WHEN THIS INFINITY IS BIGGER THAN THAT ONE

FINITE RESOURCES IN AN INFINITY OF UNIVERSES

College was not, as it turned out, particularly useful for practical stuff. Although I learned a reasonable amount, it had a tendency to be the kind of thing that makes great conversation while playing Trivial Pursuit rather than  while trying to figure our your household budget for the month.

Consider the subject of infinite sets. I am not a mathematician. I’m okay with arithmetic and I can figure out a basic, algebraic equation if you give me enough time and scratch paper … but otherwise? Unless it’s part of a computer language, I’m at a loss.


Finite versus infinite sets. Equipotent sets. Countable sets. Example!


I remember infinite sets because it was similar to trying to understand time travel.

An infinite set is any combination of numbers that has not end. There are lots and lots of them. All positive numbers, like: 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 … and obviously, you can keep counting until the moon turns blue and the world is exhausted.

But what about an infinite set of all negative AND positive numbers, so that they go backward forever into the minuses as well and forward into the positives. Forever and a day. With no end. That would be twice as big as all positive number … but equally infinite.

There can be infinite sets of only numbers which divide by three or cardinal number and any bizarre combination of fractions. They are all infinite, but some are bigger than other.


Finite and infinite sets. Two sets have the same cardinality when there is bijective function associating them. Cardinality is is reflexive, symmetric and transitive. Countable sets: set of all integers, set of even numbers, positive rationals (Cantor diagonalization) Set of real numbers between 0 and 1 has same cardinality as set of all reals. Computability of functions.


How can one infinity be bigger than another infinity? Apparently universes are sort of like that and now, my brain is due for explosion because I can’t keep this kind of information in there.

Our personal numeric world consists of shockingly finite numbers. That’s one of the amazing parts of retirement. You have what you have and you will never have more, unless you hit the lottery or have an extremely rich relative planning to die and leave his fortune behind for you. Retirement income just “IS.” It won’t get bigger. Retirement income pretty much stays the same while the world trundles on. Life and the universe may be infinite, sort of, but retirement income is not.

It’s just a thought to ponder. If you feel like pondering.



Categories: Humor, mathematics

Tags: , , , ,

18 replies

  1. The complicated math and physics I had to learn (and basically failed at doing that) was what soured my on my love of meteorology when I was in college. I’m glad there are people who understand this kind of stuff and whatever practical implications it may have, though. I can picture a couple of mathematicians bragging over whose infinity is bigger…

    Like

  2. You lost me at ‘Equipotent sets’ ! 😉

    I like contemplating this stuff but as you said – our human brains are not really all that well equipped to understand the concept of infinity(s) – we have nothing we can really ‘hang’ it on!

    While i agree that retirement income certainly is not infinite – we would not want or need it to be since we only have a few short finite years in which we can spend it before… well, you know.

    I strongly disagree though that it has to be limited to less than or equal to what you are getting currently. There are almost an infinite number of ways you could increase it if you put your mind to it! The internet is opening up millions of opportunities – some of them even legal! 😉

    Go Spike! (and Garry the Samoan!)

    love.

    Like

  3. I once owned an Infiniti for a finite period of time (3 years). It was a fine car, as I recall.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. All I know is Chuck Norris counted to infinity.
    Twice.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Never had to use it, thank heavens.
    Leslie

    Like

  6. One of my students from Brazil said his physics teacher explained infinity by starting a line on the blackboard, continuing it all around the room to the door, walking out and not coming back for a week (and not continuing the line. “See?” he said, “That line is still going.” I think that’s pretty cool. I’m sure the students uncertainty made them get a visceral understanding of the idea.

    Liked by 2 people

    • It’s a great idea and rather mind boggling. The idea of multi size infinities went into that strange hole where I keep trips in time and flying at warp speed. It’s weird how easily I absorb broad concepts like this, but can’t do a simple set of numbers without making dozens of mistakes. I think I’m the person for whom they invented calculators.

      Like

  7. I don’t know if I could do it today. I remember chasing x and y all over the place with all their ups and downs. I could even do logarithms and antilogarithms, but you had to have the book. Since the invention of the pocket calculators who needs logarithms. I wonder if they still print the books. Oh, the days when I had a brain and not a rusty piece of body work.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know people who were physicists who look at books they WROTE and can’t remember what they were thinking. I can’t remember 1/4 of what I used to know. If it weren’t for Google, I wouldn’t even remember the 1/4 of it all. Use it or lose it. I’ve lost it.

      Liked by 2 people

Talk to me!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

France & Vincent

Writing Magic, Myth and Mystery

Barb Taub

Writing & Coffee. Especially coffee.

This, That, and The Other

Random musings on life, society, and politics.

Keep it alive

A look at life, achieving good physical and mental health and happiness

Covert Novelist

Just another WordPress site

The Small Dog

Life from the Tail End

Cee's Chronic Illness Sisterhood

Peer support and hope for women with Chronic Illness and their support team.

Salted Caramel

Blogging, Motivation, Lifestyle and much more.

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

Echoes of Life, Love and Laughter

Sarah's Attic Of Treasures

Making My Home A Haven is important to me. Sharing homemaking skills. Recipes and food. Bible Studies. This is a treasure chest of goodies. So take a seat. Have a glass of tea and enjoy. You will learn all about who I am.

Green Screen

The Environmental Movie Podcast

bushboys world

Photos of my world and other stuff I hope you will enjoy too. Photos taken with Canon PowershotSX70HS Photos can be purchased.

musingsofanoldfart

Independent views from someone who offers some historical context

The HOBBLEDEHOY

I use the best, I use the rest

My Blog

Just another WordPress.com site

National Day Calendar

Fun, unusual and forgotten designations on our calendar.

Cee's Photo Challenges

Teaching the art of composition for photography.

Trent's World (the Blog)

Random Ramblings and Reviews from Trent P. McDonald

Views from the Edge

To See More Clearly

serial monography: forgottenman's ruminations

wandering discourse, pedantic rant, self-indulgent drivel, languorous polemic, grammarian's bête noire, poesy encroachment approaching bombast, unintended subtext in otherwise intentional context, unorthodox unorthodoxy, self-inflected rodomontade, …

draliman on life

Because sometimes life just makes you stop and think

The English Professor at Large

Posts about old Hollywood, current concerns

sparksfromacombustiblemind

EMBERS FROM SOMEONE DOGGEDLY TRYING TO MAKE SENSE OF IT ALL...

The Day After

Musings, Photography, Writing, and More

THE SHINBONE STAR

NO LONGER ENCUMBERED BY ANY SENSE OF FAIR PLAY, EX-JOURNALISTS RETURN TO ACTIVE DUTY TO FIGHT THE TRUMPIAN MENACE!

Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss

Welcome to the Anglo Swiss World

ScienceSwitch

Your Source For The Coolest Science Stories

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: