i think that time is a vector does anyone think its a scalar?

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- anonymous

i think that time is a vector does anyone think its a scalar?

- chestercat

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- Xishem

Can you give a reasoning behind your claim?

- anonymous

well a vector gives direction and time is moves forward so it has direction

- Xishem

But it only has one direction. A vector where one quantity is constant is really a scalar.

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- anonymous

ya that makes sense.. and there is no way possible at all that time could have different direction im assuming

- Xishem

The point is, for all applications of time in standard physics, a vector of time will always simplify to a scalar.
It's like trying to make the argument insisting that x^10 is actually x * x * x * x * x * x * x * x * x * x. It's a valid statement, but for all practical applications, x^10 will work and is more concise.

- Xishem

Unless you get into problems dealing with time travel or multi-dimensional time, yes, time will always have the same direction.

- anonymous

speaking of vectors can you add two dot products together?
lile (A*B)+(C*D)?

- anonymous

A B C D are all vectors

- anonymous

Yes, indeed time is a vector. Although we only know that time travels only in forward direction practically but it is theoretically proved that time travel in the past is possible. Hence time is a vector quantity rather than being a scalar.

- anonymous

what answer do you think my physics 141 class would want?

- Xishem

Maybe you should say that it could be either, and give a description of why you think so.

- anonymous

In the context of classical physics, time is a scalar, like temperature, speed or energy, because it only has a magnitude (size). When you speak of a "direction" you are thinking of a *change* in time, which is quite another object entirely, just like a velocity (a change in position) is not the same as the position itself. Whether a change in time could be considered a vector is an intereting philosophical proposition, but it hasn't a lot of meaning in the context of classical physics, because there is no way to change the time of one object without changing the time of every other. That is, there is no such thing as time travel.
In the context of modern (i.e. relativistic) physics, time is no longer a measureable quantity by itself at all -- it is only a component of a sort of "position" vector that tells you the location of an event in space-time. So in that sense time because an object like the position of an object along the x axis -- something the size of which depends on the coordinate system you construct. Mathematically, you would still treat it as a scalar (an object consisting of but one number), but physically I would say it is neither a scalar nor a vector, since it isn't a physically measureable quantity at all.

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