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John Adams Blog

The blog of The Antient and Honourable John Adams Society, Minnesota's Conservative Debating Society www.johnadamssociety.org

Friday, November 25, 2005

It’s the End of Light Speed As We Know It (and I Feel Fine)

Physicist Michio Kaku reports speculation via Discover Magazine that c (the speed of light), as well as h (Planck's constant), and G (Newton’s Constant), could change with time due to universe expansion.

To clarify, I believe he refers to the notion that as the universe expands, the source of the light removes itself in one direction as the light wave proceeds in the opposite. (Hubble's Law, or red shift proportional to distance.) But I could be wrong. My physics education is light years removed from me as well, and also traveling in an opposite direction.

The alternate viewpoint is that light is in actuality slowing down, causing a perception of expansion where there is none, or where the expansion of the universe is slowing.

Before pandemonium ensues, the change in c, if any, would be an nth degree of imperceptible in our lifetime (though last night’s reading of Dean Koontz’s Frankenstein could encourage fantasies of immortality in a less grounded person).

More importantly, as much as I admire the sincere attempt at populism below, I felt it necessary to cleanse the blog’s palate, much as strong and bitter coffee is essential following over-sugared confections (or Twinkies for our populist friends).

Next Week: Wave Energy