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While physics and mathematics may tell us how the universe began, they are not much use in predicting human behavior because there are far too many equations to solve. I'm no better than anyone else at understanding what makes people tick, particularly women.
What can a pencil do for all of us? Amazing things. It can write transcendent poetry, uplifting music, or life-changing equations; it can sketch the future, give life to untold beauty, and communicate the full-force of our love and aspirations.
Concern for man and his fate must always form the chief interest of all technical endeavors. Never forget this in the midst of your diagrams and equations.
I don't care much for equations myself. This is partly because it is difficult for me to write them down, but mainly because I don't have an intuitive feeling for equations.
Science is beautiful when it makes simple explanations of phenomena or connections between different observations. Examples include the double helix in biology and the fundamental equations of physics.
Not a lot of people know this, but I'm very good at mathematics. When I was an angry teenager, I used to sit in my room and do quadratic equations to calm myself down.
It seems that if one is working from the point of view of getting beauty in one's equations, and if one has really a sound insight, one is on a sure line of progress.
If God has made the world a perfect mechanism, He has at least conceded so much to our imperfect intellect that in order to predict little parts of it, we need not solve innumerable differential equations, but can use dice with fair success.
The fundamental laws necessary for the mathematical treatment of a large part of physics and the whole of chemistry are thus completely known, and the difficulty lies only in the fact that application of these laws leads to equations that are too complex to be solved.
I became an atheist because, as a graduate student studying quantum physics, life seemed to be reducible to second-order differential equations. Mathematics, chemistry and physics had it all. And I didn't see any need to go beyond that.
I regard it in fact as the great advantage of the mathematical technique that it allows us to describe, by means of algebraic equations, the general character of a pattern even where we are ignorant of the numerical values which will determine its particular manifestation.
Friedrich August von Hayek
Everything, however complicated - breaking waves, migrating birds, and tropical forests - is made of atoms and obeys the equations of quantum physics. But even if those equations could be solved, they wouldn't offer the enlightenment that scientists seek. Each science has its own autonomous concepts and laws.
But the beauty of Einstein's equations, for example, is just as real to anyone who's experienced it as the beauty of music. We've learned in the 20th century that the equations that work have inner harmony.
Even before string theory, especially as physics developed in the 20th century, it turned out that the equations that really work in describing nature with the most generality and the greatest simplicity are very elegant and subtle.
The complicated, ambiguous milieu of human contact is being replaced with simple, scalable equations. We maintain thousands more friends than any human being in history, but at the cost of complexity and depth. Every minute spent online is a minute of face-to-face time lost.
Daniel H. Wilson
Playing a three-hour Rush show is like running a marathon while solving equations.
The universe is governed by science. But science tells us that we can't solve the equations, directly in the abstract.
Even if there is only one possible unified theory, it is just a set of rules and equations. What is it that breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe?
We can summarize electricity, magnetism and gravity into equations one inch long, and that's the power of field theory. And so I said to myself: I will create a field theory of strings. And when I did it one day, it was incredible, realizing that on a sheet of paper I can write down an equation which summarized almost all physical knowledge.
In my own research when I'm working with equations, I never feel like I really understand what I'm doing if I'm solely relying on the mathematics for my understanding. I need to have a visual picture in my mind. I'm constantly translating from the math to some intuitive mind's-eye picture.
The math of quantum mechanics and the math of general relativity, when they confront one another, they are ferocious antagonists and the equations don't work.
We have the only cookbook in the world that has partial differential equations in it.
Global equations undergo changes, this is their nature.
To me, drum soloing is like doing a marathon and solving equations at the same time.
You kind of alluded to it in your introduction. I mean, for the last 300 or so years, the exact sciences have been dominated by what is really a good idea, which is the idea that one can describe the natural world using mathematical equations.
John F. Kennedy
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