not real?   An axiom is something that is accepted as being true.  So, is he saying Time Dilation is not real but it is accepted as being real?  Why can't he just say what he means????  His sixth and final message was:
Stupid Ed lake does not understand that its equaly as stupid to say that space expands in space and to say time slows down in time
I fully agree.  And the troll is the only one who has ever said such a "stupid" thing.  I've said that material from the Big Bang expands into empty space, and that motion and gravity slow down time, just as many experiments have verified.  Time is particle spin.  Time is the cause of aging and decay.  Everything else we know about time is memory and records and what we learn from memory and records.

My memory and records show that arguing with the troll is mostly a waste of time.  But, just like showing how conspiracy theorists think, showing how trolls argue can be also be interesting and educational.  In the end, you just shake your head and wonder: How can anyone think that way? 

January 6, 2021 - On my Kindle, I've been reading a book "about time" that contains a lot of excellent information.  At the moment, I'm only 40% done, so I don't want to write a review yet, but I want to mention that the book explains in great detail how it can be easily determined who is moving relative to whom. The simplest example is that the person who moves faster must accelerate to get moving faster.  The "stationary" person does not accelerate, but remains in an "inertial frame."  The moving person accelerates to get moving faster, and then cuts the engines and starts coasting in an "inertial frame."  So, there can be no doubt that the person who accelerated to a higher speed is the one moving faster.

And the book describes in detail how time slows down for the person who is moving faster, and how that can be verified in various ways.  Then the author wrote something that directly related to what I had written yesterday about "Time is Particle Spin."  The book says,
A breakthrough came in mid-1912, about the time the Einsteins moved back to Zurich, where Albert took the post of professor at his alma mater, the ETH. Einstein came to the conclusion that a fully satisfactory general theory of relativity could be obtained only by giving up the normal rules of geometry. It was wrong to think that gravitation causes a distortion or warping of time, he realized—gravitation was a warping of time! More generally, both space and time must be warped. A gravitational field is not a field of force at all, but a curvature in the geometry of spacetime.
I had just written that gravitation causes particle spin to slow down, and the slowing of spin causes time to slow down.  So, am I wrong, or was Einstein just looking at things mathematically?  In a mathematical model of the solar system or the universe you can imagine how spacetime affects gravity and time.  But we can measure differences in time on a local scale, in some local building.  Time ticks slower on the ground floor than on higher floors.  How can that be time causing gravity?  And if speed also causes time to slow down, doesn't that say that time is slowed on a local level?  You can view things from a cosmological point of view and see thing differently, but I still think that time is particle spin.  Besides, when Einstein was writing his papers they didn't even know that particles spin.   Particle spin wasn't discovered until the 1920s.

Interestingly, this also fits into the book I'm listening to while driving to the bank and grocery stores.  Here's a passage from that book:
Over the past decade, airlines have also learned the dangers of the authority bias. In the old days, the captain was king. His commands were not to be doubted. If a copilot suspected an oversight, he wouldn’t have dared to address it out of respect for—or fear of—his captain. Since this behavior was discovered, nearly every airline has instituted crew resource management (CRM), which coaches pilots and their crews to discuss any reservations they have openly and quickly. In other words: They carefully deprogram the authority bias. CRM has contributed more to flight safety in the past twenty years than have any technical advances.    
My mind is open to being shown to be wrong, but I'm not going to accept being wrong just because I disagree with something Einstein wrote or said over 110 years ago.  I don't agree with "length contraction" either.  It's never been confirmed, and I think it could just be an idea Einstein came up with because he had no way to know about (or even imagine) how particle spin is time. 

Meanwhile, yesterday I did some digging around and found what I think was my first paper.  It's titled "Time Dilation Re-visualized," and it's dated May 31, 2015.  It's basically just my early 2014 web page "Time Dilation - as I understand it" turned into a science paper.  It describes how you can tell who is moving faster through space by using a pulsar as a clock.  The pulsar will appear to pulse faster for the person who is traveling fastest (assuming both are moving at right angles to the pulsar, not toward or away from it) because that person will count more pulses per his longer second.  

