Breakthroughs in physics 2023

So, how has physics been this past year? Let’s start by taking a look at Physics World. In an article dated 7th December 2023, online editor Hamish Johnston said this: “Physics World is delighted to announce its top 10 Breakthroughs of the Year for 2023, which ranges from research in astronomy and medical physics to quantum science, atomic physics and more”. He went on to say the winner will be revealed on 14th December. Sounds good. So, Hamish, what have you got? 1.  Growing electrodes inside living…

Continue ReadingBreakthroughs in physics 2023

Do black holes have singularities?

I think Roy Kerr’s recent paper is important. It’s called Do black holes have singularities? I think it’s important because it challenges an orthodoxy that’s been taken for granted, and because Kerr has the authority to get some attention. That’s because he was in on the Golden Age of General Relativity, and because the EHT collaboration described both M87* and Sagittarius A* as matching the Kerr metric. To set the scene, black hole physics has been around for a long time, but a major development was…

Continue ReadingDo black holes have singularities?

The Tomorrow War

I’ve always liked science fiction. I can’t explain why. I just do. When I was a boy I’d go to the library and bring home yellow-jacket Gollancz science fiction books to read. When I was a teenager I’d buy paperbacks from the bookshops. I have about a thousand science fiction books on the shelves in our back room. We call it “the library”, but there’s also an electric piano, a sofa, and a seventy-inch TV. The “library” It’s my favourite place for watching movies. I don’t…

Continue ReadingThe Tomorrow War

The Nobel prize in physics 2023

There have been some dreadful events in Israel, with terrorists going door to door killing women and children, and more. Meanwhile sections of our media and community refuse to condemn such acts, and call the perpetrators “militants”. Such is the corruption in our society. As I was saying last time, honesty and decency are in short supply, so it’s no small wonder that so many people are suffering. These are troubled times, so much so that the trouble with physics is left in the shade. For…

Continue ReadingThe Nobel prize in physics 2023

Nature and corruption

There was an important news story in the Telegraph last Thursday: Climate scientist admits overhyping impact of global warming on wildfires to get published. It was written by Sarah Knapton, the Telegraph science editor, and it featured a climate scientist called Dr Patrick T Brown. He’s a whistleblower, and I totally applaud the guy. He was referring to a paper he co-authored that was published in Nature. It was called Climate warming increases extreme daily wildfire growth risk in California. Nature cover, Volume 621 Issue 7977,…

Continue ReadingNature and corruption

Lifters

If you do a Google search on lifters today, what you see is a bunch of mechanical contraptions such as pallet stackers, disability aids, and cooking utensils. When you finally find something of interest on page 4 of the search results, it’s a Wikipedia disambiguation page saying “Lifter may refer to an ion-propelled aircraft, a device that can generate thrust using ionised air with no moving parts”. The ion-propelled aircraft article then refers to Thomas Townsend Brown in a rather negative way. It says he spent…

Continue ReadingLifters

We need better planes

I was watching Nope again the other night. I thought it was really cool that the UFO could go from dead slow to a sonic boom in about two seconds flat. See the end of this clip, sorry about the ads. I think Nope is a great movie, but I won’t say any more in case I spoil it for you. However I will say this: I wish we had planes that could move like that. I say that because of our recent family holiday in…

Continue ReadingWe need better planes

The psychology of belief

Many years ago I wrote an article called belief explained. You can find a 2007 version of it on a website called scienceforums.net. A development of that was an article called the psychology of belief. You can find a 2010 version of that on a forum called ILovePhilosophy.com. I wrote it because way back in about 2006, I realised that I believed in things for which there was no scientific evidence at all. I don’t just mean things like religion and politics. I mean things in…

Continue ReadingThe psychology of belief

Quantum entanglement is scientific fraud

The quantum entanglement story began in 1935 with the EPR paper. That’s where Einstein, Podolsky, and Rosen said quantum mechanics must be incomplete, because it predicts a system in two different states at the same time. Later that year Bohr replied saying spooky action at a distance could occur. Then Schrödinger came up with a paper where he talked of entanglement, a paper where he used his cat to show how ridiculous the two-state situation was, and a paper saying he found spooky action at a…

Continue ReadingQuantum entanglement is scientific fraud

Quantum entanglement history II

As I was saying last time, the 2022 physics Nobel Prize was awarded to John Clauser, Alain Aspect, and Anton Zeilinger for their contribution to quantum entanglement. This is associated with instantaneous “spooky action at a distance”, and is said to play an important role in quantum computing. It all started in 1935 with the EPR paper, where Einstein, Podolsky, and Rosen said quantum mechanics must be incomplete because it predicts a system in two different states at the same time. Bohr gave a rambling off-topic…

Continue ReadingQuantum entanglement history II