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- Noncommtuative geometry and the origin of time

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05090005

Noncommutative geometry is a more general formulation of geometry that does not require coordinates to commute. As such it unifies quantum theory and geometry and should appear in any effective theory of quantum gravity. In this general talk we present quantum groups as a microcosm of this unification in the same way that Lie groups are a microcosm of usual geometry, and give a flavour of some of the deeper insights they provide. One of them is the ability to interchange the roles of quantum theory and gravity by `arrow reversal'. Another is that noncommutative spaces typically carry a canonical 1-parameter evolution or intrinsic time created from the fundamental conflict between noncommuting coordinates and differential calculus. In physical terms one could say that quantising space typically has an anomaly for the spatial translation group and this forces the system to evolve. We give an example where we derive Schroedinger's equation in this way.

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