After more than 6 years of research into this subject, I still find it fascinating.

January 5, 2021
- When I went through my web site log file this morning to see how many visitors I had and who was visiting this site, I found three more messages from the troll who puts personal attacks into my log file.  Mentioning those attacks just encourages him to post more, but this time I think they are worth mentioning.  Here are the three messages he posted via a web site in Roosendaal, Netherlands, which he has used before: - - [04/Jan/2021:15:58:12 -0600] "GET /STUPID  Ed  lake  still  does  not  seem  to  realize  that  ANY  type  of  spin  OCCURS  IN  TIME  so  spin--of  any  type--can  not  be  TIME  ITSELF HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/78.0" - - [04/Jan/2021:15:59:02 -0600] "GET /STUPID  Ed  lake  still  does  not  seem  realize  that  PARTICLE  SPIN  speeds  up  IN  TIME---and  PARTICLE  SPIN  slows  down  IN  TIME---so  particle  spin  can  NOT  be  TIME  ITSELF HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/78.0" - - [04/Jan/2021:15:59:37 -0600] "GET /STUPID  Ed  lake  still  does  not  seem  realize  that  particle  spin  is  A  TYPE  OF  MOTION  and  as  such---IT  OCCURS  IN  TIME  so  particle  spin  can  not  be  TIME  ITSELF HTTP/1.1" 404 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/78.0"
As you can see, he's viewing time philosophically or conceptually, as if it is just an idea.  Time is simply something that is always there ticking away. 

But that view is OBVIOUSLY WRONG, since it cannot account for time dilation.  Notice, too, that he does not state what time is, he only says what it is not.

We know that time can speed up and time can slow down, and we know what causes that change in the rate of time.  We know that time ticks at a slightly different rate just about everywhere in the universe, depending upon the speed and location of the object that is experiencing time.  That says that time is NOT just a concept or idea or philosophy.  It is a thing that can be affected by motion and gravity.

Remember, too, that when Einstein described time, he simply described what was measured with a clock.  And any object which spins or ticks at a regular rate is a clock.  And every object in the universe is constructed of particles which tick (or spin) like tiny clocks.  That is because they are clocks.

Memories and records are not time.  They are memories and records of what occurred in time.  So are aging and decay, which relate to particles.  Muon particles exist longer when moving faster.  Atomic clocks are based upon the idea that particles operate at a constant rate as long as the atomic clock is not moved.

We also know a lot of things about "The Big Bang" that suggest that time may not have existed before the Big Bang, i.e, there may have been a time when there was no time.  The theory is that there was just a "singularity," or some highly compressed object which had no way to measure or experience time.  Then that object exploded, beginning with a period of "cosmic inflation."  During that brief period, things moved much faster than the speed of light.  If there is no time, there can be no speed of light, because "speed" is distance over time.

The troll seems to believe that you can have time without any means to measure time, since time is just an idea or concept.  If that were true, then there would only be one time.  In our universe, time passes at a different rate almost everywhere, although the difference is usually too small to notice.

Maybe the next time the troll posts his insults to my web site log he will explain what he believes instead of just posting insults and how he does NOT believe what I am saying.  What does he believe that time is if it can be affected by motion and gravity?  It cannot just be an idea or concept.  If it can be affected by motion and gravity, it must be a "thing."

January 4, 2021 - We definitely live in interesting times.  This morning the news is mostly about Trump's "crime boss" phone call to try to overturn the election by forcing and intimidating people to lie and cheat and steal for him.  I searched around and found that the York News-Times has a transcript of the entire hour-long call, plus a complete audio copy which can be downloaded in MP3 format.  I'm listening to it as I type this comment.  (The New York Times web site, The Wall Street Journal's web site and other sites have the same thing, but you have to be subscribers to get to them.)

