An exploration of what time is

Definition of time from Wikipedia:

Time is the indefinite continued progress of existence and events that occur in apparently irreversible succession from the past through the present to the future.”

Linearity of time (from order to chaos)

Time as a whole (containing all of space) is apparently irreversible. That means, it seems that change can not ever form reality to exactly the same shape as it has ever been before, ever. The present, even though it can be similar to past events, appears to always be in some way different from all time that has ever passed before it. A constant state of inescapable uniqueness or novelty.


Definition of Entropy:

“lack of order or predictability; gradual decline into disorder.”

Everything in the world goes towards chaos, simply because there are more unique ways a thing can be “disordered” than “ordered”.

Here is a one hour demonstration of chaos produced by the mechanical movement of a double pendulum:

There may be repeating patterns coming from the double pendulum, but in no way can we predict the exact path it takes before it does. And that is really the point I’m trying to make here; time as a whole never reverses, but fragments or parts of reality can be reversed to perform again; to cycle.


Definition of cycle:

“a series of events that are regularly repeated in the same order.”

Cycles usually happens as an effect of reversing some form of entropy. Lowering the entropy of one system to a state of lower entropy can only be made at the cost of increasing the entropy somewhere else.* For this transfer to take place there must either happen two things: 1. An external force puts the disorder from the first system into an equally or more chaotic system. This force in itself requires the production of more entropy 2. The system is connected to an environment with lower entropy where the chaos dissipates into.

This ability of local parts, patterns or systems to reverse to the same (or at least similar) order as before is what gives rise to cycles.

* This describes using potential energy as described in physics.

Relative change (Measurement of time)

By measuring multiple cyclical phenomena taking place at the same time, it is possible to quantitatively (with numbers) compare a specific cycling phenomena in terms of other cycles. For instance, here on earth, we have the cycle of the earth rotating around itself, which we choose to call the period of a day. We also have the cycle of the earth looping around the sun, which we call the period of a year. By these two measures, day and year, we can figure out their relationship to each other by keeping track of when these cycles repeats. One year cycle repeats always only when the day cycle has repeated 365 times (days). And one day cycle repeats only in 0.00273972602 cycles of a years.* With these relative measures of change we observe what we humans refer to as speed and durationNot every cycle repeats as uniformly as a year or a day however, which is a reason why we find it meaningful to measure speed and duration of cyclical phenomena.

* To make these cycles easier to understand and use, we humans also divide these cycles into smaller parts which is why we have months and weeks but also hours, minutes and seconds.

Time dilation (Weird parts of time)

I don’t feel educated enough to talk about this concept in physics, so I’ll let this part be explained with YouTube videos.

The point is, how fast distance change between things (over time) affects how fast time itself goes, which is very hard, at least for me, to grasp. It breaks my concept that there is one universal and physics based present moment. It means that the physically experienced time is slightly different for everyone. That if I go for a car ride and comes back while a friend stays at home, the amount of duration that has passed between the moment I left and came back are not the same physical amount for me and for my friend.

Sometimes I get carried away when I write so it might be hard to keep track of what I’m saying. I want us to be on the same page so please tell me if it’s the case. The journey through this text is coming to an end. But before it is over I want to hear your thoughts.

What is time for you?

Thanks for reading.

What is a Black Box?

A Black Box is a system or process where all you see is:

  • Input – The things that affects the black box.
  • Output – The things that the black box produces or affects.Blackbox3D-withGraphs.png

This implies two things:

  • That you sometimes don’t know what happen within a system, even though you know what effects it produces.
  • That you sometimes don’t need to know how something works on the inside to interact with it on a meaningful level.

Whether used with intention or not, a black box symbolizes and represents hidden knowledge and the unmeasured parts of systems. Everything that is unmeasured or uncertain but happens anyways can thus be thought of as a Black Box.

Fundamentals of a process

Something that is changing is going through a process

Process - Alteration.png


The following are various forms of atomic processes:

Process - Storing.png


Putting an object inside another object or environment where it can not be altered by outside forces. (Usually for later use when needed.)


Process - Gather.png


Putting objects closer to each other or within a specific area


Process - Distribute.png


Putting objects further away from each other or divided from one source and put into many other locations.


Process - Arrange.png


Put objects according to a pattern.


Process - Assemble.png


Connect elements to form a system.


Process - Disassemble.png


Isolate elements from a system, until it is not the same system.

Documentation overflow

I have a problem.

I come up with ideas and thoughts that I want to recall and revisit. But if I do not write them down, I tend to lose them. It means I can lose unique viewpoints on things that I could otherwise foresee. I risk never having the same perspectives again.

So I document.

A lot.

I write it down the easiest way where ever I can:

This enables me to store and recover information. But it is not enough. I must still find the right notes in the right moment. I must find it when I need it and I need to easily navigate all information.

So far I have tried solving the problems with these methods:

Eliminating – Removing or rewriting the information that is no longer true or that lacks utility.

Tagging and labeling – Putting on labels, tags and keywords on notes to know what they are about. This enables me to find things without having to read the full text or it’s content.

Chunking – Finding commonalities between notes, such as concern, category or function. Then structuring the notes into documents structured by chapters.

Synthesis – Putting together notes with similar meaning and removing repeated content.

This has taken me from 1000s of notes to 100s of documents. But in doing so I lose specificity. Instead of one note for each idea, there is now one document for a cluster of ideas. (Separation of concern?)

What I am trying to do now is:

  1. Automating the above process. I still take notes the same way. This forces me to spend time and focus connecting notes to my bigger documents. I need to jot things down and continue with what I was doing without interrupting my flow. So I write on whatever material I have nearby.
    1. One solution is making me take notes more mindfully to remove the extra step of the process. But that introduces a delay between finding where to write and getting thoughts on paper.
      1. Use one platform. Keeping everything in the same place. I have too many places to look when searching for particular information.
      2. Limit the vocabulary / type of language to make it more generic and easier to search.
      3. Make my information more searchable. This helps me find the correlated information quicker.
      4. Train on merging it quickly and effectively with these notes.
      5. Simplifying the steps of the process enough so that I’m confident I want and can do in a way that doesn’t take up all my time.
      6. Create a Keyword map. Make a head document that acts as a mind map connecting the most important search words in one place.
  2. Making the bigger documents easy to read and navigate. Putting notes in bigger documents creates an unnatural linearity of the information. I’m thinking about using tagging systems to link information in a network structure. I’ve tried this before in Google Keep but stumbled upon multiple problems. Especially increased loading times.

I think my ideas and thoughts are useful so I’ll keep working on them. I aim to open up more and share more. Just need to organise it more!