The Instigator
GarretKadeDupre
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
BoggyDag
Con (against)
Winning
10 Points

Einstein Was Wrong

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
BoggyDag
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/3/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,370 times Debate No: 64541
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (13)
Votes (2)

 

GarretKadeDupre

Pro

The argument I will advance in this debate is that the Twin Paradox has no resolution. "[I]f the argument is correct, relativity is wrong."(1)

Relativity is Einstein's idea, so if Relativity is wrong, so is Einstein.

First round is for acceptance only. PLEASE use the comment section for clarification of terms, etc.

The reason I put this debate in the Philosophy section instead of the Science one is because it's about a thought experiment.


(1) http://newt.phys.unsw.edu.au...
BoggyDag

Con

I accept.
I say there is a solution to the alleged paradox.
Debate Round No. 1
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

Thanks for accepting.

According to Relativity, all reference frames are equally valid.

In other words, it's equally true to say the sun orbits earth, and earth orbits the sun. This is because the first claim utilizes the earth as a reference frame, while the second claim uses the sun as a reference frame.


Also according to Relativity, time slows down as speed increases.

Thus, if one twin blasts off into space at an incredible speed, time will pass slower for him and he will age slower than his twin on earth. But note
that this claim utilizes the reference frame of the twin on earth. In other words, from the perspective of the twin on earth, the twin shooting through space is moving faster and aging slower.

Since all reference frames are equally valid, let's check out the other reference frame: that of the twin shooting through space. From his perspective, it's not him that's shooting away; it's actually the earth, and his twin standing on it, that is blasting away from him into the distance at high speeds. But this reference frame is equally valid. Therefore, it's equally true to say the twin on earth is traveling faster than the twin in space. So time for the twin on earth passes slower than time for the twin in space, and the twin on earth ages slower.

Let's recap:

Time passes slower for the twin in space, and he ages slower than his twin on earth.
But time also passes slower for the twin on earth, so he ages slower than his twin in space.

That is a clearly an absurdity, but it is what Relativity says:

The space-twin will age slower than the earth-twin, but at the same time,
the earth-twin will age slower than space-twin.

I think my opponent will agree that, if Relativity were to state this, then Relativity would be illogical and therefore, wrong. I expect that his arguments will focus on denying that these statements are actually made by Relativity.
BoggyDag

Con

First, allow me to point out that my opponent's own source presents a solution to the alleged "paradox" and unmasks it as a straw man argument designed to make Relativity appear faulted:
"The twin paradox uses the symmetry of time dilation to produce a situation that seems paradoxical."
"seems" as in "gives an impression", not a fact.
"it is fun to attempt to prove that it is wrong. Surely it's possible to make a paradox out of the symmetry of time dilation? Let's see."
"The naive interpretation--the reason why the situation is called a paradox--is to assume that the situation is completely symmetrical."
"As this assumption is false, there is no paradox."

It is thus already proved that my opponent has this whole thing wrong from the beginning. And I do not have to show anything beyond that other than for my own entertainment. This debate is already over.

Secondly, my opponent downplays one aspect of the original theory.
http://www.phys.vt.edu...
"12. Time Dilation
Another consequence is that clocks in different inertial frames will be observed to run at different rates."

This is what the theory states. That OBSERVATION is a key component of Special Relativity.

Which presents simple solutions to the twin paradox as it is presented by my opponent.

A) The logical explanation - disregarding content.
My opponent states that two people PERCEIVING each other to be slower poses a paradox to which there is no solution.
However, PERCEPTION can be deceiving, as we all know from optical illusions.
The simple solution is: one or both of the twins perceive the situation wrong.
Now, my opponent says that this disproves Einstein's Special Relativity.
In FACT it only proves that the twin paradox with its very special setup (moving clocks and their relative observation) is not a proper test for the validity of Einstein's theory. The paradox relies on two witness accounts, one of which may even be distorted by the effects of travelling at speeds no human has probably ever experienced.
This can hardly be called scientifically reliable. It even touches the fields of psychology and biology, as perception falls into that territory. How is this a proper test for a purely physical problem?
It's not.
That is the simple answer from the perspective of a person unfamiliar with Einstein's theory.

B) The scientific explanation - light moves at a finite speed.

Scientifically spoken, Special Relativity revolves all around light moving at the speed of c, commonly called "light speed" or "speed of light".
Now, I understand that it is kind of hard to follow that, but I will make it easy by using a comparison with the speed of sound, which is also a constant in our atmosphere, about 300 yards per second.
If a motorbike approaches us, the sound it produces seems to be high-pitched. If it drives away from us, the sound seems to be deeper. Yet, if we sit ON the bike, the sound is always the same. We know this as the "Doppler Effect". It is the result of the sound wave originating in the bike's engine moving along with the bike, which means that the amplitudes of the wave reach our ear faster than if the bike was not moving. This creates the illusion of a higher frequency of the sound, which our ear interprets as a higher pitch.

With light, it's similar, except light CANNOT move any faster. Still, we have similar effects as the Doppler Effect, called red shift and blue shift.

Now, the entire idea of relativity is that if we move at speeds close to the speed of light, OBSERVATION changes, just like we hear the approaching motorbike with a higher frequency than it actually produces.

Everybody knows that we measure interstellar distances in light years. Which is a distance even light needs one year to travel.
Now for the alleged "paradox" in layman's terms.
Twin A sits in a spaceship and travels at 0.6 c, sixty percent of the speed of light, away from earth. Twin B remains on Earth.
The "paradox" only emerges if we assume that B can observe the clock A has on his ship INSTANTANEOUSLY, and vice versa. But Special Relativity is about OBSERVATION. Which means we need the signal from A's clock to travel back to Earth, and from B's clock to A's ship. And no matter what signal we use, it cannot travel faster than the speed of light, because NOTHING moves faster.

