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Thread: Learning Physics

  1. #1 Learning Physics 
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    I love physics as well as mathematics and science in general. As a result, I've decided to learn what I can about physics, and I'm hoping to not only learn but to make a contribution to this discipline.

    I think it's fair to say that almost all of the top physicists have gotten where they have by getting a formal education and earning doctorates and other advanced degrees.

    My question, then, is what can I expect to do through self-study? Acquiring books on physics and math, and buying software is not a major problem for me. I also have a lot of time to devote to study because I'm retired. Can I become a physicist this way?

    Thanks!

    Jagella


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  3. #2  
    Forum Ph.D. william's Avatar
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    To be honest, my first thought upon reading your post was that you'd probably end up a crackpot. Don't take that personal - I'd probably end up one too. The reason I think this is because it's too damn easy to not understand some particular physical concept and to jump to the conclusion that it's wrong and you're going to turn physics on its head. I recall several people in this forum that were like that.

    This is not to say that you're cursed to becoming a crackpot. But you'll have to resist the urge to think that you've understood something better than all the physicists past and present.

    I would strongly urge you to take some physics classes at your local college and maybe see if you can help some of the professors with their research.


    I hope I didn't poo-poo your idea. But please resist the urge to think you've understood something better that everyone else - which is usually where this type of self-study leads to.

    Best wishes.


    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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  4. #3  
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    Quote Originally Posted by william
    To be honest, my first thought upon reading your post was that you'd probably end up a crackpot. Don't take that personal - I'd probably end up one too. The reason I think this is because it's too damn easy to not understand some particular physical concept and to jump to the conclusion that it's wrong and you're going to turn physics on its head. I recall several people in this forum that were like that.
    Crackpots in an online forum? Believe me, Bill, I've met so many of them that I think they are the majority. I've heard everything from "Christianity started modern science" to "dinosaurs went extinct in the Noachian flood." I suppose a lot of people have inferiority complexes and wish to elevate themselves through online braggadocio.

    Quote Originally Posted by william
    This is not to say that you're cursed to becoming a crackpot. But you'll have to resist the urge to think that you've understood something better than all the physicists past and present.
    I will resist that urge, but don't some people understand something better than “all the physicists past and present”? Wasn't that the case for Newton and Einstein?

    Quote Originally Posted by william
    I would strongly urge you to take some physics classes at your local college and maybe see if you can help some of the professors with their research.
    Years ago I studied some science including physics and astronomy at a local college. I did very well in all of my courses. How agreeable are professors to having a nonstudent help them with their research?

    Quote Originally Posted by william
    ...please resist the urge to think you've understood something better that everyone else - which is usually where this type of self-study leads to.
    I will try to be unusual.

    Thanks.

    Jagella
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  5. #4  
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    Hello, I am one of the self learners too. I would say be careful about sources of information, bad data can lead to "crackpottery" even in a good processor.
    I have found it easier to learn the conceptual aspect's of science more readily than I've been able to learn the rigorous application of mathematics. In that area I would prefer to have access to some formal education.
    There are some bonofide pro's posting around here, ask good questions and they will help you out.
    Four post's in a row with the first person capitalized, that may be a record for this forum. 8)
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    Quote Originally Posted by william
    To be honest, my first thought upon reading your post was that you'd probably end up a crackpot. Don't take that personal - I'd probably end up one too. The reason I think this is because it's too damn easy to not understand some particular physical concept and to jump to the conclusion that it's wrong and you're going to turn physics on its head. I recall several people in this forum that were like that.

    This is not to say that you're cursed to becoming a crackpot. But you'll have to resist the urge to think that you've understood something better than all the physicists past and present.


    Best wishes.
    Seven years ago, I accidentally came upon the means by which atmospheric lightning is produced. I was not trying to be better than anybody else or to outclass the experts. At that time, I had yet to learn how angry well-trained scientists can become when they discover some fool that thinks he knows any little thing that they don't. You would think that an ignoramus would be brought up with enough humility to leave thinking to the proper people. Nevertheless, I first shared my information with my family and then felt some unforgivable desire to share it further. Of course, right or wrong, I had nevertheless thus become a crackpot so ready to disrespect all of my betters by volunteering information. Intuitive reasoning enabled by fifty three years in electronics does not trump certificates and diplomas from accredited institutions of learning. But the curse was upon me and I continued to be tormented with mind experiments which, just the other day, brought me to, I am so sure, the actual cause of sun spots (in the sky, not on the face). Another secret to take with me when I go. "I was just trying to help." Bet that is what they all say.

