Saturday, December 26, 2009

Physics Quote of the Day (December 20 - December 26)

"If we look at the fact, we shall find that the great inventions of the age are not, with us at least, always produced in universities." Charles Babbage, born 26 December 1791.

"The light microscope opened the first gate to microcosm. The electron microscope opened the second gate to microcosm. What will we find opening the third gate?" Ernst Ruska, born 25 December 1906.

"My object has been, first to discover correct principles and then to suggest their practical development." James Prescott Joule, born 24 December 1818.

"You cannot possess the truth, you can only search for it." Albert Jacquard, born 23 December 1925.

"This fact, that all charges are integral multiples of a fundamental unit, is still one of the unexplained puzzles of fundamental physics. It does not in any way contradict electromagnetic theory, but it is not predicted by it, and until we have a more fundamental theory that explains it, we shall not feel that we really understand electromagnetic phenomena thoroughly. Presumably its explanation will not come until we understand quantum theory more thoroughly than we do at present." John Clarke Slater, born 22 December 1900.

"A surprising number of physicists are into mountain hiking, and the combination of strenuous physical activity, fresh mountain air and breathtaking views of the Alps is useful to physicists because it is such a contrast to sitting at a table doing calculations." Cecile DeWitt Morette, born 21 December 1922.

"Of course, we must avoid postulating a new element for each new phenomenon. But an equally serious mistake is to admit into the theory only those elements which can now be observed. For the purpose of a theory is not only to correlate the results of observations that we already know how to make, but also to suggest the need for new kinds of observations and to predict their results. In fact, the better a theory is able to suggest the need for new kinds of observations and to predict their results correctly, the more confidence we have that this theory is likely to be good representation of the actual properties of matter and not simply an empirical system especially chosen in such a way as to correlate a group of already known facts." David Bohm, born 20 December 1917.

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