FAQ  •  Search  •  Memberlist  •  Usergroups   •  Register  •  Profile  •  Log in to check your private messages  •  Log in

Your ad here, right now: as low as $0

Below are the TaBB Archives! The new forum is here. Even if you're already registered here, you'll need to create a new account there. CLEAN SLATE.

 INFINITE TERROR View next topic
View previous topic
This forum is locked: you cannot post, reply to, or edit topics.This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies.
Author Message
Ryan
Strawberry-blonde Milkshake


Joined: 27 Jan 2005
Posts: 4414
Location: CANADA

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 11:24 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Okay so today's comic speculates about nesting ghosts like Matryoshka dolls (those Russian nesting dolls you've probably seen). The question is, can you really have arbitrarily-large TERROR in a finite volume?

I was intending the nesting doll metaphor to be kind of loose, figuring that if ghosts can walk through solid objects, then they can walk through other ghosts, which means you could have them all standing in the same space. But what if you do need a ghostly shell to keep the ghosts from merging together?

BN sent me this email that examines that possibility!

bn wrote:

so what t-rex is proposing is that the scary part of a
ghost is the surface area, rather than the volume. and
from this he deduces that a russian doll ghost could
possibly be INFINITELY scary. is this the case?

so i guess the question you should ask yourself is:
does a ghost "scare membrane" have depth?

if the curtain that is a ghost has depth e,
what is the surface area of a spherical nesting doll
ghost of radius R?

hmmm. what's the surface area of one ghost of radius
r?
=>4*pi*r^2
total surface area, where N=R/e

SUM{n from 1 to N} (4*pi*e^2 n^2}
=4*pi*e^2 SUM(n^2)
=FINITE

hm. so if the depth of a ghost scare membrane is
finite, then the scaryness of a nesting ghost is also
finite. but how big is it?

what's the volume of all these nesting sphere ghosts?
the volume of one spherical ghost is
4/3 *pi*( (r+e)^3-r^3)
=4*pi( er^2+r*e^2+(1/3)e^3)

so the total volume where N=R/e will be
=SUM{n from 1 to N} (4*pi* (
e(n*e)^2+(n*e)*e^2+(1/3)e^3) )
(recall that this =4/3*pi*R^3 )
>4*pi*e^3 SUM(n^2) (= surface area *e)

so the surface area is related to the volume by:
Volume / e = total surface area.

so at the limit of e->0, the finite volume will give
an infinite area and thus, be infinitely scary.

but is this a realistic assumption? hard to say:

in general relativity, once a star "dies" and is no
longer capable of maintaining fusion, one possible
end-state is a black hole. black holes are pretty much
ghosts of stars... in that, the position and
impression of the star still remains, though nothing
else of the star remains in place. further, in terms
of regular words, a black hole is characterized only
by a 2-dimensional boundary: the even horizon. the
event horizon has no depth, it's an infinitesimally
thin curtain separating the happy normal universe from
the horrors of gravitational crushing hell. Finally,
the scaryness of a black hole is relatable to its
area: the black hole of a baseball would be very small
indeed, and the black hole of the earth or the sun
would also be pretty small compared to the regular
world. uhhh... 2m=r-> as you increase the area
linearly the mass increases quadratically.

so t-rex's picture fits well, kind of. we're drawing
an intuitive analogy, and not saying that they are
equivalent, so i won't go into how the picture doesn't
fit.

on the other hand, in quantum mechanics, there is
generally assumed to be a fundamental length scale,
beyond which length is meaningless. thus, an
infinitesmally thin sheet cannot exist. at the very
smallest, the ghost would have the width e= plank
length. which is very small indeed. but it's not
zero. thus, a nesting ghost could be VERY SCARY, but
not infinitely scary.

finally, the universe has not existed for an infinite
amount of time, and so it's not obvious how an
infinite number of ghosts could nest together to be
infinitely scary.

this concludes my discussion on the subject.

bn


an addendum wrote:

oh, so lets suppose that ghost membranes have variable
widths, which they can make arbitrarily small.

the russian doll of ghosts would be a countably
infinite degree of scaryness at the very most.

on the other hand, if the ghosts are indeed
2-dimension, then the full-up russian doll of ghosts
would be uncountably infinite!
so when you see one, chances are YOUR SOUL IS ALREADY
SOMEWHERE INSIDE THE GHOST!!!!!!

awesome.