    Your sage council is just what we need on a forum, advice on prevention of the foolishness of unauthorized cerebration.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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  7. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil
    Hello, I am one of the self learners too.
    It's nice to “meet” you.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil
    I would say be careful about sources of information, bad data can lead to "crackpottery" even in a good processor.
    I'm actually very conservative when studying science. I'm not out to discover Bigfoot or ETs. I know pseudoscience when I see it. I just want to learn what scientists are discovering. Would I be less of a “crackpot” if I chose to remain ignorant of the basic principles of mechanics and quantum theory?

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil
    I have found it easier to learn the conceptual aspect's of science more readily than I've been able to learn the rigorous application of mathematics. In that area I would prefer to have access to some formal education.
    The mathematics involved in physics are the easy part, as far as I'm concerned. I'd recommend that you check online book websites like Amazon.com to search for good math books. You can often read reviews and descriptions of those books and even read parts of them before you buy.

    Another good way to approach mathematics is to use software. Computers are very helpful in the study of mathematics and make learning much easier and fun. Even spreadsheets, some of which can be downloaded for free, can be very useful when learning mathematics.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiantEvil
    There are some bonofide pro's posting around here, ask good questions and they will help you out.
    Four post's in a row with the first person capitalized, that may be a record for this forum. 8)
    Well, I will look for that help.

    Jagella
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  8. #7  
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalemiller
    Quote Originally Posted by william
    To be honest, my first thought upon reading your post was that you'd probably end up a crackpot. Don't take that personal - I'd probably end up one too. The reason I think this is because it's too damn easy to not understand some particular physical concept and to jump to the conclusion that it's wrong and you're going to turn physics on its head. I recall several people in this forum that were like that.

    This is not to say that you're cursed to becoming a crackpot. But you'll have to resist the urge to think that you've understood something better than all the physicists past and present.


    Best wishes.
    Seven years ago, I accidentally came upon the means by which atmospheric lightning is produced. I was not trying to be better than anybody else or to outclass the experts. At that time, I had yet to learn how angry well-trained scientists can become when they discover some fool that thinks he knows any little thing that they don't. You would think that an ignoramus would be brought up with enough humility to leave thinking to the proper people. Nevertheless, I first shared my information with my family and then felt some unforgivable desire to share it further. Of course, right or wrong, I had nevertheless thus become a crackpot so ready to disrespect all of my betters by volunteering information. Intuitive reasoning enabled by fifty three years in electronics does not trump certificates and diplomas from accredited institutions of learning. But the curse was upon me and I continued to be tormented with mind experiments which, just the other day, brought me to, I am so sure, the actual cause of sun spots (in the sky, not on the face). Another secret to take with me when I go. "I was just trying to help." Bet that is what they all say.

    Your sage council is just what we need on a forum, advice on prevention of the foolishness of unauthorized cerebration.

    I'm just playing the odds is all.

    To be clear, self study is great. But too many people can't control their egos.

    My "sage council" is only to not jump to conclusions - especially if your conclusion tells you that all of physics is wrong. And this advice applies to the "experts" as well.

    Your summary of my "council" ("advice on prevention of the foolishness of unauthorized cerebration.") is completely wrong. That is not what I said at all.


    By the way, it would be interesting if you were to post your hypotheses here for all to scrutinize (or perhaps you already have - I don't know; I haven't been here in a long time...); it might incite a nice discussion. I'm curious... what were the reasons given to you as to why your hypothesis on lightning was rejected - were they scientific arguments as to why it was incorrect, or was the reason simply that you were somehow 'not qualified'?
    "... the polhode rolls without slipping on the herpolhode lying in the invariable plane."
    ~Footnote in Goldstein's Mechanics, 3rd ed. p. 202
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  9. #8  
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    My advice would be ask for help, listen to the answers and follow the scientific method, which means, among other things, that if you have an idea, you should be the first, second and last person to try and poke holes in it.
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  10. #9  
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    If you are in the UK (or certain other countries) you should consider courses at the Open University.
    http://www3.open.ac.uk/study/undergr...ence/index.htm
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  11. #10 Re: Learning Physics 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jagella
    I love physics as well as mathematics and science in general. As a result, I've decided to learn what I can about physics, and I'm hoping to not only learn but to make a contribution to this discipline.

    I think it's fair to say that almost all of the top physicists have gotten where they have by getting a formal education and earning doctorates and other advanced degrees.

