Nuclear Chicanery in ‘Batman Vs. Superman’

What a headache. I watched “Batman vs. Superman” last night and it was kind of painful. I will admit right out that I liked some parts of that movie, but quite a lot of it I did not. If you haven’t seen the movie, beware, there will be some *SPOILERS* here. The reason I’m bringing […]

Schwinging the Pendulum

Masses on springs get a lot of use in physics; you see them early in that first year of introductory classical mechanics with Hooke’s law and they come back over and over again after that. Physicists are fond of saying that basically everything in reality reduces to a mass on a spring if you squint […]

The Question of How You Build a Black Hole

‘If Ant-man can’t do it, how does it happen?’ After I finished working on that post yesterday, I was left with this question. It’s kind of a squirrelly question if you stop and think about it. I made an argument by Uncertainty Principle that particles can’t be compressed into such a tiny space in order […]

Hank Pym is not the deadliest Marvel Superhero ‘Because Blackholes’

I was reading blog articles as I was wont to do and I stumbled over a blog entry on ScreenRant about the deadliest Marvel superheroes. Most of the article is very tongue and cheek and can be taken with a grain of salt. I felt no alarm until I read the #1 entry placing Hank […]

Angular momentum by harmonic oscillator

I’ve been thinking about Sakurai problem 3.19 for the past few days. The problem reads: 19.) What is the physical significance of the operators K+ ≡ a+†a-†        and       K- ≡ a+a- in Schwinger’s Scheme for angular momentum? Give nonvanishing matrix elements of K± I’m not sure I completely understand this problem yet. The ‘a’ operators […]

How Quantum Mysticism Slips Free of the Math

(Subtitle: How I’m still seething after reading about Quantum University and seeing a bunch of boobs calling themselves ‘quantum physicists.’) After finishing that previous post, I realized that I still have more to say about the topic. I’ve actually read quite a bit from quantum cranks before and the topic never fails to inflame me. […]

Grade A crankery at Quantum University

It would be accurate to call me a skeptic. There’s no intention in me to use this blog to debunk the overwhelming quantity of crap floating around the internet, but sometimes, I just need to open my mouth. Such an inspiration hit me while reading Respectful Insolence. In that post, Orac is talking about a […]

Spherical Harmonics and State Rotation

Working my way through Sakurai problem 3.18. I spent quite a bit of time thinking about how exactly to interpret the math that underlies this problem. Here’s the problem as written in my notebook: “18.) Consider an orbital angular momentum eigenstate |l=2, m=0>. Suppose this state is rotated by an angle beta about the y-axis. […]