RE: chaos and uncertainty (was seti@home is SORTA WORKING)

Rob Harris Cen-IT (
Fri, 16 Jul 1999 09:56:10 +0100

> Ron, can you expand the uncertainty detail at all? Anyone
> else...?
> that the uncertainty principle limits the precision
> of measuring both the position and momentum of a particle at the same
> time. The product of the uncertainties of position and momentum is at
> least Planck's constant.
> So the precise initial conditions needed to make a prediction cannot be
> obtained, given the uncertainty principle.
> Ron Kean
I see, in the most part. I just don't get the most juicy bit. How was Planck's constant arrived at and declared the limit of all detection and computation, regardless of the system in question? Why is tracking the momentum AND the position so difficult? Perhaps it is not regardless of the system - are we talking specifically about molecular/atomic interactions here? Also - is this (Planck's constant) an absolute upper tracking limit (dubious), or does it concede that new, unknown technologies may provide the key ? Do you? What about SI's ?

Cheers Ron,


> .

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