_________________
It is a good day to do what has to be done by me to help my brother to defeat the enemys.
View user's profileSend private messageSend e-mailVisit poster's website
Aether



Joined: 24 Jan 2006
Posts: 2468
Location: Utah

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 11:31 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Haha, bn is just far too awesome for words

_________________
I'm afraid to forget you
I am remembering you
You were sparkling
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's websiteYahoo MessengerMSN Messenger
Miles
away from ordinary


Joined: 06 Apr 2007
Posts: 8990
Location: Jet City

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 11:49 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Do they teach a class on this somewhere? They should.

_________________
Go on, take a swig of that poison and like it
Don't ask for silverware, don't ask for nothin'
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's website
Future Skeleton



Joined: 15 Oct 2006
Posts: 278
Location: The Future

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 1:50 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Do you mean the math stuff? Or the ghostology?
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's websiteAIM Address
roquentin



Joined: 07 Apr 2007
Posts: 3890
Location: the lost and found

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 2:03 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

i think he obviously meant the ghostology. There are "real" academics who do work in para-studies, like measuring the physical effects of seances and whatnot.
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's website
otie



Joined: 17 Jan 2006
Posts: 1019
Location: Finland

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 2:16 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Like the doctors Egon Spengler, Raymond Stantz and Peter Venkman.

_________________
she's so fine
great big healthy country girl
she's the finest thing
finest thing in the world
View user's profileSend private messageSend e-mailVisit poster's websiteMSN Messenger
parallax



Joined: 02 May 2007
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 2:43 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

You know what would be even scarier than nested ghosts? A fractal ghost!
View user's profileSend private message
Miles
away from ordinary


Joined: 06 Apr 2007
Posts: 8990
Location: Jet City

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 3:22 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I guess I meant a class on the math of ghosts.

_________________
Go on, take a swig of that poison and like it
Don't ask for silverware, don't ask for nothin'
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's website
Half a Bee



Joined: 17 Nov 2006
Posts: 510

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 3:44 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

What bn didn't address is the limits of human scariness perception. Every human will only be able to distinguish a limited number of overlapping ghosts.

H = total horror
h = horror per ghost
n = number of ghosts present
m = maximum ghosts detectable

H = h * min( n, m )

Infinitely large values for n produce no more total horror (H) than when n = m. For the highest possible H values, you want to be increasing h, not n.

Also, linear growth requires infinite ghosts to approach infinite horror. T-Rex should work on is a method for making the horror of each ghost increase the scariness of all the other ghosts present, such that there is quadratic growth in scary. That way total horror (H) will be approaching infinity at a faster rate and T-Rex will achieve higher horror per ghost values.

---

Another idea would be a recursive ghost: the ghost of a person who's ghost killed him(or her)self. There you have an infinite number of ghosts and victims all in one entity.
View user's profileSend private message
Stranger Dan



Joined: 15 Nov 2004
Posts: 1889
Location: Western Massachusetts

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 4:29 pm Reply with quoteBack to top


_________________
(in their majestic and far-sweeping wisdom, true falcons will attack children)
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's websiteAIM Address
Dezro



Joined: 08 Dec 2005
Posts: 9009
Location: SOMEWHERE EXTREME

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 6:54 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Guys did you know that this is basically what Scientologists believe? That everyone is haunted by tons of ghosts and as people die their ghost, along with the ghosts haunting them, go out and find a baby to haunt? So as time goes on people are haunted by more and more ghosts and their lives get crappier?

I think they call them body thetans or something instead of ghosts, though.

_________________
Image
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's website
Unwinder
Foreman of Deceit


Joined: 26 Sep 2005
Posts: 7508
Location: Wherever the money is at! (because I love money)

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 7:11 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Wow. I thought they were weird. I didn't know that they were TERRIFYING.

_________________
Unwinder's Tall Comics
Though I am doomed to forever walk this planet scoring hoops, the swish of the net compares not to your incomparable beauty and nice face.
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's websiteAIM AddressYahoo MessengerMSN Messenger
Lapsed Pacifist



Joined: 05 Nov 2006
Posts: 2013
Location: in my ears and in my eyes

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 7:16 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Also they are the ghosts of ancient humans who were teleported into a volcano by an alien space warlord.
View user's profileSend private message
Sydd



Joined: 26 Apr 2007
Posts: 2500
Location: erie, pa

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 7:21 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

otie wrote:
Like the doctors Egon Spengler, Raymond Stantz and Peter Venkman.


