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Physics Communication Idea - Prove Me Wrong

  1. Nov 29, 2009 #1
    Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    I had an idea that i thought would be interesting to try.

    I have been wishing lately to make proposals of certain ideas I had about how certain things in the universe may work. I wanted a way to tell them to someone more knowledgeable than myself so that they could prove me wrong. I always have a bunch of crazy ideas about how things like gravity or wormholes might work and I wanted to see why they wouldn't.

    The exciting part about this is that many people could participate and maybe new truths could be discovered just from curious people asking questions. Of course, knowledgeable people would also have to participate so that theories could be proven wrong or right.

    I just want to know everyones thoughts and also maybe try it out right here in the forums. Also I just joined this forum, solely for the purpose of this post so be gentle, thanks. -Chris
     
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  3. Nov 29, 2009 #2

    DaveC426913

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Hrm, as gently as possible:

    I'm afraid you have the wrong forum. PF does not support personal theories and speculation. This is part of the rules you agreed to when you registered.

    "...it is against our Posting Guidelines to discuss, in most of the PF forums or in blogs, new or non-mainstream theories or ideas that have not been published in professional peer-reviewed journals or are not part of current professional mainstream scientific discussion..."

    Speculation outside currently-accepted science will be locked.
     
  4. Nov 29, 2009 #3

    Pengwuino

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    If you really care about learning and hopefully (or well, not hopefully...) be proven wrong, the obvious thing to do is to learn.... physics! There are many books out from books to the lay person all the way to well... i suppose serious texts on general relativity and the like. Find out where in the middle you stand and see what is generally accepted in the scientific community.
     
  5. Nov 29, 2009 #4
    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Yes I am looking for the same thing. I understand this is not that place. Anyone have ideas on where such a discussion is being held? Thanks.
     
  6. Nov 29, 2009 #5

    DaveC426913

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Well, don't misunderstand. Feel free to ask any questions you wish. We will fall all over each other to answer. (You could even ask "why is X not so?")

    What we don't do is entertain claims of "X is so. Prove me wrong."
     
  7. Nov 29, 2009 #6
    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    My very first post was censored as being in the" X is so" class. So I re-posted just a small piece that I thought was in the "so what happens in this case" class. It was censored with the warning that the censor knew I would post the other parts of my initial post as a reply to myself. This is in fact not true. I would like to hear peoples answer to the question. But I dare not re-re-post at this point. Is there another place where we can speak more freely about science?
     
  8. Nov 29, 2009 #7

    DaveC426913

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Not here, no.

    Best thing to do is ask how things do work, not why your ideas don't work.
     
  9. Nov 29, 2009 #8

    russ_watters

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    To amplify a little, the reason we don't allow this is "prove me wrong" is not a productive way to learn. Thousands of scientists have contributed to the body of knowledge that comprises our current understanding of physics over 500 years. Even if you are smarter than all of them, you could only reproduce an insignificant fraction of the knowledge they have contributed over the past 500 years.

    It is much more productive to simply open your mind to the knowledge already generated and absorb it as is.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2009
  10. Nov 29, 2009 #9
    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Dave I understand not here. Do you know of other places on the web or elsewhere?
     
  11. Nov 29, 2009 #10
    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    I have found several yahoo groups that look promising.
     
  12. Nov 29, 2009 #11

    vanesch

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Just to add a bit. The reason why we don't like the "prove me wrong" kind of text, is that one of the hallmarks of this forum is that we keep crackpots out. In a way this is sad, because science should have "open communication" and all that, but the practical result is that crackpots are noisy and sometimes nasty flooders, and they make true scientific communication, unfortunately, totally impossible (look at the news group sci.physics).

    We've tried different tactics here, several of which failed, and the closest we come now is the "independent research" subforum. So in a way we are sorry that we can't allow for "new ideas", but it has proven not to work out.

    So why not the "prove me wrong" kind of "question" ? Simply because it would be an open door for crackpots to come in again, and then defend themselves that they were just "asking for people to prove them wrong". It is not because at the end of a totally bogus piece of creative "science", you add the simple phrase "can someone prove me wrong ?" that this changes anything to the undesirable flooding effects of crackpottery.

    Of course, you can ask "prove me wrong" kinds of questions on specific issues, like:
    "look, I've calculated this such and so, and I arrive at *this*, but according to theorem such and so that's not possible, so where am I wrong ?"

    But not: "I think gravity is in fact due to wobbling pinhole bottles made out of green paste flying around at 3 times light velocity in 7-dimensional quantum space, prove me wrong".
     
