Wednesday, 2 October 2013

One for My Memoirs
Theoretical research is a mixture of highs and lows. I’ve been labouring away at the logical discussion; looking for the counter arguments and the means to counter them. “Ah but have you considered the effect of….”

One particular area was very logical and clear to me, but was missing a vital factor. Yesterday, for a break from something else, I did some of the Maths. I had already done some work on this before using figures interpreted from somebody else’s work, but since then I had acquired the empirical data and the re-plotted graph had confirmed the previous, rough, findings.
Looking anew at the graph, I then realised it also, apparently, supported a well-known physical theory, which had, so far, gone uncorroborated. If that theory was shown to be accurate, one of my last remaining logical hurdles was passed! The moment had arrived to do the statistical regression analysis and provide the equation that was the main purpose of the plot.

Maple did its work, and once a couple of terms had been dismissed, because their value was well within experimental limits of error, I was left with a simple expression containing just one independent variable and one constant. Up till that moment I had not really looked at the numbers, just the form of the expression. I suddenly twigged that the one remaining numerical constant was in fact “c”, the speed of light: a totally unexpected outcome.
Rewriting the expression gave me such a beautiful equation; I just sat back in amazement. I now fully understand what all those eminent scientists had meant about beautiful equations. Result: corroboration for part of my theory, corroboration for another man’s work, and one of the most beautiful equations I’ve ever seen.

Sorry but you’ll have to wait for publication to find out what it is.
Meanwhile, what’s “c” doing there? That’ll be another new chapter, then.

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