Thursday, September 28, 2006

Hilarity in Physics

I find Stephen Colbert pretty funny. I've watched his show from the beginning without much enthusiasm, afterall, who wants to see someone emulate Bill O'Reilly, even if completely in mockery. But it's been hilarious. The Daily Show, though an excellent show, tends to bring me can so many people allow the world to get like this and not punish those in power responsible for bringing it upon us? But not so with the Colbert Report.

So the show's success got me thinking that maybe the greater physics community would benefit from similar mockery...someone along the lines of an O'Reilly in physics. That person would have to act a bully, take extreme positions and act like dissent only comes from traitors and idiots. Someone capable of shoving some theory down other physicists throats as dogma all the while keeping a straight face as he (or she) castigates us as not knowing what real science is.

But of course, there's someone in the blogosphere very much like this, and who is, in his own way, pretty entertaining. And of course his recent post speaking for the entire Harvard Faculty is hilarious:

As a typical average member of Harvard faculty, I want to say that we admire Bill O'Reilly tremendously. We are proud about him and consider him to be one of the shining examples for all of us and for the students who will make it into the top ten list sometime in the future. ;-)

He just needs to be a little careful. You can't break character even with just a little emoticon at the end!

As a postscript, let me also say that there was no humor in his tasteless comments about Sean and I'm glad that Lubos has pulled them. I'm not sticking up for Sean, he's a big boy and can withstand such matters, but I would hate to see any other bloggers out there getting silenced out of intimidation.

1 comment:

Uncle al said...

"Hilarity in Physics" Let's overturn general relativity, string theory, and quantum field theory. They demand isotropic space (Noether's theorems and angular momentum conservation). Kill the founding postulate by reproducible empirical counterdemonstration.
Earth's spin and the moon's orbit exchange angular momentum. Earth's day lengthens 0.023 msec/year and the moon's orbit expands 3.84 cm/year (lunar laser ranging). Mean moon orbital radius is 3.844x10^10 cm.
General relativity's mathematical symmetry does not allow spin-orbit coupling. Einstein-Cartan theory lifts the offensive symmetry but also introduces a chiral pseudoscalar vacuum background.

[(3.84 cm/yr)(yr/365.242 days)]/(3.844x10^10 cm) = 0.27 parts-per-trillion/day parity violation
Metaphoric left and right shoes fit non-identically into left-footed space. They pursue non-identical minimum action vacuum free fall trajectories and uncouple the ratio between gravitational and inertial mass,

Expensive falsification is a 90-day parity Eotvos experiment contrasting solid single crystal spheres of opposite parity atomic mass distribution cultured quartz, crystallographic space groups P3(1)21 and P3(2)21 (opposite shoes gravitationally accelerating around the sun as they inertially accelerate with Earth's spin).

Cheap falsification is the differential enthalpy of fusion of space groups P3(1)21 and P3(2)21 benzil single crystals (opposite shoes) into identical achiral melts (socks), (3-D stereogram, like Magic Eye)
Two days, two calorimeters, eight paired determinations, $100 in consummables, intrinsic internal controls via signal amplitude and phasing. A non-zero net signal contradicts no prior prediction or observation. All of physics is nevertheless demonstrated to be wrong as written, overthrown by a footnote.

Are we laughing yet? Somebody should look at the punchline.