## What is phase?

Hey, im self taught and by no means an expert, but have a decent understanding of the standard model. im looking looking for a little clarification on what exactly a phase, or phase shift is. also perhaps a definition of what a dimension is... as i understand them, a dimension is movement, or the freedom of movement in the direction of that dimension.

Thanks

Recognitions:
Gold Member
Are you referring to the phase of a wave?

As for dimension, take a look at a couple of common definitions from wikipedia:

 the dimension of a space or object is informally defined as the minimum number of coordinates needed to specify any point within it
And:

 In physical terms, dimension refers to the constituent structure of all space (cf. volume) and its position in time (perceived as a scalar dimension along the t-axis), as well as the spatial constitution of objects within – structures that have correlations with both particle and field conceptions, interact according to relative properties of mass, and which are fundamentally mathematical in description. These or other axes may be referenced to uniquely identify a point or structure in its attitude and relationship to other objects and occurrences.
Did that help at all?
 Recognitions: Gold Member Phase in sinusoidal functions or in waves has two different, but closely related, meanings. One is the initial angle of a sinusoidal function at its origin and is sometimes called phase offset. Another usage is the fraction of the wave cycle which has elapsed relative to the origin. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phase_(waves) This site has an excellent overview for your learning pleasure, plus some great animation to demonstrate the concept of phase of sinusoidal waves. http://www.indiana.edu/~emusic/acoustics/phase.htm