The Instigator
Johnicle
Pro (for)
Losing
19 Points
The Contender
beem0r
Con (against)
Winning
33 Points

Theoretically, two objects that are not touching can always get closer.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/16/2008 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,594 times Debate No: 3668
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (6)
Votes (16)

 

Johnicle

Pro

This is meant to just be a simple theoretical debate. I am in support of the following theory...

Two objects that are not touching can always get closer.

To prove my theory, I want you to imagine a line and a wall. This line stretches to the wall but never touches it. BUT, it can always get closer. Let's just begin it with the line stretching so it gets as close as human eye's will allow it to get. Now I want you to add a "theoretical" microscope that can zoom in on anything. Zoom in so it looks as if the line and the wall are far apart again (even though the have not moved). Move the line in again until, through this microscope, it looks as if there is only a small crack in between the line and the wall. Zoom back in and continue doing this (infinitely).

Thus, my theory is proven... I wish good luck to my opponent. I reserve the right to clarify and extend my theory. (I heard someone else has come up with this theory but this is what I came up with on my own...)

Thanks!
beem0r

Con

First, I would like to apologize to my opponent, since I am taking this debate in a direction I do not think my opponent was expecting.

However, if I had taken the position my opponent wanted me to, it would be simple to beat me. "Any two objects that are not touching can get closer because they can end up touching." This would have easily defeated the stance my opponent wished for me to take. I believe my opponent wanted me to argue that there is a smallest distance, and therefore zooming in is no longer possible at a certain point. This, as I just showed, would have been easily defeated, since the two objects touching would be making them come closer together.

Therefore, let us examine what this resolution really means. Since the word always is used, and we are talking theoretically, all I must do is come up with one theoretical scenario where two objects would not be able to get closer.

Scenario:

We start with the two most massive black holes, on opposite sides of the universe. (which means they are moving away from each other at a very high speed, and are actually accelerating away from each other)
The objects are each at the center of their respective black holes.
There are no comparably large black holes in path of either of these black holes.
There are no wormholes in the path of either of the black holes.

I have just gave you a scenario where it is theoretically impossible for two objects to get closer. Therefore, the resolution "Theoretically, two objects that are not touching can always get closer." has been proven wrong.

Feel free to remake this if you're not satisfied with the direction I took it.
Debate Round No. 1
Johnicle

Pro

The point within this debate is not to show two different objects that can not move closer to each other, rather that they can get closer. If there was an appropriate force (as we can't comprehend some of the significant forces in the universe today), then these two objects WOULD be able to get closer. If this debate was about two objects that won't touch it would be about the sun and the earth, HOWEVER that is not this debate. The debate is about the theory of if two objects can get so close that if they were to move ANY amount closer to the other object that they would touch. In my theory, this has been proven false. Two objects that are not touching can always get closer. As soon as they do touch they may be able to move closer to each other on other parts of the object, but since they are touching they are outside of this debate. Flow through my example of the object and the wall. Your example you bring up is NOT theoretical but is rather a real world example. But if for some reason they began to move closer... um... they could always get closer until the final force to touch each other stops the theory in question. You must view this (theoretical) attempt as trying to move them closer and not trying to get them to touch. In the end, theoretically, two objects that are not touching can always get closer.

Sorry for my lack of organization... It seemed more appropriate just to rant.

Thank You!
beem0r

Con

Ah, but let us suppose I had taken the stance you wished me to take, the stance that requires me to have some smallest distance. Even from my viewpoint, the resolution would have been true, just not in the way you had originally meant. The resolution does not state "two objects that never touch."

Step 0: "There is some smallest distance, X"
Step 1: Two objects not touching are X away from each other. (Two objects that are not touching)
Step 2: These two objects can touch one another.
Step 3: By touching each other, they would be getting closer to one another.

This does not violate the resolution.
Therefore, the resolution would have still been in your favor if I had successfully proven that there is a smallest distance, X.

Also, you claim that my scenario is real-world, not theoretical. I beg to differ. You see, I simply made it up. Of course, I'm operating within the constraints of the real world, but so are you.

Then, you attempt to show that my scenario is not valid, because there might be some unknown force that moves them closer to each other.

Let us reexamine the resolution. Since the words always and theoretically are used, I simply have to show one scenario where two objects would not be able to get closer.

While my scenario I gave last round, plus some unknown force that makes them get closer is certainly a scenario, it is not the one I specified. If there is no unknown or known force to do this, then these objects cannot get closer. Thus, the resolution is proven wrong.

Very massive black holes, mudkips at their centers, at opposite sides of the universe, moving away from each other at extremely high speed.
No known or unknown forces that will substantially divert the course of either black hole.

These mudkips cannot and will not get closer. Also, this is certainly a theoretical situation, not a real-world example. Not that a real world example wouldn't disprove a theoretical question.
Debate Round No. 2
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by behindblueeyes 9 years ago
behindblueeyes
this debate reminded me of "The Princess Bride"
Posted by beem0r 9 years ago
beem0r
In math, there isn't a smallest distance things can have between them. From what have you drawn this conclusion? Perhaps a faulty explanation of limits from a misinformed calculus teacher?
Posted by Johnicle 9 years ago
Johnicle
*sigh... this debate did not go as I ever wanted it to. I just wanted to debate if there was a distance that 2 objects can not get closer (without touching). In math, there are assumptions that there IS a distance (on a linear graph) that two lines can not get closer. This debate was not intended to be IF two objects can get closer, but if there was a force to make them closer, they could get closer until they touch. Oh well...

(judges don't include this in your decision it is simply my intentions not the debate... this is not intended to be a final argument)
Posted by beem0r 9 years ago
beem0r
Whether or not they would also be getting farther away, they would also be getting closer, so that would be insufficient.
Unless we count an object's location to be it's center of mass, in which case it can only get farther.
Posted by Shorack 9 years ago
Shorack
Well Johnicle, allow me to give you something to think about:
what with 2 objects, one inside the other.

let's take for example a hollow ball and in that ball an other ball right in the middle, not touching each other.

If you take the center of the object to measure distance, which seems appropriate to me, especially in this case, the distance is zero.

If you'd hold on to the shallow point of view, that you just look at what you see, you can't either.
As soon as you move one of the balls into a direction, you get the dilemma: it seems to come closer, but just look at the other side and it seems like they move away from each other.
Posted by beem0r 9 years ago
beem0r
If you remake it, consider qualifying it with "can always get closer without touching."
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Vote Placed by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
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