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  #16  
Old 04-08-2010, 02:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Negative Zero View Post
It's the sun, right? The sun radiates out low entropy energy that's captured by the plants and works its way up the food chain.
The wording is a bit off but you have the right idea. The Suns energy lowers entropy here on the Earth by warming it and driving chemical energy storage in plants. Overall, the Sun slowly loses its potential energy so the entropy of the Earth/Sun system is still going up.
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  #17  
Old 04-08-2010, 02:43 PM
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As I understand within the concept of entropy indeed orderly and disorderly states are out the window. In Mike's example of the marbles the state inside the jar is allready one of complete entropy. Given that the jar embodies the entire universe. And the differentiation between red and blue is moot. If the marbles are as 'spread out' as they can be given their possible positions then that is the state of maximum entropy. The possibiilty of dark matter is interesting in this regard as it apparently fills the spaces not occupied by balls.
Do you know how the existence of dark matter influences, if at all, theories about entropy GORT?
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  #18  
Old 04-08-2010, 02:44 PM
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All you did gort is tell me how little you know about entropy and once again call into question why I am wasting my time on this idiot-brain forum.
You mean this entropy? Entropy (classical thermodynamics)

Or just an overly simplified view of Boltzmann's statistical mechanics?

The thing is that although red and blue marbles can represent levels of entropy, A full enough discussion to relate this to thermodynamics would be prohibitive. Just who around here do you expect to understand it even if you describe the premise fully? Stick to the newer energy flow and disposal descriptions.


Anywho, no further mention of Hoyle?
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  #19  
Old 04-08-2010, 03:54 PM
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Do you know how the existence of dark matter influences, if at all, theories about entropy GORT?
DM would seem to provide the lion share of entropy "inside" the universe. This based on estimates of super massive black hole mass and refinements of the Hubble constant. On a grander scale however, all of the universes internal entropy is dwarfed by the entropy of a growing horizon of expansion as evidenced by dissipation of the CMBR.
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  #20  
Old 04-08-2010, 06:26 PM
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How does internal entropy differ from the entropy involved in the growing horizon? Isnt the jar just getting bigger?

Im no physicist, just a philosophy student with a penguin dictionairy of physics and a very basic comprehension of astronomy and quantum-physics, so if it takes too long to explain then nevermind but arent black-holes a bit of a problem to entropy?

As to the topic of this thread; the rules concerning evolution and those concerning entropy are not really comparable. Though do inhabit the same body of rules known as this universe they do not operate on the same scale. The particles involved differ too much in size.
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  #21  
Old 04-08-2010, 11:36 PM
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Originally Posted by G O R T View Post
The wording is a bit off but you have the right idea. The Suns energy lowers entropy here on the Earth by warming it and driving chemical energy storage in plants. Overall, the Sun slowly loses its potential energy so the entropy of the Earth/Sun system is still going up.
Isn't the key that the sun supplies the biosphere with "order" (low entropy) and not just "energy"? After all, all the energy the earth receives from the sun is radiated back out into space in a disordered form. The biosphere strips the order from the suns energy and uses it to order matter into cells and bodies etc.
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  #22  
Old 04-08-2010, 11:38 PM
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Also, where did the low entropy in the sun's energy come from in the first place?
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  #23  
Old 04-08-2010, 11:49 PM
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Oh and btw, i think the best way of viewing the phenomenon life is as the emergence of design from order.
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  #24  
Old 04-09-2010, 12:10 PM
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How does internal entropy differ from the entropy involved in the growing horizon? Isnt the jar just getting bigger?
Im no physicist, just a philosophy student with a penguin dictionairy of physics and a very basic comprehension of astronomy and quantum-physics, so if it takes too long to explain then nevermind but arent black-holes a bit of a problem to entropy?
As matter and energy move beyond the cosmic horizon, their influence is also largely removed.

Ponder this: Cosmic entropy could be 100 times greater than previously thought.
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  #25  
Old 04-09-2010, 12:24 PM
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For the record, my stance on entropy in the context of this website is illistrated by this Wikki article : Entropy (energy dispersal).