It's interesting that the phone call was recorded, but Trump either didn't know about it or didn't care.  The news outlets are calling it "unprecedented."  It is definitely an amazing example of trying to argue with a rabid conspiracy theorist. Here is one bit I copied from the transcript:
Raffensperger: Mr. President, the problem you have with social media, they — people can say anything.

Trump: Oh this isn't social media. This is Trump media. It's not social media. It's really not it's not social media. I don't care about social media. I couldn't care less.  Social media is Big Tech. Big Tech is on your side. I don't even know why you have a side, because you should want to have an accurate election. And you're a Republican.

Raffensperger: We believe that we do have an accurate election.

Trump: No, no you don't. No, no you don't. You don't have. Not even close. You're off by hundreds of thousands of votes. And just on the small numbers, you're off on these numbers and these numbers can't be just — well, why wont? — Okay. So you sent us into Cobb County for signature verification, right? You sent us into Cobb County, which we didn't want to go into. And you said it would be open to the public. And we could have our - So we had our experts there they weren't allowed into the room. But we didn't want Cobb County. We wanted Fulton County. And you wouldn't give it to us. Now, why aren't we doing signature — and why can't it be open to the public? And why can't we have professionals do it instead of rank amateurs who will never find anything and don't want to find anything? They don't want to find, you know, they don't want to find anything. Someday you'll tell me the reason why, because I don't understand your reasoning, but someday you'll tell me the reason why. But why don't you want to find?
There are probably a hundred better quotes in the transcript that show how conspiracy theorists think.  They constantly argue beliefs against facts, and they argue that you just need to listen to people who agree with them instead of people who disagree with them, and then you'll see what "the truth" is.

It is truly an amazing discussion - something for the history books (and probably a lot of psychology books).

January 3, 2021
Yesterday morning I awoke realizing something.  For weeks I have been constantly modifying and adding new stuff at the beginning of a new paper tentatively titled "Motion Relative to the Speed of Light," and it now seems what I was really looking for to start the paper was what I wrote nearly 5 years ago in another paper, "What is Time?"  It's also something I mentioned in my December 27 comment, when I quoted a troll who wrote this in my log file:
Stupid Ed lake does not understand that when he says *Time=Particle Spin* what he is really saying is *Time=Motion*   Motion occurs in Time---Motion stops in Time---Motion slows down in Time
No, I'm not saying that "Time=Motion."  I'm saying that "Time=Particle Spin." I'm saying that there is a very important difference between particle spin and the motion of a particle.  The basic energy of a particle is a measurement of its spin, while the motion of a particle is its movement through space (which can add kinetic energy to the particle).  But more importantly, I'm also saying that every sub-atomic particle in the entire universe is a little clock that constantly ticks off time as it spins.  And, each sub-atomic particle ticks off time at a slightly different rate depending upon its motion and speed through the universe and its proximity to a gravitational mass.

That is also the essence of Einstein's theories.  Here's a quote from a PBS article:
Then it suddenly hit him, the key to the entire problem. Einstein recalled, "A storm broke loose in my mind." The answer was simple and elegant: time can beat at different rates throughout the universe, depending on how fast you moved. Imagine clocks scattered at different points in space, each one announcing a different time, each one ticking at a different rate. One second on Earth was not the same length as one second on the moon or one second on Jupiter. In fact, the faster you moved, the more time slowed down. (Einstein once joked that in relativity theory, he placed a clock at every point in the universe, each one running at a different rate, but in real life he didn't have enough money to buy even one.) This meant that events that were simultaneous in one frame were not necessarily simultaneous in another frame, as Newton thought. He had finally tapped into "God's thoughts." He would recall excitedly, "The solution came to me suddenly with the thought that our concepts and laws of space and time can only claim validity insofar as they stand in a clear relation to our experiences.... By a revision of the concept of simultaneity into a more malleable form, I thus arrived at the theory of relativity."
So, every point in the universe has its own time, ticking at its own rate, and at each of those points the speed of light is measured to be 299,792,458 meters PER SECOND according to the clock located at that point.

