Questions that ask about some aspect of physics research or study which doesn't involve the actual physics. In general, soft questions can be answered without using physical reasoning.

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1
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1answer
29 views

Rain system movements and highways?

In my free time I sometimes enjoy watching the weather or radar and trying to predict how a rain system will move. Pretty often I notice that a small rain system or even a large one will congregate or ...
3
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0answers
29 views

Are the fundamental constants of nature independent?

Background: I am a layman and I just watched the video "Infinite Worlds: A Journey through Parallel Universes" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OO4uzgiRHkE) featuring a discussion with Andrei Linde, ...
4
votes
1answer
41 views

“Hollow Earth” like Theories for pedagogical porpuses [on hold]

I recently encountered the Hollow Earth theory, and I realize that This kind of theories can be used to give a really interesting discussion of a physical law. For example, If we take the ...
-1
votes
0answers
23 views

Topic for research paper in Computational Physics [closed]

I want to write a paper in computational physics. I have some physics and computer knowledge, but I could not come up with any research idea. Also, I have access to supercomputers. Can you give me a ...
1
vote
0answers
28 views

How does the optimal-gear indicator work? [migrated]

Modern cars like BMW, Ford, Audi come with a system on the panel which tells the driver the next optimal gear to drive. How does it work ? What is the algorithm behind it? What data does it require ...
0
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0answers
29 views

Computer Science student with nascent interest in Physics [closed]

I am an undergrad studying computer science and have keen interest in physics. I would like to ask about the possibility of minoring in physics or possibly studying physics along with computer ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

How important is doing exercises in learning physics? [closed]

I am a Chinese student who is currently studying physics at Nanjing university. And I just entered university a year ago. I am quite curious to know how you guys learn physics when you are in ...
1
vote
0answers
25 views

Are there computerized ontologies for Relativity and (Experimental) Physics? How to contribute?

As machines and automation can generally assist humanity in physical activities, and even exceed mere human capabilities, so, increasingly, also in tasks of reasoning. A basic component of the latter ...
1
vote
2answers
74 views

Why isn't all of physics based on other rates of change [duplicate]

Define the jolt/jerk to be $$J(f)={{d^3 f} \over {dt^3}}$$ Why don't we use the concept of jolt more often considering that the change in acceleration is most definitely an important characteristic ...
0
votes
1answer
12 views

Affects of static electricity on the heart

I have an electricity problem. I get shocked by just about everything. Metal, plastic, etc. flooring can be wood,tile, carpet,linoleum , it doesn't seem to matter. The ones that go through my ...
1
vote
0answers
79 views

What does it mean: “If you scream in Hilbert space, nobody will hear you!” [closed]

This question may not be appropriate for this site and if it so, sorry for that. Today, I have heard the following quote from one of my friends: If you scream in Hilbert space, nobody will hear ...
0
votes
2answers
127 views

Naked Time ( Is there such a thing ?) [closed]

I have lately been concerned with time and whether or not it is an illusion. For argument's sake let's assume it is. Then time should stand on its own. Can anyone describe, (or point me to a paper ...
0
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1answer
60 views

How do you become a theoretical physicist? [closed]

Is there a specific subject at university called "theoretical physics" or do you get a PhD in Physics and then if your job involves theory you are considered a theoretical physicist?
0
votes
1answer
60 views

What is “adjustable constant”?

This is quoted from A.P.French's Vibrations & Waves. Explicit differential form of linear harmonic oscillator is: $$ m\dfrac{d^2x}{dt^2} + kx = 0 \quad \& \quad \dfrac{1}{2} ...
7
votes
3answers
372 views

Why does the lake surface appear darker in some areas?

My question: What causes the surface of the lake to appear darker in some places? My take on the matter: Firstly, I don't dare to say it's fishe which cause it. Secondly, the dark surfaces move ...
2
votes
2answers
65 views

What unit system does Fahrenheit belong to?

Wikipedia's page for Imperial Units does not list Fahrenheit. The corresponding page for SI Units lists Kelvin as an SI unit, and Celcius as a derived SI unit. This leads me to believe that ...
2
votes
2answers
75 views

Differential operators in curvilinear coordinates

In the appendix A of Griffith's Electrodynamics text, he cites Spivak's Calculus on Manifolds as a reference more a more complete treatment of taking the gradient, curl, divergence, and Laplacian in ...
0
votes
2answers
68 views

What does a unit like $C^{1/5}$ or $kg^{1/2}$ physically mean?