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Problem: entropy as disorder is hard to teach
The term "entropy" has been in use from early in the history of classical thermodynamics, and with the development of statistical thermodynamics and quantum theory, entropy changes have been described in terms of the mixing or "spreading" of the total energy of each constituent of a system over its particular quantized energy levels.

Such descriptions have tended to be used together with commonly used terms such as disorder and chaos which are ambiguous, and whose everyday meaning is the opposite of what they are intended to mean in thermodynamics. Not only does this situation cause confusion, but it also hampers the teaching of thermodynamics. Students were being asked to grasp meanings directly contradicting their normal usage, with equilibrium being equated to "perfect internal disorder" and the mixing of milk in coffee from apparent chaos to uniformity being described as a transition from an ordered state into a disordered state.[1] Studies found that few understood what these terms were intended to convey.

The description of entropy as the amount of "mixedupness" or "disorder," as well as the abstract nature of the statistical mechanics grounding this notion, can lead to confusion and considerable difficulty for those beginning the subject.[2][3] Even though courses emphasised microstates and energy levels, most students could not get beyond simplistic notions of randomness or disorder. Many of those who learned by practising calculations did not understand well the intrinsic meanings of equations, and there was a need for qualitative explanations of thermodynamic relationships.[4][5]

Solution: entropy as energy dispersal
To overcome the difficulties described in the previous section, entropy can be exposited in terms of "energy dispersal" and the "spreading of energy," while carefully avoiding all mention of "disorder" and "chaos" except when explaining misconceptions. All explanations of where and how energy is dispersing or spreading have been recast in terms of energy disperal, so as to emphasise the underlying qualitative meaning.[2]

In this approach, the second law of thermodynamics is introduced as "Energy spontaneously disperses from being localized to becoming spread out if it is not hindered from doing so." in the context of common experiences such as a rock falling, a hot frying pan cooling down, iron rusting, air leaving a punctured tire and ice melting in a warm room. Entropy is then depicted as a sophisticated kind of "before and after" yardstick — measuring how much energy is spread out over time as a result of a process such as heating a system, or how widely spread out the energy is after something happens in comparison with its previous state, in a process such as gas expansion or fluids mixing (at a constant temperature). The equations are explored with reference to the common experiences, with emphasis that in chemistry the energy that entropy measures as dispersing is internal energy, which beginners can most clearly understand as “motional energy”, the translational, vibrational, and rotational energy of molecules.

By giving concrete examples, this approach is effective in explaining entropy to assist those who have great difficulty in grasping mathematical abstractions. The statistical interpretation is related to quantum mechanics in describing the way that energy is distributed (quantized) amongst molecules on specific energy levels, with all the energy of the macrostate always in only one Microstate at one instant. Entropy is described as measuring the energy dispersal for a system by the number of accessible microstates, the number of different arrangements of all its energy at the next instant. Thus, an increase in entropy means a greater number of microstates for the Final state than for the Initial state, and hence more possible arrangements of a system's total energy at any one instant. Here, the greater 'dispersal of the total energy of a system' means the existence of so many possibilities.[6]

Continuous movement and molecular collisions visualised as being like bouncing balls blown by air as used in a lottery can then lead on to showing the possibilities of many Boltzmann distributions and continually changing "distribution of the instant", and so on to the idea that when the system changes, dynamic molecules will have a greater number of accessible microstates. In this approach, all everyday spontaneous physical happenings and chemical reactions are depicted as involving some type of energy flows from being localized or concentrated to becoming spread out to a larger space, always to a state with a greater number of microstates.[7]

This approach provides a good basis for understanding the conventional approach, except in very complex cases where the qualitative relation of energy dispersal to entropy change can be so inextricably obscured that it is moot.[7] Thus in situations such as in the entropy of mixing when the two or more different substances being mixed are at the same temperature and pressure so there will be no net exchange of heat or work, the entropy increase will be due to the literal spreading out of the motional energy of each substance in the larger combined final volume. Each component’s energetic molecules become more separated from one another than they would be in the pure state, when in the pure state they were colliding only with identical adjacent molecules, leading to an increase in its number of accessible microstates.[8]

