16 August 2012
Know How… is an internet television show and video podcast that airs Thursdays at 3:00 PM Pacific Time on the TWiT network. In Episode 7 (16 August 2012), cohost Iyaz Akhtar gave a quick lesson on how to solder electronic components. Cohost Leo Laporte wanted to know the temperature of a soldering iron so he consulted The Physics Factbook.
7 June 2009
- The past two years were mild ones for The Physics Factbook. Since I became the Science Research Coordinator at my day job, I haven't been teaching that many physics classes. Fewer physics classes means fewer physics students and thus fewer Factbook entries.
- Where we currently stand.
- 834 essays written by …
- 744 authors on …
- 798 topics
12 June 2007
- The Physics Factbook is back with so much new stuff it will make your brain ache (in a good way). 2007 was the "Year of Physics C". The class that requires physics as a prerequisite and calculus as concurrent registration or better. The class that few are qualified for and even fewer are willing to contemplate. The 2006-2007 academic year was the first in my long career where I actually had a full class. (That's 34 fantastic students for those of you unfamilar with the way we do it here in NYC.) The result: more special projects pages than ever before.
- Physics on film: Batman, Jackass, Sin City, Road Trip, Troy
- More superheroes: Hulk, Superman, and more Superman
- Serious stuff: cliff diving, seat belts
- Video games: Super Mario Brothers, Madden NFL 2006
- The human body: blood pressure, shoe size
- Wake up, sleepy students! The Flying Screaming Monkey is bringing a calculus problem your way.
- Why doesn't this lab work? Blame the students or blame the equipment?
- And basketball! basketball!! basketball!!!
- Did I neglect to mention the usual praises? Midwood is the nation's premiere large, urban, public high school for science education. We have more Advanced Placement students than most schools have students. We have more students than some school districts have citizens and they represent more nations than an international conference on global warming. This year we added …
- 75 new essays by
- 57 new authors (and 7 established authors) on
- 65 new topics (and 10 updated essays).
- Plus one special bonus page: Ten magnetic field diagrams. Beautiful, hypnotic, disgusting, sometimes inexplicable, and 100% genuine. (Idealized portrayals are for overpriced textbooks.)
11 June 2006
- To steal a line from the great philosopher of education, John Dewey, the purpose of education is growth -- the purpose of growth is more growth. Well, The Physics Factbook just continues to grow. This year I've added 58 new essays by 48 new and 9 veteran authors. This raises the totals to …
- 715 essays by
- 648 authors on
- 702 topics
- Once again I would like to highlight the outstanding special projects pages written by the students in AP Physics C.
- Physics of the Body (5 pages). Topics included body proportion, center of mass, fingertip reaction time, footwear and running, and more acceleration perturbations of everyday living.
- Physics on Film (5 pages). Students analyzed videos looking to calculate dynamical quantities like acceleration, momentum, speed and power. Movies included Dodgeball, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, X-Men, and a Honda Civic commercial.
- Miscellaneous (2 pages): Coefficients of restitution and How long do the subway doors stay open? (Not as long as they're supposed to.)
12 June 2005
- The Physics Factbook celebrates its tenth year with 94 new essays. The volume of information has gotten so large now that it's hard to tell exactly how many items there are in the current edition. It appears that The Physics Factbook consists of …
- 656 essays on
- 644 topics by
- 607 authors
- The highlight of this year's collection are the special projects which include …
- Physics on Film (11 pages). Students analyzed movies (mostly car chase sequences) looking to calculate dynamical quantities like distance, speed, acceleration and force. Movies included Bad Boys 2, The Blues Brothers, The French Connection, Le Mans, C'était un Rendezvous, Spider-Man, The Run, and four short video clips.
- Students Choice (15 pages). Pages on a variety of topics chosen by the students (obviously). Coefficients of friction, refractive indexes, acceleration of an elevator and of the human body, the magnetic field of a MetroCard, and electrical devices.
- Chaos Project (5 pages): In 2002 I had groups of students measure the fractal dimension of various objects or systems including bread, broccoli, leaves, the coast of Maine, and changes in stock prices. I moved these pages from their original home at midwoodscience.org. They seemed a little bit lonely out there.
14 June 2004
- Added 94 new essays.
25 June 2003
- Another successful year with 74 new entries. New pages will be Unicode Savvy, allowing quotation and citation of sources written in non-latin alphabets like Ελληνικά, Русский, 日本語 or اللغة العربية.
16 June 2002
- Now in its seventh year on the web, The Physics Factbook contains 404 essays on 368 topics written by 388 authors. Freshly uploaded today: 77 new entries including 17 graphs with data sets, 4 photographs, and two diagrams. Even with all the extra image files, The Physics Factbook is still bandwidth friendly. This year's entire output is only slightly larger than a floppy disk.
- Reorganized the entire site so it would be easier to manage. Clustered the essays into groups by year of first submission. Gave the site a more stylistically uniform look. Optimized and basically cleaned up all the junk code that had accumulated from years of tiny modifications. All pages (except the indexes) are now lighter in weight and load slightly quicker. Very distant users and those with clunky old modems may notice some improvement in performance.
20 June 2001
- Check out the 101 newest essays from this year's authors.
23 June 2000
- The end of another successful year. Look in the Author Index for the 93 newest essays.
16 December 1999
- Links to The Physics Factbook have started to appear on the web. Check out the people and organizations that find this site worth visiting.
15 February 1999
- Moved to hypertextbook.com from www.columbia.edu/~gae4.
- This website was created sometime in the spring of 1996 at Columbia University in New York City. Nearly one hundred students participated in the second year of this project, but only eight made webpages. (At that time, most html editing was done by hand. The first pages I wrote for this website were all manually coded.)
- The Physics Factbook is born as a response to administration requests for increased "portfolio assessment". Initially done as an all-paper activity, completed essays were saved for one year in accordance with state law and then tossed in the trash.