Category Archives: Physics

Arago finds new physics with a compass (1824)

One of the challenges of doing physics outreach is that there are so many cool phenomena which simply can’t be demonstrated in an eye-catching way, because they are too small, too subtle, or too complicated.  So whenever I find a … Continue reading

Posted in History of science, Physics | 1 Comment

Chladni patterns, now in color!

One of my favorite physics demonstrations to perform at local schools, conventions, and expos is the production of Chladni patterns, such as the one shown below. I’ve blogged about these patterns before. They are formed by vibrating a metal plate … Continue reading

Posted in Physics, Physics demos | 2 Comments

Somnium, by Johannes Kepler

I’ve had an interest for a while in ridiculously old science fiction, such as Margaret Cavendish’s 1666 novel The Blazing World, as well as science fiction written by prominent scientists, such as Simon Newcomb’s His Wisdom the Defender (1900), Robert … Continue reading

Posted in Physics, Science fiction | 2 Comments

1965: Rabbits versus relativity

One of a number of posts that I’ll be sharing based on things discovered during research into my book on cat physics, coming next year!  The previous post on the Chandler wobble is another post in this series. The ability … Continue reading

Posted in ... the Hell?, Animals, History of science, Physics | 5 Comments

1891: Chandler finds a wobble

Sometimes, in science, it turns out that the best way to find something is to not be looking for it at all. This is more or less what happened in 1891, when an amateur astronomer and full-time insurance actuary observed … Continue reading

Posted in History of science, Physics | 3 Comments

What is quantum entanglement? Part 6: Locality, reality, and John Bell

This is part 6 in a lengthy series of posts attempting to explain the idea of quantum entanglement to a non-physics audience.  Part 1 can be read here,  Part 2 can be read here, Part 3 here,  Part 4 here, and Part 5 here. … Continue reading

Posted in History of science, Physics | 3 Comments

Optics in the solar eclipse!

Just a very short note: I’m on the road, aiming to be in the path of totality of the solar eclipse hitting tomorrow.  One of the things I’m going to be looking at, in addition to the ghostly hidden sun, … Continue reading

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