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What should i do to learn general relativity

  1. Aug 16, 2005 #1
    i want to learn general relativity and do research in this field but i have not yet learned maths required for GR.so i wanted to know whether i can make enough money to buy a sports car. i mean i m not interested in this things but my parents expect that i live this kinda lifestyle. should i do research for a phd or for my own satisfaction not material satisfaction.but i m really looking forward to learn general relativity after i complete my high school. i want to do research but not like this that i have to submit a few research papers in the given months.should i do my own independent research. i dont know but when i see the equations of GR i fell like knowing them really and thats why i m really interested .i dont have an ambition of making my name famous in this field but i want to do it just for my satisfaction.but again my parents dont expect this
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 16, 2005 #2
    I advise that you learn all the introductory level physics first, and worry about General Relativity when the time comes. Get down classical mechanics, electromagnetism and quantum mechanics, and take math courses in topology and differential geometry as extras to your standard math load.

    As for learning GR, the best introduction in my opinion in the Schutz, which will teach you the basics of everything you need. Also, at around $40, it's a good deal. After you get that book down (probably near the end of your undergraduate career) you should probably tackle the Misner, Thorne and Wheeler. By then you'll be almost if not already a graduate student, and ready to start doing serious research in the subject in a year or two.

    Something you need to have with regards to physics is a lot of patience. You will not be qualified to immediately start doing cutting edge work once you get to college. Nobody is. Just take your undergraduate course load and get ready for graduate school.
  4. Aug 16, 2005 #3
    And you can make plenty of money as a physicist in the US.
    Average starting salary is around 80k.

    considering that a decent second hand ferrari costs about 50k then you will make your parents happy.
  5. Aug 17, 2005 #4
    well see i m in a high school and as u said malleus the levels i have to complete to learn general realtivity i m really looking forward to doing this .i dont want to jump directly to the GR but the maths that it requires really excites me.i dont know why but i really want to learn topology and manifolds kinda thing. but i dont have patience and i m also bored listening to the stupid lectures in my school.
  6. Aug 17, 2005 #5
    to robousy
    well see robousy i from india and i wanted to know how can i get admission in some university in ur country USA on basis of some scholarship which can take on college fees. i mean no fees or very little fees. and further i would like to do phd and do research .please help me in this matter
  7. Aug 17, 2005 #6


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    Staff: Mentor

    Learn how to play some sport very very well, preferably basketball or American-style football. I think many more people here get full scholarships for athletics than for academics, unfortunately. :frown:
  8. Aug 17, 2005 #7
    Learning physics is ultimately a game of patience. You have to work your way up to subjects; if you don't do this then you just get horribly confused and gain little from the experience.
  9. Aug 17, 2005 #8
    Most Indian folks in the US are here on academic ground and not on athletic. Especially the engineering department. So make sure you are an outstanding student in India and apply for grad school in the US and you can get funded.
  10. Aug 17, 2005 #9


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    Homework Helper

    you guys have to be joking. relativity research and sports cars in the same sentence?
  11. Aug 17, 2005 #10
    If you think the lectures in your school are 'stupid', maybe you should reanalyse your goal in careers. While they are not teaching what you like, they *are* teacher essentials which are required in later lif, in whatever discipline.

    Specialised 'topology and manifolds' are specialised teaching courses, and when i mean specialised, i don;t mean dumbed down.

    ''i dont want to jump directly to the GR but the maths that it requires really excites me''

    Then you are being ambiguous in your whole post.

    Have patience in your learning. While they may seem exciting, they also require having your basics concrete solid.
  12. Aug 18, 2005 #11

    well i understand that bladibla that i need a solid foundation in my basic mathematics which is taught in schools and i m good at it. by stupid teachers i mean they dont go deep into the problems and do just simple i mean really simple problems. the main problem with me is that in india people by people i mean my family appreciates theoretical physicist for their intelligence but money creates the main problem.
    also tell who makes more money computer engineer or theoretical physicist which contains lots of maths
  13. Aug 20, 2005 #12
    many people like to see things such as GR or quantum mechanics as the "fun physics" and the rest as "the boring stuff you learn in school".

    If you really like physics, you're going to like working on problems regardless of which field does it belong to. That's the fun part about doing physics, you can spend 3 hours working on a problem but its not going to get you near a nobel prize.

    By the way, have a positive attitude towards learning the basics in math and classical physics, it can be a very rewarding experience. Instead of being something "i have to do so i can understand GR", it can really hone our problem solving skills and physical intuition. What makes us think we can visualize the event horizon of a black hole when even we have difficulty thinking about spring systems?
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2005
  14. Aug 20, 2005 #13
    Man, GR is BOOOOORING, you are better of studying Britney's semiconductor course

    This will also provide you with a better future...financially that is ... :wink:

  15. Aug 20, 2005 #14
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