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View Full Version : Do you believe that space is finite or infinite?


DudeNtheRoom
07-11-2011, 06:39 PM
I was watching a TV show about this while I was eating. i always thought it was believed that space was infinite. Seems there are some scientists that believe is it circular like a ball or something and when you go out one end you come in the exact opposite side.

Theres a plasma layer out there all around us waaaaaaay out in space. So even if we built a telescope capable of looking past it we wouldn't be able to.

This leaves us to wonder if space is in fact 1 of the 2.

I'm going to stay old school on this one and say it's infinite.

Lozer
07-11-2011, 06:43 PM
I believe it's finite but ever-expanding!

However, sizing the universe is beyond our comprehension or measurements, so it may look infinite to us mortals.:cool:

stillmatic07
07-11-2011, 06:48 PM
I believe it's finite but ever-expanding!

However, sizing the universe is beyond our comprehension or measurements, so it may look infinite to us mortals.:cool:

I think it's finite. We'll never reach the end though. Plus it's theorized that there are 8 or so dimensions, so we are a spec in the grand scheme of things.

sad_ism
07-11-2011, 06:49 PM
Now that the US has cancelled its space shuttle program, you may never know! :troll:

cegrogan
07-11-2011, 06:52 PM
Several laws of physics would be utterly broken if space was infinite. Especially the idea of continual entropy, since infinite space would indicate infinite mass, which correlates to infinite energy.

DarthSatoris
07-11-2011, 06:58 PM
There's a theory going around called "heat death" or "big freeze", where scientists speculate the ultimate fate of the universe to go to a complete standstill (freeze over) as the universe continues to expand, by using the laws of thermodynamics.

If anyone here knows about thermodynamic powers, the universe is a closed system, and as space expands, the distribution of the only heat we have gets thinner and thinner until it's so thin that the limit is reached and thus everything freezes over as there's no more heat.

This of course takes several hundred billions of years so it won't happen in your time. :)

cegrogan
07-11-2011, 07:00 PM
There's a theory going around called "heat death" or "big freeze", where scientists speculate the ultimate fate of the universe to go to a complete standstill as the universe continues to expand, by using the laws of thermodynamics.

Entropy is a ♥♥♥♥♥

Snorkel
07-11-2011, 07:02 PM
Yes, I believe that space is finite or infinite.

frogsmoothy
07-11-2011, 07:02 PM
Entropy is a ♥♥♥♥♥

Well played. I'll bring that up in my next physics class.

I think logically, it should be infinite. But it's probably finite.

AsheMan
07-11-2011, 07:03 PM
Maybe it's infinite, but somehow comes in on itself as a cycle (expand/contrast, layers of dimensions, wormhole/circular) as an infinite process.

cegrogan
07-11-2011, 07:04 PM
Well played. I'll bring that up in my next physics class.

I think logically, it should be infinite. But it's probably finite.

Thing is, heat death or the big freeze wouldn't be a very logical assumption if energy was infinite

damaged
07-11-2011, 07:05 PM
Entropy is a ♥♥♥♥♥

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5bueZoYhUlg

DarthSatoris
07-11-2011, 07:07 PM
To bring up my own theory.

Bubble Multiverse.

Our universe is a bubble among countless other bubbles, and there is a definite wall when you reach it. you can't see past it, you can't determine its substance; it's literally the end of the world.

The other bubbles are similar universes to ours, and they are under the same laws of physics as us. But only 10^500 of them. The rest have completely different laws of physics.

FreemanForPrez
07-11-2011, 07:10 PM
Are we talking space or the universe?

In the case of the universe, if the Big Bang is correct, it would have to be finite, although expanding, as someone else pointed out.

If we're talking space (not space-time), as in the absence of everything, I would have to guess space is infinite.

But although I can easily picture a finite but ever-expanding universe, I find it impossible to picture infinite empty space.

