Mar 20, 2011

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Books are just scrolls that sold out…Strings are just alternate realities…


Mar 14, 2011

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Talk Like a Physicist Day – A nation of Einsteins

nation of Einsteins

Talk Like a Physicist Day : March 14, 2009
A nation of Einsteins

Check out the FAQ on how to talk like a physicist

Mar 14, 2011

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Talk Like a Physicist Day is here!


From our FAQ:

How to talk like a physicist:

Here are some terms that Physicists use:

Order of Magnitude: Use terms like “orders of magnitude” to describe significant differences of scale.

Negligible: When something is small, say it is “negligible” non-zero, but negligible.

Infinitesimal: If it is really really small, say it is infinitesimal.
Non-trivial: For a physicist, nothing is ever hard or difficult – it is always “non-trivial”

First-order approximation : That is only a first-order approximation to a good cup of coffee… “The living room is clean. Well…at least to a first order approximation.”

Canonical: Use “canonical” when you mean “usual” or “standard.” As in, “the canonical example of talking like a physicist is to use the word ‘canonical.’”

Orthogonal: Use “orthogonal” to refer to things that are mutually-exclusive or can’t coincide. “We keep playing phone tag — I think our schedules must be orthogonal”

Emprical Data: Any actual personal experience becomes “empirical data.” i.e. a burn on your hand is empirical data that the stove is hot.

Ground State: You’re not being lazy, you are in your ground state.
Extrapolation: A semi-educated guess is an extrapolation

Ideal Case: You aren’t ignoring details, you are taking the ideal case
Vanishingly small: A tiny amount is “vanishingly small” or “negligible.” Really small is “infinitesimal”

You aren’t overweight, you are thermodynamically efficient
Potential Well: Stuck in a meeting is “trapped in a potential well,” though you hope you can “tunnel out.”

Blackhole: If there is no escape, you are trapped by a black hole, from which there is no escape.

Photons: It’s not light, they are photons. Turning on the lamp becomes emitting photons.

Exercise to Reader: The rest is history becomes “the rest is left as an exercise to the reader…”

Not even wrong. Someone is making an argument using assumptions that are known to be wrong, or are making an argument that can’t be falsified. Courtesy Wolfgang Pauli. “Wait, he’s assuming Ron Paul can still win the Republican nomination? That’s not even wrong.”

For very small values of. This one, I’m afraid, I can best explain by example. “So there are four of us going to dinner.” “Three.” “Okay, so there are four of us for very small values of four.”

Super position: If something seems to act like something else, I say that it’s in a “superposition of the two states”.


Q: two trains are a approaching each other at 40 mph and are 8 miles apart, when will they cross each other? An untrained person would say “in about 6 minutes”.

A physicist would respond as:
If the trains are on the same track, they will not cross each other but run in to each other; when you say approaching each other, are the trains engines facing each other? they could go around the world and then cross each other, but for that I need to know the location of the trains. Also, I need to know the lengths of each of the trains to accurately calculate this, but in a trivially simple situation, the trains will cross each other in 6 minutes.
Again, make sure that the correct answer is always present at the end.


Mar 6, 2011

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Chocolateo-cosmology : combine Chocolate and Cosmology for some pun

physis pun

This is a good start, but there is so much potential here; I haven’t even used Mars bar pun yet, or postulated Punion, a smallest single unit of pun in this discussion yet!

Click on the image above to see a better readable, or the text is given below.

SK: A little piece of chocolate gives me a lot of energy, proving that Energy equals milk chocolate square.

D: But most of the energy is in the form of dark chocolate matter… Then there’s dark chocolate energy…. which is an entirely different matter…

and the milk chocolate part, the part that you see, is only 7%.

Lets not forget the two dimensional manifold that surrounds and creates S4xC2 symmetric space to contain this chocolate.

P:physicist at work…..i’m reading a Deepak Chopra book on the spontaneous fulfilment of desire and loving it….i thought i was way to dumb to understand physics….

D: shortly after the chocolate (especially dark) is placed in front of me, I no longer see any of it. So, apparently the visible component spontaneously turn to the dark component. THen I can **feel** the energy…

SK: I guess you don’t subscribe to the Licorice string theory! Prof Nestle at the Hershey lab did some experiments on Toblerone and found that the visible milk chocolate expands the circumference or adds to the convexity of nearby objects, its called Twix-ass effect.

I don’t believe those results because Toblerone is so triangle, they should have used Rolo instead.

I’ll just wait for the Heath telescope to Caramelize the Milkeyway Galaxy. it is an expensive telescope, it cost 1000 Grand, some people Snicker at it, but I think it will be a Powerhouse and might even find Goobers; that will be NutRageous, a big Payday. There is some data but I want S’more.

It might even explain the asymmetry between dark chocolate and white Chocolate using the Cadbury’s Fudge factor.

Leave a comment if you think you can add to this.

Join me on facebook, send me a friend request if you think we have common interests.

Mar 4, 2011

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May the mass times acceleration be with you


Hmmm.. considering the speed at which Starwars characters travel, this may not be fully accurate. But saying “may the derivative of momentum be with you” just doesn’t sound right.

Mar 3, 2011

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Delightful Astronomer matrioshkas


Matrioshkas doll combined with astronomy! Astrowesome!

Copernicus, Galileo, Newton, Sagan, Hawking

Made by Nate for his girlfriend who is studying astronomy.

Mar 2, 2011

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Dear supersymmetric partner : we hardly knew ye!


I sense a great disturbance in the Force, as if thousands of physicists cried out in confusion, and were suddenly silenced by a plot (from LHC data).

Looks like the Supersymmetry is dead! *

Last week, the anticipated signs of SUSY were missing from the early data generated by the LHC’s two experiments, ATLAS and CMS.

This is almost as bad as having a decade long on-line relationship with your “soul mate”, and then finding out that your love interest on the other side was a Nigerian scammer.

No love for low scale supersymmetry at the LHC.

Don’t be upset about this. We are physicists, we are always open to the possibility that our ideas may be wrong.

Physicists: social, fair if not generous toward colleagues, open to the possibility that their ideas may be wrong, and remarkably willing to accept criticism.

* I know, it is only the Minimum Supersymmetric Standard Model (MSSM) that seems to be in trouble. With 150 known parameters and unknown numbers of other unknowns, it can never be ruled out.