  13. Nov 29, 2009 #12

    russ_watters

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    There are numerous places. You might try sciforums.

    One note, though: I assure you that you will find no better place on the web to learn physics than here. I can also assure you that with the "prove me wrong" method and more importantly, the closed-minded attitude that goes with it, you will be wasting your time and you will not learn physics.
     
  14. Nov 30, 2009 #13
    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    No, what a horrible misconception of how science works. In science, we start or atleast try to start with conception that everything we know or experience is wrong until proven otherwise by experiment. I claim there is a small teapot orbiting Mars at a height of 2 Mars radii, I ask you Chris, Please PROVE ME WRONG!
     
  15. Nov 30, 2009 #14

    vanesch

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    :redface: mmm, might be. Last time I've been to Mars, I've lost indeed a tea pot... I was hoping nobody found out about it... :tongue:
     
  16. Nov 30, 2009 #15
    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Erm, you've got the wrong end of the stick. He's not making claims as fact, his OP clearly reads like he just has an idea and wants a knowledgabe eye to critique it, not that he is claiming to have reinvented science.

    There is a difference between:

    "I think that black holes should suck everything in the Universe, how come they don't?"

    and

    "Black holes man, light can't escape so nothing can. This doesn't happen so science is clearly wrong they aren't gravitational bodies they are really aliens hiding behind a big black peice of cardboard."

    The first is a legitimate quiestion, the second is crackpottish.


    To OP: Whether a thread gets locked depends greatly on how you post and the wording of the question. Dave has already pointed this out.

     
  17. Nov 30, 2009 #16
    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Also, it puts the burden of proof on the wrong people. Before people will look at your ideas seriously, you have to have shown some effort at proving yourself wrong. Once you've become sort of familiar with the literature, you'll find a lot of "yes that's an interesting idea, but people thought of that 10/20/50 years ago, and after several years of thinking about it, we came to the conclusion that it won't work because of X."

    There's also the problem that some models are hard to prove wrong because they are much, much too vague. For example, the idea that particles might be some distortion in space-time. Interesting idea, but unless you try to be much, much specific, there isn't enough detail there to be useful. (And once you try to be specific, you'll find that it won't work.) One problem with non-specialists is that they often do not have the mathematical ability to state a model in a way that is specific enough to be amenable to calculation.

    Finally, a lot of theory is not a matter of right and wrong, but of interesting and uninteresting or useful and not useful. Good theorists come up with ideas that are *interesting* and are *useful* even if they turn out to be wrong. All models of the universe are incomplete and wrong. Some models are interesting and useful.

    Also understanding something doesn't mean believing it. The other thing is that helps being productive is to stay away from "crackpot fodder." There are certain topics that seem to attract crackpots and certain topics that don't. I don't know of many crackpots in turbulence, combustion physics, ocean physics, or condensed matter physics, even though these areas have as many mysteries as the big bang.
     
  18. Nov 30, 2009 #17
    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    One thing that people don't get is that a lot of physics involves taking the seemingly mundane and extending it. Much of the knowledge on the big bang involves rather ordinary gas physics, and a lot of high energy physics has concepts from condensed matter.

    If you want to understand the beginning of the universe, don't think about the beginning of the universe since that gets you nowhere. You can say pretty much anything you want about wormholes since I don't have one close to me, so if you make a statement about wormholes, it's pretty impossible to disprove.

    Wormholes are pink. Maybe they are. I don't have one nearby to see.

    Now if you make statements about candle flames or ocean waves.....

    Candle flames are pink. No they aren't. I have one next to me and it doesn't look pink.
     
  19. Nov 30, 2009 #18

    Moonbear

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    As others are suggesting, you should consider the classroom first. Seriously. Instead of bothering people who have taken time to get a formal education in the subject with poorly considered ideas that you KNOW are flawed (why else would you ask to be shown what's wrong if you don't know something is wrong?) as a round-about way to get an education on the topic, just put that time into classes so you can learn the science correctly and figure out for yourself what's wrong with your ideas.
     
  20. Nov 30, 2009 #19
    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Id rather go out and destroy another N thousands of my neurons in a weekend long binge drinking session. You are welcome to join, and talk about everything which crosses your head, but the drinks will be on you.
     
  21. Nov 30, 2009 #20

    DaveC426913

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    Re: Physics Communication Idea - "Prove Me Wrong"

    Hm. I thought we'd been doing a pretty good job of steering him in the right directon without being quite so harsh about it...

    I wouldn't want anyone to come away thinking that they were a "bother". :frown:
     
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