Thought Experiments

Or Are They More Like Brain Teasers?

What if...

You typed random letters for an infinitely long time, or you traveled back in time and killed your grandparents? Or you where shot in the head by two different bullets at exactly the same time? Come to philosophy section at 10:15PM on Monday, April 8th to discuss some mind-melting puzzles and create your own! Here are some famous ones to munch on:

Light Speed

Einstein famously wondered what would happen if caught up with a beam of light. Predictably, everything would look frozen. If you traveled faster than the light, however, you would seem to be reversing your direction in the time dimension, which means you'd be going back in time.

The China Brain

Suppose that all of the people in china mimicked exactly your brain networks in their communication and behavior. Would china become one giant brain? Would it start perceiving things?

The Surprise Hanging.

A judge tells a prisoner that they will be hanged next week, and the day they will be hanged shall be a surprise. The prisoner reasons it cannot be Friday, since if it had not been before then, it would be certain to happen on Friday. Similarly, it cannot be Thursday, since if the hanging had not been before then, the prisoner would expect it on Thursday (since Friday is out of the question). Similarly for Wednesday, and so on for every day of next week. The prisoner is elated that the hanging cannot happen, having proven it. Then, on Tuesday, to their complete surprise, they are hanged. How can this be?