Let's break it down into phases.
Phase 1: both twins are in very close proximity of each other.

-----------------------------A0/0--------------------------->
<----------------------------B0/0----------------------------

Their clocks are synchronized. A sees 0 on his clock, and so does B, which results in the time set (0/0). The same goes for B.

Phase 2: distance between the two increases. Let's say the distance is now 0.6 light years. This means, distance has grown for one year, since A speeds away with 0.6 c. A's clock now shows 1. But B cannot see that. When A's clock advances, A is already 0.6 light years away from B, which means that B cannot see the clock reach the one-year-counter for another 0.6 years. B has to wait for that signal to arrive back on Earth, and because the signal cannot travel faster than c, it takes 0.6 years to travel the 0.6 light years A is away right now.
And the same goes for A with B's clock.

Now, what do they see right now on the clock of their respective twin? Let's have a look.
Light or radio (=the signal) from A travels towards Earth at the speed of c, the ship moves FROM Earth at a speed of 0.6 c, or 6/10 c = 3/5 c. Which means that the light from the ship needs the reciprocal value of that in years to travel BACK to Earth.
I have prepared a graph to show that in order to reach B back on Earth, the signal from A has to leave A's ship 0.625 years after Phase 1.




Note that this signal CANNOT CHANGE once it has left the ship, just like you can't change what you just said. The sound waves of what you say will reach the nearest ear invariably, you literally can't take back things you said.
This means that when the signal arrives on Earth, B "sees" that for A, only 0.625 years have passed. Wrongly.

-----------------------------------------A1/0.625----------->
<-------------B1/0.625---------------------------------------

And that's basically it. Here's the fault in the observation, there's no paradox, as the same thing goes for A with B's signal.
Now, why is there no paradox? Imagine two motorbikes passing each other. Each driver hears his own engine as a steady sound. Another bike approaches, making a higher-pitched engine sound, but as it passes, the sound becomes ever deeper.
AND BOTH EXPERIENCE THE EXACT SAME THING!

Or another example: if I stand 10 yards away, I will appear smaller to an observer who stayed behind.
Yet to me, the one who stayed behind APPEARS smaller.
Neither has shrunk in size.
What my opponent basically proclaims is that this is impossible, since if one appears smaller, how can the other one also appear smaller? They cannot both be smaller than the other one, because that would mean an infinite loop.
Yet we all understand that this is a matter of perspective, because to a third party in the middle of both, both appear equally shrunk.

The "paradox" can be resolved just like that. Light or other signals take some time to reach a destination and transmit information. Just like a letter takes days or weeks to reach its destination.

The confusion comes from the OTHER theory, General Relativity, that claims time ACTUALLY passes slower for objects subjected to gravitational forces and that mass increases with speed. But that's a totally different theory and has NOTHING to do with the twin paradox as presented by my opponent.

If my opponent now post-hoc expands his resolution to include General Relativity, it would be an auto-forfeit of this debate.

Which is all unnecessary, as my opponent has already given a source that contains a lengthy explanation why the twin paradox is not a paradox at all. And that explanation also expands to General Relativity.
My opponent may now disprove his own source.


Debate Round No. 2
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

I appreciate the effort my opponent has put into his response, but I guarantee that nobody, not even himself, can make sense of what he just said.

Let me demonstrate one of the biggest fallacies of his self-contradictory, convoluted argument.

He begins by quoting this from my source:

"The naive interpretation--the reason why the situation is called a paradox--is to assume that the situation is completely symmetrical[...] As this assumption is false, there is no paradox."

He brags that this debate is already over, that this statement refutes my case because the situation is not symmetrical. But then he concludes by saying:

"Now, why is there no paradox? Imagine two motorbikes passing each other. Each driver hears his own engine as a steady sound. Another bike approaches, making a higher-pitched engine sound, but as it passes, the sound becomes ever deeper. AND BOTH EXPERIENCE THE EXACT SAME THING!"

Note that this situation is completely symmetrical. My opponent has made it clear that both motorbikes are passing each other at the same speed. So my opponent first argues there is no paradox because the situation is not symmetrical, but then ends up arguing there is no paradox because, lo and behold, it actually is symmetrical.

That's absurd. You can't have your cake and eat it to.

By the way, for those who didn't catch on, symmetry is the sameness or reciprocity of things (hope that makes sense). Let me try to explain.

If I say that the space-twin is blasting off into space but the earth-twin is standing still, that's not symmetrical, since both twins aren't doing the same thing. But in the motor-bike analogy that Con presented, he said they are passing each other, apparently at the same speed. That makes the motor-bike analogy symmetrical. This means it's a false analogy.

Now, my opponent says Special Relativity says movement causes things to appear to age slower, but they don't actually age slower. This is completely wrong. Special Relativity indeed says that motion causes time to slow.(2)

Let's tackle this paradox from a different angle to make things clearer.

Space-twin blasts off into space and makes a round trip about the earth, ending up back where he started. Earth-twin just stands there. Earth-twin is aging normally since he's not moving at all, while space-twin is aging slower. So when space-twin completes his trip, earth-twin is older than him. Let's say earth-twin is twice as old as space-twin.

Alright, space-twin is twice as young as earth-twin. No problem for Special Relativity, right?

WRONG.

The entire scenario I just described assumed that Earth was motionless, because that's the only way to claim that earth-twin is standing still.

What if it was actually the earth that made a revolution around the space-twin, with earth-twin standing on it? That would mean it was actually earth-twin that moved, and aged slower, which would mean it was actually earth-twin that is younger than space-twin.

So there's a problem. How do we know which really occured? After all, we must identify which twin actually moved before we can say which is younger.

If earth-twin remained still on the motionless earth while space-twin moved around it in a circle, than we're back to the Medieval Ages.

