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Images of TimeMind, Science, Reality$
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George Jaroszkiewicz

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198718062

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198718062.001.0001

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Mathematical images of time

Mathematical images of time

Chapter:
(p.70) 7 Mathematical images of time
Source:
Images of Time
Author(s):

George Jaroszkiewicz

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198718062.003.0007

This chapter discusses the mathematics underpinning various models of time, starting with a review of the requirements that any reasonable model of time should satisfy. This is followed by a detailed review of the continuum concept, because the most successful model of time we have is based on the real number continuum. Starting with the fundamental concept of a set, the chapter discusses ordered sets, functions, and linear continua. The chapter discusses the role of functions in predicting the future and retrodicting the past. Important mathematical concepts such as infinitesimals, signature, imaginary time, discrete time, fuzzy time, causal sets, and p-adic numbers are reviewed, as all of these have been used in one way or another to model time. The chapter comments on the difference between the mathematics that can be used on each side of the Heisenberg cut concept discussed in Chapter 2.

Keywords:   ordered sets, functions, prediction, retrodiction, linear continua, infinitesimals, imaginary time, discrete time, causal sets, p-adic time

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