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National lampoons physics

It snowed a little again today, which put me in the mood for some winter-related physics. :snowman: Some of you may be familiar with the movie "National Lampoons Christmas Vacation," a very silly yet amusing film about the holiday antics of the Griswold family. During one scene, Clark Griswold takes his brother and the children to go sledding. He decided to spray the bottom of his sled with a kitchen lubricant, significantly decreasing the friction between his sled and the snow. For those o

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Family Guy Physics

Family Guy isn't exactly school appropriate in most cases, but it is, however, physics appropriate. In one episode, Brian (the dog) educates Peter (the tubby man) on his weight issue. Brian claims that Peter has his own gravitational pull, and continues to demonstrate this by placing an apple nearby his stomach. The fruit then assumes orbit directed around Peter's abdomen. ...For those of you who are not familliar with the episode, here is a not-so-legally posted, poor quality youtube video f

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Video Response: Despicable Me

For those of you who don't know, there is a video section of the Aplus site that features videos of physics-y origin. You can get there by clicking the word "videos" on the top blue bar of the site. http://aplusphysics.com/community/index.php/videos/view-340-vector-despicable-me/ When I first saw this video, it was floating among intense brain-teasing physics vids and real life examples of the science. I thought it deserved some defense for its place on the site, so let me explain what thi

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

MY LAST BLOG POST D:

Soooo, because this is my last blog post for this year ( ), I thought it would be fitting to do a course reflection on the AP-C physics class this year. I thought I'd do it in a "bests-vs-worsts" top 5 format, kind of like you could find on collegeprowler.com when viewing different schools. Top 5 Bests: 5.) Blog Posting [i thought this was really fun! I've never done anything like this before for a class. It brought up interesting physics applications and I thought it was fun to converse w

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Why Mumble from Happy Feet stuck to his day job

Many of you are familiar with the children’s movie happy feet, about a whimsical penguin chick that just can’t stop dancing. Why don’t these birds fly instead of dance, you ask? Let’s use physics to figure out why Mumble is aerially challenged: There are four main forces involved in avian air travel: lift, weight, drag, and thrust. As shown by the diagram of a blue jay in flight (credit to http://www.lcse.umn.edu), lift opposes weight and thrust opposes drag. A bird is able to fly when lift

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Physics Equations: Mechanics

Having trouble on the 4 minute drill? Need to consolidate your thoughts for the Mechanics part of the AP-C exam? Have no fear! I've sifted through my notes to find a good portion of the mechanics equations. If you find anything missing/incorrect, PLEASE give feedback in the comments section! I'll edit the changes in ASAP. Thank you MECHANICS Vectors etc. A B = lAl lBl cos Ө A x B = - (B x A) lA x Bl = lAl lBl sin Ө Kinematics V= Vo+ at Δx = Vo t + (1/2) a t2 V2 = Vo2 +2aΔx

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

The Physics of Tom and Jerry

In an episode of Tom and Jerry from 1948, Tom once again has his face smashed in from a falling object. This time, the offender was a half-ounce canary wielding circular cage parts. The bird unfastened the cage bottom and let it drop onto the unsuspecting feline below, making Tom's face into a pancake. How much force does this pan actually make? Could it really damage a cat's face? [ATTACH=CONFIG]513[/ATTACH] First, we must find the velocity of the pan when it hits Tom's face. We know tha

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Moment of Inertia Review

Just thought we could benefit from some review on moment of inertia, because it was a pretty extensive topic and wasn't really mentioned in physics B. Not to mention that the variable is a different expression for each object. The general form of the equation is I = ∑i miri² = ∫r² dm . Below are the moment of inertia equations for a few different objects. If you have another object in mind to share, please do add it in the comments! Isolid disc = 1/2 mr2 Icylinder about its axis = 1/2 m