    My question, then, is what can I expect to do through self-study? Acquiring books on physics and math, and buying software is not a major problem for me. I also have a lot of time to devote to study because I'm retired. Can I become a physicist this way?

    Thanks!

    Jagella
    Not unless you are exceptional and already have extensive background. If you were that exceptional you would have made a major contribution before you were 20.
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  12. #11 Re: Learning Physics 
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrRocket
    Not unless you are exceptional and already have extensive background. If you were that exceptional you would have made a major contribution before you were 20.
    I don't know how "exceptional" I may be, but I don't have an "extensive background." In addition, at age 48, I'm well past 20. If it's OK with you, though, Doc, I think I will give it a try anyway. There are worse things I might be trying, no?

    Jagella
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  13. #12 Re: Learning Physics 
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrRocket
    Quote Originally Posted by Jagella
    I love physics as well as mathematics and science in general. As a result, I've decided to learn what I can about physics, and I'm hoping to not only learn but to make a contribution to this discipline.

    I think it's fair to say that almost all of the top physicists have gotten where they have by getting a formal education and earning doctorates and other advanced degrees.

    My question, then, is what can I expect to do through self-study? Acquiring books on physics and math, and buying software is not a major problem for me. I also have a lot of time to devote to study because I'm retired. Can I become a physicist this way?

    Thanks!

    Jagella
    Not unless you are exceptional and already have extensive background. If you were that exceptional you would have made a major contribution before you were 20.
    Albert Einstein (pronounced /ˈælbərt ˈaɪnstaɪn/; German: [ˈalbɐt ˈaɪnʃtaɪn] ( listen); 14 March 1879 – 18 April 1955)
    It would appear that Mr. Einstein was over twenty years of age during 1905, his "miracle year".
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  14. #13  
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    [quote="william"][quote="dalemiller"]
    Quote Originally Posted by william

    I'm just playing the odds is all.

    To be clear, self study is great. But too many people can't control their egos.

    My "sage council" is only to not jump to conclusions - especially if your conclusion tells you that all of physics is wrong. And this advice applies to the "experts" as well.

    Your summary of my "council" ("advice on prevention of the foolishness of unauthorized cerebration.") is completely wrong. That is not what I said at all.

    By the way, it would be interesting if you were to post your hypotheses here for all to scrutinize (or perhaps you already have - I don't know; I haven't been here in a long time...); it might incite a nice discussion. I'm curious... what were the reasons given to you as to why your hypothesis on lightning was rejected - were they scientific arguments as to why it was incorrect, or was the reason simply that you were somehow 'not qualified'?

    It was simply ignored. A call to NSF put me in touch with their expert on “charge seperation”. He said, “I don’t think so” and would write me to say why but never did. NASA wrote back that they would reply as the always do and never did. Who do you go to if you have found a goody? One of them prescribed a book for graduate study that I bought only to find it a preposterous load of dung. The et al author I reached stiffed me. My kids have almost quit coming by.

    The hypothesis stalled out until I could noodle out a logical reason for the earth to be charged negative. That had to be. Finding that foundation came later, but it slid right into place.

    Initial inspiration showed me two equal raindrops charged to 100 Volts. Then their merged result at maybe 128 Volts whatever. Bingo. Additional energy, musta come from the agravation of pushing them together. Yes. Go back to the originating water vapor: Heat from sun evaporated it. Then it mingles in an atmosphere riddled with negative ions, getting naturalized in the bargain (somewhat ionized). Comes time to make it rain, condensation delayed as water ions stay at mutual excape velocity as though of lesser gravity. Then condensation drives many ions much closer together. Much latent heat has been thereby converted to electric energy as tiny droplets form, and kinetic energy is then taxed to push them further together. Every such merger raises Voltage because all charge is confined to skin of raindrop, thus doubling every time eight equal drops combine as one for instance. Rain can fall through air down to –40 degrees as liquid due to electrostatic repulsion of molecules as it nears lightning potenials, then their skins break off with nearly all of the ions beginning a non-nuclear chain reaction.

    The case for negative atmosphere here on Earth shows up with Fair Weather Current (FWC). (The geniuses measured FWC from oceans (about as low as you can get) while most electrons await escape from surface at the highest point they can reach. But FWC representing electrons rising tells us Earth is of negative charge (more of them than experts think). They come from the sun. It repells our negative electrosphere, so we know it must have a negative charge too. Just think about it: if the sun has a negative charge, free electrons will scramble to get out and wind up on top if they cannot get away. If electrons go upward, then positive charges will migrate or propagate downward. Interruptions do not matter. Eventually, electons from plasma step upwards and positive charges hog the middle. This presents a true but counterintuitive propasition: An electron shell holds the positive core in place down there. Perfect setup to squeezing protons together.

