Thu, 05 Aug 2010 05:06:06 +0000

One second.

Cut it in half. You have 1/2 seconds.

Half again. And 1/4 seconds.

Mathematically, you can do this forever.

Can you do it in real life?

A guy named Max Planck said we couldn’t. He calculated that, around 10^-43 seconds, we can no longer split time in half. It has to do with the speed of light and other complicated formulas. Planck, also known for Planck’s constant, humbly named this Planck time.

But he was wrong.

Future scientists found that, actually, you can split time infinitely. It’s a quantum mechanics thing. Complicated — again, with numbers and formulas.

Now, onto my point:

You’ve probably spent about 20 second reading this post. In those 20 seconds, how many moments did you experience?

Imagine it like a cartoon animation: How many frames did you experience?

I want to think that the world has an infinite number of frames. But, because of physical limitations, we can only experience a finite number of moments. Even when we break down the frames to 24 per second — like a movie reel — we see a smooth, flowing image, which looks like real life to us.

It makes me feel claustrophobic. With my brain and eyes, I can only process a minuscule number of frames. I miss out on nearly 100 percent of the frames around me. All I get is a brief summary.

But, right now, I’m sitting in a tiny room in the East Village, staring at a wall. And I feel free — in awe. Because, if there are an infinite number of frames, the world around me is so much bigger, so much more vast, than I can even know. And, really, future scientists might prove this wrong; they might say that time is actually the universe traveling 88 mph in a Delorean.

Existing in this world is incredible. Being able to think about this world is mind-blowing. Not doing so is dumb. Because we're human, and we have this gift; because we're human, and we only get so many moments.


RWC: Between Moments