Category Archives: physics

BICEP, gravitational waves et al.

Reader Justin sent a link to this animated video by MinutePhysics that tries to explain what the BICEP project really revealed about the Big Bang (I say “tries” because I’m not a physicist). Do note, though, that Official Website Physicist™ Sean Carroll was an advisor on the science, so it must be right!. One thing […]

Neil deGrasse Tyson identifies the greatest physicist of all time—in slow motion

I don’t know why I—or reader Gregory, who sent the link to me—find this video so funny, but I suspect it’s because it makes Tyson sound like he’s been smoking wacky tobacky.  What the astonomer says is right on (he’s describing his hero Newton), but the slowing down—2/3 speed, I think—makes one think that as […]

Prince Rupert’s Drop

Here’s another physics phenomenon that, despite being fascinating, I still can’t quite get my head around. It’s Prince Rupert’s Drop, a phenomenon created when molten glass is dripped in a tadpole-like shape into ice-cold water.  This object and its peculiar physical properties have been known since at least 1625, and are seen in this don’t-miss […]

A physicist decries “quantum woo”

You may recall the bizarre “Biocentrism” theory of Dr. Robert Lanza, which I’ve discussed before (here, and here, for instance). I’ve also consulted Official Website Physicist™ Sean Carroll, who pronounced biocentrism pretty much a crock. If you want Lanza’s scholarly explanation of biocentrism (and take a Pepto-Bismol first), read this piece he wrote for The American Scholar (shame […]

Update: Sean Carroll on biocentrism

At my request, Official Website Physicist™ Sean Carroll gave me his take on Robert Lanza’s theory of biocentrism that I discussed this morning. Here’s what Sean emailed me (quoted with permission): Like Chopra, Lanza mixes (1) completely legitimate (but strange sounding) statements about quantum mechanics, (2) tendentious interpretations of what quantum mechanics says that are […]

A physics joke

From reader Ginger K: A Higgs boson walks into a Catholic church.  The priest says, “Hey, you can’t be in here!” To which the Higgs replies, “Why not?  You can’t have mass without me.” Tip your waitress, folks! And don’t forget to try the roast beef.

Steven Weinberg discusses the mysteries of physics

A common misconception is that the major problems of physics have mostly been solved, and all that’s left is some minor sweeping-up.  I doubt that the readers here would agree, for huge surprises and mysteries continue to surface in physics. In a new piece in the New York Review of Books, “Physics: What we do […]

Physics Nobel goes to Englert and Higgs; Sean Carroll kvetches a bit

Well, contrary to Sean Carroll’s guess, the Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded this morning to Peter Higgs and Francois Englert. The news came out only about 20 minutes ago, and is the subject of a terse New York Times piece: STOCKHOLM — Physicists Francois Englert of Belgium and Peter Higgs of Britain have won […]

Debate/discussion: Krauss vs. Craig

UPDATE:  It appears now that the first and third parts of the debate are posted at this link, but I don’t know where part 2 is. They’ve also separated the interviews with Krauss and Craig from the onstage exchange. The Bible Society also has written interviews with Krauss and Craig about the debate.  An excerpt […]

Cat-and-science themed Google doodle

Take a look at today’s Google doodle and guess what it’s about: Of course you guessed correctly when you saw the dead and living cats in the box. Today would have been the 126th birthday of physicist Erwin Schrödinger (1887-1961). As the Guardian notes: However, it was not until his late 30s that he was […]

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