This is the way to teach thermodynamics! :)

This is the way to teach thermodynamics! 🙂


Originally shared by ****

The 2nd Law: Unsustainable

Muse / The 2nd Law (2012)

All natural and technological

Processes proceed in such

a way that the availability of the

remanining energy decreases

In all energy exchanges, if no energy

enters or leaves an isolated system

the entropy of that system increases

Energy continuously flows from being

concentrated to becoming dispersed

spread out, wasted and useless

New energy cannot be

created and high-grade

energy is being destroyed

An economy based on endless

growth is unsustainable



The fundamental laws of

thermodynamics will place fixed

limits on technological innovation

and human advancement

In an isolated system, the entropy

can only increase

A species set on endless

growth is unsustainable



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31 Responses to This is the way to teach thermodynamics! :)

  1. Jim Carver says:

    In a Newtonian kind of way it is true. We don’t really live in Newton’s universe though.

  2. Finally, a rock band that is able to look beyond the starving African children.

  3. Rajini Rao says:

    Could you elaborate, Jim Carver ? Are you saying that modern physics violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics?

  4. Erm…. one minor quibble: “New energy cannot be

    created and high-grade

    energy is being destroyed” ?! Energy cannot be destroyed. It can be transformed but that is about it. 

  5. Jim Carver says:

    Maybe it doesn’t, but how is dark energy conserved? or gravity for that matter.

  6. Jim Carver Gravity is a field force. Dark energy is theoretical at the moment. We believe it is there because the equations tell us it should be and nothing else accounts for the discrepancy. 

  7. Back to the Muse song itself, which I’ve now listened to. There will be millions dancing on it without having the slightest idea of its meaning and without any interest in knowing it as well. Only a tiny fraction, I am afraid, will get the message. Darn I wish subliminal messaging would work 🙂

  8. Rajini Rao says:

    Haha, quibbling is a requirement for proper participation on my posts, David Amerland . No fun without it 🙂

    Simply put, energy can neither be created nor destroyed, I agree.. (high or low grade, it matters not..but we can give them some artistic license!

  9. Rajini Rao Full points for trying I suppose. It is Friday so yeah, why not? 🙂 

  10. Jim Carver says:

    David Amerland That kindergarten answer doesn’t address my comment. And I know you can’t show me a graviton. So don’t treat me like a puppy.

  11. Jim Carver Temporal correction then. No puppy communication intended. It’s Friday and seeing how I do not even remember talking to you before it was an off-the-cuff response, Would you feel less biologically transmogrified if I retract it? 

  12. Rajini Rao says:

    “For millions of years mankind lived just like the animals…

    Then something happened which unleashed the power of our imagination…We learned to talk…” –  Stephen Hawking

    Pink Floyd – COSMIC VOYAGE – Keep Talking

    We need more of these 🙂

  13. Ram Sew says:

    It is thrue millions years ago who nows the animals or the humanbeen?

  14. I am not in any type of intellectual capacity to argue with that genius (or you guys) but animals none the less do communicate in extraordinary ways. How do we define “talk”?

  15. James Kasper As far as I know no other animal species had something approaching Pink Floyd 🙂

  16. Rajini Kumar says:

    Don’t they write poems on Nature and Love, anymore? 🙂

  17. Rajini Rao says:

    Rajini Kumar , meh. Nature and Love have been done to death, don’t you think? 🙂

    James Kasper , certainly animals do communicate. But I would have to agree with Zaid El-Hoiydi 😉

  18. Nice lyrics. The song sounds very unlike Muse except Matt’s vocals, which are fantastic as always.

    And this makes for a nice read, Rajini Rao et al:

  19. There is certainly some scale of excellence in every language and genre. Pink floyd rules! I was talking about the Hawking quote…

  20. Drew Sowersby BTW you will enjoy that book (but not learning much 🙂

  21. DaFreak says:

    David Amerland about “high grade energy” being destroyed, I think that’s more a matter of semantics than an actual error on their part. In a literal sense you are right but in that case nothing is ever really destroyed. If you blow up your house with a bomb, it’s not really destroyed, it has only been transformed into many different smaller pieces. :p

    Unless our current understanding of physics is completely wrong, an indefinite sustainable future is most definitely a myth. Entropy WILL kill us at some point but I do think we have a couple of million years left and hopefully even a few billion if we manage to make it off our rock. 🙂

    Jim Carver You are going to have to bring more to the table than “theoretical form of energy might not be conserved” if you want to trash the 2nd law. 😉 Keep in mind that dark energy has negative pressure so the equations do balance out.

  22. Koen De Paus I agree with you, I know they are playing a little loose with the meaning of the word ‘destroy’ and for a truly meaningful scientific discussion we need to define terminology. Still this has been an enjoyable thread on a really hectic Friday. Kudos to Rajini Rao for starting it and everyone else for participating.

  23. – Fascinating discussion here on cooperation between animals and animal intelligence in general which I thought some of you may find interesting since the topic was touched upon above. 🙂

    ” Coyotes and badgers hunt together. In fact, you’re far more likely to witness coyotes seeking out food alongside badgers than hunting with other coyotes.” –

    Animal-partnerships –

  24. Chad Haney says:

    Feisal Kamil I was swamped today. Besides I haven’t studied thermodynamics since the early 90’s.

  25. Good summary by Koen De Paus 🙂 There was a bunch of books written about entropy not least by Issac Asimov (The Collapsing Universe).

  26. Someone dares compare floyd (as great as they are) to the harmonics of certain song birds and others. Its funny how much a thread gets offtopic. But anyways, I was just flowing with it. Look at how that bee tells the hive exactly where the treasure lies.

  27. Rajini Rao says:

    We were jesting, James Kasper . Some rabid PF fans in my circles, not to mention expert threadjackers 🙂

    Absolutely, I believe animals communicate in ways that we are only beginning to appreciate. My posts are a never ending compilation of the scientific marvels of Monarch butterfly migration, epigenetics of bee social castes or the engineering of bowerbird boudoirs. I would post on moth pheromones soon, but I keep getting sidetracked into reading more papers on the topic 😉

  28. You certainly are well rounded physics/biology. I guess everything is science in some way. I try not to argue. 😉

    I think I am smart enough to not do that with people that are so much more intelegent than I. Pretty much all I have is if someone is miss-informed or using opinion instead of facts.

    Sorry to interupt. I was fascinated with the physics theories and got bored with all the song references getting away from the story. 😉

  29. Btw, the content owner has not made this video available for mobile…

  30. Rajini Rao 🙂 excellent topics and I have the same interests as well !  too cool!

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