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FQXi FORUM
May 23, 2013

ARTICLE: Chasing Constant Change [back to article]

Reason McLucus wrote on Jun. 3, 2007 @ 07:13 GMT
Physicists can be so naive. The constants in physics equations are not necessarily "constant" They may represent unknown factors which do not appear to change, at least not in the short run. Constants are placed in equations because the known factors by themselves cannot produce an answer when specific values are placed in the equation. Placing the "constant" in the equation allows physicists to get an answer.

In the case of electromagnetic radiation over long distances, constants might not be the only factor which could be associated with differences in data. Conditions in space may change radiation between the time it leaves a distant galaxy and the time it reaches earth.

The values of many physical constants were determined with equipment that was not as sensitive as the equipment in use today. New equipment may produce different values or detect differences in potential factors that could not be determined even a few decades ago. Today's equipment may allow identification of factors that could not be identified before.

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paul valletta wrote on Sep. 3, 2007 @ 01:23 GMT
The Constants of Nature are "fixed" into physical Laws within the Universe. The fixing paramiter is of course Time, we place a value on testable quantities "now", in the present time.

In GR and within QM, both allow the Constants of Nature to be fixed, but both QM and GR allow the "effects" of the constants to be varied!

In QM, there is the Law of observation, in GR there is also the Law of observation, both theories are WRT position and momenum, encased within a reference frame of Time, present-time.

The constants of Nature are Observationally varied by the Observers who are detecting them.

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paul valletta wrote on Sep. 3, 2007 @ 01:26 GMT
Sorry, this is missing from the above post:The constants of Nature are Observationally varied by the Observers who are detecting them, at a certain instant in Time.

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