Dewey B. Larson
755 N.E. Royal Court
Portland, Oregon 97232
Feb. 6, 1982
Mr. Henry A. Hoff
7410 Brookdale, Apt. 111
Darien, I11. 60559
Dear Mr. Hoff:
My basic finding in the physical field is that the physical universe cannot be fully and accurately defined in term of currently existing concepts, and that there must be both a revision of some existing concepts and addition of some new ones. The only feasible way of accomplishing the necessary reconstruction of thought is to start from scratch, and set up a new system of fundamental postulates and definitions, from which the revised concepts, laws and principles can be derived. If these foundations are complete and accurate, the valid portions of existing theory will then emerge from the theoretical development as it proceeds.
What you are, in effect, asking is that I should express these new ideas in terms of present-day conventional thought. This is not possible. The essence of my findings is that some aspects of this conventional thought are wrong. But it is not immediately obvious which are wrong and which are right. This is something that will take a great deal of time and effort to ascertain. Sooner or later the task should be carried out so that we will know just where the differences are real and where they are merely semantic. It will also be desirable to translate my quantitative findings into the prevailing mathematical jargon. But I cannot undertake either of these jobs. I have been able to get to the present stage of development in fifty years or so only because I concentrated on the essentials. I have no time, nor will I ever have any time for the mop-up work.
To illustrate what I am talking about, let me take one of your statements. You assert, on the strength of certain current theories, that “zero motion exists.” But one of the consequences of my postulates is that zero motion does not exist. As I said, I cannot undertake, as a general practice, to analyze the currently prevailing theories to ascertain the origin of whatever conflicts may exist with my results. But since you have given these matters considerable thought, and have raised a number of issues, I want to deal with this one as an example of what we are up against.
On analyzing this situation, I find that the difficulty arises because current science does not distinguish between a physical zero and a mathematical zero. I suspect that your immediate reaction to this will be that you don’t understand what I am talking about, and doubt if I do either. And this is just the point. Current scientific thought does not recognize any difference. My theoretical development does. So when you compare the two, you find a conflict. But this does not show that I am wrong. It merely shows that somebody is wrong.
Let us assume that the magnitudes (speeds) of two motions are a and b respectively. My finding is that a speed a=0 is impossible, because, on the basis of my definition, the definition that enters into my postulates, motion is a relation between space and time. Zero space is not space from a physical standpoint, whatever it may be mathematically. It is physically nothing at all. On the other hand, a speed a-b=0 is admissible under my definition of motion, because both a and b actually exist physically, and only the mathematical resultant is zero. The mathematical and physical theories that you are trying to apply to an evaluation of my results are deficient in that they do not recognize this substantive difference between the zero that is both physical and mathematical (a=0) and the zero that is mathematical only (a-b=0).
On first acquaintance with it, this deficiency in current thought may not strike you as being very important. But it is a basic error, and errors in fundamentals have major effects on the superstructure. This particular error is responsible for one of the most serious problems in physics today: the existence of infinities in physical theory. As expressed by Richard Feynman: “We have all these nice principles and known facts, but we are in some kind of trouble: either we get the infinities or we do not get enough of a description.” When we eliminate the physical zero, we also eliminate infinities. They cannot be produced by the a+b process; that is, by combination of finite magnitudes. There are no infinities in the universe of motion.
I hope that this exploration of one item in your list will enable you to understand why I cannot undertake to correlate my results with those of previous theories in each individual case. There are a great many places in current thought where something on the order of the difference between the two zero concepts has been overlooked, and since this error or omission may be buried deep in the antecedents of current theories, it may be hard to find. I cannot afford to spend the necessary time to track these things down. My job is to build a sound structure on the foundations that I have set up.
It is quite possible, however, that some of the members of the organization that has been set up for the purpose of promoting understanding of my findings would be interested in discussing the kind of a correlation that you are attempting. I suggest that you contact the Secretary, R, W. Satz, F. 0. Box 622, King of Prussia, Pa. 19406. He can also give you the information about their publications. The new name of this organization, adopted at their annual conference last August, is the International Society of Unified Science.