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Re: [Amps] "Conventional" current flow

Subject: Re: [Amps] "Conventional" current flow
From: Larry Dighera <>
Date: Sun, 20 Nov 2016 10:58:03 -0800
List-post: <">>
Hello Jim,

Yes; I must apologize for my error in addressing my comment to you instead of
Bill.  Me Culpa.

I find that Nova math documentary brilliant in the information it provides
about the study of physics through the ages, but then, I'm just a
dilettante....  If you haven't seen it yet, you may consider including it in
the physics 101 classes you teach.

There's another equally informative Nova documentary I feel compelled to
    PBS NOVA - Inside Einstein's Mind - New Documentary 2016
    Program Description
    Journey into the mind of a genius and visualize the thought experiments
    Albert Einstein could only imagine: mind-boggling meditations on light,
    time, and space that would forever change the way we view the universe.
    This two-hour special offers a penetrating profile of the world's most
    renowned physicist, who contributed more than any other scientist to our
    modern vision of physical reality.

While these Nova documentaries are tangential to the subject of this list, I
find the insight about the fabric of space-time they provide useful in grasping
the phenomenon of electromagnetic waves propagating through the universe....

Thank you for sharing your knowledge publicly on this list; very much

Best regards,

On Sat, 19 Nov 2016 17:49:26 -0700, MU 4CX250B <> wrote:

>Hi Larry,
>I think you may be confusing me with another member of the list. In an
>earlier time, I was a physics prof and am well aware of the importance
>of mathematics in understanding the physical world! Thanks for the tip
>on the nova program, though. I'll be sure and check it out.
>Sent from my iPhone
>> On Nov 19, 2016, at 4:38 PM, Larry Dighera <> wrote:
>> Jim,
>> With all due respect, it would appear that you may be unaware of the vital 
>> role
>> mathematics plays in discovery of our physical universe.  There is a 
>> remarkably
>> insightful explanation in the Nova episode "The Great Math Mystery" aired 
>> March
>> 30, 2016 on PBS:
>>    Is math invented by humans, or is it the language of the universe?
>>    Video:
>>    Program Description:
>>    Revisit "The Great Math Mystery," fresh from the archives and just
>>    nominated for an Emmy Award.
>>    Join NOVA on a mathematical mystery tour?a provocative exploration of
>>    math's astonishing power across the centuries. We discover math's 
>> signature
>>    in the swirl of a nautilus shell, the whirlpool of a galaxy, and the 
>> spiral
>>    in the center of a sunflower. Math was essential to everything from the
>>    first wireless radio transmissions to the prediction and discovery of the
>>    Higgs boson and the successful landing of rovers on Mars. Astrophysicist
>>    and writer Mario Livio, along with a colorful cast of mathematicians,
>>    physicists, and engineers, follow math from Pythagoras to Einstein and
>>    beyond. It all leads to the ultimate riddle: Is math a human invention or
>>    the discovery of the language of the universe?
>>    "When scientists seek to understand the patterns of our world, they often
>>    turn to a powerful tool: mathematics. They quantify their observations and
>>    use mathematical techniques to examine them, hoping to discover the
>>    underlying causes of nature's rhythms and regularities.
>>    And it's worked, revealing the secrets behind the elliptical orbits of the
>>    planets to the electromagnetic waves that connect our cell phones.
>>    Mathematics has even guided the way, leading us right down to the
>>    sub-atomic building blocks of matter, which raises the question, ?Why does
>>    it work at all? Is there an inherent mathematical nature to reality? Or is
>>    mathematics all in our heads??
>> Religious practitioners have a vested interest in protecting their dogma; 
>> take
>> the Catholic church's behavior toward mathematician Galileo's 15th century
>> discovery of Jupiter's moons, and how mathematics revealed the Earth revolved
>> around the Sun, not the other way around, as the church had contended for
>> centuries.  The religious leaders nearly executed Galileo for publishing what
>> mathematics had revealed.  It took four hundred years for the church to 
>> finally
>> admit its error.
>> Likewise, "Intelligent Design" and creationism run country to the empirical
>> proofs grounded in mathematics.  I wonder how long it will take before they
>> admit their bias ...
>> Best regards,
>> Larry
>> --
>> Irrational acts are ultimately founded on irrational beliefs.
>>    -- Larry Dighera,
>>> On Sat, 19 Nov 2016 19:26:27 +0000, Bill Turner <> wrote:
>>> ------------ ORIGINAL MESSAGE ------------(may be snipped)
>>>> On Wed, 16 Nov 2016 22:16:50 -0700, you wrote:
>>>> So the bottom line is that we shouldn't be troubled by abstract ideas like 
>>>> electric current. Most everything we know about the world is an 
>>>> abstraction of some sort. Instead, we should be grateful that the 
>>>> universe, despite its enormous complexity and subtlety, allows us to 
>>>> simplify its rules into stripped down descriptions that our small brains 
>>>> can understand and that let us do useful things, like build vacuum tubes.
>>>> 73,
>>>> Jim W8ZR
>>> REPLY:
>>> My main objection to "modern" physics is in the quote above.
>>> Physicists have a bad habit of using mathematics to describe the real
>>> world. They build a mathematical model of it and after a while they
>>> come to think the model is the real thing. It isn't, any more than a
>>> marble statue is a real human being. They get fixated on the math and
>>> lose sight of what is real. Einstein's description of gravity as a
>>> "distorting of space" is typical. Gravity is simply a force which is
>>> poorly understood, not a distortion of anything.
>>> Another classic example is the Big Bang Theory. When it was first
>>> proposed the word "Theory" was always included. After a number of
>>> years, "Theory" was dropped and it became just the "Big Bang", as if
>>> it had been proven. It has not, except as a mathematical model but
>>> that doesn't stop a lot of people as accepting it as proven fact.
>>> One of the great failings of the human race is the willingness to
>>> accept a plausible explanation for something that may or man not be
>>> true and can not be proven.
>>> Mathematics is useful, but it is only a model, not the real thing.
>>> 73, Bill W6WRT
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