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1 googol years from now

topic posted Sun, November 18, 2007 - 8:43 PM by  Unsubscribed
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Empty your mind. We’re about to take a BIG leap into the future. Not just a lousy few billions of years, but 10 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 years!



One ‘googol’ years, is the official word for that number. It’s the current age of the Universe, one billion billion billion billion billion billion billion billion billion billion times over. Squeeze the entire history of our Universe into the thickness of a dollar bill, and one googol years would give you a pile of money that reaches one hundred quadrillion quadrillion quadrillion quadrillion light years high. It wouldn’t even fit in our Universe.
One googol years. That’s truly staggering. Beyond anything a human can comprehend.

First, let’s fast-forward to the not-so-awfully-far future. For the coming billions of years, scientists predict quite a ride. The Sun will explode, the Milky Way will slam into another galaxy. The Cosmos might collapse, or get torn apart -- scientists can’t seem to decide yet which is more likely. And even if the Universe doesn’t do that, we’re destined to face a weird and horrible crisis, which involves us spending our lifetime as sleeping robots.

The problem is that the Universe gets bigger and cooler. Ever since the Big Bang, it expands, much like an expanding ball of fire after an explosion. Right now, the Universe is still young. It has these cute stars and twinkling galaxies. But in the long run, that will change. Slowly but inevitably, the Universe will empty itself.


Big Nothing: Eventually, the Universe will become a dark, sterile place

First, the galaxies will fly out of sight, beyond the horizon of what we can possibly see. Next, the stars in our own galaxy will burn out, one after the other. The only thing that will remain, is a dull graveyard of cold planets, dead suns and black holes. In about one hundred trillion years, the Milky Way will go black, astronomers expect.

And eventually, even this graveyard decays. One after the other, the dead stars and planets are eaten by black holes, or kicked out of the Milky Way by collisions. Astronomers expect that in one hundred to one thousand billion billion years, our galaxy has dissolved completely.

Time goes on. After a while (more trillions of years) something else will kick in. You’ll notice that even the very stuff nature is made of, isn’t stable. A proton, the particle you’ll find in the core of atoms, has an average lifetime of 100 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 years. Wait long enough, and it will suddenly vanish. Poof, gone. The same goes for light particles, the so-called ‘photons’. They’re expected to last a few zero’s longer, but in the end, they too will kick the bucket, one after the other. Isn’t that just bizarre? The light will go out, literally.

The last thing that survives, are the black holes. But in the end, they too will vanish. They will evaporate in a puff of radiation.

So there we are, at our unimaginable one googol years. Finally, the Universe is totally and utterly empty. You won’t see any light or spot any planet -- in fact, you won’t even find the tiniest speck of dust. The Universe has sterilized itself. All there is left, is emptiness, and darkness. Total oblivion. And worst of all: there’s nothing we can do to stop it. We can build fancy machines or futuristic devices all we like -- but in the end, they’ll all get kicked out of existence, when the matter they are made of simply vanishes.

So there you have it: infinity. Booooring, we must add.

But don’t sob. There’s an upside.

As the quadrillions of years pass by, something very odd should happen. In eternity, even the rarest events get a chance to occur. Weird, bizarre phenomena that only happen once in a zillion years or so, become quite normal.

For example: the nothingness should yield a few surprises. Already, physicists know that in a vacuum, there are sometimes tiny little energy ‘blobs’. Little, random fluctuations of the so-called ‘quantum vacuum’. Out of nowhere, tiny particles pop in and out of existence. But theory predicts that on very, VERY rare occasions, the fluctuations should be a bit larger. Out of nowhere, an entire atom might appear! Or hey, the vacuum may even spit out a few of them!

Think of it like the static on TV. Wait long enough, and out of the random fuzz, a recognizable image might materialize. Wait REALLY long, and one day a complete episode of The Bold And The Beautiful should accidentally show up!


In the vastness of eternity, even things that are almost impossible become real. Like the sudden appearance of, say, a light green buste of Napoleon Bonaparte.

In the Universe, this should give some really surprising results. With eternity at hand, the vacuum should begin to yield all kinds of objects. Incoherent lumps of random garbage, most of the time. But on very, very rare occasions, you’ll see other objects popping into existence. The Eiffel tower. A purple camel. A golden parking garage filled with chocolate Cadillacs. Napoleon Bonaparte sitting next to Mike Tyson on top of a stack of comic books. As the googols of years pass by, it’s all there.

In the VERY, VERY, VERY long run, the vacuum will even belch up complete planets, and beautiful stars, burning and all. Theoretically the vacuum should even churn out a complete solar system one day, identical to ours, with a planet Earth inhabited by people. "In an infinite amount of time, one day, I will reappear", as physicist Katherine Freese of Michigan University once put it. "An crazy thought, but true."

One day the black nothingness should even produce a new Big Bang. Admittedly, we’ll have wait really long for it to happen. Researchers of the University of Chicago once tried to calculate it. And according to their best estimates, it should happen somewhere over the next 1 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 years. That’s a one with 1056 zero’s. You can count them, if you like.





