Reversible Dynamics and the Directionality of Time

In Gianfranco Minati, Mario Abram & Eliano Pessa (eds.), Methods, Models, Simulations and Approaches towards a General Theory of Change. Singapore: World Scientific. pp. 161-172 (2012)
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The received view on the problem of the direction of time holds it that time has no intrinsic dynamical properties, and that its apparent asymmetry, to be understood in purely topological terms, is dependent on the directional properties of physical processes. In this paper we shall challenge both claims, in the light of an algebraic representation of time. First, we will show how to give a precise formulation to the intuitive idea that time possesses an intrinsic dynamics; this formulation relies on the fact that the algebraic properties of time can equivalently be understood in dynamical terms. Second, we shall argue that the directional properties displayed by the processes occurring in time depend on the directional properties of time, rather than the converse.



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Claudio Mazzola
University of Queensland
Marco Giunti
Indiana University

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