

04282011, 02:03 PM

#21

~~~~~~~~
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Wales
Posts: 5,556

Re: Is math real?
Quote:
Originally Posted by berry120
It's still all going to boil down to a different method of doing the same kind of things, because they'll be governed by the same physical laws.
Of course, we're assuming here that they haven't come up with an alternative, completely different system that explains the universe and its laws just as well but without using anything like we know of. I guess at the end of the day that's all our system is describing, the universe as we perceive it.

I know it's easy for me to say in hindsight, but that's kind of what I was trying to get at
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04282011, 11:05 PM

#22

BSOD
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 70

Re: Is math real?
I don't think mathematics "exist" in nature. It is simply a perceived consequence of the physical laws.
Or conversely
Mathematics IS nature and the physical laws are the consequences of the greater laws of mathematics.
I think i'll go with the first one.
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04282011, 11:42 PM

#23

Guru
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: U.S.
Posts: 7,841

Re: Is math real?
Quote:
Originally Posted by pspmodandcfw
I don't think mathematics "exist" in nature. It is simply a perceived consequence of the physical laws.

I disagree. What you're saying is that mathematics is the result and physical laws are the cause. Mathematics came before any sort of quantified physical laws if you consider rudimentary arithmetic, so this kind of relationship is false. Mathematics is in many ways abstract. While there exists no physical evidence of mathematicsnothing concrete that you can touchit is very much real in the sense that it is a language used to describe physical laws amongst other things.



04292011, 07:35 AM

#24

Golden Master
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 13,873

Re: Is math real?
Mathematics can explain everything.
It's so complex that even we can't contemplate every possible sum
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04292011, 01:59 PM

#25

In Runtime
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 193

Definitions
I lean towards math not being real (even though it's part of the mind) because you can't taste it, smell it, feel it nor hear and see it with our senses.
However the possibility exists that if one possibility exists, the other may well exist simultaneously in our minds. Just like to understand good, we must simultaneuosly understand bad and viceversa, then math may be both real and unreal simultaneously in our minds.
The bottom line is that we need definitions of math and reality that will let us work an answer out of this situation.



04292011, 04:09 PM

#26

Guru
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: U.S.
Posts: 7,841

Re: Definitions
Quote:
Originally Posted by Comp Explorer
I lean towards math not being real (even though it's part of the mind) because you can't taste it, smell it, feel it nor hear and see it with our senses.

Then your emotions don't exist it. For that matter, anything intangible doesn't exist and half of your life is essentially nonexistent.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Comp Explorer
However the possibility exists that if one possibility exists, the other may well exist simultaneously in our minds. Just like to understand good, we must simultaneuosly understand bad and viceversa, then math may be both real and unreal simultaneously in our minds.

Based on your previous statement, this statement is contradictory and thus false. You say that to understand good you have to simultaneously understand bad. OK, I agree. But then you go on to say that math may be both real and unreal simultaneously. Since you're drawing a parallel to good and bad you're saying that good would be a real part and bad would be an unreal part (or viceversa), but this is clearly false because good and bad are equally intangible.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Comp Explorer
The bottom line is that we need definitions of math and reality that will let us work an answer out of this situation.

That is not the bottom line. There is no bottom line when you assume that everything intangible doesn't exist, especially since the bottom line isn't physically there.



04302011, 08:57 AM

#27

Site Team
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 7,872

Re: Is math real?
i think it rather depends what you see as maths.
I mean water running downhill has the ability to produce sound, we can model that sound with maths.
we can express sound in mathematical terms.
wind blowing through a circular hole can be expressed by a simple sine function.
lots of things happen naturally that can be described mathematically...
but it's difficult to say if maths exist in nature.... clearly we're probably not going to see perfectly written out equations made of sand that has blown on the breeze. but we do see mathematical patterns in nature all the time.
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04302011, 09:55 AM

#28

In Runtime
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 193

Re: Is math real?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kage
Mathematics can explain everything.
It's so complex that even we can't contemplate every possible sum

Not quite Kage. Even though you, I, David Hilbert, Bertrand Russell and others share the same hope, it turns out that Kurt Godel about 80 years ago proved that for math systems large enough to contain arithmetic axioms, has theorems that can't be proven nor disproven using the axioms of those systems (this proof by Godel is widely accepted by mathematicians).
Quote:
Originally Posted by JogaBonito1502
Then your emotions don't exist it. For that matter, anything intangible doesn't exist and half of your life is essentially nonexistent.
Based on your previous statement, this statement is contradictory and thus false. You say that to understand good you have to simultaneously understand bad. OK, I agree. But then you go on to say that math may be both real and unreal simultaneously. Since you're drawing a parallel to good and bad you're saying that good would be a real part and bad would be an unreal part (or viceversa), but this is clearly false because good and bad are equally intangible.
That is not the bottom line. There is no bottom line when you assume that everything intangible doesn't exist, especially since the bottom line isn't physically there.

1) "Then your emotions don't exist it. For that matter, anything intangible doesn't exist and half of your life is essentially nonexistent" As Spock would say, "It doesn't compute." Someone else would say "utter nonsense."
2) "...you're saying that good would be a real part and bad would be an unreal part (or viceversa)..." Not what I'm saying. What I'm saying is as soon as you conceive that math is real (in the mind), then you must automatically have math as an unreality in the mind too to understand it properly.
Quote:
Originally Posted by root
i think it rather depends what you see as maths.
I mean water running downhill has the ability to produce sound, we can model that sound with maths.
we can express sound in mathematical terms.
wind blowing through a circular hole can be expressed by a simple sine function.
lots of things happen naturally that can be described mathematically...
but it's difficult to say if maths exist in nature.... clearly we're probably not going to see perfectly written out equations made of sand that has blown on the breeze. but we do see mathematical patterns in nature all the time.

"i think it rather depends what you see as maths." That's what I meant when I said that it depends on how you define math and reality.



04302011, 10:35 AM

#29

BSOD
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 1

Re: Is math real?
Well it is real unless someone proves it wrong. Because it is a science. Science is based on observed & experimented things. So maths is real.
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04302011, 01:08 PM

#30

Guru
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: U.S.
Posts: 7,841

Re: Is math real?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Comp Explorer
What I'm saying is as soon as you conceive that math is real (in the mind), then you must automatically have math as an unreality in the mind too to understand it properly.

How can something be real and not real at the same time? If it exists, it exists, if it doesn't, it doesn't.
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