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

How to become an autodidact

How to become an autodidact (defn: self-directed learner) :einstein) Monday, we were given a few packets of work, some written directions and a "finish this before the test next week." Weird. A class with no teacher? A few groups popped up to grab a computer, others buried their noses in the textbook, and some started chatting leisurely with friends. It's not that we don't have a teacher, it's just that for the next few days, we're our own teachers. For a few of us (including myself), th

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Kerbal Physics for a Cookie

You are a Kerbal physicist for Kow Jumped Over the Mun, a company that excels in anything spacey or astronaut-y. Your co-worker, Kirby McKerbin, is arguing with the desk clerk Moony Muni. Because you clearly have nothing better to do until next launch, you decide to listen in. Kirby is absolutely convinced that if he were to oscillate a pendulum on Kerbin, move it to Mun, and repeat the same occilation, the period of the pendulum on Mun would be roughly 3.5 times that of the period of the pendul

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Kerbal Physics for a Cookie 2

{I added a second cookie Q to buy you guys more time. Hopefully Charlie won't answer both before someone else in the class answers one..} You are a Kerbal physicist for Kow Jumperd Over the Mun, a company that excels in anything spacey or astronaut-y. After ending an argument between two colleagues, you decide to take a lunch break. The cafeteria guy, Louie Eeloo, has a thing for riddles, which started out amusing and grew annoying as the years passed. You were hoping that the line would be l

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Infrasound

Infrasound is sound with a frequency lower than 20 Hz. Human hearing registers sounds from roughly 20 to Hz 20,000, though under certain circumstances the body will hear/feel sound at a lower frequency than 20Hz. Though the human ear does not normally register infrasound, these inaudible waves effect our everyday lives. [ATTACH=CONFIG]530[/ATTACH] In Nature: Infrasound is produced naturally by severe weather and other forms of nature. Storms, thunder, volcanic activity, earthquakes,

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Break is fun!

SO, because everyone else decided to take a break, my brain also decided to go off on holiday for a while. In that case, I've decided to make this blog post 100% fun (yet still on topic), and what's more fun and physics related than comics? Hope these tickle your funny bone, have a great break everyone!!! ...And finally, a comic that Mr. Fullerton would enjoy: Have a great break! Make sure to relax (and pretend that midterms aren't coming up)! --Alphageek

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Phone Book Friction

...With all of this electricity and magnetism boggling our minds, it's nice to be reminded of the importance of mechanics once in a while. And by that I mean the force of friction: Ff = (normal force)(mu). Believe it or not, this commonly viewed as weak force can add up. Take the above myth busters clip for example, when the friction in between the sheets of a phone book in between the pages of a second phone book make them extremely difficult to separate. Try 8,000lb of force and two tank's wor

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

SI Prefixes (in perspective)

Often times, values in physics are abbreviated using metric prefixes, or SI prefixes. I found this table the other night and thought it would be helpful to post, in that I'm sure I'm not the only one who gets these mixed up sometimes. Thanks to wiki for this table: [TABLE="class: wikitable, width: 0"] [TR] [TH="bgcolor: #CCCCFF, colspan: 2"]Metric prefixes[/TH] [/TR] [TR] [TD][TABLE] [TR] [TH="bgcolor: #EEDDFF"]Prefix[/TH] [TH="bgcolor: #EEDDFF"]Symbol[/TH] [TH="bgcolor: #EEDDFF"]

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Physics for a cookie: Toy story problem

Hi everybody! I haven't done a cookie problem in a while, so here it goes! The problem is related to the current unit. First correct answer gets a cookie. I think Charlie is the only one who answers these things, but I enjoy writing them and he likes cookies, so... It all works out :glee: Slinky the dog is bored (since Andy is off at college and all), so he decides to watch Walter Lewin's video Lecture 15. Slink thinks the solenoid example is really cool and decides to try it out himse

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Coat hanger solenoid

As Goalkeeper0 and Mr. Fullerton suggested, I decided to give the soap-and-water approach to understanding flux a shot. If you'd like to try this experiment but can't find one of those ancient metal coat hangers, here's a different approach: >>>Credit to Goalkeeper0<<< I bent a coat hanger into a solenoid with 5(ish) loops and filled the dish basin in our sink with soapy water. I'm not sure if it's because here wasn't enough soap in the water or a different factor, but the

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Happy Halloween!

