John Barrow writes:
“Only three-dimensional worlds appear to possess the ‘nice’ properties necessary for the transmission of high fidelity signals because of the simultaneous realization of reverberation less and distortionless propagation.” For audiophiles, these terms refer to sound quality in stereos, but they apply equally to all wave phenomena. Reverberation occurs when signals emitted at different times arrive simultaneously; signal distortion is an alteration of the form of the wave as it propagates. Astronomers take for granted the remarkable fidelity of information carried by light across the universe. Life, too, almost certainly requires high fidelity in neurological signal transmission, as Whitrow suggested. A three-dimensional universe, unlike the alternatives, allows information to flow with a minimum of fuss and bother. It seems reasonable to conjecture that altering the number of time dimensions would also enormously complicate cause-and-effect relationships and consequently make prediction much more difficult, if not impossible. Indeed, the only safe prediction in such a place might be that accurate prediction weren’t possible. 1
Framework settings 2
Our universe exists within a framework of four dimensions: three of space and one of time. But it didn’t have to be that way. In theory, universes can be created with many other dimensions. (String theory physicists believe our universe may sport seven more undetectable, tiny, curled-up dimensions.)
Princeton physicist Max Tegmark argues that it is only a universe containing the 3+1 dimensions with which we are familiar that could support life. Given the diverse possibilities, we must ask again: how did our universe arrive at this sweet spot?
1. THE PRIVILEGED PLANET, pg.210, Guillermo Gonzalez and Jay W. Richards