    A hurdle lies in our path: Plasma fusion kills off an electron for every positron it takes away. But static fusion within a positive solar core would provide virtual generation of electrons. The evidence suggests that this has to be true. That’s a no brainer if you understand electricity, but show me a physicist who will step forward to vouch for the phenomena that brings this on. (There is an agenda out there somewhere.)

    I read a book once and it said scientists were beginning to think Earth had a negative charge, but then cosmic rays came in vogue and they agreed to forget about it. I got all day but its time to shut up. Am not sensitive about being a crackpot: it goes with the territory.

    If your still here, why don’t I tell you another one: I don’t deal mostly with saying things are different from what scientists say, am mostly trying to fill in the pot-holes they leave open. Here is last night’s output to my blog.

    Solar heating and spotting


    Sunspot activities demonstrate a normally suppressed regenerative trait of stellar plasma fusion: Plasma fusion leads to production of heat and increased heat increases fusion. Normally, a close regulation of luminosity is provided for our sun at the depths where fusion proceeds.

    Temperature of fusing plasma becomes pegged to a single normal value for any given depth where the process occurs. The ideal gas law holds the product of pressure and volume proportional to temperature, and since solar pressure is normally fixed at any given depth, this leaves changes to the volume of fusing plasma alone to vary directly with any change of temperature. Any deviation from normal temperature adjusts the plasma’s volume in the same direction to thereby lift overbearing solar mass in response to overheating, or to permit its descent in response to cooling. Corresponding changes to rate of fusion with temperature circumvent regenerative activity by thus diverting output energy changes into the domain of potential energy instead of heat.

    An exception to the constancy of the pressure/depth relationship comes about in the rotational center of swirling masses: The pull of centrifugal force upon such a vortex would reduce solar gas pressure in an extensive column that could penetrate depths given to normal fusion, which might be much more shallow than the central solar core. In consequence, fusion would decelerate to a point of severe underproduction.

    In concert with central cooling of a vortex would be effects of a positive pressure gradient surrounding the vortex. At some radius, gas pressure would suffice for fusion that would not be enslaved to the gravitational give and take encountered in normal venues. A sheathing of plasma bearing relatively uncontained rates of fusion would expand into the collapsing center and upwards to break the surface as solar flares. Once the interior collapse subsides as vortex cooling approaches its limit, the sheathing-to-center flow of gasses becomes discontinued to afford normalization toward equilibrium.

    A simple sun spot would dimple the surface because of the downdraft and be surrounded with superheated flares that would convey a normal excess of surface electrons upwards at such rates that magnetic fields would form and vary to produce the radio interference we hear so much about.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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  15. #14  
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    I'll just point out that, as someone engaged in research (not in physics in particular), you jump at any potholes you spot in other peoples work since that's an easy start to a new paper. Therefore, there really aren't many such potholes that don't get filled very quickly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    I'll just point out that, as someone engaged in research (not in physics in particular), you jump at any potholes you spot in other peoples work since that's an easy start to a new paper. Therefore, there really aren't many such potholes that don't get filled very quickly.
    I don't know what you mean. My insight on lightning is all mine, suddenly inspired while brooming the kitchen floor, details worked out at night awaiting sleep as I labored to conceive what twist in our infrastructure supported the phenomenon. It took a few months to realize how our ionizations came about and how the truth could hide so well from us all.

    Striving for credibility, I threw in my discovery of sunspot generation as less complicated. It doesn't hinge on any reevaluation of infrastructure. It was included in hopes of reaching intelligent people who might show me where I may have gone wrong, or better yet offer support if they agree.

    The fusion of plasma never interested me as I thought it a side effect afforded by the static fusion inspired by no one else. A PhD at a venue of my recent past corrected my shortsighted complaint that plasma fusion alone would be unstable. He replied that when you heat plasma it gets cooler. In rewording of that little clue (he had to think he was saying something) I worked out an explanation for the control of plasma fusion and realizing that the gravitational give-and-take involved would not get in the way of adjacent temperature deviations of opposite polarity, I found myself at the root of sun spot activity. The exception inherent to a vortex was all mine and a subsequent Google search vexed me to see cause and effect so turned around again. If they don't know they call it magnetism.

