Pharyngula

Dark matter matters

i-47e12ac74041e1c7cf6cf9ea7aed13f7-chandra_lensing.jpg

Wow…so this mysterious stuff called dark matter actually exists? Sean Carroll gives us the context and the beautiful pictures, while MarkCC explains the math.

Comments

  1. #1 Julia
    August 23, 2006

    Beautiful and fascinating! Thanks for the links.

  2. #3 G. Tingey
    August 23, 2006

    But visible through our detectors, covering the whole e-m spectrum…..

    Which is why my first testable postulate is:

    No god is detectable.

  3. #4 tacitus
    August 23, 2006

    Heh, just had to post this “alternative” explanation for dark matter:

    What then is dark matter? I have suggested that dark matter exists within galaxies, if not elsewhere. We have considered various physical micro and macro-size possibilities. But there is another option. Perhaps the dark matter we seek is in reality the unseen hand of the Creator. We know from Colossians 1: 17 that God in some way holds all things together. Therefore at some point, physical reality must mesh with the spiritual. And that point may lie in the unexplicable problems of modern science.

    From: http://www.creationresearch.org/crsq/articles/36/36_4/darkmatter.html

    So what we think of as dark matter might actually be the cosmic manifestation of those trillions of little angels required to keep the orbits of the stars and planets in place. Comforting to know, I guess…

  4. #5 Richard Harris
    August 23, 2006

    Gillian (?), of course god is detestable. Well it would be, if there were one.

  5. #6 Bronze Dog
    August 23, 2006

    Perhaps the dark matter we seek is in reality the unseen hand of the Creator. We know from Colossians 1: 17 that God in some way holds all things together. Therefore at some point, physical reality must mesh with the spiritual.

    Sooooo… We’re back to Intelligent Falling and God pushing stuff down with his finger?

  6. #7 Grumpy Physicist
    August 23, 2006

    Sooooo… We’re back to Intelligent Falling and God pushing stuff down with his finger?

    Damn! Does that mean that we get to call ourselves Newtonists, then?

    Oh wait, that’s not quite right. And it would get mixed up with that ignorant Gingrich jerk.

    Einsteinists! Yes, I’m a godless Einsteinist! Hmm..doesn’t quite trip off the tongue.

    But when a right-winger accuses me of being a ‘relativist’, I reply “yes, Generally”, but they never get it.

  7. #8 Stogoe
    August 23, 2006

    My physics prof’s favorite woo example was invisible green goblins pushing down on everything. Maybe they’re the dark matter.

  8. #9 Dustin
    August 23, 2006

    Heh, just had to post this “alternative” explanation for dark matter:

    What then is dark matter? I have suggested that dark matter exists within galaxies, if not elsewhere. We have considered various physical micro and macro-size possibilities. But there is another option. Perhaps the dark matter we seek is in reality the unseen hand of the Creator. We know from Colossians 1: 17 that God in some way holds all things together. Therefore at some point, physical reality must mesh with the spiritual. And that point may lie in the unexplicable problems of modern science.
    From: http://www.creationresearch.org/crsq/articles/36/36_4/darkmatter.html

    So what we think of as dark matter might actually be the cosmic manifestation of those trillions of little angels required to keep the orbits of the stars and planets in place. Comforting to know, I guess…

    Wow… that must mean that when God gets smacked with the spin operator, he spits out complex eigenvalues. I bet I could run a whole theology class on that. Oh, the profundity!

  9. #10 Dustin
    August 23, 2006

    Heh, sorryfor the double post, I just couldn’t resist this:

    The Creation Research Equation:
    S|God> = (3+5i)|God>

    The Nietzsche Equation:
    a-|God> = 0

    The Jack Chick Equation of Jesus Potential:
    Jesus(r) = -(g^2)(e^(-mr))/r

  10. #11 DominEditrix
    August 23, 2006

    On the subject of beautiful things that do not owe their existence to any deity other than the FSM, is anyone else getting chain-letter spammed with this, exhorting the recipient to ‘make a wish – you have looked into the Eye of God’ ? A lovely picture, but it’s the freaking Helix Nebula, not some Omniscient Oculus.

  11. #12 Dustin
    August 23, 2006

    That’s a freaking planetary nebula for chrissake! It’s a dead star. If that’s his eye, God needs to get his omnipotent butt to the optometrist in a hurry.

    “So, God, what seems to be the problem?”
    “Man, I left a contact in for the last few million years, and now I’ve got this electron degeneracy. Hurts like hell. Do you have any eyedrops for this?”

  12. #13 Torbjörn Larsson
    August 24, 2006

    “But when a right-winger accuses me of being a ‘relativist’, I reply “yes, Generally”, but they never get it.”

    Heh! Well, I would like to say that I’m a ‘quantist’, but I’m uncertain about the interpretation.

  13. #14 Keith Douglas
    August 24, 2006

    Bronze Dog: Actually, if you think about it, the vast majority of things and processes are unobservable in the strict sense. On the other hand, if we have good warrant to postulate their existence, there are indicator hypotheses that link the observable with the unobservables in question. (Warning: “Observable” here does not have its meaning sometimes used in QM.)

  14. #15 Kayla
    August 24, 2006

    That’s so cool!

  15. #16 DP
    August 25, 2006

    At what point do you just say, “the theory is wrong” instead of trying to put band-aids on it?

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