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Topic: IF a tree falls in a forest...
Message: Posted by: landmark (Apr 7, 2017 10:41PM)
You know the drill:

...and no one is around, does it make a sound?

What do you think, and why?
Message: Posted by: NYCTwister (Apr 7, 2017 11:21PM)
The tree makes a sound because the sun will rise tomorrow.

Cue the pseudo-intellectual nit pickers.
Message: Posted by: Salguod Nairb (Apr 8, 2017 05:43AM)
[img]http://25.media.tumblr.com/e14e700457f5155ace74974ce5ef321f/tumblr_mt1vny3Qyc1r4gei2o1_400.gif[/img]


The real question is if you create a thread about a tree falling in the woods, does it become political??
Message: Posted by: landmark (Apr 8, 2017 07:58AM)
? That's in your head.

I asked because a friend brought it up last night. We were discussing a theater piece I had seen which was kind of a non-linear story. You go in, two at a time, and each member of your pair gets a pair of earphones in which is piped in a different story. So even though you're both seeing the same thing, you're hearing different interpretations of it. At the end of the piece you're given a chance to compare notes. Because of my particular personal history, I had a very strong association with what was being presented.

My friend's reaction when I told her about it, was whether a person who had not had my particular history would have found any meaning in the somewhat disjointed theater piece. Which got us talking about where does meaning in a piece of art reside? And that prompted her recollection of the old tree in a forest question.

When I was younger, I was quite adamant that the sound was independent of the observer. Not so now.
Message: Posted by: Salguod Nairb (Apr 8, 2017 08:03AM)
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, landmark wrote:

We were discussing a theater piece I had seen which was kind of a non-linear story. You go in, two at a time, and each member of your pair gets a pair of earphones in which is piped in a different story. So even though you're both seeing the same thing, you're hearing different interpretations of it. At the end of the piece you're given a chance to compare notes. Because of my particular personal history, I had a very strong association with what was being presented. [/quote]


We see that everyday here on the forum. People read the exact same post and come to two completely different conclusions.... ;)
Message: Posted by: landmark (Apr 8, 2017 08:17AM)
Mrs. Landmark once explained to me that that in higher academia the (seemingly obvious to me) view that meaning is a collaboration between author and reader is called Reader Response Theory. Evidently at one time folks spent a lot of time discussing and arguing about it. Maybe it's not that obvious to some, or maybe I am not thinking hard enough about the other possibilities.

And though these kinds of questions may seem nitpicky and so on, I think on reflection that a person's response to these kinds of questions tells a lot about an individual's outlook on the world, and shows up in his or her personality.
Message: Posted by: Salguod Nairb (Apr 8, 2017 08:58AM)
I'm not a fan of litmus personality tests.
Message: Posted by: NYCTwister (Apr 8, 2017 08:58AM)
According to some, you can't tell anything about them by what they repeatedly say.
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Apr 8, 2017 09:06AM)
If there is no one around to see it, does the tree even exist?
Message: Posted by: landmark (Apr 8, 2017 09:46AM)
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, Salguod Nairb wrote:
I'm not a fan of litmus personality tests. [/quote]

That wasn't the intention. I think the question is more profound than "Who is your favorite Beatle?"

But it's fine if you don't want to play.
Message: Posted by: landmark (Apr 8, 2017 09:47AM)
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, Tom Cutts wrote:
If there is no one around to see it, does the tree even exist? [/quote]

Well, that's an interesting question. In my opinion, something exists, but I'm not sure it's a tree.
Message: Posted by: karnak (Apr 8, 2017 10:37AM)
Responding to the original question: Define "sound."
Message: Posted by: LobowolfXXX (Apr 8, 2017 11:10AM)
Noun
1.
the sensation produced by stimulation of the organs of hearing by vibrations transmitted through the air or other medium.
2.
mechanical vibrations transmitted through an elastic medium, traveling in air at a speed of approximately 1087 feet (331 meters) per second at sea level.

Unfortunately, while it does some fascinating philosophical overtones (undoubtedly what has intrigued Landmark), I do tend to agree with Karnak that strictly speaking, it's a purely semantic question, the answer to which is "no and yes," respectively (see above).


Setting that aside, though, and embracing the spirit rather than the letter of the question, I agree with Young Landmark, apparently no longer with us. My answer is yes. Warhol was wrong.
Message: Posted by: lynnef (Apr 8, 2017 11:22AM)
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, karnak wrote:
Responding to the original question: Define "sound." [/quote]

Good point! "sound" can be defined scientifically as pressure waves in air or another medium which is the objective source of hearing. In other words, it doesn't depend on hearing. A trippy thought: if an object fell on a planet without an atmosphere, what would it sound like? Lynn
Message: Posted by: Magnus Eisengrim (Apr 8, 2017 11:45AM)
A more important question.

