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0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:08 am UTC
by IceCat
Image

Alt-text: 'The LINACs in the glasses frames can barely manage one MeV. You should have gone to the screening at CERN.'

The middle pane is in awesome 3D! :D

Re: 0774: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:10 am UTC
by Caffeine
Awesome :)

Wrong comic number in the title by the way...

Re: 0774: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:10 am UTC
by Retsam
An original topic post without any individual remark?

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:22 am UTC
by ysth
I've never been to a 3D "movie"...are those buckets to hurl in they have?

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:25 am UTC
by Unknownlight
Amazing.

I actually fully understood this comic, without having to look up anything.
That's rare.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:26 am UTC
by Tyrannosaur
no those are the cupholders. I used to be wary of 3d movies, but saw tron a couple weeks ago. and now 3d is totally awesome. (when its not rolled up really small...)

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:37 am UTC
by meat.paste
Huzzah! That was a funny comic.

Oh wait. I meant "my mother was killed once in an accident involving a linear accelerator and time machine. Not funny. Not a good comic" or something like that.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:44 am UTC
by soren121
Had to do a bit of research on string theory to get this one. Nice con, Black Hat Guy!

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 5:56 am UTC
by willpellmn
How exactly anyone takes that idea of a "rolled up dimension" seriously I don't know. It seems like a pretty obvious "the math doesn't work out so let's make up some nonsense about how it does and assume people less smart than us will believe it" to me. And why exactly did they decide exactly 11 dimensions anyway? Once you've got your basic 3 space and 1+ time dimensions, what are the other 7 or less for? Again, seems like they just made up a number at random..."Well, nobody's doing 11 of anything, how about that?"

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:13 am UTC
by Tyrannosaur
willpellmn wrote:How exactly anyone takes that idea of a "rolled up dimension" seriously I don't know. It seems like a pretty obvious "the math doesn't work out so let's make up some nonsense about how it does and assume people less smart than us will believe it" to me. And why exactly did they decide exactly 11 dimensions anyway? Once you've got your basic 3 space and 1+ time dimensions, what are the other 7 or less for? Again, seems like they just made up a number at random..."Well, nobody's doing 11 of anything, how about that?"

sounds like you havent heard all that much about string theory. i would recommend actually reading about it before blasting it

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:19 am UTC
by CalculatingGod
That is cool.

Just sayin'.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:31 am UTC
by ijuin
Ok, the whole "rolled up dimensions" thing is best understood by starting from General Relativity. GR represents gravity as being functionally equivalent to our 4D spacetime being curved into a fifth dimension, with the amount of local curvature corresponding to the local gravitational field.

So, after GR was experimentally proven to be a more accurate description of gravity than the Newtonian model, physicists got the idea that the other three known fundamental forces (electromagnetism, the strong nuclear force, and the weak nuclear force) could likewise be modeled as curvature in a higher dimension. A non-physicist might assume that this would result in eight dimensions (4D spacetime plus one for each of the four forces), but it turned out that a minimum of ten were needed to make the equations internally self-consistent. Later, an eleventh dimension was added because this allowed the unification of several possible ten-dimensional models into a single model, with the 10D models each being a subset of it.

Now, this mathematical model is all very nice, but it raises a major question. If there are more than four dimensions in our universe, then why can't we observe objects moving through these other dimensions? The accepted answer to this question is that the freedom of movement in these dimensions is smaller than the uncertainty in our measurement of the position/energy of subatomic particles (i.e. too small to detect with existing equipment). This is part of why physicists are so eager to build ever-more-powerful particle accelerators--each new, more powerful accelerator will either produce proof of these extra dimensions, or else will lower the maximum limit on how "big" they can be (thus disproving theories that require the dimensions to be above a certain size).

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:33 am UTC
by dr7
3d didn't work for me as a kid with the ViewMaster. I don't expect 3d movies to be worth my time.

What's sad is that we seem to be heading in the direction of "every movie will be 3d, 2d is dead". And they'll lose me as a customer. Not that I went to many movies anyway, but whatever.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:38 am UTC
by phlip
ijuin wrote:Ok, the whole "rolled up dimensions" thing is best understood by starting from General Relativity. GR represents gravity as being functionally equivalent to our 4D spacetime being curved into a fifth dimension, with the amount of local curvature corresponding to the local gravitational field.

