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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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
558 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
80 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
438 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
97 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
120 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
84 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
123 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
423 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
312 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
98 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
397 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
185 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
277 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
229 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
991 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?
1
vote
2answers
212 views

What is a good way to reason in physics? [closed]

I have recently made the decision to study Physics seriously. However, in the past, I've had some difficulty with the subject because of my primarily mathematical background. I find that sometimes ...
1
vote
1answer
485 views

How can you test what color different people perceive? [closed]

If I would show someone a yellow object and ask them, "is this object yellow?" That person would say "yes". But I could never know if my perception of the color yellow is the same as that other ...
1
vote
0answers
159 views

Approaches to Quantum gravity [closed]

I'm going to start my graduate studies in theoretical physics. My supervisor wants me to work on quantum gravity. He gave me the liberty to chose a particular approach to Quantum gravity (Excluding ...
7
votes
2answers
369 views

Understanding Cherns-Simons-Witten Theory

I want to read about Wittens work, on Cherns-Simons theory, and relations to knots and jones polynomials. I am extremely motivated to read his paper: Quantum Field Theory and Jones polynomial. What ...
0
votes
1answer
466 views

Quick introduction to electromagnetism / Maxwell's equations [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Electrodynamics textbook that emphasizes applications I am a graduate student in applied mathematics and I am looking for a concise introduction to Maxwell's equations / ...
3
votes
3answers
568 views

Intuition for Path Integrals and How to Evaluate Them

I'm just starting to come across path integrals in quantum field theory, and want to get the right intuition for the them from the start. The amplitude for propagation from $x_a$ to $x_b$ is typically ...
2
votes
1answer
415 views

Is it possible to take a QFT class knowing only basic quantum mechanics?

I'm in grad school and notice there are no prerequisites required for QFT in the physics department. In fact, the system allows me to sign up for the course just fine as a technical elective. But... ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

When is the FAIR accelerator supposed to be finished? [closed]

The FAIR accelerator is a planned facility for antiproton and ion research. Ground water wells are being put in, the forest is being cleared... But when is it supposed to be completed? Does anyone ...
0
votes
2answers
286 views

Einstein and vibrational energy of the atom and its way to QM

As suggested by one of the commentators on my last question, I am going through Bohr's Nobel prize lecture in order to understand how quantum mechanics was developed. The lecture describes Planck's ...
1
vote
1answer
214 views

Are the sound waves from fundamental strings impossible to interact with?

Edited the question thanks to some helpful commenters. Are the sound waves emitted by fundamental strings so small as to be impossible to interact with the world? In other words, do they disappear, ...
4
votes
4answers
420 views

What is the term for hose fluctuating movements during flow?

What do we call it when water flowing through a flexible hose causes it to act like snake movements if the hose were disturbed? Can this movement be explained by the Coriolis force?
0
votes
2answers
941 views

Level of calculus required for physics [closed]

First time for me here so kindly let me know if I violate the rules - especially if this is a duplicate. After reading the page how to become a good theoretical phycist, I started a serious revision ...
3
votes
2answers
208 views

Reference request for the Aharonov-Bohm effect

I am looking for a good reference to an online source or book, on the magnetic Aharonov-Bohm effect. I have read the appropriate sections from the book by Griffiths and Ballentine, and still haven't ...
3
votes
0answers
307 views

Interesting Math Topics Useful for Physics [closed]

What are some interesting, but less popular, math topics that are useful for physics that can be self-studied? Specifically, topics that might ultimately be useful in high energy theory (even if it is ...
2
votes
0answers
199 views

What's the most efficient way to study physics? [duplicate]

I'm CS major trying to learn QFT on my own . I'm trying to make an efficient study plan .The problem is that I've never read any textbook from cover to cover and solved all the problems .What of the ...
-1
votes
1answer
232 views

Why does Physica A journal contain economics papers? [closed]

Why does Physica A journal contain economics papers? Like this: Steve Keen, Russell Standish. Profit maximization, industry structure, and competition: A critique of neoclassical theory. Physica A ...
3
votes
2answers
333 views

Instructional examples of QFT

Where can one find some concrete physical problems (with solutions) that illustrates the uselfullness and power of QFT? These must not be solvable by QM or SR alone. It would be good if the problem ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I start learning particle physics? [closed]

I am 16 at the moment. I am really interested in physics. Especially particle physics. Can someone please tell me how to start learning the subject. like what to learn first. like which fundamental ...
1
vote
1answer
240 views

How much of theoretical physics research involves contemplation and reflection?

Something that I do when I'm learning physics is to contemplate and put into perspective the stuff that I've learned. I often find that I stumble upon deeper or more subtle questions and issues when I ...
1
vote
1answer
350 views

Crucial Misconceptions about The Universe [closed]

So I am piecing together a school project on the numerous misconceptions of the universe, which I plan to "provide proof against them" with information from various sources (one of the main ones will ...
3
votes
1answer
675 views

Need for a side book for E.Soper`s Classical Theory Of Fields.

I am reading now E Soper Classical Theory Of Fields now and sometimes it is very hard to follow the equations.So I need a side book to read it comfortably.Landau`s book is not helping as its content ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

How should a theoretical physicist study maths? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How should a physics student study mathematics? If some-one wants to do research in string theory for example, Would the Nakahara Topology, geometry and physics book and ...
-2
votes
1answer
299 views

How to express $ds$?(when we know expression for $ds^{2}$) [closed]

We know that $$ds^2 = g_{\mu\nu}dx^{\mu}dx^{\nu},$$ Can you say how to calculate $ds$?
-10
votes
2answers
619 views

The end of theoretical physics? [closed]

About the meta questions 1193 and 2609, I've heard parallelly, that the complete branch theoretical physics is already done and that there isn't any thing else to do in this field, how true is it?
3
votes
0answers
142 views

What are some fields where physics is leading mathematics? [closed]

I know developments in physics and mathematics often nourish each other, and at different points in history, physics and math have taken turns leading each other. An example of a physicist "inventing" ...
5
votes
7answers
692 views

Physical intuition for higher order derivatives

Could somebody give me an intuitive physical interpretation of higher order derivatives (from 2 and so on), that is not related to position - velocity - acceleration - jerk - etc?
3
votes
0answers
65 views

Searching for a collaborator for a physics simulation of multi-party elections [closed]

I have completed a series of physics simulations on Matlab to find the equilibrium positions of parties in 2-D or 3-D voting space and compared them to the optimal positions that would provide the ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

How can some-one independently do research in particle physics?

I'm not affiliated with a physics department and I want to do independent research. I'm working my way through Peskin et. al. QFT now. Let's say that I've finished Peskin et. al. and Weinberg QFT ...
0
votes
1answer
565 views

What is the importance of electrodynamics and magnetism in physics as a whole? [closed]

At my university the second half of a year long sequence in basic calculus based physics focuses on electrodynamics and magnetism. I am wondering what is the significance of these topics to physics in ...
4
votes
1answer
240 views

Probability in Quantum Mechanics

Do you need to take a probability/statistics course for Quantum Mechanics, or is the probability in quantum mechanics so rudimentary that you can just learn it along the way? I'm in doubt as to ...