If A Tree Falls In An Empty Forrest - Does It Make A Sound??

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If A Tree Falls In An Empty Forrest - Does It Make A Sound??

Postby Laura-Pixie » Mon Dec 11, 2006 12:40 pm

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Postby pinkparrot » Mon Dec 11, 2006 5:07 pm

Is it empty of anyone with ears?
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Postby intowiz » Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:08 pm

of course it doesnt. sound is caused by vibration so i no one is around to hear the vibration then no.
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Postby parnassus » Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:15 pm

I have never really understood the point of this question. To me it's like saying, "Does something cease to exist if you're not around to witness it?"
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Postby chocolatefudgecake » Mon Dec 11, 2006 9:43 pm

Put it this way: if you get a tape recorder, start recording and go, so that there is no-one around to hear the sound. the recorder will pickup and noises that are made. The tree falls.

You go back and get the tape. you then listen to the tape.

If sound isn't there is no-one is there to hear it, then the tape-recorder doesn't have anything to pick up and you will only hear suff on it when there is someone near it.

But if you do hear the tree falling on the tape, then the sound has to have been there for the tape recorder to pick up.

You could argue that the tape picked up the soundwaves, BUT, thats what sound is, isn't it? and even if your not there, the soundwaves still are.

Therefore sound is still made.
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Postby Fortnox » Mon Dec 11, 2006 10:02 pm

I don't see why it wouldn't make a sound. I think this question kinda fell apart after the 20th century, with tape recorders and science and all that jazz.
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Postby intowiz » Mon Dec 11, 2006 10:22 pm

parnassus thats the actual point of the actual question
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Postby parnassus » Mon Dec 11, 2006 10:28 pm

Which is why I've always found it a ridiculous question. It's two-year-old logic. If you play hide-and-seek with toddlers, they think that they become invisible just by shutting their eyes. That's not logical.
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Postby pinkparrot » Mon Dec 11, 2006 10:59 pm

So that would be a longitudinal sound wave? (Sorry...physics revision.)
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Postby intowiz » Mon Dec 11, 2006 11:51 pm

how can there be a sound if no one picks up the vibrations?
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Postby parnassus » Tue Dec 12, 2006 10:25 am

Because the vibrations still exist, even if there's no one there to receive them. The Titanic definitely sent out a distress signal when it went down. Two mysterious vessels that were much closer than the Carpathia did not pick up the signal. That doesn't mean that the signal did not exist.
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Postby intowiz » Tue Dec 12, 2006 12:37 pm

the question is though "did it make a sound" and even though the vibrations existed no one was there to pick up the vibrations and because of that no sound. Really its a preverbial question anyway like half full half empty.
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Postby Laura-Pixie » Tue Dec 12, 2006 7:06 pm

I still think it DOES make a sound, because meh, idunno, i'm not in a very argumentitive mood! it makes a sound because I SAID SO.
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Postby pinkparrot » Tue Dec 12, 2006 10:11 pm

What kind of question is that anyway?
What matters is whether the tree fell on anyone! I bet they'd probably make a sound too.
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Postby chocolatefudgecake » Wed Dec 13, 2006 4:34 pm

If the tree fell on someone, then they would have been around to hear the sound. unless they died instantly.

intowiz wrote:the question is though "did it make a sound" and even though the vibrations existed no one was there to pick up the vibrations and because of that no sound.


If no-one witnesses a crime, does that mean it didn't happen? no. Just because no-one is around to hear it, doesn't mean it's not there.

It's like vicky said: it's two-year-old logic.
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