Critical Section


gravitational waves

Thursday,  02/11/16  09:29 PM

gravitational wavesPretty cool, huh?  So we've detected gravitational waves, but what are they?  NASA attempts to answer, here.  The NY Times also does a nice job with a video, here.

This rabbit hole is pretty deep.  Normally with "waves" you think of things moving in time.  But ... what if the waves are time itself?  Yeah.  Whoa.

Anyway it's great that we have further confirmation, if any were needed, that Einstein's 100-year-old theory of the universe is correct.  I don't think this is quite as surprising or momentous as a lot of news reports make out...  we've had a long time now to confirm this theory in all its aspects, and have found zero counter-examples.  It would have been surprising if the absence of gravitational waves had been proved, but of course it is hard to prove a negative. 

Missing from all the breathless reports is any new implication.  I find experiments which yield new implications to be more interesting than those which confirm existing ones.

Well anyway it was fun, and the diagrams are cool.  Onward!

 

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