[youtube]ErS9HCh8GfE[/youtube]

[quote]Rain forest
Mist and mystery
Teeming green
Green brain facing labotomy
Climate control centre for the world
Ancient cord of coexistence
Hacked by parasitic greedhead scam
From Sarawak to Amazonas
Costa Rica to mangy B.C. hills
Cortege rhythm of falling timber.

What kind of currency grows in these new deserts,
These brand new flood plains?

If a tree falls in the forest does anybody hear?
If a tree falls in the forest does anybody hear?
Anybody hear the forest fall?

Cut and move on
Cut and move on
Take out trees
Take out wildlife at a rate of species every single day
Take out people who've lived with this for 100,000 years
Inject a billion burgers worth of beef
Grain eaters, methane dispensers.

Through thinning ozone,
Waves fall on wrinkled earth
Gravity, light, ancient refuse of stars,
Speak of a drowning
But this, this is something other.
Busy monster eats dark holes in the spirit world
Where wild things have to go
To disappear
Forever

If a tree falls in the forest does anybody hear?
If a tree falls in the forest does anybody hear?
Anybody hear the forest fall?

If a tree falls in the forest does anybody hear?
If a tree falls in the forest does anybody hear?
Anybody hear the forest fall?

[/quote]
Message: Posted by: NYCTwister (Apr 8, 2017 12:14PM)
Wrong thread.
Message: Posted by: landmark (Apr 8, 2017 12:20PM)
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, karnak wrote:
Responding to the original question: Define "sound." [/quote]

I would say to you and Lobo that asking one to define "sound" is asking an equivalent question as the original one posted in shorter form. So I don't think it's a semantic issue--I think it's a real issue about how we perceive our perception of reality.
Message: Posted by: landmark (Apr 8, 2017 12:23PM)
[quote]I agree with Young Landmark, apparently no longer with us...[/quote]

Believe me, you don't miss him half as much as I do.
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Apr 8, 2017 12:52PM)
[quote]On Apr 7, 2017, landmark wrote:
You know the drill:

...and no one is around, does it make a sound?

What do you think, and why? [/quote]


Yes when done as naive question. I fill in lots of "on earth", "with gravity, atmosphere", "as seen on tv" ...
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Apr 8, 2017 12:55PM)
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, landmark wrote:
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, Salguod Nairb wrote:
I'm not a fan of litmus personality tests. [/quote]

That wasn't the intention. I think the question is more profound than "Who is your favorite Beatle?"

But it's fine if you don't want to play. [/quote]

There is no more important question than who is your favorite Beatle.

I like the Hercules Beetle. (By the way you spelled beetle wrong.)
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Apr 8, 2017 01:01PM)
But to take the original post a bit more seriously I have always thought it incredibly arrogant to think that the universe does not continue without us observing it directly. Only humans posses such arrogance. Only some humans at that.

So yes the universe goes happily along whether you realize it or not. I mean isn't that really the question at hand here? If I personally don't know of it does it happen?

As a VERY small child I used to believe the TV characters stopped when I switched off the TV. But I was a child. Didn't take long to figure out that they went merrily asking completely independent of my observation. Go figure.
Message: Posted by: karnak (Apr 8, 2017 02:03PM)
Does "sound" refer to (A) the objective physical reality of vibrational waves propagating through a medium?

Or does "sound" refer to (B) the subjective mental reality of experiencing a sense perception we call a noise?

The answer to the original question ("If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around, does it make a 'sound'?") might be yes if (A), or no if (B).
Message: Posted by: Magnus Eisengrim (Apr 8, 2017 02:29PM)
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, NYCTwister wrote:
Wrong thread. [/quote]

As if responding to himself.

[quote]On Apr 7, 2017, NYCTwister wrote:
Cue the pseudo-intellectual nit pickers. [/quote]
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Apr 8, 2017 02:54PM)
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, Dannydoyle wrote:
...the TV characters stopped when I switched off the TV. But I was a child. Didn't take long to figure out that they went merrily asking completely independent of my observation. Go figure. [/quote]

A pragmatic approach: To emotionally build upon a model where it's the same moon and the same sun every day works until you get to creating explanations - or Mythology.
There's a tradeoff between verifying everything as it is when experienced and depending upon models with rules. Rules based models can be hacked. Verification to sufficient confidence takes time and effort. Consider how long it was between Euclid and Newton.

