Reopen thread request: What's it like to be a theoretical physicist?

  • #1
Reopen thread request: "What's it like to be a theoretical physicist?"

Hello,

I'm not sure how to go about asking for a thread to be re-opened, but after searching I found other such requests had been posted as new threads. Please let me know if there is a person I should PM in the future to request this.

I have something to add to the mentioned thread. It is years old, but since it has a lot of views (7,653) I think it's worthwhile to add this information. I've checked through the "similar thread" links at the bottom of the thread, and did not find any other appropriate thread to which to add it: the information directly answers one of the questions in the thread "What's it like to be a theoretical physicist?", and provides new information.

Here is what I'd like to add:

"
For current readers of this thread, I wanted to add the following.

In my Master's in Theoretical Physics, many people are doing pen-and-paper calculation for their mini-thesis project. This project involves original research, which leads to publication if the calculation is successful. In our courses, too, we do most of our work with pen-and-paper, and use Mathematica and other programs only sparingly. Of course, in coursework the point is to learn the physics, not to learn how to use the computer.

The thesis projects of which I speak were in the fields of particle physics, quantum foundations, and a few others which I can not remember (sorry about that).

So, in theoretical physics people do still use pen-and-paper calculations for research purposes.

The computer is still used, for these pen-and-paper projects, to research what others have done, communicate with other physicists, and write up results.
"

Thank you.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
jtbell
Mentor
15,614
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Can you give us a link to the thread that you were looking at?

I did a Google search on the title, restricting it to this forum, and I came up with this thread:

https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=98283

in which the last post was more than eight years ago. We consider such threads to be far too old to reactivate.
 
  • #3
Evo
Mentor
23,146
2,761
I think only 2 of the people in that thread are still here, and they were answering, not asking, so there is no one to respond to.
 
  • #4
jtbell: Sorry for not including the thread link; yes, that is it.

While the thread is old, and the original posters have moved on, it is still being used for information from new viewers. The threads in PF are not just used for discussion, but also for public collections of information. Thus, I think it's worthwhile to make the thread more complete with another, different set of experiences (such as mine, in the case of this thread).

Would it be more in keeping with the purpose of PF to start a new thread on the topic?

Thank you for your replies.
 
  • #5
Evo
Mentor
23,146
2,761
jtbell: Sorry for not including the thread link; yes, that is it.

While the thread is old, and the original posters have moved on, it is still being used for information from new viewers. The threads in PF are not just used for discussion, but also for public collections of information. Thus, I think it's worthwhile to make the thread more complete with another, different set of experiences (such as mine, in the case of this thread).

Would it be more in keeping with the purpose of PF to start a new thread on the topic?

Thank you for your replies.
We have had a lot of threads on becoming a theoretical physicist, you just stumbled across one.

You might want to check out ZapperZ's blog.

"I Want To Do Theoretical Physics"
https://www.physicsforums.com/blog.php?b=3727 [Broken]
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • #6
Thank you, Evo. I did search for and read through the other threads on the topic. This comment directly addresses something which was discussed in the closed thread, but which is not discussed elsewhere. As such, it would be tidy and present a more complete view to readers to put it with the old, presently closed thread. However, I can make note of it in one of the other threads about being a theoretical physicist. It would start a new subject within those threads, but interested readers would still find the information. If PF is more about discussion than storage of information, then this approach would be more in keeping with your purposes.
 
  • #7
Evo
Mentor
23,146
2,761
We don't like necroposting, posting to a thread more than a year old. It's just not a good idea to revive old threads as our rules change and those old threads may no longer meet our discussion rules, (they may not be locked because they were missed) so please do not post to a thread more than a year old. Thank you.
 
Last edited:
  • #9
Hi Evo,

Thank you for explaining! Yes, my post would fit in the thread which you suggested. I did not use the right search terms to find that thread: my apologies. Thank you for finding it.

My point is already made in that thread, so I won't post again in there.

Thanks to both of you!
 
  • #10
Evo
Mentor
23,146
2,761
Hi Evo,

Thank you for explaining! Yes, my post would fit in the thread which you suggested. I did not use the right search terms to find that thread: my apologies. Thank you for finding it.

My point is already made in that thread, so I won't post again in there.

Thanks to both of you!
You're quite welcome, we're here to help.
 

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