If space-twin remained still while the earth (with earth-twin standing on it) moved in a circle around him, than space-twin is motionless and the earth orbits him.

We cannot say both are equally true because "it's all relative" or something like that. ONLY ONE CAN BE TRUE. For if both are true, than both twins are younger than each other.

And that's impossible.

Good luck Con.

(2) http://www.physicsoftheuniverse.com...
BoggyDag

Con

"I appreciate the effort my opponent has put into his response, but I guarantee that nobody, not even himself, can make sense of what he just said."

My opponent generalizes from his own intellectual shortcomings to the general public. But we have several rounds to fill, so here goes.

"Let me demonstrate one of the biggest fallacies of his self-contradictory, convoluted argument." asf.

What I clearly wrote is that my opponent's OWN SOURCE offers ONE way to resolve the alleged paradox. It uses General Relativity and uses an asymmetry. So, the paradox is resolved and the debate was already over at that point.

THEN I offered ANOTHER TWO WAYS of resolving the "paradox". One simple, logical, argument A, which my opponent does not even address and thus CONCEDES, again ending the debate.
The second one using a time diagram referring only to Special Relativity, in analogy to the graph shown in my previous source here: http://www.phys.vt.edu...
This source, as well as mine, refers only to Special Relativity, which does not address time itself, only the constant speed of light c.

For my opponent's irrelevant claim of an asymmetry: it's another straw man argument.
My opponent's own source declares:
"The causes of this asymmetry are the fact that Jane reverses direction and Joe does not, and the finite time that light takes to transmit this information to Joe means that Joe doesn't get the news immediately. Jane leaves one inertial frame and joins another, and she has the effect of that change immediately. Joe, on the other hand, doesn't notice the effects of Jane being in a different inertial frame until much later because she is a long way away from him when it happens. The asymmetry is as simple as that." http://newt.phys.unsw.edu.au...


Now, as we see the asymmetry happens only when the ship turns around. But I resolved the alleged paradox with the ship moving in one direction, just as my motorcycles move in one direction and don't turn. So, the asymmetry does not happen in my examples, because nobody reverses direction. I don't have to go that far to show that the alleged paradox can be resolved.

Need I remind my opponent that the "paradox" he wanted to show was THIS:
"The space-twin will age slower than the earth-twin, but at the same time, the earth-twin will age slower than space-twin."

And I have shown that this can be explained in two ways: A) either or both twins are mistaken. B) Information cannot travel faster than light.

With the explanation given in my opponent's source this makes THREE possible ways to resolve the "paradox".

His NEW source offers a FOURTH solution, btw.:
"This is sometimes considered a paradox in that each twin sees the other twin as travelling, and so, it is argued, each should see the other aging more slowly. But in fact this is based on a misunderstanding of relativity, because in reality only one twin experiences acceleration and deceleration, and so only one twin ages less." http://www.physicsoftheuniverse.com...

This means my opponent has now relied heavily on TWO SOURCES, BOTH OF WHICH SAY THERE IS NO PARADOX FOR DIFFERENT REASONS.
Well, that's a concession if ever I saw one.


"If I say that the space-twin is blasting off into space but the earth-twin is standing still, that's not symmetrical, since both twins aren't doing the same thing. But in the motor-bike analogy that Con presented, he said they are passing each other, apparently at the same speed. That makes the motor-bike analogy symmetrical. This means it's a false analogy."

Aaah, so now it's a FALSE analogy, but yet my opponent just used that analogy as an argument against my point. You can't eat the cake and keep it, dear opponent. If the analogy is false, then it proves NOTHING, as it would simply be off the point. Which it is not, as I was explaining relativity.


"Now, my opponent says Special Relativity says movement causes things to appear to age slower, but they don't actually age slower. This is completely wrong. Special Relativity indeed says that motion causes time to slow.(2)"

No, it doesn't. Since the intellectual capacity of my opponent is too limited to even reply to each of my arguments, I have JUST the proper source for him. Maybe this is simple enough to get through to him:

http://www.dummies.com...

"If you move fast enough through space, the observations that you make about space and time differ somewhat from the observations of other people, who are moving at different speeds."

"Special relativity includes only the special case (hence the name) where the motion is uniform. The motion it explains is only if you’re traveling in a straight line at a constant speed. As soon as you accelerate or curve — or do anything that changes the nature of the motion in any way — special relativity ceases to apply. That’s where Einstein’s general theory of relativity comes in, because it can explain the general case of any sort of motion."

The shift in actual time is subject to general relativity, thus. Which is not our topic. Despite my warning, my opponent has crossed over into General Relativity, which is a change of topic. And an auto-forfeit.

Let's hear it from Einstein himself:
"Now in reality (considered with reference to the railway embankment) he is hastening towards the beam of light coming from B, whilst he is riding on ahead of the beam of light coming from A. Hence the observer will see the beam of light emitted from B earlier than he will see that emitted from A. Observers who take the railway train as their reference-body must therefore come to the conclusion that the lightning flash B took place earlier than the lightning flash A." from http://www.bartleby.com...

That's special Relativity, directly from the original source. Nothing about time passing at different speeds. Just a matter of perception while in motion.


"Space-twin blasts off into space and makes a round trip about the earth, ending up back where he started."
This is NOT the twin paradox as presented before. Returning to Earth requires a CHANGE OF DIRECTION, and thus crosses over to the GENERAL theory of Relativity.

Let's hear THAT from Einstein:
"THE BASAL principle, which was the pivot of all our previous considerations, was the special principle of relativity, i.e. the principle of the physical relativity of all uniform motion." from: http://www.bartleby.com...
Returning to Earth is NOT a uniform motion, thus not part of SPECIAL RELATIVITY and hence NOT THE SUBJECT OF THIS DEBATE. Auto-forfeit by my opponent.

