[2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitude!

Blame Quintushalls for this.

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[2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitude!

Postby Tony » Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:09 pm

http://www.smbc-comics.com/index.php?id=4078

My first guess (no pun intended) is that it's a reference to zeroth-order approximation. Any other ideas?
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Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby Cley Faye » Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:46 pm

This comic is funny, but only if you're a physicist :wink: .

(yes, I registered just to say that. Hi everyone.)
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Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby lucidfox » Tue Apr 12, 2016 4:16 pm

I don't get it. And I usually do get SMBC, so that's new and puzzling.
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Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby Guest » Tue Apr 12, 2016 7:43 pm

The joke is physicists round stuff. if it's an object with a couple of sides, it's basically a circle. If it's closeish to ten, it's basically ten.
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[2016-04-12] 10. 10. Circle. Circle. 10.

Postby Astrogirl » Tue Apr 12, 2016 8:02 pm

Microaggression? Microaggression!
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Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby 9squirrels » Tue Apr 12, 2016 11:03 pm

Sounds more like an engineer to me than a physicist. I studied electronics engineering and I saw a lecturer cancel Pi with a 3 ("It's close enough").
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Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby john » Tue Apr 12, 2016 11:17 pm

an astrophysicist once told me that they use 3 for pi because with the vast dimensions and huge errors they deal with it doesn't really matter how many decimal places one uses.
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Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby Theo » Wed Apr 13, 2016 12:47 pm

Theoretical physicist here. That comic made me laugh, because it is acutally quite accurate.

See, as a physicist it isn't your job to calculate numbers. A computer or calculator can do this for you, and they are way faster and make no mistakes (unless you tell them to ;) ). It is your job to analyze the deeper structure of the things itself, their dynamics and connections, to find models, formulas and relations characterizing the systems at hand. As such, you are interested patterns. It is intersting to know the magnitude, because the magnitude tells you something about competing scales.

For example if you want to compute the movement of the sun around the orbit, gravitational effects on (roughly) the same scale are interesting. This applies the sun, or too an lesser extend even the moon. Both influence the track of the earth in its orbit significantly. But obviously you can neglect effects on a lower scale (for example a single human spinning around its own axis, influencing the angular momentum of the planet). So it is nice to know if the number you are looking at is ~ 10 or ~ 100 or ~ 1000, but not if its 8, 13 or 5. For a theoretical physicist, the gravitational law looks like F ~ m1* m2 * 1/r^2. No one cares for the constant accompanying ;). In this context, i also saw people writing pi = 1 (though most of the time, pi is kept, because it tells you something about the structure of a formula).

It is very much the same with shapes. A rectangular and a circle are topological pretty much the same. Assuming that you don't make a large error replacing one with another, most of the time you do this, if it is easier to calculate.
Theo
 

Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby Sauzels » Thu Apr 14, 2016 10:16 am

So do her teeth just temporarily fall out on panel 5?
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Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby Astrogirl » Thu Apr 14, 2016 12:32 pm

Sauzels wrote:So do her teeth just temporarily fall out on panel 5?

Yes.
Microaggression? Microaggression!
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Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby a1s » Fri Apr 15, 2016 4:19 pm

Sauzels wrote:So do her teeth just temporarily fall out on panel 5?

That's a physical brain-worm. You can see it moving between panels.
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Re: [2016-04-12] We can't repel a diagnosis of this magnitud

Postby ologisticAlgorist » Thu Apr 21, 2016 10:08 pm

So do her teeth just temporarily fall out on panel 5?


Her teeth are approximately there.
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