Not... really. A topology can be "curved" without being embedded within a higher-dimension space. It may be that embedding it makes it easier to visualise, but that doesn't make the embedding intrinsic to anything. If you simply removed the words "into a fifth dimension" from this paragraph, it would be accurate... but then, of course, the rest of the post wouldn't follow.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:42 am UTC
by ddxxdd
willpellmn wrote:How exactly anyone takes that idea of a "rolled up dimension" seriously I don't know


When you see ants in the distance crawling around what looks like a small 1-dimensional pipe, you can't see the other 2 dimensions that the ants are moving about. Furthermore, a 2-dimensional being can't fathom what 2-dimensional ants are doing when they're crawling up miniscule, 3-dimensional bumps. I can't find the video that demonstrated this visually, but trust me, the concept is simple

willpellmn wrote:It seems like a pretty obvious "the math doesn't work out so let's make up some nonsense about how it does and assume people less smart than us will believe it" to me.


There are very few times in science when the completed version of the math that includes all variables doesn't actually work out. Is the concept of "force" (mass * acceleration) made up nonsense? What about "impulse" (mass * velocity)?

The only assumption made by string theory is the part about strings- other than that, it explains virtually everything in physics. And considering that these strings are too small to be detected by light or to exert a force on subatomic particles, you can consider string theory to be tautological; some theoretically small entities exhibit some behavior (that may or may not be represented by strings) that create effects that cause existence as we know it.


willpellmn wrote:Once you've got your basic 3 space and 1+ time dimensions, what are the other 7 or less for? Again, seems like they just made up a number at random..."Well, nobody's doing 11 of anything, how about that?"


The story of how they got to 11 dimensions is nothing short of remarkable. One physicist/mathematician theorized that in order to explain subatomic particle behavior, 11 dimensions had to be assumed. Others said that there had to be 10, including several string theorists. However, there was much disagreement between the theorists about how strings vibrate, how they bond, and how they interact.

These disagreements led to the creation of 5 separate string theories, each with 10 dimensions but with drastically different assumptions about how strings worked.

Until 1 mathematician/physicist came up with a grand theory: that there 5 theories were all 1 single theory, and all the assumed differences in string behavior disappeared when you added 1 thing: an 11th dimension.

The 11th dimension solidified the framework for string theory.

The main criticism against string theory is that it is as yet untestable and too theoretical to make predictions. But once we get a particle accelerator powerful enough, a new era of physics will begin.








tl;dr: string theory's cool

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:44 am UTC
by black_hat_guy
All ideas in this work are purely theoretical philosophical. Any resemblance to actual consequences is entirely coincidental.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:50 am UTC
by Halrandir
ijuin wrote:Ok, the whole "rolled up dimensions" thing is best understood by starting from General Relativity ... or else will lower the maximum limit on how "big" they can be (thus disproving theories that require the dimensions to be above a certain size).


Interesting explanation, I'd never fully understood the need for these extra dimensions, but your post puts it well (to my mind, at least).

My question with all this is still: what is the point? I not usually that guy who challenges the need to know as much information as possible, but it seems like even if proof of these extra dimensions is discovered someday, is there any use we can put that knowledge to, or is the research just for the sake of letting academics and engineers scratch that intellectual itch that's been nagging them forever? (And if it's the latter, then why are we investing so many billions into bigger and bigger accelerators just to prove some equations right?) Like I said, I'm one of those people who loves to know as much as they can about everything, but this sometimes seems like my high school literature class studying Moby Dick; you can look for and find dozens of layers of meaning in the book, but if that one book doesn't do anything for you then why bother?

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:57 am UTC
by Tyrannosaur
Halrandir wrote:
ijuin wrote:Ok, the whole "rolled up dimensions" thing is best understood by starting from General Relativity ... or else will lower the maximum limit on how "big" they can be (thus disproving theories that require the dimensions to be above a certain size).


Interesting explanation, I'd never fully understood the need for these extra dimensions, but your post puts it well (to my mind, at least).

My question with all this is still: what is the point? I not usually that guy who challenges the need to know as much information as possible, but it seems like even if proof of these extra dimensions is discovered someday, is there any use we can put that knowledge to, or is the research just for the sake of letting academics and engineers scratch that intellectual itch that's been nagging them forever? (And if it's the latter, then why are we investing so many billions into bigger and bigger accelerators just to prove some equations right?) Like I said, I'm one of those people who loves to know as much as they can about everything, but this sometimes seems like my high school literature class studying Moby Dick; you can look for and find dozens of layers of meaning in the book, but if that one book doesn't do anything for you then why bother?


youre right. i cant see any reason to go beyond newton.
i mean, things get shorter as they get really fast?!?!
and what about that crazy theory with the "virtual particles" ?? that cant possibly have any practical use either...
http://xkcd.com/808/

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 7:15 am UTC
by Mazuku
For every Tron Legacy there will be a lot of '3D' movies which are just nit worth risking a headache for,

I hate how they are trying to make just about every movie 3D just so they can justify the sale of those bloody 3D TVs.