    I am not a researcher. I just love what physics I can understand. Now have 60 years' experience in electronics, work alone, took 3 months' spare time to send one paper to nature with full explanation for polar jets (Too bad, they had a dog in the race having just put out a paper claiming it was magnetic curlytails). I am a nearly shut-in caregiver to my lovely wife of 80 years' vintage, scullion, launderer, fetch and carry fool. Am relatively ignorant but have knowledge of cosmic structure that is all mine and all is due to insight on what happens within a Faraday cage. As a casual participant in science, I do indeed have the gall to fancy giving physicists a more complete deck to play with.

    Williams' post was heart warming, but so close to home for me. I respect what advice he gave but hoped that stigmatization of crackpots could be back-peddled.

    I know that my eight years as a crackpot could serve legitimate scientists if they would heed. They won't and I will take these accomplishments to my grave soon enough, thanks to the abundance of gentlemen like MagiMaster.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalemiller
    [I know that my eight years as a crackpot could serve legitimate scientists if they would heed. They won't and I will take these accomplishments to my grave soon enough, thanks to the abundance of gentlemen like MagiMaster. Guys like you are two for a nickel, three for a dime.
    At least they have some value and make a contribution to society from there work in the field.

    I'm far too stupid to know whether what you are proposing has merit or not, but I do value my understanding of people. My experience suggests, based on the way you present yourself, that you are sincere, but misguided. I have no doubt you will reject that analysis. I regret that as much as you regret the obstinacy of others to understand the value of what you are offering.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    I have no doubt you will reject that analysis. I regret that as much as you regret the obstinacy of others to understand the value of what you are offering.
    I am regrettably obstinate that you should indeed doubt that I will reject that analysis.
    Here is thanking you for your earnest opinion, and you with almost everybody else for not coming out to poke me with a stick.

    It would be crazy to publish a book: who would buy it? Any valid notion brought to the forum has some chance, even if a small one, that it will be picked up and put to use. What else can I do but try? A hundred people can just dodge the crackpot without doing any harm. One thinking person can still rescue an orphaned breakthrough. It would be nice to see that day.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalemiller
    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    I have no doubt you will reject that analysis. I regret that as much as you regret the obstinacy of others to understand the value of what you are offering.
    I am regrettably obstinate that you should indeed doubt that I will reject that analysis.
    Here is thanking you for your earnest opinion, and you with almost everybody else for not coming out to poke me with a stick.

    It would be crazy to publish a book: who would buy it? Any valid notion brought to the forum has some chance, even if a small one, that it will be picked up and put to use. What else can I do but try? A hundred people can just dodge the crackpot without doing any harm. One thinking person can still rescue an orphaned breakthrough. It would be nice to see that day.
    You are good dalemiller, keep it coming.
    .
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  20. #19  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Wilson
    You are good dalemiller, keep it coming.
    If you are serious about learnibg physics you will need a more accurate source than dalemiller -- a MUCH more informed and accurate source. One of the best at an introductory level is the book The Feynman Lectures on Physics.

    But there are lots of better sources than dalemiller.
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    Dr Rocket,
    I do see your point and I am serious about learning physics. Most of the time I read and keep my mouth shut. The stuff that dalemiller produces is very interesting, he has sixty years of experience in electronics, that must count for something. I suppose we could all post stuff straight from a physics text book, but in my opinion that would make the forum rather bland. The forum can only benefit from hearing new and interesting hypothesis.
    .
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  22. #21  
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    This subsection isn't for new hypothesis. There's a separate section just for that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    This subsection isn't for new hypothesis. There's a separate section just for that.
    That is true, but we do have moderators to send threads to "down there".
    I went and looked quickly "down there", and it seemed to me that the common posters "up here" don't go "down there" much. It's nice to have ideas reviewed by people with some credibility.
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  24. #23  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Wilson
    Dr Rocket,
    I do see your point and I am serious about learning physics. Most of the time I read and keep my mouth shut. The stuff that dalemiller produces is very interesting, he has sixty years of experience in electronics, that must count for something. I suppose we could all post stuff straight from a physics text book, but in my opinion that would make the forum rather bland. The forum can only benefit from hearing new and interesting hypothesis.
    There is a difference between sixty years of experience and one year of experience sixty times. What dalemiller has produced thus far is indeed interesting. Unfortunatrly is not right and is misleading.
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  25. #24  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Wilson
    Dr Rocket,
    I do see your point and I am serious about learning physics. Most of the time I read and keep my mouth shut.
    I'm curious... why do you keep your mouth shut? If you'd rather not say why in public, feel free to PM me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrRocket
    There is a difference between sixty years of experience and one year of experience sixty times. What dalemiller has produced thus far is indeed interesting. Unfortunatrly is not right and is misleading.
    Dr. Rocket: Take a look at what you are doing. All you can do is to express generalities to denigrate my posting, not for anything you can point to, but simply because it is mine. I pushed the state of the art by accident for cats' sake and you find it "not right and misleading". My explanation can hardly be even termed as speculation: it deals within the realm of established principles and conflicts with nothing but speculative conjectures commonly afforded to anointed scientists as their due until something better comes along. Well here it is in this thread: it is something better, and it doesn't have to understandable to the likes of you.