So, summarizing:
My opponent quoted two websites, both of which explain differently why there is no paradox.
He did not refute my argument A.
He also did not refute my argument B, because he simply misinterprets the SPECIAL Relativity as presented by Einstein and changes the resolution post-hoc.
I have thus presented no less than FOUR ways to explain how to people can perceive each other as aging slower while one is moving in a spaceship at high speeds. I have met my burden of proof.

I employ my opponent to find - in Einstein's original work - any mention of motion causing time to slow in order to back up his outlandish claims.
All Einstein says is that, while an observer is in motion, two incidents that would appear as simultaneous from ONE FIXED POINT IN SPACE appear as NOT simultaneous to the observer.
All else is false conjecture.





Debate Round No. 3
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

First, I will apologize to my opponent for my mental shortcomings.

Second, I will point out that I never agreed that appealing to General Relativity would be a forfeit. That's a rule my opponent made up out of nowhere, and that I never agreed to, which is why I ignored it.

Thirdly, I'd like to challenge Con's repeated assertion that the slowing of time caused by motion is only an illusion experienced by external observers. Con asked me to literally quote Einstein. Now I can't be bothered to search Einstein's actual works for every instance where he refers to time dilation, nor would I know where to begin looking for such an archive. But I think we can all agree that NASA is a credible authority for how Special Relativity is supposed to work. Let's settle this once and for all, Con: motion slows time. It does not merely create the illusion of slowed time to external observers. It slows time for the object moving, because according to NASA:(3)

  • Special Relativity also says that a surprising thing happens when you move through space-time[...] Time goes slower for you than for the people you left behind. You won't notice this effect until you return to those stationary people.
  • Say you were 15 years old when you left Earth in a spacecraft traveling at about 99.5% of the speed of light (which is much faster than we can achieve now), and celebrated only five birthdays during your space voyage. When you get home at the age of 20, you would find that all your classmates were 65 years old, retired, and enjoying their grandchildren!

Now, Con will probably want to repeat his assertion from the last round that when the twins meet up, they will appear the same age to each other. Clearly, this is not what is predicted by Special Relativity. If Con wants to dispute this point, I suggest he take it up with NASA, not me.

Moving on.

Con said that my sources provide their own resolutions to the paradox. He then acts as if I'm not aware of this. However, none of their resolutions work, which is why I ignored them. Con can't just quote my sources making the assertion that the paradox is solved.

Con also complains that I didn't address his arguments. Actually, I did, but indirectly. Since his arguments rely on the incorrect assumption that moving objects only appear to age from the perspective of external observers, and I pointed out this assumption is false (and even cited NASA backing me up), all his arguments fail. Just like that.

Make no mistake. Time passes slower for moving objects, according to Special Relativity.(3) If this were not the case, then NASA could not say that the twins were of different ages (and portray earth-twin with a bigger beard) whenever they met up again. I can't wait for Con to say NASA is wrong in it's interpretation of Special Relativity.

Con sums up his proposed resolutions of the paradox as follows:

1. Either or both twins are mistaken.

2. Information can't travel faster than light.

Number 1 is proven wrong because, as I just explained, their perception of slowed time is not a mistake. Time is actually slowed for the moving twin; it's not an illusion that only the other twin sees.

Number 2 is just stupid, honestly. What is this even supposed to mean? It seems like Number 2 is just a rephrasing of Number 1. Con is trying to say that the light from space-twin can only travel so fast, and since space-twin is moving away from earth-twin, a Doppler effect occurs that means earth-twin perceives space-twin as aging slower, but in reality, space-twin is not aging slower. In other words, there is an illusion happening and earth-twin is mistaken. See? This is just a rephrasing of Number 1 for Con to make it seem like he is proposing multiple resolutions to the paradox, but he only has one! Nice try Con, but I'm not going to be conned.

It's absolutely hilarious how Con quotes one of my sources arguing for the following resolution:

  • Only one twin experiences acceleration and deceleration, so only one twin ages less.

He got that from my physicsoftheuniverse.com source, but this resolution is completely absurd.

It tries to say that earth-twin, being still on the earth, feels no acceleration or deceleration, proving he is the one standing still, and aging normally. In contrast, (it goes on to explain) space-twin feels acceleration whenever he either:

A) Makes a u-turn with his rocket to return to earth-twin to compare beard-length and number of wrinkles, or

B) Stops his rocket, then goes backward to reunite with earth-twin.

In both of these scenarios, space-twin can feel the motion, kind of like when in a car you make a sudden stop or sharp turn and you slide to the front or the side of your car... like on a rollercoaster.

The proposed resolution is that this acceleration space-twin senses proves that he is the one actually moving. So Con thinks this proves only space-twin aged slower, and earth-twin will have a longer beard when they reunite to compare beards.

But trying to use this argument to defend Special Relativity cuts both ways. If you prove space-twin is moving and earth-twin is standing still, you also prove the earth is standing still. Out with Copernicus, Einstein, and Special Relativity, and in with Geocentrism.

Now I'm going to deal with the problem Con has with my scenario from last round where space-twin traveled a circular path. It doesn't matter if space-twin travels in a circle to make my point, so I'll rephrase.

  • Space-twin blasts off from earth and travels indefinitely at a constant speed on a linear path away from earth-twin. See, no need for General Relativity! We are not dealing with varying speeds or direction. We just have space-twin shooting up in a straight line at a constant rate, leaving earth-twin behind.

Remember that motion slows time for the one moving. So space-twin is aging slower than earth-twin because he is moving. But wait! The only way to claim space-twin is moving is by claiming earth is a non-inertial frame... in other words, standing still!

