Saturday, July 07, 2007

Physics and Attractive Forces

Last night I went to a physics talk. Microkelvins. Matter waves. All that. The audience totally grilled the speaker, asking about packings of atoms and molecules at low temperatures, measuring the energy of a vortex in the material, the implications of this work for materials at higher temperatures.

Something about a physics talk brings out this type of speculative question about the way the world should be.

Partway through the talk a guy wandered in and sat near the end of a row. I had assumed that he was a colleague meeting the speaker after the talk.


At the end, the guy asks me if this was for a class. (No.) He tells me that he came to campus to see the film being shown in 26-100 but it wasn't there so he came to 10-250 to see if the film was there. Instead: phyiscs. He listened to the end of the talk and afterwards started asking other attendees about the beginning of the talk and trying to talk physics with them.

Everybody wants to talk about physics.