A new universe has been discovered...
Come along as we explore this new universe and discover the similarities and differences it has with our own.
Currently, there are things we know for certain about Universe X; there are things we can speculate about and there are many things yet to be discovered. Hopefully, over the life time of this app we will be able to continually increase our knowledge and understanding of this new world.
This app is divided into sections that each describe a different aspect of Universe X. Eventually each of these sections will also contain an exploration screen that will allow the user to see each aspect modeled visually.
The first exploration screen is for the Cellular Automata section. This explorer will allow the user to view a number of famous Cellular Automata and will also allow the user to define and execute their own Cellular Automata using the Oovium visual programming language.
So what is Universe X?
Universe X is quite different from our own. Our universe can, at times, seem quite magical: space curves, time dilates, length contracts; God plays dice with our universe. Our universe contains dark matter and dark energy; our universe is expanding and expanding at an increasing rate.
In contrast, Universe X is quite simple; it has no magic at all. Universe X is entirely mechanistic. It follows a few simple rules which are easy to understand and (hopefully) easy to model.
In the 19th century it was speculated that the space between planets and stars contained a fluid called the aether that was analogous to air. This aether was the medium that allowed light waves to propagate, just as air is the medium that allows sound waves to propagate. At the beginning of the 20th century with the discovery of Special Relativity it was realized that this aether does not exist in our universe.
In Universe X, however, not only does the aether exist, fundamentally, it is the only thing that exists. But this aether, the aether of Universe X, has very little in common with the 19th century concept of aether.
The 19th century concept of aether was that of a fluid that the planets and stars moved through and displaced, just as an object moving in air or water displaces each of those fluids. For example, as an airplane flies through the sky, air collides with it and flows along the surface of the craft. It was believed that there must be a similar substance in space that both collides with and flows along the surface of the planets as they orbit the sun.
In 1887, Michelson and Morley performed their famous experiment looking for the flow of that aether along the surface of the Earth. They were shocked to discover that no such flow existed.
In Universe X, the aether is not a substance that is displaced by planets and stars. Rather, in Universe X, the aether is a substance upon which the matter of the universe sits. It is the canvas upon which the painting appears; it is the game board upon which the chess pieces move. The planets, the stars and ALL matter in Universe X sit atop of this aether and smoothly slide along it.
And like a computer monitor that is divided into a 2 dimensional grid of cells, called pixels (from 'picture elements' or 'picture cells'), each displaying a single color in order to render an entire image, the aether of Universe X is divided into a number of small 3 dimensional cells called aexels (from 'aether elements' or 'aether cells').
Currently, there are a few things we know about these aexels. Like the atoms of a liquid, they can move and flow. Like the atoms of a crystal lattice, they repulse when they get too close and attract when they get too far. As such, the aether is compressible; the density of the aexels can vary, sometimes bunching up, other times spreading out.
These aexels have state. Just as each pixel of a screen has a three dimensional state representing red, green and blue, each aexel also has a multidimensional state. This state can change over time. The changing of state in one aexel can, after a short delay, cause the change of state in neighboring aexels.
And perhaps most shockingly, based on those states, new aexels can be created and existing aexels can be destroyed.
At a base level, aexels are the only thing that exist in Universe X. However, Universe X also has two other aspects: space and time. Unlike our own universe where space and time are quite magical notions, where space can curve and time can dilate and each is intimately intertwined with one another, in Universe X, space and time are quite intuitive and boring.
Space in Universe X does not curve or expand; it is simply a three dimensional construct which houses the aexels. Time in Universe X does not dilate; it is simply a one dimensional construct moving at a constant rate from past to present to future, mediating the progression of the state changes of the aexels as well as their motion. In Universe X, space and time are entirely separate notions that are not intertwined at all
Of course, these facts about the aexels of Universe X leave many questions unanswered. For example, what is the exact equation of force between individual aexels? Does the notion of momentum exist for aexels? How many dimensions of state are there? Answering these questions and many more will be the primary focus of this app for years to come.
As such, let our exploration begin...
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