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  1. jtbell

    Random Photos

    No, not the New Orleans Saints. This is across the street from a local charter school whose football team is also called the Saints. (as in St. Bernhard, obviously)
  2. jtbell

    Random Photos

    We had a photo contest for such photos a few years ago:
  3. jtbell

    Need Advice on studying in my first University Physics class

    In the US at least, a calculus-based intro physics course generally uses calculus mainly to simplify certain equations and derivations, and to tie concepts together more easily than is possible without calculus. Consider basic kinematics: velocity is the time derivative of position, and...
  4. jtbell

    Random Photos

    Just a couple of weeks ago, temperatures were still in the low 90s(F) here. Now it's cooled off to highs around 80, and lows in the upper 50s. This is apparently enough to trigger fall colors in a few trees. This is the first one I've seen, just yesterday.
  5. jtbell

    Auto/Motor Car Maintenance: Costs, Recommendations, and Debates

    My car is a 2013 Chevy Sonic with about 80K miles. I've never used it for daily commuting, because I live a few blocks from the college where I used to teach. I normally take it out once or twice a week. Usually I'm going out of town, either down the road 5-10 miles to the next town where most...
  6. jtbell

    Difference between -3² and (-3)² ?

    Gee, I never knew that! :cool: I haven't used that calculator in a loooong time, ever since I found out about the RLM-11CX calculator which emulates my old HP-11C. It of course doesn't have parentheses because it uses RPN input.
  7. jtbell

    I Neutrino detection at the LHC

    He finished his PhD right about when I joined the group. He showed me how to run a bubble-chamber film scanning machine. I spent a few weeks scanning film so I could see where the data was coming from and what the interactions we were studying looked like. He also introduced me to the...
  8. jtbell

    I Neutrino detection at the LHC

    High-energy accelerator-based neutrino beams with nearby detectors have been a thing since the 1960s. Accelerator neutrinos (Fermilab) I did my PhD dissertation with a group that used the 15-foot bubble chamber in Fermilab's neutrino beam. Here's an example of the papers that the group...
  9. jtbell

    What do physics majors in university study after physics 1 and 2?

    As another example, here is the B.S. in Physics at Clemson University in the US. The details are likely to be different for universities in different countries, and even for different universities in the US (and perhaps some other countries). Nevertheless, the general patterns should be...
  10. jtbell

    Random Photos

    From my morning walk yesterday:
  11. jtbell

    Random Photos

    I found a web site showing picture postcards of the Copenhagen-Malmö ferries, including mine. It mentions that the fast ferries were eliminated after the Öresund bridge opened in 1999. I finally located the lighthouse on Google Maps as "Malmö inre fyr / Malmö Old Light House". Now I can see...
  12. jtbell

    Random Photos

    Yes, it's from summer 1978. A friend and I arrived via the hydrofoil ferry from Copenhagen. We spent a few hours walking around and eating dinner, then left via the night train to Stockholm, en route to Finland.
  13. jtbell

    Random Photos

    @DennisN will surely recognize this.
  14. jtbell

    Low CGPA for Grad School

    When I was in grad school (in the US) 40+ years ago, I had to repeat thermodynamics / statistical mechanics because I got a B- in it, which dragged my GPA below the university's acceptable level for a half-time teaching assistantship.
  15. jtbell

    Random Photos

    "I'm sorry, sir, we don't have any more gas here."
  16. jtbell

    Intro Physics “Fundamental University Physics” by Alonso and Finn - out of date?

    Textbook publishers sometimes release new editions because they (or the authors) think they are genuine improvements from a pedagogical point of view. More often, it's because they want to protect their revenue stream. They change the content enough to change the page numbers and exercise...
  17. jtbell

    How should I choose and begin learning about certain research fields?

