Whew! First, from 3 Quarks, there was this, and then this, and then I asked (only half-joking) if they were joking, and Abbas Raza promised a plain-language explanation -- and kept his promise. So now there is this, from Cosmic Variance. I have read it, and the comment thread, and my head is full (I feel all this pressing against the inside of my skull) but I think I -- maybe -- almost -- understand.
I used to imagine a course I would love to take: Physics for Poets. I don't mean, exactly, a dumbed-down physics -- though I realize this would be somewhat unavoidable -- but physics explained in comprehensible language. I think Sean Carrol could teach that course. So could Erin.
There's an idea -- in your spare time, you two could get together and teach the rest of us physics! A pleasant online diversion. I suppose we should have a philosopher in there, too. Any volunteers?
I have tried over and over to read Stephen Hawking's first book, A Brief History of Time, pencils and highlighters to hand, but I've never made much progress; and each time I try, I have to begin again at the beginning. Everything I learned from previous readings seems to fall out of my brain.
And you can see why this is so difficult for me. I passed, but I shouldn't have. Seven out of ten? Certainly not an A+.
|You Passed 8th Grade Math|
Now I feel compelled to disclose that I did quite well on my GRE's. OK, not so well on the math part, but very well on the verbal. And the year I took it they were trying out a logic section (did they keep that, I wonder?) and I aced that. I not only aced it, I loved it.
So I really should be able to get this. No?