And there's also this problem - what are we left with after all the last particles in our universe have poofed out of existence?
Does space still exist? I'd say yes. Does space-time still exist? hmmm....

bluz74
07-11-2011, 07:12 PM
Thinking about space hurts my tiny brain. That's why I hang out at the space bar looking for Esc. :mad:

Excygy
07-11-2011, 07:15 PM
universe is infinite, but galaxies are finite, but expanding.
we are also not alone.

imo.

damaged
07-11-2011, 07:17 PM
(...)
we are also not alone.
(...)

That's just bluz, ignore him, he'll go away once he finds Esc. :D

Eldar
07-11-2011, 07:19 PM
Finite, but impossible to comprehend the scale of it considering how small and insignificant we are.

Draek
07-11-2011, 07:19 PM
Finite but unbounded, like the surface of a sphere.

FreemanForPrez
07-11-2011, 07:20 PM
To bring up my own theory.

Bubble Multiverse.

Our universe is a bubble among countless other bubbles, and there is a definite wall when you reach it. you can't see past it, you can't determine its substance; it's literally the end of the world.

The other bubbles are similar universes to ours, and they are under the same laws of physics as us. But only 10^500 of them. The rest have completely different laws of physics.

Not just your theory - I think that's the implication of string theory.
Although I think it allows for the laws of physics to work out differently in each case.

joeylawn
07-11-2011, 09:39 PM
Do you believe that space is finite or infinite?

Depends on what person's Head you are referring to.

<Witty name>
07-11-2011, 09:46 PM
I'd like to mention my theory against infinite universes.

Suppose there was an infinite set of universes. Now, logically, every possible event that could ever happen will occur across this infinite number of universes.

Sadly, this involves a creature of a certain universe inventing a way to annihilate all universes and subsequently using said way, thus ending everything.

As such, if there were infinite universes, there would be nothing.

I'm guessing we've got a finite set of universes, or perhaps just one universe. Again, it would have to be finite in size or it would not exist.

Draek
07-11-2011, 10:20 PM
I'd like to mention my theory against infinite universes.

Suppose there was an infinite set of universes. Now, logically, every possible event that could ever happen will occur across this infinite number of universes.

Sadly, this involves a creature of a certain universe inventing a way to annihilate all universes and subsequently using said way, thus ending everything.

As such, if there were infinite universes, there would be nothing.

I'm guessing we've got a finite set of universes, or perhaps just one universe. Again, it would have to be finite in size or it would not exist.

You're assuming that a way of annihilating all universes is possible, and that therefore the probability of it existing in any one universe is non-zero.

An example for illustrative purposes is, can there be an animal that is at the same time a cow and not a cow? no, because being (not a cow) implies it's (not) (a cow), therefore if the second premise is true then the first one is false, so no matter how many universes you examine, such a being could not exist.

You'll find a similar problem with your theoretical multiverse-killing machine, probably with the definition of "universe", but I lack the knowledge in Physics to know for certain.

CTRL ALT DEL !
07-11-2011, 10:23 PM
It's mine and it's finite when I step on it.


Seriously the edges of the universe must continue to grow at the speed of light.

Anorexia
07-11-2011, 10:33 PM
When i think i about the dimensions of the universe i always think about lightspeed and what it actually means. Basically, there are universes out there, so far away, that their light hasnt had time to travel all the way to us. Its like they never existed. We're enclosed in a bubble of "time" where everything outside to us might as well not exist. Its freakin crazy.

skippy72294
07-11-2011, 11:06 PM
It's mine and it's finite when I step on it.


Seriously the edges of the universe must continue to grow at the speed of light.

I hope eventually we have something like in Mass Effect... FTL speeds aka Faster Than Light... not possible though.

abcxyq
07-11-2011, 11:36 PM
Yes, I believe that space is finite or infinite.

This is the only answer that can currently be proven.

P.M.
07-11-2011, 11:47 PM
I think it's finite. We'll never reach the end though. Plus it's theorized that there are 8 or so dimensions, so we are a spec in the grand scheme of things.

