It hit me one day; an idea that is. Nanotechnology is the application of quantum theory to our every day lives. That idea helped me to make sense of all the information I’ve been gathering for the last two and half years. (Aside: I’m still not sure why I decided to follow nanotechnology rather than some other emerging technology.) I mention this now because physicist Alexander Mayer is presenting a new theory of time at a talk for the American Physical Society, May 2, 2009. Richard Feynman, the physicist who proposed the nanotechnology concept, had tackled a phenomenon in relativity (Einstein’s theory) called ‘time dilation’. Mayer is proposing an amendment to the theory of relativity which explains time dilation and will change modern physics. There’s a much better explanation for this at Nanowerk News. My point with all of this is that ideas tie together in unexpected ways and scientific theories proposed and understood by experts can eventually have an impact on our everyday lives. I don’t grasp Mayer’s ideas well but it’s intriguing to think that one day children may learn these ideas and consider them easy. After all, the concept of zero was initially considered complicated and yet most of us take it for granted.
President Obama has been making quite a splash with his promises of funding for the science community. He’s pledged 3% of the gross domestic product, which is more money than the US spent at the height of their last golden science funding period (the race for space in the 1960s). What a contrast with the current Canadian scene!