Talk:2646: Minkowski Space

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
Revision as of 05:33, 26 July 2022 by (talk) (Cheeky response to a cheeky joke.)
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I still don't get it. 03:06, 16 July 2022 (UTC)

It's definitely not in the top ten all-time funniest ever, but there are probably more than a few academic physicists it got a grin out of. 03:38, 16 July 2022 (UTC)
It's been a long time since I had any sort of dealing with Minkowski diagrams, but it definitely got me chuckling... I suppose you just have to appreciate Randall's particular slant. 04:45, 16 July 2022 (UTC)
You were just bound to make that kind of joke, weren't you? 05:33, 26 July 2022 (UTC)

I don't think checking in to Hilbert's Hotel provides any comfort at all. After all you are required to pack up your belongings and move to a new room a possibly infinite number of times, thus leaving you no chance to get any sleep. MAP (talk) 05:46, 16 July 2022 (UTC)

I agree, and removed "The fugitives of the first ship may enjoy a more comfortable getaway if they check into Hilbert's Hotel." because the hotel paradox has nothing to do with Hilbert space or anything else in the comic. I also think the subsection should be removed as misleading, but I'm waiting on someone to perhaps proofread it as maybe it's just poorly drafted. 06:06, 16 July 2022 (UTC)
If the pursuer knows what the prefered "move and insert" algorithm is (and 'arrival number(s)' used in that), then they can go immediately to the pursued's room, without bothering to book in themselves. So maybe that's a danger. But I'd rather be in a hotel room (that is an unknown one amongst a countably infinite whole) than in a quite obvious maybe-reachable tin can in the openness of space.
(And any given insertion of new residents needs only a single move at a time, no matter how many nested infinities of arrivals/transports/etc. So moving every now and then isn't so onerous, so long as housekeeping has an infinite number of staff to clean and prepare each new room each time, which they probably can with evenly distributed live-in staff alone.)
That said, it seems to be more the ubiquity of Hilbert in mathematical constructs than a direct link, him seemingly having an infinite number of fingers in an infinite number of infinite-pies. Probably no loss. 12:14, 16 July 2022 (UTC)
An infinite housekeeping staff would either be able to so easily keep up with the rooms that the hotel could give them infinite paid vacation, or they'd all be working 24 hours a day and still getting farther and farther behind on the cleaning, depending on how the housekeeping staff's infinity is defined. Dansiman (talk) 21:19, 18 July 2022 (UTC)

On position alone, "Closer?" could be Voice 1, "Reference" is Voice 2 (both from the cockpit) and "Tell" a new voice (from further behind, passenger/engineer?). Which matches (and adds to) the original dialogue, with Voice 2 being the experienced captain reacting to the more worried copilot/operator next to him, etc. Except that Voice 2 says "On my mark" but then their presumed "Mark" emits elsewhere (to leave room for the actual click, which I'd expect Voice 1 to make). I have sympathy with Randall, if he actually wanted to put this story down in accurate visuals and yet positionally keep to conventions (having a top-down reading experience) he'd need to either wrap speech-lines around the nose of the craft or (...might need some intermediate frame showing some 'acrobatic' drawing...) have the evading craft flip inverted for the current second frame. Could get more complex than 'necessary', just to leave us with less of a voice-ID mystery where it probably matters very little in the long run. 12:51, 16 July 2022 (UTC)

Hilbert space sounds like the Infinite Probability Drive. 13:46, 16 July 2022 (UTC)

How long should I wait before getting worried about not returning to normality? 15635176 (talk) 15:30, 18 July 2022 (UTC)

At first I wondered if this was a reference to the Wolf 359 podcast ([1]), which has a couple of characters named Minkowski and Hilbert. But it's likely that those names are references to these different kinds of space. ShifterCat (talk) 16:30, 16 July 2022 (UTC)

that was what I thought too, then I had the same train of thought. At least I wasnt the only one lol 03:28, 18 July 2022 (UTC)

I disagree with the explanation! We are not living in the Minkowski space but in the Minkowski spacetime. This little detail lead into misunderstanding of the joke. In Minkowski space there is one cordinate with different signature to others. We use this in relativistic physics for the time coordinate to explain many phenomenons in relativistic physics. But in this comics we swap into Minkowski SPACE. It is even more obvious from pictures that strange deferomation happens when we are closer to the diagonal direction. We know this deformation on the spacetime diagram but this one displays whole ship in its spece-like character. So it is not trivial to do such a jump into Minkowski space and it changes the situation! On top of that the distance is usually invariant and indepenedent on reference frame for the given geometry. So the last frame may be a bit strange becouse it looks like a false statement. But it makes sense if you think about it. If we think about "reference frame" in common comics language the reference frame in comics language basically means mention of different frames we picture. And we changed the goemetry between frames. So the geometry itself may cause that distance is independend on reference frame but the fact that we changed the geometry between frames causes that the distance of both ships may depend on such a thing as reference frame. The joke is ingenious! But for completely different reasons that are presented in here.MBas (talk) 10:29, 20 July 2022 (UTC)

I really wish I understood what you're trying to say. Is there a source which explains the distinction between Minkowski space and Minkowski spacetime you're trying to draw? Even 1-D Minkowski space is always taken to mean a 2-D spacetime, isn't it? 06:03, 24 July 2022 (UTC)