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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4
votes
3answers
965 views

Is “Witten's Dog” from a Futurama episode an actual physics concept? [closed]

In an old episode ("Mars University") of Futurama which is a TV show, a character named Professor Farnsworth was trying to lecture "Superdupersymmetric String Theory" and "Witten's Dog" to some ...
1
vote
2answers
106 views

Why not assimilate nuclear waste into “igneous” rock?

I was reading a question about why not to drop nuclear waste into volcanoes; the short answer is it would come back out and not be rendered safe. Ignoring the cost and energy requirements, why can't ...
-2
votes
1answer
147 views

Based on what does Hawking give 1000 years of time for humans to escape the planet earth? [closed]

I read it news that: Hawking Gives Humans 1,000 Years to Escape Earth How did he arrive at this figure? Whats gonna make human race extinct in 1,000 years?
4
votes
3answers
596 views

Are Mathematical Physics and Occam's Razor compatible?

Occam's Razor and mathematical beauty appear to be compatible when reviewing Michael Atiyah's video. But are the high levels of complexity associated with mathematical physics compatible with ...
4
votes
2answers
148 views

How hot would space feel?

I read that the temperature of the space around the earth can vary greatly depending on whether or not it is in direct sunlight. Space, however, is not very dense, so I imagine that heat would not ...
0
votes
0answers
39 views

High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) And Earthquake Myth or Reality? [duplicate]

Could HAARP (or any other secret device) really trigger an earthquake? For example I've heard that U.S Trigger 6.3 magnitude earthquake in Kaki near Bushehr to destroy Iran's nuclear power plant!? ...
2
votes
2answers
475 views

The meaning of 'postulate' in physics? [duplicate]

What does postulate mean in physics? What is its role in physical theories? Is it possible to break physical postulates?
-1
votes
4answers
1k views

Why there is no “Edison” unit in physics? [closed]

In the popular culture the XIX-XX century competition between Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla is well-known. The example could be the Prestige movie, where there are some "Edison's agents" who sabotage ...
0
votes
2answers
711 views

How to teach myself physics needed at undergraduate electrical engineer level? [closed]

I want to learn electrical engineering on my own, specifically because I'm interested in loudspeaker design, more specifically how to design active dipole loudspeakers using DSP crossovers. I have ...
5
votes
2answers
7k views

Is time a Scalar or a Vector?

In Wikipedia it's said that time is a scalar quantity. But its hard to understand that how? As stated that we consider only the magnitude of time then its a scalar. But on basis of time we define ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How deep can my knowledge of particle physics go without the maths?

By no means do I have the mathematical background to understand most of the math used in elementary particle physics. My current knowledge is of all the elementary particles and how they interact ...
7
votes
1answer
258 views

Reference Request: Classical Mechanics with Symplectic Reduction

I am trying to find a supplement to appendix of Cushman & Bates' book on Global aspects of Classical Integrable Systems, that is less terse and explains mechanics with Lie groups (with dual of Lie ...
1
vote
2answers
688 views

How much pure math should a physics/microelectronics person know [duplicate]

I do condensed matter physics modeling in my phd and I was struck up learning quite an amount of physics. But while having done lot of physics courses, I see that if I learn pure math I would ...
-1
votes
1answer
199 views

How is gravitational force is compared to flow of water?

I listened to a lecture. The professor said that the gravitational field around the particle (spherical in shape) can be compared to a pond having a constant height and depth and water is constantly ...
1
vote
1answer
125 views

QFT in Quantum Computing and Control Theory?

