Yoichiro Nambu is no more, and with him is gone an era in physics. His door was always open. Every Monday, for a full hour, I'd meet with Nambu to show him my meager calculations, and he'd try to explain where he saw the project going. I'd take notes, understanding little of what he said but invariably departing all fired up, so infectious was his sheer delight in physics.
Science tells us what the world is, not what it means. As expert as they are at collecting and analyzing data, most modern scientists tend to shy away from the question, "What does it all mean?" To them, the question seems so vague as to be, well, meaningless.
Life and death often compel us to ask the most poignant of questions. With life, we wonder what it is all about. With death, we wonder what happens to us after. Perhaps we should consider these mysteries with more intent during times of normalcy, but often we ponder them after tragic events.
Killing people in cold blood in a sacred space, trespassing on holy ground, I don't fully understand it, nor do I fully understand the faith of those still standing at Mother Emanuel's, after the horrors they've faced there.
I've known Taylor Wilson from a distance for several years, from a time many lifetimes ago when I was working as a journalist covering the nuclear power industry. He's not a kid anymore, but when he was 14 years old Wilson decided to build a nuclear reactor in his parents' home.
For all his contributions to science, controversial and otherwise, in modern context Sir Isaac Newton is most indelibly associated with one rather suc...
You can argue. Discoveries in science, not business, made by people who are long dead. What could we possibly learn here? Plenty, in fact.
You might have heard that the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is back online. In the past few weeks, it started circulating beams and then they were able to ramp up the energy per beam to 6.5 trillion electron volts which is a new record, up from the previous 4 trillion electron volts.
Anyone who has studied physics and marketing can observe some very interesting similarities between the concepts of these two seemingly different disciplines. Unlike physics, however, marketing is not often taught according to scientific principles.
By now you've probably seen the viral video below of a concrete block smashing Physics demo gone wrong. I am assuming that you are about to walk down to my office, email me, or draft a law telling me that I can never perform such a dangerous demonstration in my classroom ever again. Please don't. You shouldn't. Here's why.
The speech 'Our revels now are ended' is famous as Shakespeare's farewell address to us, his audience. It is usually delivered indirectly to the theater audience by the retiring magician Prospero near the end of The Tempest , the last play written entirely by Shakespeare and written at the end of his career.
Most people think that Star Trek-style nuclear rockets are a thing of the future, but the fact is we had them in the 1960s... and gave up on them.
I've seen this before. It is really a simple trick when you understand the problem from a structural engineering perspective. The trick consists of a moderate amount of power and speed, and a lot of careful selection of the target material and geometry.
Astronomers have known about these objects for decades, but in the depths of cosmic time, it's hard to understand how they can grow so quickly -- or maybe not!
The sun is a stormy star that, across the centuries, has gifted our Earth with some incredible moments of calamity. Telegraph and radio technologies and even satellites and human safety have been placed in the breach of near-destruction. Is there a major "superstorm" in our future?
What if Dr. Townes, instead of taking that timeout, had sent a text or played Angry Birds? Might we be in the dark about the laser? As research and Townes' example suggest, the unpredictable sparks of our own mental machinations should be something we don't want to miss any more than the majestic sight of a passing whale.