    Tear it apart if you can but stick to the truth. You publicly disgrace yourself throwing out libelous generalities. It is never too late to start building up your character.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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  27. #26  
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    Without having fully read your description of your ideas, I will warn you that you're hitting a lot of the points that mark crackpots. I'm not saying you are one, but if you want to be taken seriously, there are better ways to go about it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    Without having fully read your description of your ideas, I will warn you that you're hitting a lot of the points that mark crackpots. I'm not saying you are one, but if you want to be taken seriously, there are better ways to go about it.
    Only the section under Solar heating and spotting would be self explanatory. If you find that acceptable I am proud of you. If you do not, I am ashamed of myself.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrRocket
    There is a difference between sixty years of experience and one year of experience sixty times. What dalemiller has produced thus far is indeed interesting. Unfortunatrly is not right and is misleading.
    You give a lot of output for someone with no input.

    How can you tell if I am right or wrong? It isn't in any book as far as I know. If it were I wouldn't put it down as my own stuff. Do we just take your word for it that something unspecified is not right and is misleading? Shall I restrict my thinking to inside the box as some other snipers around here suggest? Or are you simply carrying grudges: they do make heavy burdens. I apologize for cleaning your clock a couple of times or so, but I was specific and cannot stand BS (bum scoop).
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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  30. #29  
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    Dave, it seems as if you didn't understand the point of my previous comment. I'm not saying anything either for or against your theory, but your current method of advancing it is failing. Let me repeat. I'm not calling you a crackpot, but you're making yourself sound like one, and that drives a lot of people away really quickly.

    I've got two links you should read, one more serious, and one less, but both about the same thing: signs of crackpottery.

    The less serious: http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/crackpot.html
    The more serious: http://wwwcgi.rand.org/pubs/papers/2006/P2678.pdf

    Please read one (or both) and try to rethink how you're presenting yourself. If your idea is truly worthy of attention, it'll stand on its own once you get it out the door, and the best way to do that is by presenting yourself in the manner of a serious scientist and not that of a crackpot.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    Dave, it seems as if you didn't understand the point of my previous comment. I'm not saying anything either for or against your theory, but your current method of advancing it is failing. Let me repeat. I'm not calling you a crackpot, but you're making yourself sound like one, and that drives a lot of people away really quickly.

    I've got two links you should read, one more serious, and one less, but both about the same thing: signs of crackpottery.

    The less serious: http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/crackpot.html
    The more serious: http://wwwcgi.rand.org/pubs/papers/2006/P2678.pdf

    Please read one (or both) and try to rethink how you're presenting yourself. If your idea is truly worthy of attention, it'll stand on its own once you get it out the door, and the best way to do that is by presenting yourself in the manner of a serious scientist and not that of a crackpot.
    Being the only suspect around here, I think you might have meant me. Those links are great, but the lists could be longer. My kids could give you a couple dozen more warning signs. If I had ever known the horrors of being a crackpot I would never have joined them. But worrying about going nuts would drive me crazy.

    Sorry if I mistakenly took you for a sniper when you called me a researcher, but you came at me right out of the gate slinging crap.

    I didn't know I was supposed to even take myself seriously. I recently bailed out of another forum because a moderator advised me that he will not consider issues brought up by undocumented posters. Isn't a forum defined as a place where even a slob can speak out? His criteria was a lower limit for who can speak up. "A speaker must be taken seriously if he is to be heard." A forum moderator says you got to be a somebody for him to hear you out! So I skipped school to slop the hogs. Well not really, but my father was a poet; same deal. A thinking person should be able to judge a technical issue on its own merits. Lets say a crackpot tells you he thinks the fair weather current of meteorology shows that Earth is charged negative. If you savvy electricity then I think you would agree. Whatever, you could set him straight and then go walk the other side of the street. Give him a break if he recycles and pays taxes.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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  32. #31  
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalemiller
    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    Dave, it seems as if you didn't understand the point of my previous comment. I'm not saying anything either for or against your theory, but your current method of advancing it is failing. Let me repeat. I'm not calling you a crackpot, but you're making yourself sound like one, and that drives a lot of people away really quickly.