Is QFT being applied to quantum computing and control theory? I took yesteryear a basic course on quantum computing and if I remember correctly we didn't touch on any QFT (though I think that if it ...
4
votes
1answer
355 views

From Freshman Mechanics to String Theory: A Comprehensive Textbook Sequence in Physics [duplicate]

If a student with no background in physics and an understanding of only single variable calculus wanted to learn string theory, what sequence of textbooks would most succinctly, clearly, and ...
39
votes
3answers
2k views
0
votes
1answer
85 views

Does the method of an experiment always have to be numbered? [closed]

When writing a method for an experiment, does it always have to be set out in orderly numbered steps? Can it not also be a paragraph of text that outlines the method? A mundane example: Place a ...
-4
votes
1answer
261 views

maybe the universe has already 'ended'? [closed]

I aks you if this reasoning has a base in what we know of universe. There are many articles about so called "vacuum metastability event". As I understand this happens (can happen) with an enormous low ...
3
votes
3answers
340 views

Results of Statistical Mechanics first obtained by formal mathematical methods

I have a question that seems natural in Physics and Mathematics mainly in Statistical Mechanics of Equilibrium. Results that are proven by formal mathematical methods that were already seem intuitive ...
0
votes
0answers
66 views

Did Planck said that his theory is distinct from Zeno's paradoxes?

I remember once reading that Planck or some other prominent figure in quantum physics said that the theory (probably Planck length or Planck time in particular) is not about the thing what Zeno's ...
0
votes
1answer
68 views

List of all past comet passes and area it was visible?

Is there a database/website which shows all comets which have passed Earth and have been viewed? Is there any country specific viewing database as well? I would like to do a search on the lines of : ...
10
votes
5answers
3k views

Difference between theoretical physics and mathematical physics?

I'm a huge fan of mathematical physics and I know what the formal definitions of those two areas are, I've seen them. But I still get completely baffled when someone asks me to explain it simply. The ...
4
votes
1answer
221 views

A treatment of basic Kaluza-Klein theory [closed]

I'm looking for a treatment of the original basic Kaluza-Klein theory. Can someone recommend a review article or something?
3
votes
1answer
141 views

A Book about the Bohr-Einstein debate?

A book about the Bohr-Einstein debate? Is there any book that details the correspondence between the two? The only books I could find are popular science books, I wonder if there is a book that lists ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Reading Paul Dirac's “Principles of Quantum Mechanics”

I have a similair question to the question here, but regarding a different book. "Principles of Quantum Mechanics" is a 1930 work by British Nobel laureate Paul Dirac. The wikipedia article on this ...
1
vote
0answers
118 views

Wormholes and the illusion of time?

I was watching a video on Youtube by Brian Greene, "the illusion of time."http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-u1aaltiq4 In that video, he introduces to me the idea of a "brane," or a slice of the ...
1
vote
1answer
267 views

Supplements for Kittel's Solid State Physics? [duplicate]

I think by supplement I really mean replace. I spent a lot of time agonizing over the first chapter of Kittel as he introduces a bunch of concepts such as Bravais lattice and he doesn't clearly define ...
2
votes
2answers
297 views

Where to find old papers, articles and preprints?

Question: How can I find physics papers, articles and preprints decades ago? Description: The search of articles and papers is for the purpose of finding interesting phenomenon for a science project. ...
1
vote
0answers
333 views

Starting string theory studies in grad school

How is it possible for a grad student to do research in any modern area of string theory like AdS/CFT or ABJM if they need to start grad school by having to learn QFT from scratch? Is there a ...
19
votes
11answers
3k views

Are there still 'everyday' phenomena unexplained by Physics? [closed]

There are two very famous quotes from German Nobel Laureate Albert Abraham Michelson that are remembered mainly for being extremely wrong (especially since he said them just before two major ...
4
votes
1answer
538 views

Industry application of computational quantum mechanics?

I was wondering if anybody knew of an industry application of computational quantum mechanics. For example, the efficient placement of circuit elements on a PCB is in part motivated by classical FDTD ...
0
votes
0answers
79 views

Is there a book that discusses General Relativity in terms of Modern Differential Geometry? [duplicate]

All of the physics books that I've seen which discuss General Relativity do so in terms of coordinates - the tensor calculus - even though the naturally relevant entities are invariant under general ...
1
vote
1answer
430 views

Learning roadmap for solid state physics [duplicate]

I am a PhD student in mathematics who knows little more about physics than what one learns in high school. For my research on tilings of space and aperiodic order, every now and then I have to skim a ...
3
votes
0answers
96 views

Physics textbook for mathematicians [duplicate]

Before this post gets marked as duplicate, I've checked book book recommendations among other posts but I don't think they really answer this fairly niche question. I am looking to compile a list of ...
1
vote
1answer
119 views

The status / acceptance of block time?