[ATTACH=CONFIG]506[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]507[/ATTACH] So. I was thinking of what to carve on my pumpkin earlier and thought, "What's something that'll scare the pants off of anyone, even high schoolers?" Bingo, air resistance. Many of us were shaking in our boots when Mr. Fullerton derived a few drag-related equations, but looking back they're not too bad right? Here's a little review. That long page really boils down to a few key equations: Air resistance = Fdrag = bv = cv2 , where b

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Senioritis: A senior's guide to the lethal illness

Recently, a friend has confessed to me that he has been diagnosed with stage one senioritis. We've all heard of this virus: common symptoms include drowsiness, in-class headaches, increased social tendencies, and worst of all, characteristic decreases in effort and GPA. Though some have better immune systems than others, this sickness is in fact contagious and most seniors contract a mild case. Because knowledge is the number one prevention factor, I intend to explain--using science and graphica

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Kerbal Space Program: Resources

Anybody else having trouble with orbiting other planets? Docking? Space planes even? I was on youtube the other night and came across a user who developed a number of Kerbal Space Program tutorials. They're long, but are thorough and walk you through processes step by step. He trouble shoots often, so you can clearn from his mistakes to address your own issues. Plus, he has an accent. Strangely enough that makes him fun to listen to. Here's the link to his Kerbal Space Program Playlist:

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

playground physics for a cookie

PRESSURE'S ON: First person to answer this correctly gets a cookie. :eagerness: You're at the playground with a girl you babysit, little Tori McTorque. Being 9 years old and devious, Tori took you wallet and threatened to spend your babysitting money on ice cream and root beer. Kids these days! You chased her over to the see saw, where she and her friend (Lil' Newton) sat happily on one side. You have to think of a way out of this! You don't want all of your hard-earned cash to go to waste, d

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Oh mah gerd, is dat jelly phish glowin'?

...Or in coloquial terms, "My stars, is that ctenophore exhibiting bioluminescence?" You might think that's all glow, but there's more to this jelly's luster. Bioluminescence occurs when a living organism's cells emit light. Common examples include fireflies and angler fish, who use light to find mates and attract prey respectively. These organisms convert chemical energy into light energy, just as a human body would convert chemical energy (like glucose) into mechanical or heat energy.

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

How to put eqns/fancy symbols into your blog

Do you find your blogs boring, drab and in need of fanciness? Do you think that int(x^2) is an acceptable substitute for ? Because the APlusphysics site has undergone improvements, I think that our blogs' equation quality should improve as well. ;D A little birdie (Mr. Fullerton) told me about this great tool called a latex editor. One site to go to is http://www.codecogs.com/latex/eqneditor.php , which you don't have to download and it's not blocked by the school. It's a site where you can

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

MOAr BrAin FyzicKs

Ever wonder why studying hard or taking multiple AP tests in a row makes you exhausted, or even hungry? This is because when you think, your brain has to work hard to send "messages" through the neurons to different parts of the brain and body. Cellular respiration turns your food (glucose) into adenoside triphosphate, or ATP. This is the molecule that many body functions require to do work, such as facilitated diffusion, muscle movement, and yep, you guessed it-- thinking. The sodium ion pump t

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

Military Physics

I'm not sure if this is cliche, but I saw this on television once and thought it deserved a physics-rundown (It was a future weapons episode). This bulletproof vest, called "Dragon Skin," is manufactured by Pinnacle Armor. It was designed for military use, though it failed Army inspection (the heat test: the vest was heated up to 170 degrees F and was shot at afterward. The clay material backing couldn't withstand the heat, and the design lost its overlapping shape. The integrity of the vest

AlphaGeek

AlphaGeek

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