    I've got two links you should read, one more serious, and one less, but both about the same thing: signs of crackpottery.

    The less serious: http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/crackpot.html
    The more serious: http://wwwcgi.rand.org/pubs/papers/2006/P2678.pdf

    Please read one (or both) and try to rethink how you're presenting yourself. If your idea is truly worthy of attention, it'll stand on its own once you get it out the door, and the best way to do that is by presenting yourself in the manner of a serious scientist and not that of a crackpot.
    Being the only suspect around here, I think you might have meant me. Those links are great, but the lists could be longer. My kids could give you a couple dozen more warning signs. If I had ever known the horrors of being a crackpot I would never have joined them. But worrying about going nuts would drive me crazy.

    Sorry if I mistakenly took you for a sniper when you called me a researcher, but you came at me right out of the gate slinging crap.

    I didn't know I was supposed to even take myself seriously. I recently bailed out of another forum because a moderator advised me that he will not consider issues brought up by undocumented posters. Isn't a forum defined as a place where even a slob can speak out? His criteria was a lower limit for who can speak up. "A speaker must be taken seriously if he is to be heard." A forum moderator says you got to be a somebody for him to hear you out! So I skipped school to slop the hogs. Well not really, but my father was a poet; same deal. A thinking person should be able to judge a technical issue on its own merits. Lets say a crackpot tells you he thinks the fair weather current of meteorology shows that Earth is charged negative. If you savvy electricity then I think you would agree. Whatever, you could set him straight and then go walk the other side of the street. Give him a break if he recycles and pays taxes.
    Sorry, the name was a typo.

    Anyway, I have no idea what you're talking about when you say I called you a researcher (as if that's a bad thing). I called myself a researcher since I'm currently conducting research in computer science (in a university setting and everything). Or what you mean by slinging crap. All I said was that researchers jump on any holes they find in other's research since that's an easy paper, and papers are what you're trying to produce as a researcher.

    Also, no one said researchers have to take themselves seriously. Have you ever heard of the hairy ball theorem? It's a valid mathematical theorem with a completely ridiculous name.

    All I'm saying is that the way you've presented yourself so far has made you look like a crackpot, whether you are one or not.
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    MagiMaster, my whole point on crackpots is who cares? It goes with the territory. Maybe crackpots have to organize to get any respect. They are people too. Or you might have me say it as "We are people too." My real point is that if anyone expresses him- or her-self on a forum so that one can tell what is being said, it seems as though the issue carried forward would be the primary topic rather than any concern about what affliction possesses the communicator. Why prejudice the communication?

    When you say "you" you must mean "one" or "someone". When I hear "you" with only two people in the room, I think "me" or "I". Next time me will know better. Sorry about my unfortunate response while thrown by the ambiguity.
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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  34. #33  
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    It's a discussion forum. There are more than two people in the room. And my point on crackpots is that people here do care. You're point isn't going to make it far enough to stand on its own if everyone dismisses you immediately.
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  35. #34  
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalemiller
    MagiMaster, my whole point on crackpots is who cares? It goes with the territory. Maybe crackpots have to organize to get any respect. They are people too. Or you might have me say it as "We are people too." My real point is that if anyone expresses him- or her-self on a forum so that one can tell what is being said, it seems as though the issue carried forward would be the primary topic rather than any concern about what affliction possesses the communicator. Why prejudice the communication?

    When you say "you" you must mean "one" or "someone". When I hear "you" with only two people in the room, I think "me" or "I". Next time me will know better. Sorry about my unfortunate response while thrown by the ambiguity.
    crackpots deserve to be ignored.

    If you want to organize and champion the cause for crackpots then you may do so. You seem to be suited for the job. But the Physics forum is not the apprpriate place.
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  36. #35  
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    I'll just point out that, as someone engaged in research (not in physics in particular), you jump at any potholes you spot in other peoples work since that's an easy start to a new paper. Therefore, there really aren't many such potholes that don't get filled very quickly.
    MagiMaster, why do you leave that posting in place? If you want to be understood you should write more clearly. In a subsequent posting responding to my reaction to being called a person engaged in research, you declared that your use of the word "you" meant that you were addressing yourself. Who would ever have known that?

    Since then you have engaged yourself as my analyst without my request or permission. If I wanted one of those I would determine that I was dealing with a properly licensed professional, and ordinarily, any such sessions would be behind closed doors.