Only when they can make it that you wont get a headache, need special glasses and make movies where 3D really does add to it instead of just having stuff appear to fly at you... shit like that gets old very quick, only then will I be converted to 3D.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 7:17 am UTC
by XbHW_TestEngr
Having only taken 1 modern physics course (intro to quantum mechanics), I remember the euphoria of reading articles on string theory and being able to understand (portions of) the math. The intervening brain injury (car crash --> total loss of my technical language (knew the concept of a capacitor, but couldn't remember the name or the defining equation)) means I don't remember the math, but I remember a few of the concepts.

Very cool, Lot's of fun!

I'm grinning like a fool. Randall - THANK YOU!

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 7:19 am UTC
by black_hat_guy
Tyrannosaur wrote:
youre right. i cant see any reason to go beyond newton.
i mean, things get shorter as they get really fast?!?!
and what about that crazy theory with the "virtual particles" ?? that cant possibly have any practical use either...
http://xkcd.com/808/

There is definitely reason to go beyond Newton. Something getting shorter as it goes faster is part of special relativity, which, as the comic you linked says, must be taken into account to have accurate GPS's. Discovering virtual particles allowed us to create a pion, which might be discovered to have some use we don't yet know about. There is still a lot of science that will have practical applications. Just not string theory.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 7:20 am UTC
by meatyochre
Sexy shading

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 7:25 am UTC
by rpgamer
I read the first panel, got a little distracted by something, and still started laughing before I finished the comic.

And since this looks like it's going into an actual string theory discussion, I'll link a fun video. Maybe not entirely related, but it's all I've got to add, and it seems somewhat related...

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 7:29 am UTC
by Tyrannosaur
yes,yes you did get the sarcasm

black_hat_guy wrote:There is still a lot of science that will have practical applications. Just not string theory.

thats what they said about lasers you know...

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 7:41 am UTC
by st0aty
willpellmn wrote:How exactly anyone takes that idea of a "rolled up dimension" seriously I don't know. It seems like a pretty obvious "the math doesn't work out so let's make up some nonsense about how it does and assume people less smart than us will believe it" to me. And why exactly did they decide exactly 11 dimensions anyway? Once you've got your basic 3 space and 1+ time dimensions, what are the other 7 or less for? Again, seems like they just made up a number at random..."Well, nobody's doing 11 of anything, how about that?"


Obviously the scientists were Spinal Tap fans...

Hasn't the idea of string theory been around since what, the late 1960s? Spinal Tap movie was in 1984, Then in the mid 1990s a unification of all previous superstring theories, called M-theory, was proposed, which asserted that strings are really 1-dimensional slices of a 2-dimensional membrane vibrating in 11-dimensional space.

They just turned it up to 11... I'll let that hang there a while... </mindbomb>

Coincidence? ;-)

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 8:41 am UTC
by karanod
So tell me if I got this right, if we make a 4D version of a mobious we get teleportation? Then 5D gets us time travel? If this is true how does smashing particles or having sub-atomic measuring tools get us any closer to this? How does this make us anything other than very accurate in 3D?

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:06 am UTC
by TheoGB
3D films are basically a waste of time. Avatar failed to give me anything particularly from its 3D aspect and Alice in Wonderland similarly failed to impress. I'm just hoping this craze collapses for films like it did in the 80s. Now when it comes to games it's a different matter because you can actually use the 3D as an interactive aspect.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:22 am UTC
by Mapar
karanod wrote:So tell me if I got this right, if we make a 4D version of a mobious we get teleportation? Then 5D gets us time travel? If this is true how does smashing particles or having sub-atomic measuring tools get us any closer to this? How does this make us anything other than very accurate in 3D?


What? I sure hope you are joking, 'cuz that's bullshit.

Smashing particles might provide evidence of extra dimensions. Example: to demonstrate the existence of gravitons, we would need to observe energy "escaping" (gravitons are "closed loops" in string theory, and they don't stick to a brane).

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:49 am UTC
by 2385a4
I saw Jaws 3-D at the cinema when it came out back in 1983. (Yes, it was a polarizing glasses 3D film, just like we have today, except that the glasses were disposable.) I can see 3D effects just fine, and they don't make me ill. What they do make is bad movies. Well, that's too harsh; usually, they just make mediocre movies.

There are basically three things a director can do with 3-D:
a) regular movie scenes, which happen to be in 3-D. The 3-D effects contribute nothing to the enjoyment of these scenes.
b) jump frights, where a monster or other dangerous object appears to leap out at the audience. This is OK once or twice, but it gets tired fast. You can't build a movie around it.
c) Spectacular panoramas and plunging chasms. You can make a whole movie out of these -- but it's then called a "nature doco", and IMAX has the market wrapped up.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:51 am UTC
by hthall
phlip wrote:
ijuin wrote:Ok, the whole "rolled up dimensions" thing is best understood by starting from General Relativity. GR represents gravity as being functionally equivalent to our 4D spacetime being curved into a fifth dimension, with the amount of local curvature corresponding to the local gravitational field.

