11 June 2012
Mechanics of the World
Cultures all over the world have changed and advanced their societies and technology from the discoveries of new innovations and theories in Science. The most important base of science and technology that made room for other advances in this field is the theory and applications of physics. Physics today has been improved because of the many contributions of different cultures that have preserved and enhanced the understanding of science. The different contributions in physics from different cultures have continued to change its society through technology, and developed higher understanding of the universe. sciences of many cultures were secluded to one area until now ; we have combined different understandings and innovations from diverse parts of the scientific discovery, which is the reason why physics is an outstanding subject to observe because it has drastically changed and advanced the human perception, art and religion.
Physics has contributed so much towards the perception of many human beings around the world and a good understanding how much it has had an effect on humanity is to start briefly early roots of physics. Numerous philosophers 2400 years ago studied the natural world to understand how it functions. Aristotle was the man who accumulated and sparked the main theories of natural physics we have today. An article called ???Science and Religion, 400 B.C. to A.D. 1550??? by Edward Grant talks briefly about the philosopher and physicist Aristotle, the man who had changed many civilizations due to his discoveries. In the book it states that, ???Aristotle??™s efforts were destined to have a lasting effect, enduring for nearly 2,000 years in three different major linguistic cultures and civilizations??”Greek (Byzantine Empire), Arabic (Islamic civilization), and Latin (Western Europe) (Grant 47). After he died many of those civilizations used his theories as a base and began improving and enhancing on them for hundreds of years and even now. The future of man began to drastically change over the 2400 years after Aristotle??™s death, and the twentieth century was the most significant period of change.
The twentieth century radically changed humanities lifestyle forever and made many new discoveries and inventions due to physics. An article called ???Physics: Decade by Decade??? by Alfred B. Bortz discusses how natural physics again changed cultures all around the world by proving a old theory. The article states that, ???By the end of the eighties, the big bang hypothesis for the origin of the universe was gaining wide acceptance, thanks in large to further calculations by Fred Hoyle and his colleagues??¦???(Bortz 109). Many people knew this idea but thought it as heresy and when more proof came many people started believing the idea and incorporating it in their cultural stories like the movies in America that numerous amounts of people see around the world. So many changes in technology took place in the twentieth century that changed the normal iconic dirty farmer into a machine operator or a rough greasy mechanic into a professional technician. These changes were due to the sophisticated theories of quantum physics that Alfred B. Bortz wrote about in his article. He states that, ???Innovations in physics continued after that, of course, but most new developments were applications rather than theoretical breakthroughs???(133) This is showing the new theories produced by quantum mechanics beginning to change the technology by changing the way people think of electronic, mechanic or fluids which in turn changes the people. The impact that physics has had on humanity and continues to have, shows many domino effects such as changing the perception of humanity, which in turn changes their technology and then also their art.
Art was always simple until the end of medieval times, art was copying whatever someone see??™s. Then the renaissance came into play due to the many new discoveries and revolutions in science and government, which gave more room for many ideas that changed mathematics thus also changing art. An article called ???Applied Physics??? Arthur Beiser talks about the applications of physics having on art especially with today??™s new technology such as electromagnetic waves which play a key role. In art He writes, ???Electromagnetic waves transport energy and require no material medium for their passage, which Radio waves, light waves, X-rays, and gamma rays are examples of these waves, and they differ only in frequency??? (Beiser 108) .The discovery of electromagnetic waves has changed art by finding new ways of producing it by discovering the UV light we use in x-rays and many other light waves we use to produce the art coming from everyone??™s screens.
Many people through history have contributed a great deal amount in art but Newton was surprisingly the most influential. The father of physics also had a key role in shaping the art culture of today by making many theories and observations in light, which the eBook ???Quirky Sides of Scientists: True Tales of Ingenuity and Error from Physics and Astronomy??? by David Topper discusses. Topper states that, ???In his Opticks (1704), Newton admits that the spectrum is a continuum but still delineates the sequence of seven colors??? (139). These series of colors are violet, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange and red, the colors of the rainbow. Knowing these colors separate into these seven distinct shades, which can be mixed up in many possibilities to form any continuum of colors in the universe will be a major key role in producing many future paintings, cartoons and programs like adobe or solid works, both very important ingenuous platforms for engineering and design. The advancement in art through physics has changed the way many people see religion today.
