Friday Physics #1

By request (!), starting today, I'm opening up the floor to any and all random science-y questions on a weekly basis. Want to know if that random tidbit thrown out on a Saturday morning cartoon is accurate? Want to know how a f***ing magnet works? (Only ask Feynman if you want a deep discussion of the word "Why".)

The fine print:

  • I promise to do my best to answer in the clearest way possible (it's good teaching practice), but call me out if I throw out too much jargon/numbers/etc, and I'll try to re-phrase it.
  • I don't promise to know everything (duh!) and may make use of google (I do this all the time in my classes — am I really supposed to know the half-life of cobalt in the bloodstream off the top of my head?!). But I'll take what I find and synthesize it into a nice little nugget of information.
  • I am also currently scrambling to get ready for a brand new course starting next week, so while I will be watching this thread all afternoon, expect there to be long pauses where I get distracted by actual work.
  • There may be cats.