Wave-Particle Duality

It did not cause anxiety that Maxwell's equations did not apply to gravitation, since nobody expected to find any link between electricity and gravitation at that particular level. But now physics was faced with an entirely new situation. The same entity, light, was at once a wave and a particle. How could one possibly imagine its proper size and shape? To produce interference it must be spread out, but to bounce off electrons it must be minutely localized. This was a fundamental dilemma, and the stalemate in the wave-photon battle meant that it must remain an enigma to trouble the soul of every true physicist. It was intolerable that light should be two such contradictory things. It was against all the ideals and traditions of science to harbor such an unresolved dualism gnawing at its vital parts. Yet the evidence on either side could not be denied, and much water was to flow beneath the bridges before a way out of the quandary was to be found. The way out came as a result of a brilliant counterattack initiated by the wave theory, but to tell of this now would spoil the whole story. It is well that the reader should appreciate through personal experience the agony of the physicists of the period. They could but make the best of it, and went around with woebegone faces sadly complaining that on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays they must look on light as a wave; on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, as a particle. On Sundays they simply prayed.


The trouble with conceptualizing it.

Folksonomies: physics

/science/physics (0.623665)
/science (0.331517)
/technology and computing/software/shareware and freeware (0.315168)

unresolved dualism gnawing (0.906092 (negative:-0.330721)), entirely new situation (0.886592 (negative:-0.376296)), Wave-Particle Duality (0.766510 (negative:-0.628907)), contradictory things (0.677739 (negative:-0.656362)), particular level (0.676035 (negative:-0.508527)), woebegone faces (0.675852 (negative:-0.425585)), brilliant counterattack (0.672357 (positive:0.227080)), proper size (0.662337 (positive:0.419938)), fundamental dilemma (0.658115 (positive:0.356283)), wave theory (0.650826 (positive:0.227080)), true physicist (0.649650 (negative:-0.266602)), wave-photon battle (0.635439 (negative:-0.266602)), vital parts (0.625388 (negative:-0.330721)), personal experience (0.608129 (positive:0.399991)), gravitation (0.481280 (negative:-0.405667)), light (0.479662 (negative:-0.656362)), quandary (0.406487 (negative:-0.214883)), trouble (0.403456 (negative:-0.628907)), stalemate (0.403194 (negative:-0.266602)), way (0.398519 (positive:0.012197)), electrons (0.389134 (negative:-0.496831)), interference (0.380679 (negative:-0.489448)), Maxwell (0.378606 (negative:-0.302807)), agony (0.375205 (positive:0.399991)), entity (0.375080 (neutral:0.000000)), Sundays (0.375002 (neutral:0.000000)), enigma (0.373218 (negative:-0.266602)), ideals (0.372026 (negative:-0.330721)), anxiety (0.369708 (negative:-0.302807)), Fridays (0.369563 (neutral:0.000000))

woebegone:City (0.823891 (negative:-0.425585)), Maxwell:Person (0.801923 (negative:-0.302807)), physicist:JobTitle (0.741983 (negative:-0.266602))

Quantum mechanics (0.952283): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Light (0.894152): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Electron (0.827953): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Thomas Young (0.631450): dbpedia | freebase | yago
Maxwell's equations (0.620645): dbpedia | freebase | yago
Electromagnetic radiation (0.610726): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Wave–particle duality (0.566413): dbpedia | freebase | yago
Wave (0.512585): dbpedia | freebase

 The strange story of the quantum
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Hoffmann , Banesh (1959-06-01), The strange story of the quantum, Dover Pubns, Retrieved on 2012-06-05
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  • Folksonomies: science


    25 AUG 2012

     Science Koans

    Riddles and paradoxes of existence that might crack your noodle on which to meditate.
    Folksonomies: meditation koan riddle
    Folksonomies: meditation koan riddle