Wednesday, November 21, 2012

          Continued from yesterday's post.....

          Let's think about the Inverse Square Law. It's pretty simple. It states that the gravitational force between two objects is proportional to the masses of the two objects, and inversely proportional to the distance between the two objects. The range of the force of gravity is also infinite, which is pretty strange if you think about it. If that is true, literally everything in the entire universe is pulling against everything else! The trick to the Inverse Square Law is the strength of the force dissipates pretty quickly, the further objects move away from each other. But, it never reaches ZERO(as far as I know). The range of the Electric/Magnetic force is also infinite, but follows an Inverse Square Law of its own. More on that later.  Issac Newton figured this out, but was wrong about the force of gravity in one way. He thought the force acted instantaneously between two bodies now, thanks to General Relativity, that the force of gravity (or its messenger particle, the yet-to-be-discovered graviton) travels at the speed of light, just like the Electric/Magnetic force, also due to its messenger particle, the photon. But if we travel back in time to one minute after the Big Bang again, we see that even though the Inverse Square Law exists, its not made manifest yet! Let's think of another law. Kepler's first law of planetary motion is a good one. It states that "The path of the planets about the sun is elliptical in shape, with the center of the sun being located at one focus. (The Law of Ellipses) - The Physics Classroom website. 
                     Sorry my font changed on that line and I can't change it back. Now this law existed for a long time before it was made manifest. I think in the neighborhood of 500,000 years, before matter condenced enough from gravity for objects to begin orbiting each other. Now, people will say "We call it a law because we figured it out, it doesn't mean the "law" existed!" But they are wrong, because it is expressable through mathematics, and demonstrates how our universe behaves. If the forces at play were any different, even a little, nothing would work. If gravity were stronger, planets wouldnt orbit stars, life would never emerge. It would just be a never ending succession of Big Bangs and Big Crunchs! This idea is called the Anthropic principle. I don't feel like explaining so here's the wiki page:            
    I just read a crappy book recently that was based on a facinating question: Was mathematics created by man, or discovered. The title is Is God A Mathematician?. The book isin't that bad, its just that the dude is a physicist and often times those guys are very afraid to go out on a limb or proclaim anything that cant be proven via the scientific method. His other book I read, The Golden Ratio, suffers from the dryness problem, but is still worth reading. Anyway, I believe mathematics was discovered. Im not going to get deep into this subject, but consider this: Mathematics predicts the behavior of our reality almost perfectly. That is irrefutable. That is what the greeks figured out with Euclidean geometry. Many mathematical theroies come from games mathematicians just came up with to pass time. Google Knot Theroy or Roger Penrose tilings and you'll see. OK Im done rambling for now. I'm going to be contributing a weekly colomn to starting in a couple of weeks. I hope the dozen or so people that read this check it out. The grammar, punctuation and all that will be correct, unlike this stuff. Peace and chicken grease.

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