# Right Hand Rule: Don’t hurt yourself

It is that part of the semester where the Right Hand Rule (RHR) comes out. Really, the best part is the students taking the tests. They make all these funny motions with their hands. That makes tests more entertaining (for me) than they usually are. What is the RHR? Suppose I have two numbers. Maybe…

# Physics 2 refresher

So, I hear you are starting your second semester of physics. One of the cool things about physics is that the second semester still uses stuff from the first semester. Maybe you forgot some of that stuff, so here are the bare essentials you will need to get by (this is assuming you are in…

# A small duct tape mistake

Yes, I am going to talk about the MythBusters latest duct tape episode. A couple of pre-post points: They call it “duct” tape. I call it duck tape. It doesn’t work very well with ducts. Also, it is good for water proofing stuff – you know like a duck. For the rest of this post,…

# MythBusters – velocity is relative

So, I complained about MythBuster’s explanation of relative velocity. How would I explain this? I would start by saying that velocity is relative. Here is the definition for velocity: I put the “avg” in there because it is more true. If the acceleration is zero, I could drop this. For the rest of this post,…

# Oak Trees are awesome

In this part of the world, we have oak trees. Technically they are called live oaks – but I don’t get it. Of course they are alive. I was at a soccer game and this is the tree I always look at. Look how far those limbs extend horizontally. That branch is about 12 meters…

# Ski jump landing and acceleration

My last Olympics post may have been a little complicated. I am going to try to make this one a little easier. In this post, I want to look at the landing portion of a ski jump. This could apply to THE ski jump, but there are some things in that even that make it…

# How do you represent vectors?

Recently, I was talking about vectors. At that time, I had to stop and recall how I had been representing vectors. Ideally, I should stick with the same notation I used in Basics: Vectors and Vector Addition. But let me go over the different ways you could represent a vector. Graphical Maybe this is too…

# An example of two collisions

Suppose you want to move an empty paper clip box by shooting it with a toy dart gun. Why would you want to do this? Don’t worry about that – this is my example and I am sticking with it. Should you shoot a dart that sticks to the box or should you shoot one…

# Average Speed Argument

My dad and I had a disagreement. We were driving back from a trip and he let me take over the wheel for a while. His complaint was that I was driving too slow and it was driving him crazy. For me, I thought I was driving fast. My typical behavior is to drive 3…

# Parkour Physics: Wall Climb

Forgive me if I don’t know the official parkour term for this move. This is where you have two walls that are close to each other and you vertically climb them. Here is a shot of Mark Witmer (from Ninja Warrior) doing the wall climb. Doesn’t look too hard, does it? Well, I think it…