two things

I've got seven minutes left on my coffee break before I need to plough through my to-do list to make a dentist appointment, but I've missed you, and wanted to write a quick love note.

Thing the first: I got a new tattoo to celebrate the completion of my next book. Cesium would have been more meaningful, but also more painful. I went with lithium to ward off the crazy. It isn't working.



Thing the second: After my horrible experiences in online dating, I decided to further abuse myself with OKCupid. I did end up on some lovely dates so far, but felt the need to share the following instant message with you, so we may all have a good cry:

(5:01:50 pm) Him: you are awesome

(5:02:25 pm) Me: thanks?

(5:02:50 pm) Him: wat you like chatting about?

(5:03:41 pm) Me: physics

(5:04:18 pm) Him: ok. i am cool with that. i used to watch the physic friend network with dione warwick

(5:04:36 pm) Me: WOW.

(5:04:53 pm) Him: do you think physics can predict the future?

Okey dokey! So with that, I'm off to the awful to-do list. Away.

10 thoughts on “two things”

  1. well, that last one is a valid question as written. while quantum field theory (at least my experience with it) is excellent at predicting things like the electron’s magnetic moment, it’s not so much predicting the future. i suppose general relativity is closer in that you can extract geodesics, which will give you trajectories. still, that’s a fairly limited portion of the future.

  2. I was on OKCupid as well – Its just as bad. I’ll reiterate that unfortunately – you really do get what you pay for. The pay websites do a really good job of filtering out the crazy and less than intelligent people out there.

  3. The first tattoo I’ve ever seen that I’ve liked….! As for the email exchange…I’m recovering from a prostate operation and it’s done wonders for my morale…still chuckling!!

  4. Anonymous Coward

    I’m with Terryp! Your confused suitor stumbled across a very insightful question. I’d say the primary goal of any theory of physics is to develop a mathematical formalism to describe the current state of the physical system under consideration and a mathematical formalism for propagating that forward in time. Whether or not the theory properly describes the future (insert caveats about chaos and computational complexity) is an essential test for any theory of physics.
    I’m perplexed by the Li tattoo. I understand why the nucleus wouldn’t be drawn to scale (so as to make it visible), and why the electron orbits would be drawn classically (it’s hard to draw overlapping 3-D wavefunctions), but I’m still confused about what’s going on with the electron orbits. They all appear to have nonzero orbital angular momentum and similar radii. Have the two s-shell electrons been promoted to p-shell orbits? That’s a mighty exotic state, as it’s difficult to excite and I’d expect it to ionize on sub-ns timescales. That’s a pretty cool state to get.

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