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Whats left in physics to discover

  1. Dec 28, 2013 #1
    Before I begin this thread, I will go ahead and tell you I do not have much experience in the field of physics. However in the past month I have done some independent studies in the field. But back to the topic...

    Aristotle long ago said "The only thing I know for sure, is that I truly know nothing at all", but how much of this is true? Personally I live life by this quote but does anyone have a PHD in any branch in physics? Or do we have a theoretical physicist( employed )? If so, what is their that physicist do not understand in physics today? This will come as an opinion but if someone could provide an answer it would really truly help me out. Not a philosophical question here. Is their a specific part we do not know much about? Not looking for a philosophical answer either.

    Also, I have read fusion energy is soon to be active. I predict this will bring the need for physicists up. Does anyone have information on this?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 28, 2013 #2
    Theoretical physics is basically just a mathematical framework that models what we observe in the natural world. It's just a model, and like every other model it can be improved upon.

    Classical mechanics is pretty figured out but there is still research in the field today (mostly in mechanical engineering departments) to improve upon these models.

    Quantum mechanics does not make sense intuitively and there are different formulations, so there is obviously still research going on to better understand and model the quantum world.

    The same goes for relativity, electromagnetism, thermodynamics, continuum mechanics, and many other branches of physics. These models can always be improved upon to make them more accurate. Maybe one day we will accurately model every phenomena...

    A huge goal in theoretical physics is to devise a "Theory of Everything" which mathematically connects the four fundamental forces of nature, and therefore describe all phenomena in nature from the most basic perspective.

    Anyways, to answer your question, theoretical physicists can always improve upon their models.

    I have a quote similar to yours... "I have approximate answers and possible beliefs and different degrees of certainty about different things, but I'm not absolutely sure about anything." - Richard Feynman
  4. Dec 29, 2013 #3
    no to go in much detail but I think Aristotle is still right and will be for quite frankly a very long time , even though we think we know much we know very little , our theories are incomplete and there is still very very much to understand and learn.
    as you mentioned fusion , we could say energy in gereral, Like new ways and forms of energy , that alone is a major thing we still haven't fully accomplished , as the older resources are dying out but the new ones are yet only at the experimental stage , like fusion , and since our modern way of life is 100% energy dependant , I think we have a lot of work to do if we want to survive.
  5. Dec 29, 2013 #4


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    Staff: Mentor

    The only possible answer I can think of that makes any sense is, "We don't know."
  6. Dec 29, 2013 #5
    in the long run absolutely drakkith
  7. Dec 29, 2013 #6
    But to answer my question, will the advancement in fusion energy draw the need for physicists?
  8. Dec 29, 2013 #7
    What I know is that physicists still don't understand quantum mechanics which doesn't go Along with our normal thinking
  9. Dec 29, 2013 #8
    The more you know the more you really realize that you don't know nothing and the more you don't know the more you think that you know everything
  10. Dec 29, 2013 #9
    Eevery new advancment brings new minds to it , the question is rather how many of them are capable of solving the problem not just wanting or working on it.
  11. Dec 29, 2013 #10
    new tool for measuring astrological dimention
  12. Dec 29, 2013 #11
    Does anyone know why we don't use fusion energy today?
  13. Dec 29, 2013 #12
    because we don't fully know how to, but there are some designs and people working on it.

    if you want to see more go to google and type in fusion research or fusion power and so on and see for yourself.
  14. Dec 29, 2013 #13
    no way to control and contain the reactions.
  15. Dec 29, 2013 #14
    here are a few quick thoughts....

    How do we control the weather.
    How do we make accurate long term weather forecasts.
    What factors affect long term climate variations on earth, like ice ages and subsequent warming periods?
    How can we economically travel to the outmost reaches of space and return in reasonable times.
    How can we economically raise payloads off earth for space travel.
    Can we build a functioning space elevator.
    Why are the 17 or so experimental values of the standard model of particle physics what we observe...say the charge of the electron or the mass of particles.
    How do we complete the standard model.
    How can we control gravity.
    How do we get economical energy from the sun? from the oceans?
    What are the physical processes required for consciousnous?
    How can we make computers with the abilities of the human brain.
    Where did this universe come from?
    Where is this universe going?
    Are there other universes?
    How can we get to other universes if they exist?
    How can we tell they are safe for us to travel?

    Not that I trust their projections, but the US bureau of labor statistics [I think that's the department] issues periodic projections of jobs in the US. doctors, engineers, nurses....etc....
    But of course they are usually about as accurate as weather forecasts. I've seen them online.
  16. Dec 29, 2013 #15
    Just a little add to what you said Naty1,

    I don't think personally that nay artificial chip no matter how complex and advanced will ever react and think like a human , because how do you make a robot feel emotions like we feel them or music like we feel them , not just some preprogrammed analyzing but a real feeling , I'm sure you know what I mean.

    But any other than that I think there is room for computers to advance even in terms of processing power and various applications.
  17. Dec 29, 2013 #16
    Emotions are easy to implement, money is the hard part.
  18. Dec 29, 2013 #17
    them emotions:
    bad enough in us, catastrophic in machines.

    Imagine getting into your car, you ready to go to work, your car really emotional because, well
    maybe cold outside or cold in the garage or maybe oil change overdue,whatever, you do not wan that machine sassin' back at u. driver rage is for us human peoples!

    Or you are in a space ship and encounter aliens....really bade dudes...you do NOT want your machines going all emotional....you can handle that!!
  19. Dec 29, 2013 #18
    These forums have been overrun by kids ages 10 - 15....... I thought most kids these days were more interested in video games. You could at least spell right!!
  20. Dec 29, 2013 #19
    " them emotions " do you reread what you type before you send?
  21. Dec 29, 2013 #20
    cmoon chill down :D:D:D Naty1 is not a kid looking at his info page at his profile says some things , but you didn't bother to look those up did you? , he was just making a joke , yet you didn't understand it and are now insulting him , whose the " intellectual" here ?
  22. Dec 29, 2013 #21
    A sense of humor will benefit you greatly.
    The literary formality: 'irony'
  23. Dec 29, 2013 #22
    Whose the "intellectual here"????? Errr thats not how you use that word.
  24. Dec 29, 2013 #23
    If you are looking to make jokes, go to the jokes forums.
  25. Dec 29, 2013 #24
    Brainlike computers, learning from their own mistakes:


  26. Dec 29, 2013 #25
    Let's stay on topic guys!!!!
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