What is the current status or acceptance of block time as it relates to Einstein's theory of relativity? Has quantum mechanics ruled it out or is it still the favored view of the world? Perhaps there ...
8
votes
1answer
180 views

What strategies can a researcher use when confronted with a long and complicated symbolic expression?

When doing research in theoretical physics, a frequent task one encounters is trying to express some physical quantity as a function of other quantities. A lot of times this can't be done ...
1
vote
0answers
83 views

Motivation For Definitions [closed]

I noticed in my physics textbook that we define certain relationships to be true. I can see how this is considerably helpful in deriving other relationships from these definitions; for instance, take ...
2
votes
0answers
82 views

Where to find probability density plots for all elements?

Does anyone know where I can find something similar to this, but for all elements? I would love to find something with the same image quality. Also, is there any software that can produce images ...
0
votes
1answer
61 views

Hypotheses a hindrance in physics?

In a recent episode of the Big Picture Science podcast, there was an interview with Stuart Firestein (chair of the Columbia University Biology Department) in which he discussed his book Ignorance: How ...
2
votes
1answer
120 views

Who first provided a string realization of dual resonance models?

After the $N$-particle generalization of the Veneziano amplitude was written down and studied, who was the first (or who were among the first) to realize that the amplitudes could be understood in ...
-1
votes
1answer
419 views

Can a sound mathematical formula become a science theory?

Can a sound mathematical formula become a science theory if it is constructed using a pattern creation process from sense-data, applied to observations by an inductive mapping, in contrast to ...
1
vote
0answers
306 views

Apostol or Spivak for mathematical physics? [closed]

I came across many recommendations for both of these books, but I'm not sure which one should I use to study calculus... I know most of the methods used in calculus and I use them frequently, but I'm ...
2
votes
1answer
97 views

Relativity exposition from the “naïve” viewpoint

A naïve observational viewpoint doesn't automatically try to correct for signal delays. In other words, the time co-ordinate is retarded. For example: In popular expositions of relativity you'll ...
6
votes
0answers
393 views

What are the mathematical prerequisites to understand this paper? [closed]

What are the mathematical prerequisites to understand this paper? Blumenhagen et al. Four-dimensional String Compactifications with D-Branes, Orientifolds and Fluxes. Phys. Rept. 445 no. 1-6, pp. ...
1
vote
1answer
43 views

Looking for a reference book, or book chapter to learn about piezoelectricity

I'm looking for an introduction to the treatment of piezoelectricity, specially in semiconductors emphasizing the dependence on the orientation of the unit cell and the interactive effects with the ...
1
vote
0answers
176 views

Pure mathematical exposition vs A “for physicists” approach: Which is better? [closed]

I'm an undergrad interested in theoretical physics. Don't know enough to decide which specific subfield I may go in, but particle theory (strings, QFT, GR) and mathematically heavy condensed matter ...
1
vote
2answers
270 views

Different perspective in Quantum mechanics [duplicate]

I had self-studied Griffiths(~ 4 chapters), and Sakurai (~2.5 chapters) for quantum mechanics some months ago. Now, I have to take a course in QM this sem, and I want to further my understanding of ...
4
votes
0answers
218 views

Course advice for someone interested in strings and mathematical physics [closed]

I'll be doing Introductory General Relativity and Graduate Quantum Mechanics II next semester. I still need to choose 2 (or maybe 3, but I don't want to overload too much) from the following: ...
5
votes
6answers
935 views

Do perfect spheres exist in nature?

Often in physics, Objects are approximated as spherical. However do any perfectly spherical objects actually exist in nature?