Not... really. A topology can be "curved" without being embedded within a higher-dimension space. It may be that embedding it makes it easier to visualise, but that doesn't make the embedding intrinsic to anything. If you simply removed the words "into a fifth dimension" from this paragraph, it would be accurate... but then, of course, the rest of the post wouldn't follow.


Yes, thank you phlip for getting it right.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:11 am UTC
by Felstaff
I now have a grasp of string theory. Not the mathemechanical aspects of it, of course, because I'm a plebian. But an understanding of what the theory's trying to achieve. I'm extremely thankful for the existence of Simple English Wikipedia, even if I only use it for scientific articles where it's all too easy to get bogged down with complex jargon (what's a Mother Fuckin' Hodge number?). Although I'm annoyed that some articles treat the reader as if they're children in a Kindertagesbetreuung.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 11:13 am UTC
by Isaac
rpgamer wrote:I read the first panel, got a little distracted by something, and still started laughing before I finished the comic.

And since this looks like it's going into an actual string theory discussion, I'll link a fun video. Maybe not entirely related, but it's all I've got to add, and it seems somewhat related...


err..... there are no dimensions at all, dimensions are simply a method of quantification that permits the formulation of useful predictions, they don't actually exist..... which makes this whole 'imagine that you are a flatlander' argument bunk.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 11:23 am UTC
by phillipsjk
Most "3D" movies are simply stereoscopic.

Real "3D" like holograms or 3D renderings in hardware allow you to choose the viewing angle.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 12:22 pm UTC
by SlyReaper
phillipsjk wrote:Most "3D" movies are simply stereoscopic.



"Most"? Can you name one which isn't?

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:01 pm UTC
by cjmcjmcjmcjm
For those who are confused about String Theory: http://www.xkcd.com/171/

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:01 pm UTC
by mowdownjoe
Tyrannosaur wrote:yes,yes you did get the sarcasm

black_hat_guy wrote:There is still a lot of science that will have practical applications. Just not string theory.

thats what they said about lasers you know...

Really? No one thought about using lasers for killing in their early stages?

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:12 pm UTC
by Nic the Man
Would adding a 12th dimension help in anyway? Watching that video on the 10th dimension seemed to imply it could go in ad infinium, although I stopped watching around dimension 7 (BIG BANG!? NOBODY TALKS TO ME LIKE THAT!)

TGIM

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:33 pm UTC
by neoliminal
It's a holiday so I expect the number of Kudos/Boos to increase slower than normal.

However I really like the 3-D shading on the panel... which would probably freak out anyone who had never seen the comic before. Imagine seeing no faces. Think "I have no mouth but I must scream"

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 2:28 pm UTC
by Diadem
rpgamer wrote:And since this looks like it's going into an actual string theory discussion, I'll link a fun video. Maybe not entirely related, but it's all I've got to add, and it seems somewhat related...

As far as i can tell that video is just a load of crap made up on the spur of the moment. His description of the first 3 dimensions is already shaky, calling the 4th dimension time is more dubious. But after that he just goes batshit insane.

Re: 0848: "3D"

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 3:01 pm UTC
by radtea
Three comments:

1) To people who don't like string theory because it violates their intuitions about what a nice universe should look like: please stop talking about science until you learn something about science. Science is the discipline of publicly testing ideas by systematic observation and controlled experiments. It turns out that the ideas that survive this process are almost never consistent with pre-scientific intuition. Continents move, the Earth orbits the sun, unimpeded motion continues indefinitely on a straight line, and so on... Thus, saying, "String theory is obviously bollocks because it doesn't make sense to me!" tells us a great deal about you and nothing about anything else. Thanks for reporting on your state of mind and all, but some of us are interested in the state of the rest of the universe.

2) To people who say string theory would be testable if we just had bigger particle accelerators: not so, at least not yet. M-theory, which is the modern unified basis for all string theories, has thus far proven incredibly resistant to model-building at low energies, and the grand unification scale is naively the Planck Length, which is so many orders of magnitude beyond the reach of current particle accelerators that it is profoundly unlikely we will ever come close to it via direct experiment. The hope is that string theorists will be able to figure out some consequences of extra dimensions at "low" (experimentally accessible) energies, but so far there has been very little progress on that.

3) There are non-stringy multi-dimensional theories such as the Randall-Sundrum approach that do make low-energy predictions. These are currently being tested incidentally by the LHC, as they make predictions of new particles that should show up not too far above the current LHC energies. So far it's not looking real good for them, more's the pity.

All that said: funny comic!