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Rich Lafferty's Journal

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moon physics
science, feynman
Poll time!

Poll #1390465 Moon physics

If you are standing on the Moon, and holding a pen, and you let it go, it will:

float away
float where it is
fall to the ground
none of the above

When the Apollo astronauts were on the Moon, they did not fall off because

Earth's gravity extends to the Moon
the Moon has gravity
the astronauts wore heavy boots
they had safety ropes
they had spikes on their boots

(As inspired by this.)

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You don't have an option for "velcro"

Are you going to keep asking me questions about things we never even studied in Physics?


Hi, I'm here to mess up your poll.

Spikes in their boots is way funnier than heavy boots, but I also like the idea of Earth's gravity extending to the moon (just make sure you stand on the far side or you'll fall off).

You forgot "the moon doesn't exist, it was all in a studio with special effects."

i can't believe that people ACTUALLY BELIEVE the moon landings were faked. idiots.

I used to work with a highly intelligent classics postgraduate. I mentioned in passing that I was playing an RPG set in a medieval Europe where Aristotelean physics was true, eg heavy things fell faster than light things - to which she inevitably responded "Don't they?"

It wasn't surprising, but it was depressing to realise that 18 years of the best education money can buy had left her 500 years out of date.

But I like to think even she wouldn't have committed the basic logical fail inherent in Heavy Boots.

I misremembered you telling that story as being that they did know how things really worked but couldn't conceive of a world or even world-view where it didn't. I was (apparently incorrectly) reminded of that at an OUSFG talk on Soviet science where one of the audience couldn't conceive of there being a "different" science that still allowed you to successfully build rockets.

I got scared when answering this that perhaps what I knew and thought everybody did too was wrong.

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