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Will_Pearson comments on My Childhood Role Model - Less Wrong

29 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 23 May 2008 08:51AM

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Comment author: Will_Pearson 24 May 2008 07:11:49AM 1 point [-]

"The simplest best theory we have for precisely predicting an arbitrary 12 grams of carbons behaviour over time requires avogadros of data for the different degrees of freedom of the start state, the electron energy states etc."

No, it doesn't; the Standard Model only has eighteen adjustable parameters (physical constants) that must be found through experiment.

The standard model won't allow you to predict what 12g of carbon atoms will do unless you also know what the relative position, acceleration and bonding of the carbon atoms are. Is it gaseous, or solid in buckyballs, diamond or some exotic MNT configuration.

Scientific theories are simple, actually getting them to make predictions about the world is very hard information wise.