Re: Need help comprehending EM

Tesla List wrote:
> >From tesla-at-america-dot-comTue Jul 16 22:02:39 1996
> Date: Tue, 16 Jul 96 10:28 EDT
> From: Bob Schumann <tesla-at-america-dot-com>
> To: tesla-at-pupman-dot-com
> Subject: Need help comprehending EM
> I posted on this earlier but got no replys. I will try once more
> before considering the group as an exhausted source of light on
> this one subject.


> In an antenna book I saw a picture
> drawn of a 'ribbon' in the sky across a city, but this would help my
> visualization of only the electo part or y axis not what is going on
> with the x axis or magnetic wave. The classic electromagnetism picture
> shows both x and y axis waves having common zero crossover points and
> this also adds to the problem of my visual conception.
> If anyone can help I would be very appreciative. Even if the suggestion
> is to read a certain 3rd grade book, I will have no problem humbling
> myself to such as simple pictures have helped me th most sometimes.
> If there was (don't laugh) a book called Maxwell for Dummies, rest
> assured I would have already obtained it if it exsisted!!!
> Thanks all,
>         Bob Schumann
> =============================================================
> ==  If you understand, things are just as they are.        ==
> ==  If you do not understand, things are just as they are. ==
> =============================================================


I have been involved in this stuff for some years and there is no easy 
way to visualize such an abstract idea.  The human being is about 85% 
visual.  If he can't visualize something it is not a real item.  Well, 
this need to visualize may be a cripling trait.  I no long believe in the 
concept of a field as is classically taught and thought to be 
understood.  Unfortunately, I still am forced to use the word! (old 
habit) This idea of little fingers of force extending out from magnets, 
etc, is a snare to a deeper understanding, I feel.  This was a Faraday 
concept which worked as far as it went, but in light of more modern 
investigations it may have to be let go.  The classic electromagnetic 
wave which you are struggling to grasp may, itself, require some  
revision in future.  So, I wouldn't strain like a gear box trying to 
understand something that is not really understood at the core level all 
that well anyway.

Your classic right angled magnetic and electric waves are for conceptual 
use only and may not be a physical reality.  There is some new evidence 
that they are also in phase in some special cases.  That is that the 
causal relationship between electric and magnetic fields may be 
non-existant, except in cases of induction.  All of this is at a 
theoretical level, and won't make a hoot about the performance of Tesla 
coils!  They have worked one way all this time.  It is only our 
conceptualization which may require a bit of tweeking!

I have heard from a researcher lately working at the cutting edge of 
technology with bundles of high speed electrons ("EV"s - 10 ^14 electrons 
in a bundle) who, when I asked about certain of Maxwell's questionable 
concepts, said;  "Forget Maxwell!  He's dead!  Do your own work!"  While 
this is a bit of an overstatement, the intent was read loud and clear.

Science struggles to understand and has done pretty good as long as it 
dealt with physical forces which were daily present in the environment.  
Things which were observable and measurable on the macroscopic scale. 
(Newtonian mechanics).  Mathematics has help codify and even predict many 
things.  It is only within the last 100 years that vast 
conceptualizations have come through often only pure mathematics to be 
accepted as law and they are not, nor were they ever assumed to be so.  
Other doctrines and concepts have been built on top of them.  This seems 
very unwise.  Much of this has envolved the linkage of magnetism and 
electricity (sort of a mini-unified field theory).  What we have comeup 
with thus far has satisfied most engineering efforts and due to this has 
fallen into the "its gotta be so" category.

It sounds as if you really want to "know".  Be prepared to understand 
that some things may be un-knowable in the most absolute sense!

Too much post here for a virtual non-answer, sorry, but true wisdom is 
often the ability to admit to not knowing. Learning is best done by 
carefully studying but questioning, with experiment, the "old wisdom".

You may never be truely ready for Maxwell as there are no kiddy texts 
treating the matter, and his work is best waded through at the college 
level.  Much of his theoretical work only deals with idealized point 
sources and highly restricted areas, anyway.

Richard Hull, TCBOR