Big Bang

At Mind Matters News: Re the Webb findings uproar: Who owns the Big Bang anyhow?

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Researcher and science writer Eric Lerner would never have attracted the attention he has in recent weeks if the Webb findings were not disturbing to many cosmologists:

Could it be that, as data drifts back to Earth, something is happening that is hard to put into words?

First, Lerner would never have attracted the attention he has in recent weeks if nothing were happening. His book came out twenty years ago, with no especially significant outcome.

Second, as noted earlier, there are two separate questions here: Must the universe have a beginning? Yes, if you want to avoid the impossible mathematics of infinity. But did that beginning play out just as the textbooks and popular science documentaries claim? That’s the part under discussion and many are distressed by the debate the Webb findings have inevitably created.

News, “Re the Webb findings uproar: Who owns the Big Bang anyhow?” at Mind Matters News (September 11, 2022)

Takehome: To avoid absurd “infinity” math, we just assume our universe has a beginning. But then the Webb shook up many details, creating distress and anger.

You may also wish to read: Astrophysicist: Webb finds may bring “revolutionary changes.” It doesn’t disprove the Big Bang, says Brian Koberlein… but read the fine print. Fermilab’s Don Lincoln gets the religious implications all wrong. Theoretical physicist Sabine Hossenfelder thinks we don’t know what happened and never will — and that the Big Bang is a “creation myth” in the language of math.

6 Replies to “At Mind Matters News: Re the Webb findings uproar: Who owns the Big Bang anyhow?

  1. 1
    BobRyan says:

    There has been mounting evidence to disprove Big Bang going back a while. Just because Big Bang is wrong, does not mean there is no beginning of the universe. It just means we know less than we thought we did.

  2. 2
    Seversky says:

    At Mind Matters News: Re The Webb Findings Uproar: Who Owns The Big Bang Anyhow?

    Whoever gets to plant their flag on (in) it?

  3. 3
    Seversky says:

    Did JWT’s data also cause “distress and anger” to the YEC community? Maybe they should just turn it off to protect people’s feelings.

  4. 4
    doubter says:

    BobRyan@1

    “There has been mounting evidence to disprove Big Bang going back a while. ”

    The new James Webb Space Telescope images don’t disprove the Big Bang – the abundance of very early fairly old large galaxies just necessitates a recalibration of when the Big Bang happened. If the Big Bang never happened, much more evidence would have to somehow be invalidated by the new data. For instance, rather than the diminution of older galaxies being observed to be at a new, earlier, point in apparent time, there would be no diminution at all.

  5. 5
  6. 6
    dogdoc says:

    Here’s a good explanation of what we do and don’t understand about the “Big Bang”, and the various things that term refers to:

    https://nautil.us/the-trouble-with-the-big-bang-238547/

    As Dr. Hossenfelder explains, nobody how know the universe began, or even if it had a beginning:

    So now the term Big Bang refers to three different hypotheses: The Big Bang Event that is the initial singularity, or whatever replaces it (no evidence); the expansion of the universe (extremely strong evidence); and a particular model for the expansion of the universe (largely compatible with evidence, but currently in some tension with data).

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