Variants of the energy disperal approach have been adopted in number of undergraduate chemistry texts, mainly in the United States. For a list of American first-year university chemistry texts that have adopted this approach, see here. A distinguished advanced text, Physical Chemistry by Peter Atkins of Oxford University and Julio De Paula, has followed suit. Starting with the 8th edition, Atkins and De Paula describe entropy in terms of dispersal of energy, without mentioning "disorder."[9][10]

Websites have made the energy dispersal approach accessible not only to all students of chemistry, but also to the lay public seeking a basic intuitive understanding of thermodynamic entropy. For example, here is a page setting out the qualitative simplicity of the notion of entropy.
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  #26  
Old 04-14-2010, 05:55 AM
Mike Dubbeld Mike Dubbeld is offline
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"Such descriptions have tended to be used together with commonly used terms such as disorder and chaos which are ambiguous"

This goes to show exactly what I am talking about. Whoever said this is obviously clueless about what chaos is and to associate disorder with chaos demonstrates their air-headedness/I need not bother with reading what they say further. What you find in academia is still the rigidity of one discipline like thermo unwilling to learn chaos and vice versa and so when it comes to entropy the thermo nuts thinking they own the subject want to go off the deep end on precisely what entropy is thereby changing the subject and allowing them to comment on something posted about entropy as related to cosmology -- as in if they could not do this they would have to keep their big fat mouths shut. So they want to confound the issue with the DEFINITION of entropy. Its pathetic.
Thermo is a formidable subject but so is fluid mechanics and so is astrophysics.

But to use the above quoted phrase in that manner bespeaks of someone not versed in much of anything attempting to cast such ignorance on subjects for which they are totally clueless like Chaos and for which I will be happy to demonstrate why anyone attempting to analogize Chaos with disorder IS (totally clueless).

It is endlessly frustrating getting people to agree on almost anything resulting in the pertinent question of how useful forums are for anything besides politics. My example of the red and blue marbles was not my idea but was the example given to me to demonstrate entropy as being disorder. I have seen professors make egregious many, many times so just because you come across some Wiki something it is not necessarily going to impress me and even if it does it may do so in ways contrary to ways you might think. From my perspective Wikipedia is a good starting place but many times it leaves out more than it reveals.

My original concern is not addressed. How do you know/how could you know whether embodied life is not the outcome being a minimum energy configuration? Like when you burn paper all you are doing is having the paper undergo a chemical reaction initiated by adding energy in the form of heat - is nothing more than the re-arrangement of electrons into a lower energy configuration in the same way that a rock falling down a mountain is nothing more than matter as mass releasing stored potential gravitational energy? Are bodies the result of a minimum energy configuration in the same way? How could you know if such bodies (think cells for starters/simplicity) were not created deliberately?

Although creation of amino acids by natural processes is straightforward, creation of amino acids that are all left-handed of the life (body) sort are not. If you create amino acids in a laboratory you are as likely to create as many right-handed amino acids as left yet all of life (bodies) use only left-handed amino acids. What sort of natural lower energy configuration would cause only left-handed amino acids? Once you have them, what natural process/lower energy configuration causes these amino acids to self-organize into specific proteins and then into cells that reproduce? All this sounds out of the realm of entropy/seeking of nature toward its lowest energy state to me.

At what point do you say life (bodies) strive to survive as being different than rust striving to survive by oxygen 'metabolizing' (and thereby reproducing itself) iron?

I just finished again the 6 hour course by Professor Seth Shostak on The Search for Extraterrestrial Life by The Teaching Company. Although he does not cover it entropy is a means to understand the arising of embodied life of any sort. Seth is an obvious atheist and I disagree entirely with his interpretation of the data he presents. He is led to the conclusion that life (more precisely bodies) is not special and finding life elsewhere in the universe is reason to believe we (bodies) are not special for that fact. Studying the details of whether there is life (bodies) elsewhere in the universe as well as its sort I have been doing for a long time. I am led to the conclusion that life (bodies - think cells) elsewhere in the universe IS SPECIAL and we are in fact extraordinarily special for which I can present a whole ton of reasons why this is true.
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  #27  
Old 04-18-2010, 09:59 AM
S.N.Parbat S.N.Parbat is offline
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i agree to your points....i prepared a few replies but unfortunately couldn't post any of them...i'll try again..
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