Originally Posted by size 38R
physicists....... thinking only they get it. theory's are,well, theory's.
what makes one think that anyone with a certain capability of intelligence can't look at this and say "well, you guys are dreaming up b.s." and descending a legitimate science in to fiction.
This the sort of thing that used to piss me off. These days, it's more sad than anything else - mostly I think because it shows the growing divide between us and the rest of the world - but it is also a prevalent bit of arrogance that is worth dispelling.
When people say theories are theories, they usually mean that theories are just ideas, descriptions, and hypotheses. This is not true. The simplest delineation is that they have to be descriptions or hypotheses which make experimentally falsifiable predictions. Falsifiability is a big condition. When we say things like "quantum mechanics is a theory" or "the standard model is a theory" not only do we mean that, but that we also mean that we have mountains - sometimes literally - of evidence which rather than contradicting the predictions, seem to confirm them.
I know very few theorists who labor under the assumption that only select a few are capable of grasping to even the most minimal extent the concepts they are working with. The world has Sheldon Coopers, but they're really few and far between. However, as people who dedicate our lives to these pursuits, we do come to learn the depth and complexity involved in addressing these problems. We learn about all of the things that have to work together and remain consistent if what we put forward as descriptions of physical phenomena are not going to be immediately falsified by existing data. The question is not one of intellectual capability but of sufficient learning. Sometimes it's not even that. Sometimes it's that the things we're talking about are so complicated - and are required to be complicated in order to be accurate - that even the people who are best in the world, know the most about it, are incapable of saying whether or not something is B.S.
there is no comparison to Einstien, he remained practical. or Tesla (an experimental engineer)- more my hero, and i'm sure he could understand the science of physics. as do i. and i'm no Tesla.
There is no comparisson to Einstein, except Bohr, Dirac, Feynmann, Witten, Wheeler, Dyson. I personally would put Alexei Kitaev and Xiao-Gang Wen on that list. Lise Meitner deserves mention as well. There are quite a number of people who have made gigantic contributions to physics over the last century. While Einstein is idolized in popular culture - and certain circles of physics - there are other giants just as big. Trust me. Einstein was quite often perceived as anything but practical. The true postulate of special relativity - that in order for Maxwell's theory to transform correctly between reference frames the invariant velocity must be finite - was quite controversial. It has since become practical, but that's only because it was useful for things. This same thing applies to the theory behind lasers.
One thing that most if not all of these people shared was a willingness to admit ignorance. I can tell you anecdotally that the more time you spend and deeper you dig into these subjects, the more you find out that you have no idea about. There is quite a lot that is not known. There is quite a lot that is known, but not well understood (if at all). We know and understand quite a lot actually, but this usually leads to larger piles of things we don't know. My experience has been that there are two basic ways to deal with it aside from apathy. The first is to accept your ignorance, move on, and use it as guide for further understanding the world. The second is to be incapable of releasing the notion that there could be so much out there it is beyond one's personal understanding at the time and thus that paths which lead to such things must be wrong - to adhere to a flawed world view and assume that the things one does not grasp are merely fictions.
Which brings us to the thing that makes this sad. I'm glad that you like Tesla. He did many cool things. However, you could not have shown Tesla the paper predicting the Higgs boson, Majorana's paper predicting the existence of self-dual fermions, or even Dirac's work predicting the existence of the positron. He would not have the background necessary to read these things, and this is where the science is. Likewise, I would bet good money that you lack the necessary background to be able to judge the merits of these papers either. and these are all things which have been born out by experiments but were first predicted as mere fictions of theory. I can't say whether or not this is because of any particular cognitive ability (or lack there of), but I would imagine that you lack the necessary knowledge to have a truly meaningful conversation about them at the necessary technical level. Tesla seemed like the kind of guy who would realize this, and deal with it in the first way. You however, seem to be doing the second.
so far, i have been watching this guy's lectures, after watching the documentary's on this topic by brian greene and michio kaku. started as some boring stuff to sleep to, then it got me thinking....
That guy is Leonard Susskind. He's one of the people who invented string theory.
Originally Posted by HRoi
I think you clowns should spend less time talking about which physics is better and more time figuring out how to teleport me places
They're working on it.
Originally Posted by LawrenceMD
didn't a lot of those guys go into the stock market in the last 20 years, applied their craft to make a killing
I remember watching a poker special, i think it may have been Poker after dark, a couple years back and there was this famous Physics guy from Brown who ended up looking kind of sad because he admitted he wished he went into hedge funds like his colleges did to make tons of money.
There has been an exodus of theorists from the academy into finance, and it does have a lot to do with the fact that research is not competitive as an economic pursuit.
I'm done with this topic now, except to say that quantum teleportation experiments involve the transfer of information. I know of nothing in which physical matter has been transported. I suspect that it will be a very long time before this happens because the energy required for what most people think of with this is mind bogglingly large.