On the other side of that coin, mythology/canon can be confused with history - maps. Is the moral of the story the social trump of making someone else sit for the telling and repeating it?

On TV: Doctor Who keeps changing actors, as does Superman, Batman and ...
Message: Posted by: Dannydoyle (Apr 8, 2017 03:13PM)
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, Magnus Eisengrim wrote:
[quote]On Apr 8, 2017, NYCTwister wrote:
Wrong thread. [/quote]

As if responding to himself.

[quote]On Apr 7, 2017, NYCTwister wrote:
Cue the pseudo-intellectual nit pickers. [/quote] [/quote]
Oh he was right. It has not even yet begun.
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Apr 8, 2017 03:30PM)
If an old philosophy 101 question gets posted on a forum does the discussion get hostile and personal?
Message: Posted by: Salguod Nairb (Apr 9, 2017 09:08AM)
[img]http://i.imgur.com/kCKoYEs.jpg[/img]
Message: Posted by: funsway (Apr 9, 2017 07:24PM)
In our woods out back I asked a tree this question. He has never lied to me previously.

He says that he knows when a tee falls in the forest and is sorry humans are limited to sound waves as a means of perceiving reality.
Message: Posted by: 0pus (Apr 10, 2017 07:07AM)
I asked a tree the same question.

If he responded I couldn't hear him.
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Apr 10, 2017 08:34AM)
How could you know if..

Cages of easily startled animals monitored...?
Message: Posted by: Slim King (Apr 13, 2017 09:02PM)
Biocentrism....
Message: Posted by: acesover (Apr 17, 2017 08:03PM)
It depends whether said tree was in a vacuum or not. If YES, then NO.
Message: Posted by: Slim King (Apr 18, 2017 10:49AM)
SOUND IS A BIOLOGICAL TERM .. WAVELENGTHS OF VIBRATION CAUSE A SOUND ON A PERSONS EARDRUM.... ;)
Message: Posted by: slowkneenuh (Apr 18, 2017 12:06PM)
If a person dies on earth. does anyone hear their last breath?
Message: Posted by: stoneunhinged (Apr 19, 2017 06:30AM)
[quote]On Apr 18, 2017, Slim King wrote:
SOUND IS A BIOLOGICAL TERM .. WAVELENGTHS OF VIBRATION CAUSE A SOUND ON A PERSONS EARDRUM.... ;) [/quote]

If sound is only biological or physical, how is it possible to SHOUT on an Internet forum? :)
Message: Posted by: funsway (Apr 20, 2017 09:29AM)
[quote]On Apr 19, 2017, stoneunhinged wrote:

If sound is only biological or physical, how is it possible to SHOUT on an Internet forum? :) [/quote]


or, the flip side, to produce a lot of NOISE by not posting on a thread/forum.
Message: Posted by: Jonathan Townsend (Apr 21, 2017 02:43PM)
Has anyone noticed trees making sounds?
Message: Posted by: Magnus Eisengrim (Apr 21, 2017 02:52PM)
[quote]On Apr 21, 2017, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Has anyone noticed trees making sounds? [/quote]

My neighbourhood is filled with [i]populus tremuloides[/i], or trembling aspen.

They talk all summer.

[youtube]_N4kw4QfAT8[/youtube]
Message: Posted by: funsway (Apr 21, 2017 06:25PM)
[quote]On Apr 21, 2017, Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Has anyone noticed trees making sounds? [/quote]


remember the 2004 tsunami in Indonesia that killed 200,000+ people but not a single recored animal or bird.

Several scientists researching the events reportedly interviewed many of the animals that reported that the trees told them about the impending danger.
Message: Posted by: LobowolfXXX (Apr 21, 2017 06:27PM)
Birds are animals.
Message: Posted by: Slim King (Apr 21, 2017 09:40PM)
[quote]On Apr 19, 2017, stoneunhinged wrote:
[quote]On Apr 18, 2017, Slim King wrote:
SOUND IS A BIOLOGICAL TERM .. WAVELENGTHS OF VIBRATION CAUSE A SOUND ON A PERSONS EARDRUM.... ;) [/quote]

If sound is only biological or physical, how is it possible to SHOUT on an Internet forum? :) [/quote]
Exactly!!!
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Apr 22, 2017 12:03PM)
[quote]On Apr 10, 2017, 0pus wrote:
I asked a tree the same question.

If he responded I couldn't hear him. [/quote]

Maybe you didn't ask right;

[youtube]wmDQKckFuk8[/youtube]


My physics teacher told us that sound doesn't exist until it vibrates the ear drum. So while a tree falling in the forest would certainly cause sound waves, those waves don't exist as sound until they reach an ear.