Saturday, December 15, 2007

The Gravity People of our History

What good is a universe without somebody around to look at it?
Robert Dicke

John Archibald Wheeler (born July 9, 1911) is an eminent American theoretical physicist. One of the later collaborators of Albert Einstein, he tried to achieve Einstein's vision of a unified field theory. He is also known as the coiner of the popular name of the well known space phenomenon, the black hole.

There is always somebody who is the teacher and from them, their is a progeny. It would not be right not to mention John Archibald Wheeler. Or not to mention some of his students.

Notable students
Demetrios Christodoulou
Richard Feynman
Jacob Bekenstein
Robert Geroch
Bei-Lok Hu
John R. Klauder
Charles Misner
Milton Plesset
Kip Thorne
Arthur Wightman
Hugh Everett
Bill Unruh

COSMIC SEARCH: How did you come up with the name "black hole"?

John Archibald Wheeler:It was an act of desperation, to force people to believe in it. It was in 1968, at the time of the discussion of whether pulsars were related to neutron stars or to these completely collapsed objects. I wanted a way of emphasizing that these objects were real. Thus, the name "black hole".

The Russians used the term frozen star—their point of attention was how it looked from the outside, where the material moves much more slowly until it comes to a horizon.* (*Or critical distance. From inside this distance there is no escape.) But, from the point of view of someone who's on the material itself, falling in, there's nothing special about the horizon. He keeps on going in. There's nothing frozen about what happens to him. So, I felt that that aspect of it needed more emphasis.

While people are drawn to the "micro-perspective" it is in face of this, that I fall behind on the "many blog postings" and "current events." I try to maintain a perspective about GR and the development of this process through understanding the history.

I also pay attention to those who use "relevant phrases" to let me know they are continuing to read this blog site. Even in face of the layman status I have. I pay attention also to the information they are imparting and try to incorporate new information from their blogs, within the scope of my understanding, to make sure that I am not misleading others. Thinking this artist( in the conceptual developmental phases) has some wish to be firm in the places science is currently residing.

Most people think of space as nothingness, the blank void between planets, stars, and galaxies. Kip Thorne, the Feynman Professor of Theoretical Physics at Caltech, has spent his life demonstrating otherwise. Space, from his perspective, is the oft-rumpled fabric of the universe. It bends, stretches, and squeezes as objects move through it and can even fold in on itself when faced with the extreme entities known as black holes. He calls this view the “warped side of the universe.”

Strictly speaking, Thorne does not focus on space at all. He thinks instead of space-time, the blending of three spatial dimensions and the dimension of time described by Einstein’s general relativity. Gravity distorts both aspects of space-time, and any dynamic event—the gentle spinning of a planet or the violent colliding of two black holes—sends out ripples of gravitational waves. Measuring the direction and force of these waves could teach us much about their origin, possibly even allowing us to study the explosive beginning of the universe itself. To that end, Thorne has spearheaded the construction of LIGO [Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory], a $365 million gravitational-wave detector located at two sites: Louisiana and Washington State. LIGO’s instruments are designed to detect passing gravitational waves by measuring minuscule expansions and contractions of space-time—warps as little as one-thousandth the diameter of a proton.
Despite the seriousness of his ideas, Thorne is also famous for placing playful bets with his longtime friend Stephen Hawking on questions about the nature of their favorite subject, black holes. Thorne spoke with DISCOVER about his lifetime pursuit of science, which sometimes borders on sci-fi, and offers a preview of an upcoming collaboration with director Steven Spielberg that will bring aspects of his warped world to the big screen.

So some are quick to call Kip Thorne and his ilk the fantasy and science fiction editors of our times, when progressing to the new movies they will collaborate on. So maybe rightly so here. But to bunch them into the likes of string theorists, to somehow further their goal on their own "mission to enlighten," how Peter Woit do you think so?

Peter Woit said,
Thorne expects that nothing in the film will violate fundamental physical law. He also seems rather involved in fantasy as well as science fiction, believing that the LHC has a good shot at producing mini-black holes, and that String theory is now beginning to make concrete, observational predictions which will be tested.

The very basis of research and development "has a long arm here" developed from the likes of the "small interferometer that we know "works," as a qualitative measure of the fabric of our universe, as the Ligo Operation.

Don't be so smug to think that what is fantasy in the world of good science people was somehow related to "what you may think" and does not have any validity in the mathematical realm of the string theoretical development.

It all happens in stages as we all know to well?

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