Thursday, December 3, 2009

thought experiment - BOY! that Einstein sure was smart

So.. You probably have heard of Einstein’s theory of relativity. It sounds very simple but in reality, it describes how every atom of mass, every force of gravity and almost anything else works.

This includes:
• Time travel and warping from one place to another
         With the help of gravitational waves and black holes which make ‘time warps’ because they are so strong that they warp time and space.
• Light
• Atomic principals for generating energy and bombs
• The universe, space, time and everything else you can think of probably.

Most people recognize E=MC2 which is one EXTREMELY tiny part of his works and even that short equation is super-complicated (let me know if you want to know what all it describes).. Almost all science fiction is based on his works including Star Trek’s warp speed, Worm Holes, Black Holes, Time Travel and etc.


It was said that Albert forgot to do anything with his hair and never worried about his clothes. People described him as ‘famously sloppy’.. Most people also described him as goofy or absent minded.. In reality, his brain was so involved with things that scientists STILL don’t understand (50+ years later) that he couldn’t be bothered with little things like dressing himself or remembering peoples names.

Super-brief History
• Einstein was born in 1879
• Died in 1955 (76 years old)
• Published his theory of special relativity in 1905 at 26 years old (I am almost 30).
• Published his theory of general relativity in 1915 at 36 years old
• After his death, his brain was taken out and stored. After FINALLY being found, it was studied to try and find out why he was such a genius. (

Super smart History

It is one thing to sit and use your imagination to come up with theories about how things work.. It is quite another to do what Einstein did. He used VERY complex math to find missing things in the standard theories of the time and then used math and other things to explain what is probably missing.

A GREAT example of that are black holes. He noticed that our solar system is orbiting around the milky way along with all the other stars in our galaxy.. He knew there HAD to be something with a LOT of gravity at the center of our galaxy to be affecting that many stars and all their planets.. He did the math for how much mass something would have to have (how big it is) for the gravity to be that strong but couldn’t make his math work out.. He couldn’t find anything in the universe big enough to have that kind of gravity so he began to come up with theories about what else could be there.

He used his knowledge of atomic energy to figure out what happens at the end of a stars life.. A star (like our sun) is a careful balance of atomic conversions or explosions and gravity.. Too much atomic energy and a star would blow itself up.. Not enough and it would collapse. He found out (with math) that when a star uses up all of the fuel for those explosions, it collapses in on itself.. The result was that he predicted an object which we now call a black hole.

Keep in mind that he did all this stuff in 1905.. The first “computer” is generally believed to be the “eniac” created in 1942.. 37 years after Einstein did all that math!!!!!

Exactly how smart was he? (This blows my mind)

This article states that a new computer animation model of 2 black holes merging proves that Einstein is probably right about something new; the existence of ‘gravitational waves’. (You can read the article to find out what they are.)

The excitement about the computer model is because this is the first one to work.. All other attempts to create this model have resulted in crashing the computers they put the model on. The math that Einstein used (50+ years ago) was too complex for even computers made recently!!!

“Previous simulations of black hole mergers were plagued by crashes because they used translations of Einstein's general relativity equations too complex for even the most sophisticated computers.”

Einstein used ‘tensor calculus’.. A type of mathematics SO complex that it can’t even be programmed directly into a computer.. People have to translate that math into something a machine can handle just like people translate from one language to another!!!

To me, this stuff proves that even though there are times we are all a bit silly, there is absolutely no limit to what you can learn and do.. All you have to do is find the things that are interesting to you. (space is obviously one of mine)..

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