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I R Noob

  1. Oct 11, 2014 #1
    I've always been interested in the big picture of things in the universe but I've never had the opportunity to pursue science any farther than TV series such as The Cosmos, The Universe, etc. but either way I've been thinking a lot on the various things that I've seen and heard from these series.

    For instance from my understanding light is the absolute speed limit in the universe and cannot be exceeded. However black holes are so powerful via gravity that light cannot leave them. How is this possible given light is the max speed in existence unless the medium it self is folded into itself or as we perceive it dark matter to matter. Also Is it possible that dark matter/energy is the medium in which the universe we can see exists?

    For example with regards to the model I have in my head :

    [EDIT: moderator has deleted personal speculation]

    I'm 99.9% sure my imagination has run off somewhere early on there but either way its good to be thinking about these kinds of things. To that end are there any books or other sources of information people could suggest I read to better understand everything better. To be honest I've have no idea where to start with regards to what fundamental principles should I learn etc.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 12, 2014
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 12, 2014 #2

    Matterwave

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    Unfortunately, the majority of claims made in your post makes no sense, and as such, they are very hard to evaluate using our current physical theories and models. Many of the claims would be akin to a statement such as "if quarters were worth 5 cents instead of 25 cents, would that make them nickles?" or "if the moon spoke Irish, does that mean the Welsh people originated from Jupiter?". I don't mean to demean you of course, and please don't take me as mocking you in any way, I am just saying that the statements made are so far out of whack with the current physical theories, that I wouldn't know how to respond to them. This is to be expected since you have had no training in the subject, but you want to talk about some very deep and mysterious aspects of our universe. I would meet the same difficulties if I went into an ER room and tried to perform brain surgery. In addition, PF does not permit personal theories, since the main purpose of PF is to promote the mainstream understanding of physics and other sciences. I do applaud your curiosity and imagination and hope that you will not be discouraged from keeping an open mind in the future.

    As far as sources for learning this stuff, I have always liked Stephen Hawking's "A Brief History of Time" and "A Briefer History of Time".
     
  4. Oct 12, 2014 #3
    Thanks yeah a bit too much to drink and too much cosmos yes? lol but yeah any resources that I could be pointed towards that would help me learn the underlying principles of physics and the other sciences that I would need to know to better understand things would be awesome. I don't have the money for classes or things like that but anything that's an online resource that can be used to self educate would be great.
     
  5. Oct 12, 2014 #4

    mathman

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    Try ggogle for a phrase and look for a wikipedia article.
     
  6. Oct 12, 2014 #5

    Matterwave

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    You can try MIT open courseware: http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/physics/8-286-the-early-universe-fall-2013/
    http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/find-by-topic/#cat=science&subcat=physics&spec=astrophysics
     
  7. Oct 12, 2014 #6

    Bandersnatch

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    I responded to a similar request just a few days earlier in this post:
    https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/infinite-space.775185/#post-4876628
    Most, if not all, of the links you can find there should be of use. All but Ned Wright's cosmology tutorial require no math or physics background. The tutorial is more challenging, due to being more in-depth, but doesn't require college-level maths either.

    If you're looking for course materials and lectures, have a look at these:
    http://www.perimeterinstitute.ca/video-library (you probably want the "public lectures" section)
    http://www.academicearth.org/ (try astronomy section)
    https://www.coursera.org/ (actual online courses; physics section covers cosmology as well)
    https://www.khanacademy.org/ (not a lot on cosmology, but great for learning maths and basic physics concepts)
     
  8. Oct 12, 2014 #7

    Simon Bridge

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    Pop science programs are very bad places to learn physics. Their purpose is to entertain, and sell advertising space, so they tend to be highly poetic in their descriptions. It is not surprising you are getting puzzled.

    There is too much there to put everything right but I can give you an idea of what you need.

    "absolute speed limit" is not a very good description of what "the speed of light" is.
    You know how different objects look to be moving at different speeds depending on how fast the person looking is going?
    It turns out, there is no way to determine how fast someone or something is actually going ... only how fast someone is going with respect to something else. Like the speedo on your car tells you how fast the car is going with respect to the road... but it is equally correct to say that the road is going that fast with respect to your car.
    You can measure the speed that light goes with respect to you ... but it turns out that everyone else measures the same speed for the same light with respect to themselves - no matter how fast they are going with respect to you.
    We call this sort of thing, where something looks the same to everyone, "invariance".
    We say the speed of light in a vacuum is "invariant".

    A black hole is any object where the escape velocity from it's surface is greater than the speed of light.
    It turns out that these objects are weird and we cannot say much about what happens below the distance where the escape velocity is exactly equal to the speed of light. i.e. it's common enough to think of light trying to get away from such an object to be zipping up at the speed of light only space-time is zipping the other way just as fast so the effect is like trying to climb the down-escalator. But that is not such a great analogy because we have not said who is doing the measuring: that observer would have to be inside the black hole's event horizon and that's a tricky place to talk about properly. From the outside it's easier - any light that passes close enough just becomes part of the black hole.
    To get a better understanding of that, you probably need more maths.

    [edit] It seems that everything else I was responding to got deleted by a moderator as not for discussion here. I have decided to respect that decision and delete the response.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2014
  9. Oct 12, 2014 #8

    Matterwave

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    How and why did you find the deleted part of OP's post and respond to that?
     
  10. Oct 12, 2014 #9

    Simon Bridge

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    The reply was written earlier and sent before I got the amendment - I have edited the post to respect the decision of the mentor.
    It is difficult sometimes to tell between expounding a personal theory and explaining ones state of misunderstanding for correction.
     
  11. Oct 13, 2014 #10
    Thanks for the links and the feed back I have many things to read now :)
     
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