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Hi Ankit,

Concerning your questions:

1. Can anyone explain the theory of relativity? It's not that I don't get it, the case is that no-one has ever actually explained it to me.

Okay, nobody can just explain you the theory of relativity in a couple of words, books of thousands and thousands of pages have been written on that theory alone, and I wouldn't recommend anyone typing those in. I suggest you visit your nearest library or university and look up the following book: "Spacetime physics" by Taylor and Wheeler. It's a simple, non-mathematical introduction to the special and general theory of relativity.

2. What are the most prominent theories about black holes? This is a most fervent interest of moi, so please, reply in moderate (or above) detail (if you would).

To my knowledge, there is no real single theory about black holes yet, but there are some good candidates. The advanced literature requires a good knowledge of the general theory of relativity (not really trivial). I suggest going for the more popular works by Hawking, "The universe" for example.

3. Can anyone explain chaos theory (at the very least) with a modicum of detail?

Sorry to disappoint you again. Chaos theory is a subfield of nonlinear dynamics and it requires quite some heavy maths to explain.

So basically I can only suggest the following: as soon as you feel prepared for it, go to your local university and enroll either for physical mathematics or mathematical physics courses (yes, there is a slight difference, I advice the mathematical phyisics

). After you've gone through the usual Newtonian mechanics bits, the more interesting theories of special relativity and linear dynamics are handled. Afterwards, you can choose to take extra courses in general relativity and chaos theory.

4. Just an inquiry...concerning Newton's magnum opus...F = ma.

Why, in high schools, do 'they' insist on this equation, when Momentum = mass x velocity is more accomodating? Or am I wrong and both equations are required?

A question in linear dynamics

. If you only use momentum p = m*v , then the only kind of behaviour you can have is particles moving in a straight line. In order to allow them to slow down or accelerate, a "force" is required.

The physical explanation is encapsuled in Newton's first low: a particle that is not subject to a force will continue flying in a straight line.

The mathematical explanation for this behavior is the following: "p = mv" is a first order differential equation, only giving rise to two kinds of possible solutions: either the particle flies of to infinity, or they stay at one point (when their velocity is zero at the start, it will remain zero).

As a sidenote, I should add that "p = mv" is actually a definition, and not an equation commonly used to describe motions.

Finally, there is one other formulation of Newton's second law, being:

dp/dt = F

Which is basically just the m*a replaced by m * (dv / dt) which can be written as d(mv)/dt since the mass is constant in Newtonian mechanics. And p = mv is the definition of momentum we've been talking about.

thecurly1,

Actually "E = mc^2" is an equation that is deduced in the theory of special relativity. You are right that there are two theories of relativity: the special theory of relativity (that handles object travelling at high speeds) and the general theory of relativity (that handles gravity).

Bye!

Crisp