I have to quote this because it's probably the best reply in the thread and nobody responded.
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's website
justinpie
Topless From The Waist Down


Joined: 11 Nov 2004
Posts: 20023
Location: cutting room floor

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 7:30 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I think we should measure overlapping ghosts with a g-prefix. six ghost would be a g-g-g-g-g-ghost, and ovet time you'd end up with g^23host

_________________
nobody's going to gay to eat a pay baby
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's website
justinpie
Topless From The Waist Down


Joined: 11 Nov 2004
Posts: 20023
Location: cutting room floor

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 7:30 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

six ghost

_________________
nobody's going to gay to eat a pay baby
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's website
Half a Bee



Joined: 17 Nov 2006
Posts: 510

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 8:05 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Only Shaggy could discern the number of overlapping ghosts
View user's profileSend private message
Future Skeleton



Joined: 15 Oct 2006
Posts: 278
Location: The Future

PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 8:17 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Miles wrote:
I guess I meant a class on the math of ghosts.

Yeah, so klaw, you would be looking for a BOOlean algebra class, if you'll pardon my horrifying pun.
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's websiteAIM Address
Elias_Aquarius



Joined: 03 May 2007
Posts: 1135
Location: Yeah, like I'm gonna tell the internet.

PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 12:43 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Future Skeleton wrote:
Miles wrote:
I guess I meant a class on the math of ghosts.

Yeah, so klaw, you would be looking for a BOOlean algebra class, if you'll pardon my horrifying pun.


*makes joke about only DEAD people reading hex.*
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's website
dri-ft
as in, "get my"?


Joined: 15 Apr 2006
Posts: 4452
Location: england

PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 9:45 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Half a Bee wrote:
Only Shaggy could discern the number of overlapping ghosts


hahaha awesome

this was a very awesome comic, ryan. very funny i thought.

_________________
I eat only white foods: eggs, sugar, grated bones, the fat of dead animals; veal, salt, coconut, chicken cooked in white water; fruit mold, rice, turnips; camphorated sausage, dough, cheese (white), cotton salad, and certain fish (skinless).
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's websiteAIM AddressMSN Messenger
Sydd



Joined: 26 Apr 2007
Posts: 2500
Location: erie, pa

PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 9:59 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Future Skeleton wrote:
Miles wrote:
I guess I meant a class on the math of ghosts.

Yeah, so klaw, you would be looking for a BOOlean algebra class, if you'll pardon my horrifying pun.


DEAR GOD MY BRAIN
View user's profileSend private messageVisit poster's website
Westacular



Joined: 23 Jun 2006
Posts: 2678
Location: GO TEAM WESTACULAR \o/\o/

PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 12:56 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

justinpie wrote:
I think we should measure overlapping ghosts with a g-prefix. six ghost would be a g-g-g-g-g-ghost, and ovet time you'd end up with g^23host


seconded
View user's profileSend private messageSend e-mailVisit poster's websiteAIM AddressMSN Messenger
Westacular



Joined: 23 Jun 2006
Posts: 2678
Location: GO TEAM WESTACULAR \o/\o/

PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2007 3:20 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I think we really need to consider issues relating ghosts, singularities, and the holographic principle here.

Axiom 1: Ghosts are compact regions.
Axiom 2: Ghosts are, or have, some form of physical energy.

An infinitely nested ghost would have infinite energy density. But any compact region with energy density above a certain threshold will collapse into a singularity.

Could some ghosts be black holes? If a sufficiently terrifying ghost haunts you, would there be no return -- you simply join the ghost directly? Or perhaps it only takes part of you, leaving you to suffer as a terrified, empty shell.

According to Hawking Radiation, black holes evapourate without continued input of energy; a human-sized black hole would evapourate pretty quickly. Perhaps that is why it needs to haunt people -- the ghosthole must constantly add to itself to survive?

I mentioned the holographic principle because I thought I could mention something about only needing to understand the state of the shell but ... I can't think of anything anymore.

There is also the nagging issue that a finite universe could not produce an infinite ghost...
View user's profileSend private messageSend e-mailVisit poster's websiteAIM AddressMSN Messenger
Display posts from previous:      
This forum is locked: you cannot post, reply to, or edit topics.This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies.


 Jump to:   



View next topic
View previous topic
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum