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40 Years of questions

  1. Feb 15, 2016 #1
    I'm new to the forum and don't even know if I'm in the right place. I have had things driving me crazy in my mind for the last 40 years. Questions about the universe, gravity etc. My math background stops at college Algebra. I have no calculus background. I have no college degres. Basically I'm looking for some advice or direction. I have read numerous writings and books by Einstein, Hawking, Kaku, etc. The equations confuse me. But I am searching for something. I have theories and questions and don't know if I'm just crazy or if they have any substance. For instance, with the technology today, why hasn't anybody thought of putting something in an automobile that can manipulate gravity for propulsion. I have also have pictures in my head that the universe has layers. I understand time dialation, but why does it happen. Why is the speed of light constant. So many questions. I just thought with so many intelligent people in here, someone could give me direction on how to proceed or where to find answers. Am I just thinking crazy? Thanks for any advise......Vito
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 15, 2016 #2
  4. Feb 15, 2016 #3


    Staff: Mentor

    Welcome to PF!

    Many have asked these questions before and in many cases there are no answers.

    In the case of the speed of light, Einstein made the bold assertion that its speed is the same for all observers and based his theories on that.

    Why its so remains a mystery for future scientists to discover. The fact that its so is determined by experiment and we've not found a case where it isn't.

    Please take some time to read our guidelines and remember that we dont discuss personal theories or speculative science here. Our mission is to help students learn mainstream science and math.
  5. Feb 15, 2016 #4
    Hello! Welcome to the forum. I think you have come to the right place, discussions here are good natured and usually lead to a conclusion.

    I too have a weak(for lack of a better word) background in mathematics, I recommend these books:
    I recommend:

    Pre algebra for dummies, Algebra 1, 2 for dummies (two seperate books).

    Schaums outlines:
    Basic mathematics with applications to science and technology (good for physicists and engineering people)
    College algebra
    Beginning calculus.

    I am also trying to read, "what is mathematics?" on the side.

    I know its a lot of material. but to truly master mathematics I think it is worth the effort.

    Wish you a good time!
  6. Feb 15, 2016 #5


    Staff: Mentor

    You could look to Khan's Academy or MathisPower4u.com for videos on various math topics.

    Basically if you can master Calculus I,II, and III along with Differential Equations and Linear Algebra you should be able to work through a lot of undergraduate physics and beyond.

    All these math subjects are covered at Khan's and MatihIsPower4u.
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