    You have determined the status of my mentality for the general public's scrutiny. Then you have privately contacted me with advice on how I might attempt to live down the consequential sanction you have directed upon me. Wouldn't it have been better for both of us if you had never dipped your oar into my pond? If you really wanted to help me make my point, wouldn't you have just left me alone?
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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  37. #36  
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    Now you're really misunderstanding what I've been saying.

    First, yes, that post you quoted might be confusing. I'm not the best writer you'll find.

    Second, I've repeatedly said that I'm not calling you a crackpot. I'm just trying to say that your presentation of your ideas is getting in the way of the ideas themselves, and I've tried to help you get around that.

    Third, you PMed me. I replied. I'll post it here in public if you want, but don't take any special meaning from my words just because they appeared in a PM.

    Edit: Actually, skip asking you for anything. For the benefit of everyone else, here's dale's post:
    Quote Originally Posted by dalemiller
    Thanks. You have convinced me of my folly. I failed again in communication about "two people", meaning only that your use of "you" suggested a dialog off in a corner. I cannot expect such heavy hitters to afford to yield the patience I presumed to demand. I am ashamed to have led to distraction from the intent of the string and realize that the earnest contributions I hoped to accomplish are tarnished now perhaps beyond hope of any delivery.
    And my reply:
    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    It wasn't really off in a corner, it was just my way of speaking.

    And you're aren't beyond anything yet. If you back up, present your idea in a readable way, in the manner of a scientist, you'll get a lot more constructive criticism, which is what you should want.

    Go to scholar.google.com and type in a few keywords that interest you and read a few papers. Look at how they structure things.

    Also, when presenting your ideas about physics, you need to present experiments that would distinguish your idea from others. Whether or not you could perform those yourself, the chance of failure is very important to science, in general.

    Since this is a discussion forum, you probably won't get people to read a full paper, unless you put it elsewhere and specifically ask for reviewers. Instead, you should take a similar structure and break it up into smaller pieces.

    For example, you could ask a question, hear what the current answer is, point out a possible flaw, see if people agree that it's a flaw, then point out a possible solution.

    Anyway, just be careful of doing things like asserting your correctness, comparing anything to Einstein, Newton, Gallileo or their work, saying things abut the scientific establishment, etc. (Just some common examples.) People hear those things and immediately label you a crackpot and your idea never gets read in the first place.
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  38. #37  
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrRocket
    crackpots deserve to be ignored.

    If you want to organize and champion the cause for crackpots then you may do so. You seem to be suited for the job. But the Physics forum is not the apprpriate place.
    In the direction I am going, you are too far behind me to even comprehend. You can be the smartest person in the room if you would just lock yourself in a broom closet and swallow the key. Try it. They say if you haven't tried it don't knock it.

    You are hounding me with such eloquent generalities that I can see you fear disgracing yourself with specifics that would prove your ignorance. Who but a jackass would heed your slurs?
    "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." --Buddha (563BC-483BC)
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  39. #38  
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    and papers are what you're trying to produce as a researcher.
    There are certainly places where tat is true, but they are not good research institutions.

    The objective of a good reearcher is to produce good research. That entails discoveries of depth. Quality is more important by far than quantity. Good researchers typically discover far more than they publish. Not-so-good ones are often derided as "never had an unpublished thought".
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  40. #39  
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalemiller
    In the direction I am going, you are too far behind me to even comprehend.
    You are delusional.

    Augering into the ground is not a direction.
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  41. #40  
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrRocket
    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    and papers are what you're trying to produce as a researcher.
    There are certainly places where tat is true, but they are not good research institutions.

    The objective of a good reearcher is to produce good research. That entails discoveries of depth. Quality is more important by far than quantity. Good researchers typically discover far more than they publish. Not-so-good ones are often derided as "never had an unpublished thought".
    Yeah, quantity vs quality is certainly something that varies from place to place, but by papers I meant peer-reviewed research in general.
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  42. #41  
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagiMaster
    Yeah, quantity vs quality is certainly something that varies from place to place, but by papers I meant peer-reviewed research in general.
    Not all peer-reviewed research is created equal. I have seen peer-reviewed junk (not as often as non-peer-reviewed junk and not so blatant).

    Langlands was famous for not worrying about publishing. The word is that other folks wrote things up for him. Feynman was also known for having excellent unpublished stuff in his desk drawer. Kakutani only published things that he thought were very important and kept other stuff out of publication--not always good for young collaborators..
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