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  • this is just as crazy as stories in the bible
    • Unsu...
       
      If you think about it, on an infinate timeline EVERY event will eventually happen..so a universe in which everything in the bible happens will certainly appear...so will one in which God is an evil tickle me elmo doll with a dildo on it's head.

      This is similar to the theory of multiple quantum universes, in which every possible configuration of probability exists in an infinate metaverse of seaparate universes. There is a universe in which you are say, bald, and one which is exactly the same except for the way the sugar crystals hit the surface of your coffee this morning.

      There was a thought experiement I read about a few months back regarding immortality. A scientist holds a gun to his head and pulls the trigger. There is a universe in which the bullet is fired and he dies, and one in which the bullet doesn't fire and he lives..in essence he can die in one universe but CANNOT die in the larger metaverse because there a quantum tendancy for paradoxical conditions..there is ALWAYS an opposite quantum state in which he survives.
      • >>If you think about it, on an infinate timeline EVERY event will eventually happen.<<

        No; that's a mistake. In an infinity of 0, no 1 will appear nor can 1 be synthesized from an infinity of 0.

        Infinity doesn't imply "everything" - just an endless amount of something.

        Sorry; no afterlife - EVER (probably).
        • an infinity of 0? hmmmm....i dont quite get that which is why maybe i dont get the rest of what you said. it seems to me that an infinite number of events combined over and infinite amount of time would me that, at least on paper, that every event WOULD eventually happen.
          • Common mistake.

            "Infinity" isn't "everything"; it's just an unlimited continuity of "something".

            In an infinity of x, you won't necessarily ever find n. x can easily = "no part of n".
            • i guess im looking at this not in terms of "limits" but of linear combinations....maybe i should go back and really READ this thread before i say anymore...
              • so if eventually the universe boils down to nothing then it could be said that the "limit of the universe as it approaches infinity is 0"...ok, that makes sense...

                ...but i still dont see how that acurately describes the point of the article...if each object and each deminsion is assigned a variable and everything in the universe can be described by some combination of those variables then eventually everything will happen...ontherwise something was not assigned a variable and in that case we could not descibe the whole universe.
                • I suppose it depends on what constitutes "everything".

                  What is in the universe is still largely unknown. "Every possible combination" is three big chunks of cheese, too. What exhausts thingness? What constitutes 'possible'? What combinations are impossible?

                  Infinity and universe aren't interchangeable terms. Universe includes "all there is" - but does it include "all there isn't" and "all there can't be" and "all I can imagine"? Distance, right now, is theoretically infinite, so according to this idea there's necessarily a planet - no wait: a giant glazed doughnut (without a hole because at that range doughnuts don't have holes) - where all of us are aware in real-time of this thread and are laughing at our counter-selves' silliness while emitting erotic spray-foam insulation from our anterior bungs (for form and etiquette), eating backwards, and zooming around on flying hay?

                  If not, the theory is shot.

                  When we can describe the universe, I'll eat my hat.
            • Unsu...
               
              Yes, but the premise is not that there is nothing, but no complex matter. the occasional quantum flux still occours, spitting out anything and given enough time, everything. I don't know where you are pulling the "infinity of 0 stuff".
              • Simply consider that an infinity need not contain "every" thing, nor every combination of anything, but only needs to be infinite, to be infinite.

                There is no "every" combination, anyway, but that's beside the point.

                The point is that infinity need not contain any particular combination of its components to be infinite. Imagining that "it will" at "some point" assumes a limitation that simply isn't a necessary function of infinity. In that superstring theory / multiple worlds scenario is still total conjecture, I'd say the question is moot, but - the infinity we have now is plenty infinite enough without having to tack on any infinity of infinities to account for our desperate hope that we actually won't die.

                We will. It's possible (but certainly not at all certain) that there will be some kind of recapitulation of experience, but since I don't remember having had one before, I can assume that I won't "then" either, and thus it's totally useless to me.

                But on infinity:

                the proposition that "in an infinite universe all possible combinations of the components of the universe will be extant and discoverable" doesn't indicate that what is impossible will "eventually" happen. There (almost certainly) won't be a universe where particles are 80' basketballs instead of tiny vibrating quarks of nothingness. There won't be a universe in which ham tastes like oranges and the monotheist God presides over an Egyptian-style court temple on the Northern Africa dimension. "Eventually" all potential will probably be squandered and -the possible- will include very very little at all.

                My point with 0 can be made with any integer. A universe composed of 2 evinces no -2, or -3 for that matter. Infinity needn't contain "all" - it simply has no ends. "Universe" - though it includes our imaginations - doesn't necessarily include everything our imaginations can pinch out. We rule out the silly out of habit but forget that our needs and biological inclinations are still pretty silly, after all.

                Katherine Freese of Michigan University can suck it. I ain't buying and she ain't telling any "truth" other than "gee I sure hope this fanciful and irresponsible misstatement, sophistry couched in scientific terms, is somehow 'true'".

                It ain't. Nyah. No afterlife. Sorry. Better make this life good.
                • Unsu...
                   
                  I am not saying it is an afterlife, I am simply saying it is a quantum state similar to the one's we have now.