I'm more of a math guy than a physics guy so bear with me.... In fractal geometry, fractals are considered to have fractional dimension. For instance an object such as the Koch curve has a fractal ...
9
votes
2answers
141 views

Why pouring milk from a height makes a chain shape?

I have noticed a chain-like shape when milk is poured from a height into a cup. Actually the chain pattern repeats itself after some distance and again till it reaches the milk in the cup. Any ...
2
votes
2answers
91 views

How are weights and scales used by the public calibrated?

My physics teacher has a set of masses: things from 1 to 10 grams. My chemistry teacher has electronic balances that measures things in grams. In France, there is a block of metal we hope no one ...
1
vote
1answer
86 views

When was the first time that superconducting quasiparticles were called Majorana fermions?

Since a number of years, the field of superconductivity has a growing obsession with Majorana fermions. I wonder how far back we can go: When was the first time that superconducting quasiparticles ...
0
votes
0answers
18 views

Physicists who were criticised for their works but later celebrated by the people [migrated]

"Life of Galileo Galilei was not simple, predictable, or rational. Being as great as he was, Galileo, for example, did not accept Kepler's laws of planetary motion. At the same time, he believed with ...
1
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0answers
67 views

What is the next step in math education after taking the last undergrad math course? [closed]

Currently I successfully completed the 3rd semester of my B.Sc. in Physics. Since the upcoming summer semester is starting soon and I'm going to have some spare time I can spend, I want to expand and ...
1
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2answers
88 views

What does the “T” stand for in T-duality?

First of all, I am not a physicist. I'm a graduate math student and recently I came across the concept of T-duality. Actually I'm studying generalized complex geometry, which according to this paper ...
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votes
2answers
98 views

Help with high school physics [duplicate]

I am studying high school physics and it seems i have memorize the equation and use it mechanically in doing question and memorize lots of physical phenomena.I know a lot of physical phenomena can be ...
2
votes
1answer
162 views

What was Feynman's famous formula?

In Welton(1983), Memories of Feynman, Welton mentions two formulas which he denotes as Feynman's Famous Formula (FFF) and FFF #2. Which famous formulas is he talking about? Is he maybe talking about ...
1
vote
2answers
123 views

Sign convention for the Minkowski metric $\eta_{\mu\nu}$

In special relativity, one is confronted with a quadratic form called proper time, which is $c^2t^2-(x^2+y^2+z^2)$, $t$ being time and $x,y,z$ being the space coordinates. One usually introduces a ...
0
votes
2answers
31 views

Usage of singular or plural SI base units when written in both symbol as well as name [closed]

I have multiple doubts related to the usage of singular or plural SI base units when written in both symbol as well as name. I have framed this question under two parts, namely, Part (a) and Part ...
5
votes
1answer
186 views

Physical intuition/interpretation of fractional derivatives/integrals?

Oftentimes, when the derivative and integral operations are introduced within the realm of physics, we are taught some physical interpretation of them: Velocity is the derivative of position ...
21
votes
4answers
3k views

If the LHC-calculated mass of the Higgs is wrong, how long will it take to determine this with confidence? [closed]

After I watched "Particle Fever"--the movie about Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and the successful identification of the Higgs boson--I became a bit concerned with that team's handling of various ...
1
vote
0answers
38 views

Searching for a good summer opportunity [closed]

Where's a good place in Europe that offers a summer research job for interested students in Theoretical physics? For example, there is CERN that gives undergraduate students the chance to enroll for ...
0
votes
1answer
54 views

Requirements prior to Quantum Mechanics [duplicate]

What are the requirements in physics and mathematics that somebody must have in order to start learning Quantum Mechanics by himself?
0
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1answer
69 views

What is the meaning of phenomenology?

