Apple Watching The New Year

Digital Fireworks on Apple Watch
Those wearing their Apple Watch at midnight were treated to a digital fireworks display. It was fun, thoughtful, and shows how a small detail can engage the fan base.

I imagined 2020 as the year of perfect vision -- normally a good thing -- but looking back, my eyes still hurt. A friend and colleague wrote "sometimes, it's best to not see what's ahead."

2021 might be a more fortuitous year, as it ends with blackjack. 

When I wrote Pi and Free Will, I proved, at least to myself, that the future was fluid rather than pre-determined. The nature of Pi is irrational, going on forever without repeating, and thus making determinism simply not possible because determinism requires 100% accuracy, or perfect knowledge.

I neglected to mention that Pi isn't alone, and it's noteworthy that Pi has a lot of irrational friends: the square root of 2, Euler's number, and the Golden Ratio, to name three of the more famous ones.

I also forgot about the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, where, given a particle, you can only know either its momentum or its position, but not both. This applies to the subatomic universe, but nevertheless, it's another, albeit subtle, blow to determinism.

The PBS videos -- Is The Future Predetermined By Quantum Mechanics? and Can Free Will be Saved in a Deterministic Universe? -- explores this idea further, and leaves the conclusion to you. I already have my answer. Let's all make 2021 a better year.


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