    How did this happen? :oldconfused: I recognize that for privacy reasons, you may feel uncomfortable about telling us which universities you're dealing with, or even which country. Nevertheless, more specific information might help people here give more specific advice. Things work differently...
  18. jtbell

    What are the best physics lingo/starter pack/staples? (websites and resources)

    One of the most useful things I did as an undergraduate, for improving my knowledge of current physics, was joining the Society of Physics Students, via my college's local chapter. It included a subscription to Physics Today magazine, which had (and still has) good introductory review-type...
  19. jtbell

    Other Can't take physics my first year

    Yep, Calc I is commonly a co- or pre-requisite for first semester intro physics. On the bright side, when you finally start intro physics, the calculus part should be pretty easy for you. At the schools I've studied or taught at, first-year intro physics uses calculus mainly to simplify things...
  20. jtbell

    Collection of Lame Jokes

    The Big Ten college football conference needs a new name, because it actually has 14 teams this year, and 18 beginning next year. Yesterday they accidentally revealed their new branding during the Michigan - East Carolina game:
  21. jtbell

    Latex format using Safari

    Let's see what happens if there are more than two letters: ##\sqrt{abcde}## A rollercoaster! 😆 Does the baseline height really alternate, or is it associated with specific letters? ##\sqrt{abdce}## Looks like the latter. Let's try the entire alphabet: ##\sqrt{abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz}##
  22. jtbell

    Latex format using Safari

    I see the same offset in the first post in this thread, in Safari on a 2019 iMac, under the latest version of MacOS (16.5.1).
  23. jtbell

    Kitten Lovers: Cuteness Overload with Moonbear

    From one of my near-daily walks: I hope the embedding works. I've had problems with links to videos in my Google Drive account in the past.
  24. jtbell

    Random Photos

    That reminded me of my brief visit to Vancouver 19 years ago, part of a circular trip Calgary - Edmonton - Vancouver - Calgary by train and bus. I did not participate in the squid festival...
  25. jtbell

    Random Photos

    For the past couple of months I've had to do my near-daily walks very early in the morning to avoid the heat and some of the humidity. Here's a sunrise not far from my house.
  26. jtbell

    Guidance on Pursuing a Master's in Theoretical Particle Physics

    My understanding is that the two paths to a PhD are at least approximately equivalent in terms of entrance requirements, effort and time required. Both paths begin after completion of a decent bachelor's degree (which you apparently don't have yet), and both require 5-7 years: 2 years of...
  27. jtbell

    Programs Postdoc in Particle Physics with a PhD in Nanoscience Nanotechnology

    Schools normally interview three candidates per position. In each search, I was invited for two interviews, and received one offer. So I had no choice in location, unless I decided to look for a different kind of job instead.
  28. jtbell

    Programs Postdoc in Particle Physics with a PhD in Nanoscience Nanotechnology

    When I finished grad school in the mid 1980s, I wasn't looking for community-college positions, but rather for positions at 4-year colleges where teaching was the main focus, like the college where I had been an undergraduate. Back then (don't know about now), "visiting assistant professor"...
  29. jtbell

    Classical Griffiths or Jackson for Electrodynamics?

    You have two options: 1. Start with Griffiths. If you find it too easy, then switch to Jackson. 2. Start with Jackson. If you find it too hard, then switch to Griffiths. Without knowing the details of your previous exposure to E&M, including how long ago it was, it's hard for an outsider to...
  30. jtbell

    Random Photos

    I thought, "gee, that doesn't look like what I saw 45 years ago." Then I remembered you're in Manchester, not London.
  31. jtbell

    Fast Food Discussion: Mexican Pizza at Taco Bell

    I drove to Columbia again today. I didn't think about the Zestos in Newberry and Chapin until I had gotten to Columbia, so I didn't check them out. Instead, on my way home I made a detour to the Zesto in West Columbia, which I hadn't seen before. It was late in the afternoon and I had...
  32. jtbell

    I cannot install Photoshop 6.0 onto my new laptop with Win11

    I did the same thing a few years ago when my old Photoshop (I've forgotten which version) failed to install from disc on a new iMac because of a big jump in MacOS versions. I tried Photoshop Elements, but there was something in my usual workflow that it couldn't do, so I I went over to the "dark...
  33. jtbell

    Random Photos

    What are you pointing at me for? Actually, the arrow points towards the Spartanburg [SC] Downtown Airport (SPA), about 10 miles away. This was the site of a beacon on the Transcontinental Airway System, built in the 1920s to guide airmail pilots. The square in the middle of the arrow was the...
  34. jtbell