From what I understand, phenomenology as it is used in science means talking about the details of a phenomenon without going deep into the fundamental physical processes that lead to the phenomenon. ...
3
votes
3answers
360 views

What would happen to me if I was in the LHC while it was running? [duplicate]

This is possibly a stupid question, but one I have been always wondering. What would happen to me if I was in the center of the Large hadron Collider while it was running? Would the energy of the beam ...
1
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0answers
22 views

Modern textbooks on quantum mechanics [duplicate]

I'm looking for modern textbooks on quantum mechanics that treat topics such as quantum entanglement , bell's theorem , quantum teleportation , quantum information theory , The Many-world ...
1
vote
1answer
52 views

What is the relationship between harmonic motion and the harmonics of a wave?

I learned about harmonic motion and harmonic oscillators a long time ago in physics, but I can't remember what the relationship between that and and the definition of harmonic in a wave. A harmonic ...
2
votes
0answers
50 views

Have any prominent physicists been 'scooped'? [closed]

I'm really curious as to whether any prominent physicists have had a major breakthrough, only to have another scientist publish the achievement before they managed to, and whether the credit was given ...
-2
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1answer
61 views

Production of electric field [closed]

How does varying magnetic field produce an electric field? Is it a natural phenomenon having no reason? i want the process/steps of producing of an electric field by a varying magnetic field.
0
votes
3answers
146 views

Forces on a ball thrown upwards

When a ball is thrown up in upward direction, it is said that force is in downward direction. Why we don't we consider the force given to the ball to throw up in the upward direction? Is there is no ...
0
votes
0answers
37 views

What level of mathematics would I need to understand the physics of a black hole? [duplicate]

I recently went to go see Interstellar and was awed by the visualizations of the wormhole and the black hole Gargantua. I read that noted physicist Kip Thorne was a consulting producer on the film. I ...
2
votes
1answer
22 views

What is the difference between a measurement and an experiment?

For example, say I want to determine the atomic structure of a bio molecule. I purify the molecule, get it to crystallize (probably though trial and error), shoot it with X-rays, observe the scatter ...
3
votes
2answers
60 views

Ion-propelled vs. Ion Thruster

I am fifteen and an aspiring Mechanical Engineer. I read about ion-propelled aircraft, and was fascinated. On NASA's YouTube channels they outlined Ion Thrusters as a potential way to reach greater ...
0
votes
2answers
68 views

Name for Earth?

What is the proper word for 'Earth', as in 'Solar' and 'Lunar'? I cannot find this anywhere; I am guessing there is a word that starts with geo?
0
votes
1answer
58 views

Is the intuition of “absolute simultaneity” necessarily wrong?

I read about Einstein’s theories of relativity with all the interesting stuff like time dilation, mass increase and whatnot. And also about the relativity or conventionality of simultaneity. The ...
2
votes
2answers
110 views

An attempt to understand Quantum mechanics [closed]

Can I learn quantum mechanics just by knowing basic calculus and algebra? I know basic differential calculus and integral calculus. I am willing to study to understand what quantum mechanics means. ...
3
votes
0answers
122 views

Why is imaginary time “outdated”? [closed]

I was looking at reviews for Sakurai's Quantum Mechanics textbook, and some mentioned it being outdated, specifically mentioning his use of imaginary time. Is this idea deliberately avoided in modern ...
2
votes
0answers
54 views

As an older student, is it better to finish my degree or go straight into studying physics now? [closed]

I'm a 23 year old going through a very early mid-life crisis, and considering a career change to physics. I would be very greatful for any advice :) I'm currently studying medicine, but I've realized ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

Quantum physics and constructable numbers [duplicate]

I do not know much about quantum physics. However, I do know it believes the world is discrete ( has quanta). This seems to contradicts the fact that we can create an object of length root 2 since you ...
1
vote
2answers
79 views

What are $\mu$ and $\nu$ in $g_{\mu\nu}$ metric?

What are $\mu$ and $\nu$ in $g_{\mu\nu}$ metric? Consider the metric $g_{\mu\nu} = \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 &0 \\ 0 & r^2 & 0\\ 0 & 0 & r^2\sin^2\theta \end{pmatrix}$
0
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2answers
54 views

Books on Quantum Measurement

I have been trying to understand clearly the concept of non locality, hidden variables, quantum measurement etc through research papers. I also read Quantum Theory and measurment by Wheeler and Zurek ...