If earth is standing still, it can't be revolving around the sun! There we go again, out with Einstein, in with Geocentrism. Con can try to get out of this is by saying that earth-twin is moving, and space-twin is remaining motionless while the earth shoots away from him. But if he does that, then space-twin is the center of the universe around which the celestial bodies revolve!

Have no fear, there is one last choice for Con. He can say both twins are moving away from each other at the same speed, and so they are both aging slower than they were before they started moving, but at least now the speed of their aging has declined by the same amount, so they will still both be the same age at all times. But this makes the center of the universe to be the point equidistant from both twins... which means that, whenever earth-twin rode on planet earth while it shot away from space-twin at 45% light-speed, space-twin also shot away from
earth-twin at 45% light speed. This means that before this event occured, earth was the motionless center of the universe. Which means for some odd reason, Geocentrism was true until the twins decided otherwise.

Special Relativity is doomed no matter which way you look at it.

Good luck Con.

(3) http://spaceplace.nasa.gov...

BoggyDag

Con

My dear opponent, apologies require the will to change. Yet you have expressed in this round that you are not even trying to broaden your horizon, so I am afraid I must refuse to accept that apology.

I'll try to sort out my opponent's futile rebuttals first, then proceed to his faulty arguments.

My opponent claims that my arguments are the same.
They are not, they only arrive at the same conclusion.
Argument A: By logical reasoning alone I deduced that the alleged "paradox" can be resolved by closer examining the point of PERCEPTION. My opponent tries to omit this important component, while I showed above that Einstein formulated the special theory of relativity AROUND observation. http://www.bartleby.com...

Now, my opponent himself defined the "paradox" we're discussing above:
"Time passes slower for the twin in space, and he ages slower than his twin on earth.
But time also passes slower for the twin on earth, so he ages slower than his twin in space."

This, and this alone, is what we are debating here.

We will all agree that the passage of time is a matter of PERCEPTION, because, as Einstein wisely stated:
"Under these conditions we understand by the “time” of an event the reading (position of the hands) of that one of these clocks which is in the immediate vicinity (in space) of the event. In this manner a time-value is associated with every event which is essentially capable of observation."
So at the very core of Einstein's theory stands that time can only be measured reliably if you are in close vicinity of the clock.

So, the theory we're discussing contains PERCEPTION as a component, and the paradox can easily be solved without further scientific knowledge: perception can be tricked easily.

Argument B arrives at the SAME CONCLUSION, using an elaboration of Einstein's theory, explaining exactly why there is a distortion in the perception of simultaneity of the two clocks, namely the limited speed of light. Everybody knows that what we see of the stars is an image that is years to millennia old, while the light travels through space. Hence, the "paradox" of how the twins can each consider the other to age slower than themselves is easily resolved: the light takes time to reach the respective other twin, and thus the image of the clock is delayed, creating a MUTUAL illusion.

Now, my opponent claims that both arguments are wrong, and his explanation really boggles the mind.
He, who boldly claims that "EINSTEIN WAS WRONG [caps by me]", now claims that
a) Einstein formulated in his SPEACIAL THEORY OF RELATIVITY that the twin on board the spaceship ages slower.

This is total nonsense. My opponent refuses to produce evidence for this from Einstein, allegedly because Einstein must either have dispersed his comments on time widely or has written too much about it. Neither is true. Einstein presented his groundbreaking work in 1920, in a single book (see: http://www.bartleby.com... ). Of this book a measly 10 short chapters establish the theory my opponent declares false. The last paragraph of chapter 7 states: "This theory has been called the special theory of relativity to distinguish it from the extended theory, with which we shall deal later. In the following pages we shall present the fundamental ideas of the special theory of relativity." http://www.bartleby.com...
Chapter 18 deals with the General Theory Of Relativity.
I've read it all, and there is plenty mention of the OBSERVATION of time, and NONE of ACTUAL DIFFERENCES in the passage of time. My opponent may still prove me wrong from these few pages.

b) that the twin on the ship ACTUALLY AGES SLOWER: "Let's settle this once and for all, Con: motion slows time. It does not merely create the illusion of slowed time to external observers."
This is a factual statement. My opponent uses it as a premise. He claims it comes from Einstein. Yet HE RESOLVED THAT EINSTEIN WAS WRONG!
Now here's a REAL paradox. A man who says that Einstein is WRONG INSISTS that Einstein's theory (although he quotes it falsely, see below) is RIGHT, ONCE AND FOR ALL. This is a clear contradiction. What he's saying is: Einstein is right, so he is wrong.

c) that NASA backs up his claims. Firstly, again he makes the same misreading in the theory again (see below), secondly, here's a NASA website that declares that the "twin paradox" can be resolved: http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov...
"The short answer is that one twin stays in a an inertial reference frame, while the other doesn't. The twin that stays in an inertial frame ages more."
So, NASA, according to my opponent, is the ultimate authority in this matter. NASA says the twin paradox can be resolved. We deduce that the "paradox" can be solved. I win the debate. Or that NASA is wrong, in which case my opponent's argument is for naught.

Let's get the misunderstanding out of the way once and for all.

SPECIAL relativity, as quoted from Einstein above, deals with UNIFORM motion only, in inertial reference frames.
Full Definition of INERTIA
1a : 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 (Merriam-Webster's dictionary, http://www.merriam-webster.com... )
"inertial" means "without disturbance by an outward force". Newton's mechanic states "Force equals mass times acceleration"/F=m*a. So, if a body experiences acceleration, it's no longer INERTIAL.

If twin A and B are moving apart, only a signal can relay information between them. This creates the illusion I described above. The problem is, the twin in the ship never returns. No one will EVER be able to tell how quickly he REALLY ages, because only the signal returns. Now, Einstein declared that without any means to MEASURE something, it becomes irrelevant to the scientist. There's only ONE measure for time, and that is COMPARISON. But the ship never comes back.

