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Should I study cosmology? Am I too old?

  1. Sep 1, 2011 #1
    Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Hello eveyone,

    Im 24 years old. I wasted a lot of time before. Ive just finished the 1st of university. Then I left. I regreted what ive done before. Cuz I looked for wrong things all the time. Since last year, i started reading lots books about physics and universe. I didnt think that i could be so fascinated by them. But I was wrong. That became a part of my life. Even I couldnt sleep without reading some physic articles in the night. So from this year, i started studying maths and physic by my self. To be honest, it wasnt so easy for me at begining. But i didnt give up. Now I plan to go back to the university next year. I'd like to spend all my life on the cosmos.

    Here is my question:

    Should i keep my dream and continue? Or stop being crazy and find something practical?

    Plz give me some suggestion. I will be appreciated. Thank you.


    [URL]http://www.antiquerue.com/images/bigbang.jpg[/URL]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 1, 2011 #2
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    24?? You're still a kid to me. I got my degree when I was 41, my master's at 47, and will probably go back to get a PhD in my 70's, so no age is too old.
     
  4. Sep 1, 2011 #3
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Thx for the reply. Im suprised..I really admire you!

    I wonder if there's any problem of finding a job after going out of shchool? I am not sure if they can accpter my age as well..




    [URL]http://www.antiquerue.com/images/bigbang.jpg[/URL]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2017
  5. Sep 1, 2011 #4
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Very motivating. I'm 23, I've been in college for 6 years not knowing where to go in life, also working part time. I know now what to major in. My only problem is motivating myself.
     
  6. Sep 1, 2011 #5
    You only live once. I'd rather be poor doing something I lover than rich working at something boring and uninteresting. Go for it and find out why we are here already!!!!
     
  7. Sep 1, 2011 #6
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    When you have a clear aim, you definetly have full of motivation. Do you intend to study the physics as well in the future?
     
  8. Sep 1, 2011 #7
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Your worlds are very inspiring!!! I have to say, for myself, I dont care the money. I just need to live and eat. But Im a married man. I have to consider my wife's feeling. although my wife supports me all the time.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2011
  9. Sep 1, 2011 #8

    phinds

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    2016 Award

    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    cosmosgeek, if you have found something you love then you are WAY ahead of the game ... obstacles are irrelevant by comparison. I always tell people to think about what Picasso said:

    http://www.phinds.com/picasso/
     
  10. Sep 1, 2011 #9
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Thank you very much. Motivating story.

    "there isn't anything else. I'm a painter. I paint with oils, but if you took my oils away from me, I would paint with watercolor. If you took my watercolor away from me I would paint with crayons and if you took the crayons away, I would draw with a pencil, and if you took away the pencil and threw me in a jail cell, I would bite my finger and paint on the wall in blood, because that's what I do."
     
  11. Sep 1, 2011 #10
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    24? You jest of course? I am 53. A practicing engineer in Aerospace. I intend to retire in 3 years. I am considering studying cosmology when I retire at 56 as a hobby and to keep my mind stimulated. When it comes to learning your never too old.
     
  12. Sep 1, 2011 #11
    Hey that's true. Yes I plan too once I pass Calculus which is a requirement for higher physics in my college. But the only thing stopping me from pursueing my dream is me hahaha don't let anyone tell you that 'you cant' and follow your dreams. And your right about aiming and focus. And don't forget consistency too, its part of it. Goodluck my friend.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2011
  13. Sep 1, 2011 #12
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Start by taking some intro courses on calculus and newtonian mechanics, and you might want to teach yourself computer programming. It's both useful for following a crazy dream, and also extremely practical.

    Something that you can do is to go onto Amazon and buy a graduate level textbook on cosmology or go into the Los Alamos preprint server and download some papers. You likely won't understand them. However, getting to the point where you are literate in math will take you about three to four years of work, and it turns out to be useful for a ton of other things.
     
  14. Sep 1, 2011 #13
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    You are very unlikely to get a job as a research professor. This is because anyone that goes to graduate school is unlikely to get a job as a research professor. You'll probably won't starve, but you should read the thread of other people that have gotten their Ph.D.
     
  15. Sep 1, 2011 #14
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Also one thing that you really need to do is to get involved in real research. You may find that when you are involved in real research that you hate it... or not.... There is a big difference between watching someone run a marathon and doing it yourself. One other analogy is mountain climbing. It's really cool to see snapshots from the peak of a mountain, but it's a *PAIN* to get there, and in real life, you don't even know if you are climbing the right mountain.

    Also, prepare yourself for extreme frustration. One of the more painful things about trying to figure out the secrets of the universe is the knowledge that you won't be able to figure it out. People have been trying to figure out a unified field theory for close to a 100 years, and it's hard, and one reason that it takes a long time is to go over everything that people have tried that just doesn't work, and it's very likely that after going over all of that, you'll come up with something that also just doesn't work.

    One reason why it's good to take a class on calculus and Newtonian mechanics, is to see what you reaction is. If you take a class on Newtonian mechanics, and your reaction is, "hey, this is interesting" then you'll likely do fine. If you take that sort of class and your reaction is "when are we getting to the good stuff?" then someone needs to tell you that you are working the good stuff.

    When you are working on idea #1, it's easy to be enthusiastic. It's much harder when you are working on idea #532.
     
  16. Sep 2, 2011 #15
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Thanks. You work as a engineer in Aerospace. So you have already enough knowledge to study cosmology. Cool.
     
  17. Sep 2, 2011 #16
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Thank you very much.~:rofl:
     
  18. Sep 2, 2011 #17
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Actually I always love maths and classical machanics. I still study calculus at home. I bought Feynman's lectures on physics. Cuz that book isnt so hard for me. I tried to learn some cosmology in the open course in the Internet. But I was stuck in the Algebra linear which I have never learnt. Although everyday I have to face some difficulty, Im still passionate.

    Thanks for your sincere words.
     
  19. Sep 2, 2011 #18
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    If you can do calculus, you can probably learn linear algebra.

    The big difficulty I think you will face is when it becomes obvious that you just will not be able to figure out the beginning of the universe because the data is not there, and you find yourself restricted to things that you can figure out. The big topic of research right is galaxy formation. We just don't have enough data to piece together what happened before Planck's time, but we likely do have enough data to figure out how galaxies formed.

    Also, one thing that I wonder is where this connection between physics and passion came from.
     
  20. Sep 2, 2011 #19
    Re: Should I study cosmology? Am I too old??

    Yes, you are right. Perhaps I haven't got real problem yet. I have to think again if Im not able to solve those hard questions, will I still love it...I really dont know..
     
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