Twenty-six dimensions. Out of which sixteen are compactified. I ♥♥♥♥ you not, that's actually what some particle physicists say.

That's why I only believe in postal service.

trojanrabbit.gg
07-11-2011, 11:50 PM
Trust in the Alan... (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VSYmGSJtCA&feature=player_detailpage#t=10s)

Burack
07-11-2011, 11:52 PM
"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe." - Einstein.

abcxyq
07-11-2011, 11:53 PM
Twenty-six dimensions. Out of which sixteen are compactified. I ♥♥♥♥ you not, that's actually what some particle physicists say.

That's why I only believe in postal service.

That and spaghettification are beginning to make me think scientists just make up silly words and see if they can make them common. I mean, it worked for the big bang.

alpha_centauri_
07-11-2011, 11:54 PM
To bring up my own theory.

Bubble Multiverse.

Our universe is a bubble among countless other bubbles, and there is a definite wall when you reach it. you can't see past it, you can't determine its substance; it's literally the end of the world.

The other bubbles are similar universes to ours, and they are under the same laws of physics as us. But only 10^500 of them. The rest have completely different laws of physics.

I believe that theory is already out there. It's supposed to explain why gravity is so weak compared to the other fundamental forces. Except instead of bubbles, they're called branes.

With a quick check, that's M-theory and has something to do with string theory. I'm not to keen on string theory especially because the creators needed to invent 7 new dimensions to make the math work.

I myself believe in a finite universe, but it beyond the capacity of the human mind. As Douglas Adams said "Space is big. Really big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mindbogglingly big it is." Later on in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy showing someone the Universe in its entirety was a method of killing someone.

It seems to me that infinity is just a concept anyway, not a real thing.

marie pavie
07-12-2011, 12:38 AM
The Spice must flow.

Parliamentarian
07-12-2011, 01:01 AM
Space is probably finite. We have plenty of evidence to support the theory that there is a definite edge of the universe.

However, what's on the other side of that veil may be infinite. Or there may be an infinite number of these veils between universes.

Either way, reality is infinite.

sagelink001
07-12-2011, 01:45 AM
Now that the US has cancelled its space shuttle program, you may never know! :troll:

The US ended its space shuttle program in favor of deep-space exploration research and development.

Oliolli
07-12-2011, 02:26 AM
This universe is finite, at least if the Big Bang theory and inflation theory are correct, which I believe.

I've also thought about infinity. Imagine it this way.

You are standing on an infinite featureless plain of death. The ground is white, and the sky is blue. The ground is absolutely flat. When you look at the horizon (if it can be called that), what do you see?

My belief: the ground, the sky, and between them a thin black line from beyond which light hasn't arrived yet.

Just my rambling though.

mrdead
07-12-2011, 03:10 AM
The universe is finite in both space and time.
If it was infinite, then Olber's Paradox (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olbers%27_paradox) would come into account.

Oliver Twopence
07-12-2011, 03:24 AM
I was watching a TV show about this while I was eating. i always thought it was believed that space was infinite. Seems there are some scientists that believe is it circular like a ball or something and when you go out one end you come in the exact opposite side.

What you are speaking of is a hypersphere. It is the 3D equivalent to the surface of a sphere.

Theres a plasma layer out there all around us waaaaaaay out in space. So even if we built a telescope capable of looking past it we wouldn't be able to.

When we are peering into space we are actually looking into the past. The further you look, the further into the past you see, and if you look far enough you will see the earliest moments after the Big Bang. ("Early" in the astronomical sense.)

The plasma wall is simply the universe at at very early stage, when it was very hot and dense.

This leaves us to wonder if space is in fact 1 of the 2.

I'm going to stay old school on this one and say it's infinite.

When I was little I used to imagine a brick wall. :)

I'm not sure where I stand. It sort of depends.

Currently the Big Bang is looked at as not an explosion in space, but an explosion of space. This taken into account I would have to say that it's finite but without boundaries (like the hypersphere).

