Math Is Fun Forum
  Discussion about math, puzzles, games and fun.   Useful symbols: ÷ × ½ √ ∞ ≠ ≤ ≥ ≈ ⇒ ± ∈ Δ θ ∴ ∑ ∫ • π ƒ -¹ ² ³ °

You are not logged in.

#1 2007-06-16 09:19:22

Laterally Speaking
Real Member
Registered: 2007-05-21
Posts: 356

Time as perceived by the human mind

Here's some thing to think about, but perhaps not too much: it has been demonstrated that if a person is, for example, poked (by surprise) with a needle, their conscious mind only registers activity after they jump. However, the mind perceives things differently: in you mind, you think, "I realized I got poked, so I jumped." The actual order of events is the opposite: you jump as a reflex, and then realize and rationalize what happened.

If you don't find this odd, then you probably won't find anything odd...

Another example of time going awry is the fact that, in some cases, information available in the present can affect the (relatively recent) past... I'm not sure exactly what the circumstances surrounding the discovery of this are, but I'm pretty sure it has been demonstrated.


"Knowledge is directly proportional to the amount of equipment ruined."
"This woman painted a picture of me; she was clearly a psychopath"

Offline

#2 2007-06-16 11:58:03

Ricky
Moderator
Registered: 2005-12-04
Posts: 3,791

Re: Time as perceived by the human mind

Here's some thing to think about, but perhaps not too much: it has been demonstrated that if a person is, for example, poked (by surprise) with a needle, their conscious mind only registers activity after they jump. However, the mind perceives things differently: in you mind, you think, "I realized I got poked, so I jumped." The actual order of events is the opposite: you jump as a reflex, and then realize and rationalize what happened.

It's not odd at all once you understand the biology of a reflex.


"In the real world, this would be a problem.  But in mathematics, we can just define a place where this problem doesn't exist.  So we'll go ahead and do that now..."

Offline

#3 2007-06-16 21:25:45

Laterally Speaking
Real Member
Registered: 2007-05-21
Posts: 356

Re: Time as perceived by the human mind

Well, that part isn't, but the fact that your mind thinks it realized what happened and then reacted consciously is somewhat odd, being that you reacted as a reflex, and then realized what happened.


"Knowledge is directly proportional to the amount of equipment ruined."
"This woman painted a picture of me; she was clearly a psychopath"

Offline

#4 2007-06-16 21:54:28

JaneFairfax
Member
Registered: 2007-02-23
Posts: 6,868

Re: Time as perceived by the human mind

That’s because in a reflex reaction, the neurons effecting the movement do not have to travel from the stimulus to the brain and back to the original location. Some neurons from the stimulus do travel to the brain so that the brain can know what’s happened, but by the time these reach the brain (plus the time it takes the brain to interpret the data), the reflex reaction (triggered by the neurons that did not have to travel to the brain) will have occurred. It’s all perfectly natural. smile


Q: Who wrote the novels Mrs Dalloway and To the Lighthouse?

A: Click here for answer.

Offline

#5 2007-06-16 23:48:25

Laterally Speaking
Real Member
Registered: 2007-05-21
Posts: 356

Re: Time as perceived by the human mind

In a way, I suppose it is natural, but it still seems odd that the mind would think that you consciously and rationally decided to move.


"Knowledge is directly proportional to the amount of equipment ruined."
"This woman painted a picture of me; she was clearly a psychopath"

Offline

#6 2007-06-17 01:06:57

JaneFairfax
Member
Registered: 2007-02-23
Posts: 6,868

Re: Time as perceived by the human mind

No, you didn’t. The part of your body undergoing the reflex just moves by itself. What happens is that after the movement has taken place, you consciously realize that that part of the body has moved. But you did not consciously decide to move it in the first place.


Q: Who wrote the novels Mrs Dalloway and To the Lighthouse?

A: Click here for answer.

Offline

#7 2007-06-18 14:48:09

John E. Franklin
Member
Registered: 2005-08-29
Posts: 3,552

Re: Time as perceived by the human mind

How relatively recent past are you talking about near end of 1st post, lat?
I haven't heard of such a discovery, except in science fiction movies, where
they make a bridge to the past 4 and a half days back, and make a little change.


igloo myrtilles fourmis

Offline

#8 2007-06-19 03:45:53

Laterally Speaking
Real Member
Registered: 2007-05-21
Posts: 356

Re: Time as perceived by the human mind

I mean picoseconds, even femtoseconds, perhaps even attoseconds. Not very far into the past. Ithink the thing is that you record information about something, and having that information in existence changes what happened, whereas if you have the machine record the information and delete it instantly, it's something else... In any case, it's pretty odd.


"Knowledge is directly proportional to the amount of equipment ruined."
"This woman painted a picture of me; she was clearly a psychopath"

Offline

Board footer

Powered by FluxBB