November 07, 2008
Not So Dark After All
Posted by scott at November 07, 2008 12:58 PM
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I propose the name "whatzda matter."
Hey, if "quark" can make it into the scientific jargon...
The tradition in physics is to stick with the original name no matter how misleading it turns out to be.
My favorite is "anomalous dispersion," which has been understood for quite some time. More common is the "s p d f" ("sharp principle diffuse fine") names for electron orbitals. Spectroscopic features of atoms and molecules are called "lines" and "bands" because that's what they looked like on glass photographic plates used in prism spectrometers.
Einstein tried to change "Theory of Relativity" to "Theory of Invariants" when he realized people were being misled into saying things like "Didn't Einstein prove that everything's relative?" If Uncle Albert couldn't get the name of his own theory changed, not much hope for dark matter.