The contributions physics has on art had majorly been based towards the architectural aspect. The book ???Biography of Physics??? by George Gamow shows how one of the formulas discovered by Galileo gave room for many new opportunities. In the book it says that, ???Apart from being the first formulation of the law of free fall, the above- quoted passage from Discorso also contains the first step in the development of the so- called ???integral calculus??™??¦ Galileo??™s law of the uniformly accelerated motion can be written as: Velocity= acceleration X time??? (Gamow 39). The free fall formula for measuring how fast or how long it took something to fall later produced the acceleration of gravity by deriving the formula so that acceleration equals velocity divided by time, which then produced the basic components of calculus, such as deriving. The advancement in Calculus then made it possible for today??™s robots to cut out very complicated and intricate designs from the computer. The book also has talked about the natural physical laws discover by Newton that came from Gravity and made the basis of all engineering today. The book ???Biography of Physics??? had stated that, ???Newton laid down the program of the so- called mechanistic interpretation of all physical phenomena, a point of view which dominated physics until the beginning of the present century???, this point of view will then be called ???Newton??™s laws???. These laws that built on the acceleration of gravity allowed architects even today to be able to design architectural marvels in a safe and structurally stable way that enabled the cathedrals, monuments and sky scrapers. The knowledge of gravity has made it possible to form structurally realistic and artistic architectural buildings that made the religious world accept physics in order to expand and advance their influence.
Religion has had a very narrow minded approach towards science and especially towards physics. One of the main problems religion had with physics was the astronomy and physical theories that Robert E. Kerbs explains in his article called ???Physics and Chemistry???. The article states that, ???Physics, as we know it, was practically nonexistent in Europe during the Medieval Period??¦ Rather, the study of nature was based on philosophical and metaphysical speculations??¦ and to question was often seen as an affront to one kind of god or another and thus discouraged??? (Kerbs157). The church controlled all aspects of life like government or ideas of what??™s right and they considered it heresy to prove the bible wrong especially if they use science for instance to show that the sun is really in the middle of the solar system and that we orbit around it, entails the bible must be wrong because it says that the earth is in the middle of the universe. Physics was rarely practiced in Europe because of this policy that the church enforced, bringing very little discoveries in physics in Europe. Then the renaissance started to emerge and many new physical laws were being discovered due to another religion. In the same article ???Physics and Chemistry??? talks about how the renaissance first emerged by explaining that, ???during the Renaissance (~1300??“1600), printing presses brought Latin translations of Arabic texts, based on classical Greek texts, to the Western world. These developments helped stimulate the concept of empirical experimentation and began to resemble what we know as physics and chemistry??? (Kerbs 153). The same reason why physics was held back in Europe was the same reason physics flourished in the Middle East by Islam opening the Arab nomads eyes and making them realize that they must invent, discover, and improve their society to so they might have a better future and be a better person. The golden age of Islamic civilization advanced and preserved the early works of the Greek philosophers and scientists, in turn making the European or western civilization discover new theories and innovations that put humanity in the twenty- first century. Religion has had a major role in physics whether good or bad and in the same instance physics also played a major role in religion.
Physics has contributed in many aspects in our life like our perception of the world, religion and art. The many contributions physics had on humanity can be traced back all the way to the cavemen era when the first man put an arrow on a stick and threw it at the right trajectory to kill his prey. Since the time of the Greeks understanding this subject has allowed our civilization to become an advanced society of human beings. Many had thought the twenty first century would be full of hover crafts and laser guns but many do not see what humanity has already accomplished through social media and advanced engineering tools.
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