Monday, November 29, 2010

Theoretical Physics, Fringe Science, Conspiracy Theories and Misinformation

Theoretical Physics, Fringe Science, Conspiracy Theories and Misinformation

The list of conspiracy theories is a collection of the most popular theories related but not limited to clandestine government plans, elaborate murder plots, suppression of secret technology and knowledge, and other supposed schemes behind certain political, cultural, and historical events.

Conspiracy Theories and Misinformation,

"The 31 Wildest Conspiracy Theories". LIFE magazine - slideshow.

Naomi Wolf. "Analysis of the appeal of conspiracy theories with suggestions for more accurate ad hoc internet reporting of them".

Top 10 Right-Wing Conspiracy Theories: by Alexander Zaitchik--Southern Poverty Leadership Conference--Alternet August 15, 2010 -

Timeline of Theoretical Physics

MIT Center for Theoretical Physics

Electronic Journal of Theoretical Physics (EJTP)

How to Become a Theoretical Physicist by a Nobel Laureate
 A fringe theory is an idea or a collection of ideas that departs significantly from the prevailing or mainstream view in its particular field of study. Examples include conspiracy theories, ideas which purport to be scientific theories but have little or no scientific support, unproven alternative claims about medicine, pseudo-history and so forth. Some fringe theories may in a stricter sense be hypotheses, conjectures, or speculations.
Fringe science, also called questionable science, is scientific inquiry in an established field of study that departs significantly from mainstream or orthodox theories, and is classified in the "fringes" of a credible mainstream academic discipline. Mainstream scientists typically regard fringe concepts as highly speculative or even strongly refuted. On the other hand, the history of science contains many instances of the eventual widespread acceptance of fringe sciences. This is because in theory a fringe science will still maintain scientific rigor, plausibility, and integrity, though it is usually highly disputed.
Fringe theories include any new area of scientific endeavor in the process of becoming established and some proposed theories. It can include speculative sciences. This includes physics fields and physical theories presented in accordance with known evidence, and a body of associated predictions have been made according to that theory.

Some fringe theories go on to become a widely accepted part of physics. Other fringe theories end up being disproven. Some fringe theories are a form of protoscience and others are a form of pseudoscience. The falsification of the original theory sometimes leads to reformulation of the theory.
Theoretical physics is a branch of physics which employs mathematical models and abstractions of physics in an attempt to explain natural phenomena. Its central core is mathematical physics, though other conceptual techniques are also used. The goal is to rationalize, explain and predict physical phenomena.

The advancement of science depends in general on the interplay between experimental studies and theory. In some cases, theoretical physics adheres to standards of mathematical rigor while giving little weight to experiments and observations. For example, while developing special relativity, Albert Einstein was concerned with the Lorentz transformation which left Maxwell's equations invariant, but was apparently uninterested in the Michelson-Morley experiment on Earth's drift through a luminiferous ether. On the other hand, Einstein was awarded the Nobel Prize for explaining the photoelectric effect, previously an experimental result lacking a theoretical formulation.