Tag Archives: Physics

Morgan Freeman Explains Physics to The Daily Show’s Jon Stewart

A few nights ago, Morgan Freeman was on The Daily Show promoting his new movie that comes out next week, “Now You See Me.” There’s a science-fiction part to the movie, but that’s not how we ended up with Morgan Freeman explaining physics to Jon Stewart. Morgan Freeman is also a narrator for “Through the Wormhole” on the Discovery Channel. As a result, Freeman knows (at least a little!) about science. I remember getting pretty psyched when I was watching the show live a few nights ago and Freeman says, “It’s easy, I’ll explain it to you,” when referring to concepts from physics. Anyhow, I tried to embed the clip below, but it seems you can’t embed Comedy Central clips on WordPress, so I found a version of the interview on YouTube. It’ll be here until it, invariably, gets taken down from YouTube.

I wanted to talk briefly about one of the examples that Freeman used: the balloon. Several years ago, I saw some videos of a physicist — Nassim Haramein — and they were captivating, to say the least. The way that he presents the material makes it seem very logical, but my scientific literacy isn’t such that I’d be able to say he was right or he was wrong. I know that Haramein’s partnered with one of the big names in science, but like I said, I don’t have the scientific literacy to debunk anything.

From looking on the internet, it seems that a number of people don’t think that Haramein has stumbled onto anything and a number of people do think that he’s stumbled onto something. Like I said, I really don’t know, but I do remember Haramein using the same balloon example that Freeman used in talking to Jon Stewart. You’ve seen the Freeman clip above, so I’ll embed a clip of Haramein talking about the balloon. This video has more in it than just the balloon, so I’ve set the video to start at the time when Haramein begins to talk about the balloon (short intro into it). You can probably stop watching around 37:30 to get the gist of the point I’m making.

Pretty cool, eh?

When I lived on Kauai, I did have the chance to meet with Haramein a few times and he certainly seems like a nice guy. We never chewed on science concepts, but I probably wouldn’t have been able to keep up for too long. If you’re interested in Haramein’s work, I’d urge you to look into his new website: The Resonance Project. It looks like he’s got a new movie coming out called: The Connected Universe. He also has a couple of other movies: Crossing the Event Horizon and Black Whole. If you watched the clip above, you saw a short snippet of Crossing the Event Horizon. There are 4 DVDs in the set. If you don’t have that kind of time, you might want to start with Black Whole — it’s only about an hour and a half.

 

Trying to Form a New Habit: Take a Vacation

Have you ever wanted to make changes in your life, but haven’t been able to stick to those changes? What about a New Year’s Resolution? If I’m being honest, there have been changes that I’ve tried to make that I haven’t been able to keep up. However, I think I may have discovered a trick to making it easier to stick to a new habit. (Truth be told, I’m probably not the first person to make this discovery, but I don’t remember reading it in any of the literature on habit-forming and/or making changes. Of course, that doesn’t mean that it isn’t.)

There have been some new habits that I’ve tried to form over the past couple of weeks. One of those habits is practicing French. (I’m Canadian and I think I ought to know both of the national languages. Plus, it makes good sense to be able to speak more than one language and since I had some training in French, I thought it was the best one to start with.) Anyways, I’ve tried to practice French. At least once I day, I make a point to practice French. Although, this hasn’t been as easy as I thought it would be.

If you’ve ever tried to create a new habit, you know what it’s like: you’re used to doing certain things throughout your day and as a result, it can be difficult to try to squeeze something else into the day — even if you’ve removed some of the other things that you used to do!

I recently returned from a trip this past Monday. As a result, I thought that this was a perfect time to try and carry out a new routine. Having been away from my “regular” routine for the last 10+ days, I can now impose a new routine. I’ve only been doing it for a few days, but so far, it’s been working great. If we look at it from a physics standpoint, it makes sense. The way I went about my day was an “object in motion,” and until that “object in motion” was acted upon, it was going to maintain its course. My attempts to affect its course weren’t strong enough to move that object in motion, but when I left the country, the object was acted upon strongly enough. Inertia is also another concept that applies here. Inertia is the idea that an object will resist a change to its state of motion (or rest).

So, if you’re trying to make some changes in your life, consider going on vacation or getting out of town for a few days to shakeup your routine. It just may be the change you need to make the change you need!