    Collection of Lame Jokes

    Homer Simpson once tried running a bakery. Customer: "This bread tastes terrible. What's in it?" Homer: "D'oh!"
  35. jtbell

    Collection of Lame Jokes

    Is that the stuff that's slathered with guaca-mole?
  36. jtbell

    Admissions PhD Programs for Mathematical Physics

    I find it hard to believe that a school would refuse to award you a master's after you've completed the requirements for one, simply because you're (still) in a PhD program. Although I suppose anything is possible at some school or other. While I was in the physics PhD program at Michigan many...
  37. jtbell

    US Arrested for Being Too Thin: Unbelievable!

    Got a link to a news article about this?
  38. jtbell

    Hello -- Questions about how to post on PF via mobile

    Or you can click on the "Post Thread" button at the top, which will show you all the boxes for the sections of a new post. You'll have to scroll down to see all of them. Clicking "Post Thread" at the end of that page will actually post the message.
  39. jtbell

    A Beta Decay, why did they have to resort to Neutrinos?

    I apologize for this delayed response. I came across this thread only just now, in the list of "suggested threads" at the end of a more recent discussion about beta decay. While working on my PhD in experimental neutrino physics many years ago, I collected some photocopies of historical...
  40. jtbell

    Intro Physics Beginner friendly mathematical physics book

    In the US, the usual pre-requisite math courses for the core intermediate-level physics courses (above Halliday/Resnick/Walker) are single- and multi-variable calculus, ordinary differential equations, and linear algebra. However, there are probably variations in different countries (and even...
  41. jtbell

    Intro Physics Beginner friendly mathematical physics book

    That should be enough for studying a standard introductory calculus-based general physics textbook, e.g. Halliday/Resnick/Walker. Or have you done that already, and are now planning to study intermediate level textbooks on individual subjects (classical mechanics, electromagnetism...
  42. jtbell

    Random Thoughts Part 6 - Start a New Thread

    Yesterday while I was driving along, once again I noticed that the recessed manhole covers in city streets seem to be cunningly placed off-center in the driving lane, so that my car's wheels always pass over them, ka-thunk, ka-thunk! I wonder if the designers of streets and underground utility...
  43. jtbell

    Random Photos

    Sure looks like it... don't get into a wreck with one of their vehicles! :eek:
  44. jtbell

    Random Photos

    What's up at the college today? Are they launching a new degree program in beekeeping? Are they trying to raise money to pay off their loan from the US Department of Agriculture? Are they pollinating the campus flower beds? Are the bees supposed to go after intruders? Was there a...
  45. jtbell

    Textbook recommendations for second year physics (UK university)

    That's Marion and Thornton, right? I had to Google the title because nobody in physics academia (that I know, anyway) remembers textbooks by title, only by author(s). :smile:
  46. jtbell

    B What is m in Kinetic Energy? Relativistic mass or Rest mass?

    I find it easiest to remember the relativistic kinetic energy by starting from the total energy (which is what unqualified "energy" usually means for a relativistic particle). Total energy = rest energy + kinetic energy Kinetic energy = total energy - rest energy Kinetic energy = ##\gamma m_0...
  47. jtbell

    B What is m in Kinetic Energy? Relativistic mass or Rest mass?

    As a minor point, I prefer to write ##E^2 = (pc)^2 + (mc^2)^2##, to reinforce that ##E##, ##pc## and ##mc^2## all have the same units, namely units of energy. When I was a graduate student in experimental elementary particle physics, long ago c. 1980, it was the universal practice among us to...
  48. jtbell

    Collection of Lame Jokes

    How our Aussie friends celebrated the blockbuster movie weekend: with a shrimp on the Barbie!
  49. jtbell

    Physics I love physics, but I want more money and I'm considering a career change

    When I started my college-teaching career (at a definitely non-elite institution) 40 years ago this fall, if someone had told me that I would have the amount of money I ended up with when I retired (six years ago), I would have thought he was crazy. However, the cumulative inflation factor since...