Fings wot I have wrote
by, 16-08-09 at 22:51 (156 Views)
I read that when Albert Einstein first published his paper on relativity, just about 100 years ago, the number of scientists who understood it could be counted on the fingers. But it was the building blocks of nuclear physics.
His equation was E=mc². Not much to look at but mind blowing. E is the energy equivalent of mass (m) and c is the speed of light. Light is the form of electromagnetic radiation that makes things visible to us and travels at 186,281 miles a second in tiny packets (quanta) of photons. Squared (186,281 x 186,281), the size of the figure (11 digits) takes it outside of our grasp. Mass and energy are interchangeable. This equation is the basis of all nuclear physics and has subsequently been verified experimentally. Moreover, although energy may change to another form, or to mass and vice versa, matter cannot be destroyed, only altered into another form.
The world about us changed from then on. We had been used to three dimensions, up and down, side to side and backwards and forwards. Now we had to cope with a fourth, time. It doesn’t stop there, as it turns out there may be any number of dimensions. Those not wishing to believe in what the eye cannot see should leave now.
Every now and then, usually not within a normal lifespan, an idea is formed that turns the world on its head. In more recent times, there were Newton, Darwin, then Einstein, Crick, Hoyle and Hawkins but possibly Darwin and Einstein made the most impact on our senses and beliefs. My feeling is that something more wonderful and mysterious lies ahead. The field of exploration will be quantum mechanics, the study of the infinitesimally small.