Interesting Wired article. I think it supports the view that physics
actually still has a poor understanding of how microcosmic models scale up
to basic macrocosmic qualities. It seems clear to me that simplistic ideas
about matter as defined purely by bottom level atomic structure are
ultimately misguided. Emergent properties of fluidity do not emerge neatly
from one type of configuration. I wonder if anyone has considered that some
properties of substance can emerge from the other direction, from the top
down? Why can't the macrocosm define microcosmic behaviors too?
"Why can you stand on a glacier but not the ocean?
> The answer seems simple enough: Liquids flow. Solids don’t. The atoms in
> liquids can slosh around. In solids, they fall lockstep into a crystal
> lattice. A crystal’s endlessly repeating pattern is so stable that it takes
> a considerable infusion of energy to make the atoms break rank. Or so
> physics textbooks say.
> But this long-accepted explanation for the rigidity of solids fails to
> account for quasicrystals — bizarre solids first discovered in the lab in
> 1982 and found in nature in 2009. Atoms in quasicrystals are arranged in
> patterns that never repeat, but the material is nonetheless rigid. So is
> glass, an amorphous mass of stationary atoms that behaves like a solid but,
> upon closer inspection, looks more like a liquid frozen in time."...
You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups
"Everything List" group.
To unsubscribe from this group and stop receiving emails from it, send an email
To post to this group, send email to email@example.com.
Visit this group at http://groups.google.com/group/everything-list?hl=en.
For more options, visit https://groups.google.com/groups/opt_out.