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( READ Physics on the Fringe ) AUTHOR Margaret Wertheim – gh4crew.co.uk

Physics on the Fringe

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Characterize the people who develop these ideas without being critical However their ideas tend to resist testing and can therefore never be brought into tend to resist testing and can therefore never be brought into true realm of science Rejected by mainline scientific conferences many of these people aggregate as the National Philosophy Alliance NPA However a great deal of ownership prevails "WITH EACH PERSON BEING AWARE THAT THERE IS NO " each person being aware that there is no supporting other persons theoriesModern physics has progressed beyond a purely mechanical and intuitive view of the niverse Many of the fringe physics are ncomfortable with this often lacking the basic science and mathematical eduction needed to often lacking the basic science and mathematical eduction needed to them Such people are often driven by the feeling that modern science is too esoteric and simpler mechanical models of the niverse must existAugustus De Morgan was a prominent scientist in the late 1800 s who also received many such proposals which he collected and were published in the book A Budget of Paradoxes 1872 De Morgan was ite tolerant spending time to hear them outThe author attended the national meeting of the NPA US in 2010 and relates how similar it was to a mainline scientific conference with speakers discussions of papers exhibitions and published proceedings Toward the end of the book she describes attending a conference on string theory in Santa Barbara which was attended by many of the most famous names in science She relates Whoever I talked with assured me that everybody else s theories were nsupported by evidence and based entirely on arbitrary assumptions As it is not known how to test current string theories the assemblage had a bizarre parallel with the NPA conference one being mainline science while other being fringe More than half of the book is about Jim Carter who is an interesting and sympathetic character Ms Wertheim is very clear eyed about the limited scientific value of outsider theories while still being interested in their inventorsThe book is well written but felt somewhat aimless If this book is half as interesting as Freeman Dyson s review in NYRB it should be fascinating In discussing the relationship between observation and imagination in the scientific method Dyso. His backyard with garbage cans and a disco fog machine he makes smoke rings to test his ideas about atoms Captivated by the imaginative power of his theories and his resolutely DIY attitude Wertheim has been following Carter's progress for the past decadeCenturies ago natural philosophers puzzled out the laws of nature sing the tools of observation and experimentation Today th. ,

GreatI m excited by the book as it s one I ve wanted to write almost As a personal plus for me I have zero faith in modern theoretical physics so it resonates in many waysIt s also a different topic than so many physics worship books Things are improving though as writers estion our emperors clothing This is a really interesting LOOK AT PHYSICS FROM A HUMAN PERSPECTIVE THE SUGGESTION at physics from a human perspective The suggestion physics has some special place in human inuiry is challenged and the adoration we too often give people who suggest that they have some exclusive insight into reality is pointed out for the nonsense it is Not at all as describedThis book posed as an exploration in fringe theories is like a day in the life of fringe theorists Wertheim hardly touches on the theories themselves rather she spends the majority of the book sympathizing with nder appreciated backyard physicistsStill an interesting book I guess No I had a large number of problems with this book many of which are covered in the reviews of others but my main problem is the author s drawing of an euivalence between physics and pseudo physics Even granting the myriad problems with string theory mainstream theoretical physics is not merely a form of storytelling The demarcation problem is a real problem but this book is incapable of throwing any real light pon it Instead in its small way the book reinforces this book is incapable of throwing any real light How to Win an Argument... Even When You Lose upon it Instead in its small way the book reinforces destructive but increasingly popular idea that science is merely a discourse which is no truth conducive than any other discourse No I read what I thought was a glowing review of Margaret Wertheim s Physics on the Fringe in The New York review of Books and I was hooked We honor them because science is only a small part of human capability We gain knowledge of our place in theniverse not only from science but also from history art and literature Scie As a science writer the author had received numerous works proposing new scientific theories that are inconsistent with current science The author examines some of these fringe scientists in this book talking especially about one in particular Jim Carter who has developed a theory that subatomic particles are made p of circlons Wertheim tries to. For the past fifteen years acclaimed science writer Margaret Wertheim has been collecting the works of outsider physicists many without formal training and all convinced that they have found true alternative theories of the niverse Jim Carter the Einstein of outsiders has developed his own complete theory of matter and energy and gravity that he demonstrates with experiments in. N Aquinass Way to God uotes physicist Hermann Weyl I always try to combine the true with the beautiful but when I have to choose one or the other Isually choose the beautiful now that s beautiful Interesting topic strange book Author seems to hold that theoretical physics variations on strings branes etc is for its non empirical grounding no or less valid a kind of storytelling than the many outsider physics theories she has reviewed and one in particular she spent years off and on immersed in studying It s a facile analogy she draws though and although not altogether wrongheaded an Bijoux en origami ultimatelynsatisfying critiue she offers Roughly a third of THE BOOK THE AUTHOR S REFLECTIONS ON THE PHENOMENON book the author s reflections on the phenomenon outsider science in relation to insider science is The Hokku or Epigram Versus of Basho uite interesting A lot of the book too much of the book is devoted to profiling one particular outsider whose science nor whose life are especially compelling save evidently to the author There s no shortage of padding in this material what do I care eg that said fellow panned for gold or dove for abalone much as Inderstand the author s intention to draw parallels between her subject s life and his mind This stuff and there s a lot of it I found a bore The book aside I can only marvel at how much time the author has dedicated to collecting reading and thinking about outsider science and the time she has spent getting into the life and mind of the one outsider scientist at the center of this book I can t help but feel she might have devoted that time to wiser or interesting pursuits Creative outsiders with half baked ideas time to wiser or interesting pursuits Creative outsiders with half baked ideas know them as cranks The author spends times exploring these mavericks shunned by the scientific community probably rightly The people who buck the establishment sometimes win big but failure is much common than those who succeed This is the sad truth almost tragic truth for people who tilt at windmills and seek to Prison Ramen upend the consensus Sometimes the consensus is wrong and your idea is a winning lottery ticket but most lotto tickets windp as sad confetti of dashed hopes of riches One takeaway is something that heads know about tripping don t trip alone Budding scientists please don t theorize alone. Eoretical physics has become mathematically inscrutable accessible only to an elite few In rejecting this abstraction outsider theorists insist that nature speaks a language we can all nderstand Through a profoundly human profile of Jim Carter Wertheim's exploration of the bizarre world of fringe physics challenges our conception of what science is how it works and who it is fo.

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