That means that motion through space is very different from particle spin.  Einstein evidently didn't know about particle spin.  It appears that he believed that time slows down the faster an object is moving because he believed distances and lengths shorten when moving. That makes no sense to me.  As I see it, one kind of motion affects the other kind.  Motion through space slows particle spin.  And time is particle spin, which means that motion through space slows time.  A particle that moves through space but does not spin does not experience time.  It's called a "photon."  A photon oscillates, it does not spin.  It is pure energy.  A particle that spins is matter.  Turning matter into energy involves turning a spinning particle into a particle that consists of pure energy and moves through space at the speed of light.  Lengths and distances have nothing to do with anything, and that is why "length contraction" has never been confirmed.

Einstein once said: "I very rarely think in words at all. A thought comes, and I may try to express in words afterwards."

That is probably true of all of us.  Putting an idea into words that will properly convey its meaning to others can be very difficult.  "Time is particle spin" is something that I can visualize and it makes perfect sense to me, but if someone else sees no difference between motion and spin, then explaining the idea to them can be very difficult.  What it says is that, in full agreement with Einstein, every particle in the universe is a little clock ticking off time at its own rate, a rate that varies depending upon its motion through space and its proximity to any large mass.

And, my idea for a paper titled "Motion Relative to the Speed of Light" hits a snag if I try to explain that theoretically, since every particle is a tiny clock that ticks at its own rate, that means that every atom that emits a photon of light emits a photon that travels at a slightly different speed than photons emitted by every other atom.  In practice, the difference is not measurable because (1) it can be very very small, and (2) because no one knows how to measure the one-way speed of light. 

So, every object in the universe is moving at zero percent of the speed of light as the speed of light is measured by that object, but every other object in the universe that is not stationary relative to the first object, is moving at some percentage of the speed of light as measured by the first object.  That is what Einstein's time dilation equation says:

Einstein's time dilatio formula
Unfortunately, mathematically there is no way to tell who is moving and who is stationary.  It is simply assumed that the observer inside the frame of reference is stationary.

If you want to know who is actually moving, you evidently have to use LOGIC to do that.  I may think I am stationary and the sun, moon and stars are all in orbits around me, and I can develop mathematical equations to confirm that, but simple logical experiments will show that it is not true.

The question now is: Do I continue to modify my paper on "Motion Relative to the Speed of Light," or should I update my paper "What is Time?" to incorporate all these other ideas.

Or maybe I should just lay down on my couch and read a book. 

January 2, 2021
When I read about that suicide bomber in Nashville, I could not help but think that he was some kind of conspiracy theorist.  And the same with the pharmacist who destroyed more than 500 doses of the Covid vaccine in Grafton, Wisconsin.  And, of course, we have a Conspiracy Theorist in Chief in the White House who refuses to accept the results of the election and thinks he lost because of some vast conspiracy to change votes for him into votes for his opponent.

It's totally insane.  How could anyone believe that so many people could keep such a secret?  Do they think the thousands of election workers are all hardened CIA agents posing as elderly people from the community?  But it also fits with what I read in "The Death of Expertise," the book I mentioned in my December 16 comment.  More and more people are becoming more and more vocal about not trusting experts.  Instead, they think they know more than any expert. 

After finishing "The Death of Expertise," I found a lot of similar books going back decades.

It all seems to fit into what I've written about before, that there are people who mostly think logically, and there are people who mostly think emotionally.  Everyone thinks both ways, but there appear to be a large number of people  who mainly think emotionally.  Fortunately, they do not seem to be the majority.  But they can be the voting majority when those who think logically lose interest in whatever the issue is.  Then it is the ones with the strongest emotional reasons who vote the most, and those with less emotional reasons just don't bother to vote.  The majority voted emotionally to put Trump in office, then the majority voted emotionally to get rid of him.  Logically, it is insane that he was ever elected in the first place.

January 1, 2021 -
Happy New Year!

© 2021 by Ed Lake