Is it possible to design a mathematical theory that is not applicable to reality?

Albert Einstein wondered:

How can it be that mathematics, being after all a product of human thought which is independent of experience, is so admirably appropriate to the objects of reality?

— Albert Einstein 1922

I suggest the following answer to this question.

Our brains, hearts, and everything else in our bodies consists of the same particles of which any object in our universe is made.

These particles behave according to the same laws of nature, no matter where they are — in our brains, or in stars and galaxies.

Our lives and our thoughts are properties emergent from complicated interactions of systems of quarks and electrons.

So, it seems natural to me that mathematics, being a product of human thought, is appropriate to the objects of reality.

I would ask a different question: Is it possible to design a mathematical theory that is not applicable to reality?

Can our thoughts produce mathematics that in principle can’t describe anything existing in our universe?

I asked this question in LinkedIn here.

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Published in: on 19/04/2013 at 14:44  Leave a Comment  
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