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Acoustics: A tree falls in the woods...

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Actually Researcher, I am nothing of an audiophile...heck, I never even figured out how to program the VCR.

But, I do have a background in acoustics - ocean acoustics to be precise.

My understanding of sound performance combines that background with my current position...kind of a professional interest rather than a hobby. In general I would expect the true audiophile could run rings around me in this area, but I have enough knowledge of the subject matter to (hopefully) help folks thru the weirder parts and to occasionally embarrass myself...

Thinking of the tree in the woods eberry? Actually, I even considered using that particular analogy to further confuse the whole idea, but I decided to avoid it.

Nope, my comment on the three things needed to have sound was based on the strict physical definition...of course one can argue that physics is simply a contraction "physical philosopher" and that all physics is ultimately philosophy...but, I digress.

Obviously, the part of the argument relating to the philosophical question has to be the need for a receiver to have sound. Just as obvious, without a source for a sound, then that sound cannot exist. Without a medium, then the physical sound waves produced by the action of the source of the sound cannot exist. Despite Star Trek and Star Wars and the miriad of other deep space extravaganzas, there ain't no noise in space - there is no medium to transmit the sound waves. One of the things (of many) that I really liked about "Firefly" - no sound in the dark.

The stapler was a great analogy. In the same sense as in sound, there is a source, and a medium, but if no one "observes" the stapler - if there is no detector - does that mean that the stapler does not exisit? Despite memory of the stapler....

If one were to carry Shrodinger's thesis to the extreme, then one could say that in that circumstance the stapler exists and does not exist at the same time - depending on an measure is to affect existance.

Of course like the idea Very Happy of the "cat in the box", the translation of mathematical concepts to simple words does leave something to be desired. One could then argue that that is, afterall, the basis of quantum mechanics - which we "know" works, but we are not always certain exactly how it does so.

And anyone who doesn't think that parts of quantum mechanics borders on the philospohical...!

To paraphrase and totally misquote Albert Einstein...God does indeed play dice with the Universe.

Thanks eberry and researcher, that was fun! Of course now I have to leave and I haven't written a single word about windows! lol Very Happy

And a few additional quotes attributed to Einstein:

"Science is a wonderful thing if one does not have to earn one's living at it."

"The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."

"The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education."

Post Source: sound and noise and stuff
Posted: Thu Feb 09, 2006 7:50 am