Others speculate that there might be an infinite and/or growing number of "universes". How this is pictured differs, but some speak of a huge space in which constant hyperinflation occurs all the time (at different points), creating bubbles of universes that are, in a way, cut off from the rest.

But I digress.

Personally I really like the idea that space has a finite volume, but no boundaries. There is something messy to the idea of a huge black void filled with a universe (no matter how you put this). Even in if you take the "constant inflation" thingy as fact, there is no reason to believe that the universe is infinite (at least that is how I see it).

Seth.Sekhmet
07-12-2011, 04:37 AM
Only a primitive human mind would come up with such a notion as "infinity".

In the real universe, there is no such thing. Everything has a boundary. Even the black holes in their singularity point, the gravity is not infinite.

To answer the question: this universe is finite. Also, the number of possible multi-verses existing is determined by the number of choices that mush be explored. That number is not infinite either.

Blockout
07-12-2011, 05:01 AM
Only a primitive human mind would come up with such a notion as "infinity".


Carefully now... :)

Whiplashr
07-12-2011, 05:02 AM
Given that God is infinite, and that the universe is also infinite... would you like a toasted teacake?

SeanHraefn
07-12-2011, 05:34 AM
You can't measure space the same way you measure other things because the way it expands is unique.

Time and space are one fabric. We are limited in our ability to only experience time in small slices and this makes it nearly impossible for us to properly measure space.

Also, one should never believe. One should look over the evidence, understand and accept.

Belief is for those who cannot prove what it is they believe.

A scientist accepts findings, he/she does not "believe" in them.

Firestorm998
07-12-2011, 05:58 AM
Not sure, I'd swing toward infinite though.
There's a possibility that the truth about space and time may be hard to accept, at this stage in our development anyway. Maybe those crazy quantum physics guys will get lucky.. An open mind might help too.

Pebr
07-12-2011, 06:13 AM
I don't know so i don't believe either theory.

Blockout
07-12-2011, 06:17 AM
I don't know so i don't believe either theory.

I agree.

Couldn't had said that better myself :)

bluz74
07-12-2011, 06:20 AM
Lets ask Ultima and end this once and for all.

Oliolli
07-12-2011, 06:45 AM
We already know Ultimas opinion on The Ultimate Question. It is SPUF.

Tannekr
07-12-2011, 08:31 AM
There's actually a giant impenetrable wall surrounding the Universe.

So, it must be finite.

Valestrum
07-12-2011, 08:38 AM
I think it's ridicoulous to assume that it would be infinite. It just doesn't seem logical to me to think that there is just literally never ending matter that spans outward forever, eventually it HAS to end, even if that end is very, very, very, far.

Rumina
07-12-2011, 08:41 AM
I believe that it's finite, but that there's something beyond it.

bluz74
07-12-2011, 08:43 AM
Valve is at the end of my universe. *flutters eyelashes*

SeanHraefn
07-12-2011, 08:44 AM
I think it's ridicoulous to assume that it would be infinite. It just doesn't seem logical to me to think that there is just literally never ending matter that spans outward forever, eventually it HAS to end, even if that end is very, very, very, far.

Nothing says that matter has to expand forever, only the universe.

The current theory of the end of the universe is actually that it expands so much that matter spreads out so far that even the fundamental forces of physics stop happening.

They call it "heat death".

There would be no planets or suns, just a uniform dust of particles that spreads over the entire universe.

Rumina
07-12-2011, 08:46 AM
If the human race lives long enough and heads in a reasonable direction then some day hundreds of generations from now people will look back at us and go "oh wow our ancestors were really ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥". It'll be the earth is flat thing all over again.

Shape
07-12-2011, 08:47 AM
Matter exists within this dimension, I look at it as a canvas where intelligence manifests itself, to experience, grow.

Dark Lyra
07-12-2011, 08:48 AM
Core 3: Space does not exist.