                  Perhaps you do not understand the infinate...it is a question of probabilities. However, in the mathematics of probability, the probability of an event is proportional to the time elaped. On an infinate timeline, even the highly improbable will occour..if all the particles in the universe becoming 80's basketballs is one squidillion septillion years to one event against, when we get to one squidillion septillion AND ONE year, it's going to have happened. The problem is not the theory, it's your inability to rethink your concept of the impossible against improbability when time is unlimited.
                  • This is the maximum depth. Additional responses will not be threaded.
                    both of you: describe the universe.
                    • Unsu...
                       
                      And expanding realm of space/time that is losing energy...perhaps one of multiple universes of all states.
                      • whåt do you meån by energy?
                        • Unsu...
                           
                          I mean the aspect of mass which can be converted through various forms or stored.
                          • Guess we'll have to wait and see. Something about me not remembering any previous existence kind of nullifies the scant hope that "another universe" is extant in which I would - in fact an infinite number of such universes - I'd say that that draws a rather special line around this universe. If an infinitum of realities exist in which all things happen - why not this one? Why is *this* reality so special as to lack any shred of evidence beyond the speculative that everything has, will, can, and does happen?\

                            Weird that you seem so knowledgeable about math but are strangely resistant to the simple realization that infinity need not contain any particular elements, components, or combinations to be infinite, and that an infinity of x will never evince n. Pretty simple.

                            All that shite is magic-thinkin' and wishful delusion. One Life To Live, folks. Make it good.
                            • why this linear approach to existence?

                              and how can you be sure that your parallel self (For lack of a better term) isnt sitting there wondering "why *this* donut overlord universe? what makes this universe so special?"

                              its true that string theory hasnt been "proven" but that in and of itself doesnt prove anything. What is known is that the laws of physics and quantum mechanics exist in opposition to each other. if you can at least accept this premise, then at the very least the simultaneous existance of an infinite number of universes is a possibility, however remote. The math is too far behind to say for sure, mainly because so many have accepted the inherent contradictions of the laws of science as "OK."

                              and just to be philosophical for a second... if you say that it is impossible that everything has, can or will happen, and that the universe follows a linear path to the "infinity of 0" then there can be no free will or there is a singular destiny. you can either say we live a predetermined existence where our decisions are mapped out, or you can say that *all* decisions will result in the same outcome.

                              it seems as though you come from the stance that the only variable is time...or maybe that there are no variables involved at all. which are the only two possible starting points to reach "infinity of 0"

                              i dunno, even the idea that there exists and "end" to the universe is prefaced on the linear nature of time, and im not too fond of that idea.
                            • >>>Something about me not remembering any previous existence kind of nullifies the scant hope that "another universe" is extant in which I would<<<

                              well i cant remember what i ate for breakfast a week ago, let alone many years ago, but that doesn't negate the fact that i if fact ate breakfast.
                              • Unsu...
                                 
                                I belive the fallacy expressed here is that A cannot be true because B, the result, is personally unacceptable.
                                • No; it's not fallacious to assume that special reality doesn't exist in the absence of any proof or supporting evidence.

                                  Not so much fallacy as embarrassing observation: "This one lettered lady has a 'magical thinking' albatross hanging around her neck and now PW and some other drooling acolytes want one, too, to make up for accidentally being devoid of value or meaning," no? Neato that this particular line of foolishness has the cloak of authority occasionally adopted by such other prominent shit-spewing scientists as Thomas W Campbell, Wilhelm Reich, The Forteans, the Scientologists.

                                  If the mere concept of infinity 'proves' an afterlife or other life for you, by all means, pretend this is just one stop on the immortality line and look forward to sipping tea in a wondrous again-time on the other side of infinity, enjoying eternity as a basketball made of platinum taffy.

                                  It doesn't harm me for you to be credulous of something that's obviously bullshit.
                            • Loki >> Something about me not remembering any previous existence kind of nullifies the scant hope that "another universe" is extant in which I would - in fact an infinite number of such universes - I'd say that that draws a rather special line around this universe. <<

                              You might be correct but your logic is flawed. Just because you don't remember something, does not prove that did not happen.
  • Pinworm >> As the quadrillions of years pass by, something very odd should happen. In eternity, even the rarest events get a chance to occur. Weird, bizarre phenomena that only happen once in a zillion years or so, become quite normal. <<

    One of the problems with this line of reasoning is that there is an underlying assumption that time has some objective reality. Ask yourself, what would be keeping track of time in a universe where nothing existed? Do you think that nothingness has some kind of internal clock? If nothing is happening, then in what sense can we say that time passes?

    This is not just my own nutty idea, there are a number of physicists that support it, but I am too lazy to google ATM.
    • Unsu...
       
      It's really more of a thought experiment than a postulation of objective reality, if such a thing exists. If they are correct that space and time are the same and that the fabric of the universe will remain stable, then it is possible that time and space continue, but if the nature of the universe and the forces change, time may end with it.

      the whole thing assumes that the quantum vaccum remains stable while matter itself vanishes, and yes, there is no justification for thinking this.