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drhat77's avatar

What are you favorite pet theories?

Asked by drhat77 (6166 points ) December 2nd, 2013

What scientific questions would you like to explore if you had a research lab at your disposal? Based on this question, wherein I posit some nonsense down there. If you had a grad student, and just told them “find out if this hypothesis is valid”, what would it be?
If any fellow jellies know more information on how to pursue a theory (or just flat our debunk it), comment as well!

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17 Answers

drhat77's avatar

I’ll start if off with two that I could wrangle to the forefront of my consciousness at this moment.
Once I learned what a Bose–Einstein condensate was, I realized it looks kind of like a Kernel density estimation. Could the reason matter looks like a particle at non absolute zero temperatures is because it is just a wave taking on a kernel density appearance?

drhat77's avatar

I think the appendix serves a partial function of of regulating intestinal/colonic flow. It sits just outside the illeocecal valve, where it can sample chyme as it enters to colon, tumors that arise from it are the well differentiated neuroendocrine carcinoid tumors, and if it suffers the mildest inflammation digestion just shuts down.

Pachy's avatar

I’m fascinated by quantum mechanics.

ETpro's avatar

One grad student would probably not be sufficient to sus out the truth of my pet theory hypothesis (please). My hypothesis is that dark matter and dark energy are the felt effects of virtual particles (dark mass) poofing into existence constantly via quantum fluctuations in the vacuum between dispersed atoms in space, and the energy released when the particle/anti-particle pair reunite and self annihilate (dark energy). Since E = MC^2, dark energy would be greater than dark matter by a large amount, as it is. That ratio would be controlled by how many virtual particles self annihilate versus how many persist (the current unknown), forming non-virtual elementary particles that add to the total non-virtual mass of the Universe.

If this is the case, then the Universe would be expanding, and it is. The rate of expansion would keep accelerating, and it is. And it’s quite possible that some critical amount of expansion might create an excess of energy and mass that would trigger a new Big Bang; so the big rip is the trigger, not a once posited big crunch.

ragingloli's avatar

I have this crazy idea as a complete non-physicist, that if you subjected spacetime to the gravitational effects of a black hole, the zero point energy within it would also be concentrated, and that once the black hole evaporates instantly, a massive burst of this accumulated zero point energy could be harvested.
If that were true, it would justify research into creating artificial black holes.

johnpowell's avatar

In a fight one horse sized duck or 100 duck sized horses?

ucme's avatar

Dogs know when they’ve farted but are more than happy to deflect blame onto any living things present at the time.

filmfann's avatar

My theory is that @ragingloli is really Willie Robertson from Duck Dynasty.

janbb's avatar

That Frodo needs to moderate his aggression or he will be out the door.

ragingloli's avatar

@filmfann
Ludicrous. You would NEVER see me with such a revolting headband.

mrentropy's avatar

That many cases of alcoholism and/or drug abuse stem from deeper mental health issues and that successful rehabilitation will not succeed unless the mental health issues are diagnosed and treated first.

Rarebear's avatar

Well, this isn’t how science works. A scientist doesn’t say, “I’m going to prove this theory.” or “I’m going to debunk this theory”. A scientist works within the framework of a current theory to test hypotheses within it.

LuckyGuy's avatar

I would like to investigate the hypothesis that one of the best predictors of whether a marriage will last longer than 10 years is indicated by how the new spouses treat each other during the cutting of the cake ceremony at the wedding reception.
If they are sober and treat each other with respect (feed each other the cake gently) the marriage has a higher chance of surviving than if they smoosh it into each other’s face.

I would assign a grad student to look at many wedding photos taken 5, 10, 15 years ago and classify the cake cutting performance into 4 categories. Nice, neutral, dual smooshing or single spouse smooshing and cross correlate that with divorce rate .

If anyone picks up on this, you’re welcome. Please credit me in the acknowledgment.

snowberry's avatar

My favorite pet theory is that if there’s a spot on the carpet that hasn’t yet been peed on, it will be soon!

SecondHandStoke's avatar

That Pam Poovey could kick all our asses.

hearkat's avatar

I theorize that the mechanism of introversion is somehow related to the mechanism of autism.

Like @mrentropy, I believe that many addictions began as a form of self-medication.

drhat77's avatar

@rarebear thank you. this is a flight of fancy and not a call to revolutionize the scientific method. But in terms of my own pet theories, without becoming an expert in the relevant disciplines, I don’t know another review forum that would be able to dispel any basic misconceptions my lack of education fails to account for. Live a little, @Rarebear

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