Knowing the Universe in Human Terms
In seeking to understand natural phenomena as simply as possible, physicists have made a remarkable discovery: whatever questions they ask, the answers ultimately involve the same elegant principles of energy and momentum, mass and charge. Physicists seek and study rhythms and patterns among natural phenomena, including those that are readily apparent (like the orbits of planets) and those that are apparent only to deep analysis and careful observation (like the quantum transitions of atoms). Abetted by the power of mathematics, they ultimately comprehend and express the fundamental regularities of the physical universe in uniquely human metaphors. In this way, the universe comes to know itself in human terms.
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The 2013-2014 Department Newsletter (.pdf) is now available.