1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data http://img5.imageshack.us/img5/348/snake.gif [Broken] The figure above shows a piece of flexible wire lying on a frictionless table top. The wire can slide around and change its shape freely, but it cannot move perpendicular to the table. Part I If a current were to begin to flow counterclockwise in the wire which of the following would happen? 1. The wire would tend to stretch out into a circle 2. The wire would contract down to a tangled mess 3. Nothing 4. There is not enough information to tell. Part II If the current went clockwise, would that affect your answer to part a? 3. The attempt at a solution For this problem, I feel like I should be looking at Newton's third law, which states, for any action, there is an equal or opposite reaction. So I look at the wire and I get the impression that the wire has a uniformly distributed charge, meaning that no part of the wire feels attracted to each other. If I had to have my choice at the solutions above, I would either pick 1 or 3 because I don't know the nature of two similarly charge wires. Would they push each other away for just ignore each other? For part II, I don't feel like this would make a difference, because I feel like the direction in this problem is negligible. Any help appreciated!