Now, if the ship turns around, which is what my opponent always gets wrong and quotes falsely and drags NASA into his nonsense (see above), things change dramatically. Firstly, we leave Special Relativity, and thus this debate. For no matter what my opponent "agrees" to, the resolution, once established, cannot be randomly changed. But for my entertainment, I will still pursue this.
Secondly, we enter GENERAL Relativity, and THAT discusses the effect of acceleration. NOW, things cease to be an optical illusion. Turning around, no matter HOW, means a full reverse of direction, which is a reverse of velocity, and a change of velocity is acceleration. Circle or straight line: if the ship returns, it is subjected to forces equal to gravitation. Gravitation slows the flow of time. Motion does not influence time. Acceleration does.

Here's a NASA source for that: "At some point he turns around, thus switching reference frames again, and when he gets back home he now is back in reference frame of the Earth. Depending on how fast the ship went, much less time elapsed for him then his twin brother who stayed at home. This will be shorter by a factor of:

sqrt( 1 - (v/c)^2 ) : where v = speed and c = speed of light" http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov...

So, now we also resolved the "paradox" why the optical illusion is a true solution (as long as the twins move apart), and the age difference upon return is also true, even if it is outside of this debate.

As for the selective use of sources: my opponent chose to "ignore" all the relevant parts of his sources. But burden of proof is on him. He quotes sources that differ and ignores them, never disproves them. All of his own sources say there is no paradox. He's the only one who claims so with a false claim that a higher speed slows time. There is no source for this, so all his arguments from there are naught, and I need not address them separately. The premise is wrong.


Debate Round No. 4
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

Lol it seems Con is correct that Einstein's Special Relativity version of the Twin Paradox has each twin merely perceiving the other age slower. Thanks for providing me with those links to Einstein's works, I appreciate it. However, just because I'm conceding that Einstein's stupid theory doesn't produce a paradox, doesn't mean I'm done yet.
  • We will all agree that the passage of time is a matter of PERCEPTION
No, I do not agree. The passage of time is not necessarily equal to it's perception. Objective time exists, whether it can be identified or not. Otherwise, your statement can be taken to it's absurd conclusion: that time goes backwards for those who percieve it to go backwards, and people can time-travel solely by taking hallucinogenic drugs.
  • using an elaboration of Einstein's theory, explaining exactly why there is a distortion in the perception of simultaneity of the two clocks, namely the limited speed of light.
Lol, the speed of light is not limited. Einstein's theory posits it is limited, but that assertion has never been empirically confirmed. The only reason people pretend light has a constant speed is to avoid violating Einstein's theory.
  • I've read it all, and there is plenty mention of the OBSERVATION of time, and NONE of ACTUAL DIFFERENCES in the passage of time.
I agree.
  • "Let's settle this once and for all, Con: motion slows time. It does not merely create the illusion of slowed time to external observers."
  • This is a factual statement. My opponent uses it as a premise. He claims it comes from Einstein. Yet HE RESOLVED THAT EINSTEIN WAS WRONG!
  • Now here's a REAL paradox. A man who says that Einstein is WRONG INSISTS that Einstein's theory (although he quotes it falsely, see below) is RIGHT, ONCE AND FOR ALL. This is a clear contradiction. What he's saying is: Einstein is right, so he is wrong.
Nope. Just because I lost this debate doesn't mean I'm going to let you get away with this fallacious argument. I did not intend that statement to be factual. I was merely assuming Special Relativity is true for the purpose of taking it to an illogical conclusion.
  • "The short answer is that one twin stays in a an inertial reference frame, while the other doesn't. The twin that stays in an inertial frame ages more."
  • So, NASA, according to my opponent, is the ultimate authority in this matter.
This illustrates the stupidity of NASA's PR strategy. First (in the link I took from them earlier), they violate Special Relativity in order to demonstrate that one twin will be younger than the other at their reunion. Now, in the link Con gives, NASA assumes a preferred reference frame in order to determine which twin aged more, again violating Special Relativity. This is because the only way NASA can say one of the twins (and not both) are in an inertial reference frame is by assuming a prefered reference frame from which to judge which twin has no inertia.
  • Firstly, we leave Special Relativity, and thus this debate. For no matter what my opponent "agrees" to, the resolution, once established, cannot be randomly changed.
Nope. Nowhere in this debate did I agree that leaving Special Relativity would be a forfeit. Neither did I establish this debate was about Special Relativity. I purposely used the term Relativity ambiguously so that both Special and General Relativity could be considered. The word Special does not occur in the first round, nor the title, contrary to what Con seems to think.
  • But for my entertainment, I will still pursue this.
Awesome.
  • Here's a NASA source for that: "At some point he turns around, thus switching reference frames again, and when he gets back home he now is back in reference frame of the Earth. Depending on how fast the ship went, much less time elapsed for him then his twin brother who stayed at home. This will be shorter by a factor of:
  • sqrt( 1 - (v/c)^2 ) : where v = speed and c = speed of light" http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov......
  • So, now we also resolved the "paradox" why the optical illusion is a true solution (as long as the twins move apart), and the age difference upon return is also true, even if it is outside of this debate.
Wow Con, you were doing so well until you just proved that General Relativity creates a paradox with no resolution!

From your quote, NASA is claiming (according to General Relativity, apparently) that the space-twin will have aged slower while traveling through space and, at the reunion on earth, will appear to be the youngest from the perspective of both him and earth-twin.

Now the only way to claim this is to say the acceleration of space-twin slowed his aging. However, the only way to claim that space-twin experienced acceleration is to assume earth is standing still. Now, as far as I'm aware, there is absolutely nothing preventing me from claiming, with equal validity, that it was earth, and not space-twin, that experienced acceleration and slower aging. Therefore, there is also nothing preventing me from claiming, with equal truth validity, that earth-twin will be younger than space-twin whenever they reunite.

