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paard

writing an essay about physics

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Hi,

I am going to write an essay about physics for a uni course. Could you please indicate me the principles I should include ?

Thank you in advance.

PS: Any good source is more than welcome :)

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Quote:
Original post by paard
Hi,

I am going to write an essay about physics for a uni course. Could you please indicate me the principles I should include ?

Thank you in advance.

PS: Any good source is more than welcome :)


Well, that's pretty vague. Write about Noether's theorem. There are lots of different perspectives to explore this topic from.

-Josh

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Quote:
I am going to write an essay about physics...

That is, indeed, vague. Are you going to write about physics as a general branch of science, or are you going to write about a specific branch of physics?

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yeah, sorry I should be more specific..

This essay is gonna be the 1st part of an assignment, in which later on I am going to develop applications (maybe little games) using actionscript 3.0 in which I must show the application of the physics I described in my essay.

So I am mainly interested physics applied in games.

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well again its quite vague, but in terms of applied physics you should start at the most basic level of physics, collision detection and collision response. what use is physics if stuff just flies through each other. the most popular (that I know of) is the Separating Axis theorem, But then that's expanded on later using narrow phase and broad phase collision detection, but that's getting ahead a bit, just look up SAT first

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Collision is indeed one of the most important point.
You could structure it with regards to the other laws, like gravitation, and electromagnetism, that could give you some other things to talk about and some cool structure.

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I am mainly interested physics applied in games.

Having written more than one essay as an assignment, I'd strongly suggest you first narrow your field to something very specific and define for yourself exactly what you're going to discuss in your paper.

Then - research. When you think you're done researching, research some more.

With regard to "vagueness," you haven't said what the purpose of the paper is. That is, what are you being asked to demonstrate about yourself? If the purpose is to demonstrate your own understanding of physics, pick the area of physics which you believe you're strongest in and stay at a basic but thorough level.

If you're to demonstrate a general application of some branch of physics, and you're at an undergraduate level, I would avoid discussing basic application of physics to games, as that's been done by others with much more experience and education. I'm not discounting your intelligence, but it's unlikely you're going to come up with anything particularly original. Better to do very thorough research (which is the first step for any physicist entering a field) and, perhaps, compare and contrast the techniques of others for a narrow aspect of physics as applied to gaming.

Assuming that "essay" means something less than a graduate dissertation, the topics mentioned above are too broad to tackle effectively in (what I assume is) your time allowed.

Collision detection and response, for instance, is fine for a starting point, although, if you're not particularly familiar with applying collision detection techniques in games, I'd go elsewhere. In any case, choose a specific technique within your topic ( e.g., for collision detection/physics response: friction, penetration depth, resolution, elastic vs. inelastic collisions ). You may, for instance, want to compare and contrast the specific approaches to an aspect of physics as implemented by two (or more?) of the available open source collision/physics engines often used in games, such as ODE (Open Dynamics Engine), Bullet, etc. You'll need a good understanding of C or C++ code, as well as a good understanding of the physics topic itself.

A simpler area that may prove fruitful - one of Newton's laws.

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