Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Why sometimes I wish I had become a physicist

...because in physics, when unexpected things happen they don't have an existential crisis and proclaim they're not really scientists after all - they get intrigued and try to figure out a way to explain the anomaly.

My math isn't nearly good enough to be a physicist, though, but perhaps it could have been. My math probably isn't good enough to be a theoretical econometrician, good enough to be an applied econometrician, and hopefully passing so that I can write some useful (although not completely cutting edge) theoretical stuff at some point in the future.

1 comment:

  1. There's no doubt that the maths in physics is very intense, but I'd say you can't be far off it if you've completed graduate level economics.

    I lived together with a good friend, who was studying astrophysics, during my bachelor's. (He's currently writing up his PhD at Oxford, so I guess you could say he knows his stuff.) I found it interesting that so many of the fundamental approaches he used to solve problems were very familiar to me, and vice versa. Once given the context, you could make decent fist of the calculations.

    [Of course, this is exactly what the Samuleson detractors are getting at, but we'll leave that aside for the moment...]

    Anyway, what I found much more interesting -- and challenging -- was the conceptual stuff that they were dealing with. The realm of theoretical physics -- dark matter, dark energy, string-theory, M-theory, etc -- that stuff literally blows my mind (in the fleeting moments that I am able to grasp it!).


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