This means that it is equally true to say both twins are younger than each other at the reunion on earth. This is illogical. Thus, the Twin Paradox of General Relativity has no resolution.
  • All of his own sources say there is no paradox. He's the only one who claims so with a false claim that a higher speed slows time.
I don't care if my source say there isn't a paradox. The source you just provided claimed there wasn't a paradox yet accidentally demonstrated there was one, but it took myself to point it out. I'm sorry NASA can't see what's right under their noses. Now, thanks to you, Con, I'm not the only one claiming that a higher speed slows time. The source you just cited literally says:
  • Depending on how fast the ship went, much less time elapsed for him then his twin brother who stayed at home.

That is a blatant admission that higher speed slows time! Not only that, your source (in your own quote) goes on to provide a mathematical formula to figure out exactly how much time was slowed depending on speed!

Now, the resolution of this debate was that the Twin Paradox has no resolution. I never clarified which version of the paradox, though. Was it the Special Relativity, or the General Relativity paradox?

This debate has established that although the Special Relativity paradox might have a resolution, the General Relativity version doesn't.

Therefore, voters are free to vote for either Con or myself with equal validity. It's all relative.

BoggyDag

Con

For the record:
My opponent just declared: "I'm conceding that Einstein's stupid theory doesn't produce a paradox".

As opposed to his bold claim, this DOES mean this debate is over. But my opponent just won't quit, which I personally consider bad conduct.

So, up for one last Hurrah!

First, a few quick rebuttals:

A) "Objective time exists, whether it can be identified or not."
If we were to accept ANYTHING WE CAN IMAGINE BUT NOT MEASURE as "real", then somewhere out there are Death Stars, hobbits, and of course an old man with a white beard on a throne of gold ruling Earth from the heavens while the Spaghetti Monster looks on smilingly. If something cannot be discerned, it must be considered non-existent for all practical matters.
Just as my opponent - in his typical self-contradiction - simply ASSUMES time going backwards to be ABSURD, because he cannot perceive that happening and hence concludes it does not exist. So, reality for my opponent is simply what he WANTS to be real. What he overlooks is this: objective time - since we cannot identify it - MIGHT BE THE ONE WE CONSIDER GOING BACKWARDS, THEN. How do we know, if we can't identify it? My opponent wishes to define time. So did Einstein. So do we all. Anything in our world falls in two categories: that we can perceive (called "physics") and all we can NOT perceive (called "metaphysics").
Objectivity is the property of PHYSICS. So, unless we can measure or perceive objective time, it doesn't exist. Only as a concept, an abstract idea about which we can philosophize. Shifting it to metaphysics.

B) "The only reason people pretend light has a constant speed is to avoid violating Einstein's theory."
From Einstein:
"That light requires the same time to traverse the path A —> M as for the path B —> M is in reality neither a supposition nor a hypothesis about the physical nature of light, but a stipulation which I can make of my own freewill in order to arrive at a definition of simultaneity.” http://www.bartleby.com...

The only reason why we define light speed as a constant is that it is our best shot at arriving at the idea of a concept of TIME at all. If light could vary in speed (and that was unlimited, too), then no two things could be considered "simultaneous", due to the Doppler effect my opponent already conceded. If no two things can be called simultaneous, nothing can be called successive in contrast, and "objective time" CANNOT exist.
Basically, what Einstein concludes is that - since photons and light are EVERYWHERE - their time frame should be the UNIVERSAL FRAME OF REFERENCE. Their speed is assumed constant, for else the principle or relativity would make all scientific observation totally unreliable. Leading to the conclusion that we know nothing at all, nothing is right and nothing wrong. All is inconclusive. Which then means that my opponent cannot prove Einstein wrong and I win.

C) "I was merely assuming Special Relativity is true for the purpose of taking it to an illogical conclusion."
My opponent adamantly claimed: "motion slows time. It does not merely create the illusion of slowed time to external observers."
Since this is - as conceded by my opponent - NOT PART OF EINSTEIN'S SPECIAL RELATIVITY, his defense falls flat. He alone assumed that, without any notion of playing devil's advocate here. If I was mistaken, it was due to his shortcomings as a debater. I can only judge from what I read, not my opponent's thoughts.

D) *rant about NASA's PR*
To quote my opponent: "I suggest he take it up with NASA, not me."

E) "Neither did I establish this debate was about Special Relativity"
That is due to the fact that my opponent up to the last round kept confusing the two. His original argument and resolution only addressed the twin paradox according to Special Relativity. Changing the resolution is a forfeit by default, no agreement necessary.

F)"General Relativity creates a paradox with no resolution!"
Oh, here we go again! No, it doesn't.
The General Theory of Relativity states that Special Relativity cannot explain EVERYTHING, just some things, namely in the very special case that ONLY TWO OBJECTS are observed in inertial motion.
Special Relativity cannot address - as stated above - matters of force and acceleration, including first and foremost "turning around".
Einstein writes: "Material particles sufficiently far removed from other material particles continue to move uniformly in a straight line or continue in a state of rest. We have also repeatedly emphasised that this fundamental law can only be valid for bodies of reference K which possess certain unique states of motion, and which are in uniform translational motion relative to each other. Relative to other reference-bodies K the law is not valid. Both in classical mechanics and in the special theory of relativity we therefore differentiate between reference-bodies K relative to which the recognised “laws of nature” can be said to hold, and reference-bodies K relative to which these laws do not hold." http://www.bartleby.com...

The difference between these two types of reference-bodies is FORCE, or GRAVITATION.

