Friday, October 31, 2014

Drilling a Square Hole

Have you ever considered how to make a hole in any shape other than a square? The geometry of this is very challenging, and somewhat counter-intuitive. Does anyone remember Spirograph?

The solution is like something you'd find in a box of spirograph tracing tools. I found this excellent video, which is apparently in russian, which does an amazing job of teaching you how this triangular-ish type shape, when rotated, actually traces out a square perfectly and shows you how to indeed, drill a square hole.

I love science. I love geometry. Does this not impress you?

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Episode 012: Another Dimension

In which your host introduces you to an old friend, Mr. A Square. A "spooky" journey through spacial dimensions 1-4.

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Have you ever wondered what things would be like in 4 spacial dimensions? The world we live in consists of 3 dimensions of space. Our minds in this space are unable to understand what anything could be like in 4 dimensions, so by way of analogy and metaphor, Edwin A. Abbott has given us Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions. This book, written in 1884 follows A. Square, a square living in 2 dimensions. He is encountered by a Sphere who lives in "Space", or 3 dimensions. He seems amazingly superior, and is able to interact with A. Square in supernatural (to A. Square) ways. This is how a 4-D being would be able to interact with us. Listen in to find out more!

4d designed by Michael Senkow from the Noun Project

Cube designed by Rafa Goicoechea from the Noun Project

Square designed by Renee Ramsey-Passmore from the Noun Project

Mobius Strip designed by Michael Senkow from the Noun Project

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Episode 010: 13 Physical Constants

Download The FREE Exploring Physics: Physical Constants App

In which a very tired host celebrates October and endorses superstition by reviewing THIRTEEN must know physical constants that you're sure to encounter in your first year of physics.

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Episode 010: Stay Tuned

I'm in a hotel with totally crap internet. I am hoping to get the next episode up tonight or tomorrow. Thanks for your patience.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Episode 008: Asking Questions

"If we are not able to ask skeptical questions, to be skeptical about science, then we're up for grabs." -Carl Sagan

I remember sitting in the classroom and thinking that I was probably the only person who didn't know what was going on, as all the other students were intently sitting there and writing down all the information that the teacher was putting on the board. As the year progressed, and I made more friends, I found out that nobody knew exactly what was going on. Everyone had questions, and yet noone was asking them. Usually, noone wants to stand out, be vulnerable and admit that they DO NOT KNOW WHAT IS GOING ON.

The truth is, nobody really knows what is going on. We have a good approximation of what's going on. Asking questions is so important to feeling empowered and confident about what you do as a physics student, as well as everywhere else in your life. Don't ever let someone make you feel bad for asking a question.

If you have any questions pertaining to physics, leave a comment, and I will do my best to help you out. Good luck!

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