G)"Now, as far as I'm aware, there is absolutely nothing preventing me from claiming, with equal validity, that it was earth, and not space-twin, that experienced acceleration and slower aging."
The trouble here is: that is my opponent's theory, not EINSTEIN'S, which we are debating here.
Now, EINSTEIN said there is a DEFINITE reason preventing him (and anyone in their right mind) from claiming such nonsense, and that is the postulate of OTHER POINTS OF REFERENCE.
My opponent again confuses Special Relativity (2 uniformly moving points of reference) with GENERAL RELATIVITY (EVERY point in the universe must be eligible as point of reference, though they are not all equivalent).
Acceleration is NOT relative, that's the entire idea of General Relativity - and hence there is no paradox here, either.
Let's say I watch both twins from a non-moving spaceship. I maintain the exact same difference to the twin on Earth at all times, without applying force. It is obvious that all universe will appear as relatively constant to me. Except for that rocket ship with the other twin, which is accelerating away.
Now, the only way of declaring relativity here would be this: the ship doesn't accelerate, IT MOVES ALL OF THE UNIVERSE.
Alas, it is impossible due to the conservation of energy, the one basic law to which we've found no exception so far. The kinetic energy of the ship is E=0.5*m*v².
The mass of the ship be several tons. The mass of the universe is nigh infinite. So, Energy, which is Force divided by time, differs if we accelerate the ship or accelerate EVERYTHING ELSE. That's why it is obvious that the ship is accelerated, while Earth remains in its usual orbit.

Hence, no paradox here.

G) "That is a blatant admission that higher speed slows time!"
No, it's not.
The faster we go, the harder we have to brake in order to turn around and the harder we have to accelerate to go back again. Time passes slower with ACCELERATION, so a higher speed means that if we want to CHANGE that speed, we age differently. WHILE moving at that constant high speed, time only illusionarily passes slower. That's the Special Relativity my opponent conceded to, and that formula is - as he would know, had he read Einstein's work - the Lorentz transformation from SPECIAL RELATIVITY. http://www.bartleby.com...

There's really nothing my opponent has on his hands despite lack of understanding for physics.
Please consider when voting. Thanks everybody!
Debate Round No. 5
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by CorieMike 2 years ago
CorieMike
Apart from being learned on the topic, Con comes off as a cerebral narcissist. Debates that make claims of certainty is easier to lose. All one has to do is show that one cannot know if he is wrong. The truth is he may very well be wrong, once you breakdown the assumptions being made, however, there is no way to know for sure, so one must elude to whether the arguments are sound and more reliable than their alternatives. The topic for this should have been the "Twin Paradox is unresolved". I gather the Twin Paradox has to do mainly with Special Relativity, and time dilation is coherent, and the secret lies in the relativity of simultaneity, but I guess it's gna take me a while to wrap my head around it, seeing I only nw began learning abt it. Good arguments from both sides none the less. Congrats Con.
Posted by CainAbel 2 years ago
CainAbel
The conduct by the Pro is not the best one at all, going to the point of insulting Con in numerous times and cursing, which seems little mature. Both had splendid spelling and grammar. Con used the most reliable sources, sources which Pro did not even research. This is my virtual vote since my account can't be confirmed because this site has no phone number support for my country
Posted by BoggyDag 2 years ago
BoggyDag
I consider no blog or FAQ on the internet as experts or very reliable sources.
All this debate shows is how utterly you failed to corroborate your point despite the fact that these popular science sources contradict each other.
Real experts universally agree to what I wrote.
I do not hold NASA in a very high regard for their publicity approach, and would never call their website reliable. Yet, even that was enough to shatter your nonsense down to its foundations.

As I said: all you have is a lack of understanding for physics. You lost, now take it like an adult and withdraw in dignity. You will not gain any support as long as I'm still on this.
Whatever misguided argument you want to come up with next, I will dismantle it again. And again.

Just stand down already.
Posted by GarretKadeDupre 2 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
Ok, I may have lost the twin paradox argument. But the fact that Con cited multiple expert sources using contradictory resolutions to the paradox goes to show that in general, even the so-called experts have no clue what they are talking about when it comes to cosmology.
Posted by BoggyDag 2 years ago
BoggyDag
@Samreay: I know, and said so. But since my opponent chose to (quote) "ignore" that article, I decided to entertain myself with some research.
Posted by BoggyDag 2 years ago
BoggyDag
Tweka, stalking me across this site is NOT proper conduct.
Posted by Tweka 2 years ago
Tweka
I have replied BoggyDag
Posted by GarretKadeDupre 2 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
thx RoyLatham hope u vote on my most recent debate when it's done
Posted by BoggyDag 2 years ago
BoggyDag
Aaand we have a winner for the "Anachronism of the year"-Award!
How cutely quaint.
Posted by yoshidino 2 years ago
yoshidino
Relativity: The complete abandonment of all logic.
We all would know that the twin in reality is the one moving, because we feel no change in our own speed. (whether moving or not moving).
Einstein came up with the theory of relativity in order to abolish the aether because the Michelson-Morley experiment showed that the earth was stationary. They had to resort to desperate and absurd theories like relativity in order to save the heliocentric model of our Galaxy.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Samreay 2 years ago
Samreay
GarretKadeDupreBoggyDagTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro should have done some basics physics research before making this debate to save a lot of words to read. Con wins on sources and arguments because he actually presented direct citations of Einstein on why the twins paradox was not a paradox (namely, SR handles inertial reference frames and once you add in acceleration you need to move to GR, and there is no paradox once you move to GR). Pro, you do realise that the very article you link to in Round 1 explains the solution to the Twin paradox, right?
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 2 years ago
RoyLatham
GarretKadeDupreBoggyDagTied
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Reasons for voting decision: The apparent paradox is resolved in the source Pro cited to pose the problem. Real acceleration can be sensed and measured, to it is distinct from a mathematically accelerating frame of reference. The two observers are not symmetric. The source notes that General Relativity is not required to resolve the paradox.