Anyway, that aside, could you explain why if Photons had "mass", and for the sake of sanity, let's set "mass" to mean what's it mean for the last 70 years of physics before you answer: invariant non relativistic mass, why this would allow neutrinos to exceed C?
It doesn't. It means that C is slightly faster than we think it is. Or did you miss that the last handful of times I explained it in clear English simple enough for a 5th grader to understand?
While we're here, neutrinos have mass, they have to, they oscillate
And yet, amazingly, people who actually work in the field aren't 100% sure. Similarly, while they assume that photons have no mass, and have set an upper limit on what the mass of a photon could be without violating observed behavior
, they don't actually know that for sure either.
...so let's short circuit any crazy ideas about photons somehow having "more mass" than neutrinos. They don't.
You declaring it so (in bold nonetheless) doesn't actually make it true. I know your ego is larger than the state of New Hampshire, but that just means you're more likely to be self deluded than anything else.
I keep putting "mass" quotes, incidentally, because photons, essentially by definition (are massless?).
Only the parts of the definition of a photon that are completely circular and dependent on the assumption
that photons are massless and thus the speed they travel at is the speed that massless particles travel at and is thus the fastest speed a particle can travel and is thus the basis point from which we calculate all other relative particle speeds is dependent on photons having no mass.
You do get that we use the photon for this pretty much only because it's super easy to detect, right? It's pretty much arbitrary. We picked it because it appeared to be the fastest moving thing we could detect. So we declare it the fastest, assume it's massless (because we can't find anything faster) and move on. Please tell me you can grasp how finding something that appears to move faster than light, changes the very assumptions you base your argument on
If neutrinos were easy to detect instead of ridiculously hard, can you explain any reason why we wouldn't use them as the basis for determining C? Think really hard about that before answering because it's a biggie.
If they did, they'd be something else, not photons, and light would work entirely differently (and a lot differently) than has ever been observed.
Nope. You're grossly over-exaggerating things. It doesn't change anything at all except that C is really just slightly faster than we thought (and we're talking like .0000001% faster, so an amount that we can barely even measure, but into which the measured speed of a neutrino can fit). As I stated earlier, we already know that ambient conditions can cause a photon to move slower than the "speed of light" (even a hell of a lot slower in some cases). We do experiments in which we slow photons down all the time. Amazingly, the laws of physics don't fall apart at all.
Aside from insisting that it would make things work "a lot differently", can you actually name any way in which it would make things work differently? Again, you insisting it must be true doesn't make it true. There's a whole set of physics thought experiments which ask specifically what would happen if photons actually had a very very small mass. The answer is pretty much "not much".
A LOT DIFFERENTLY. The idea that photons have mass, and this is in no way an exaggeration, is similar to the idea that moon does contain a green cheese core.
Yeah. It's an exaggeration. But it's what you do best, so keep at it!
This is in interesting anomaly. It'd be fascinating if it could be replicated, and that would drastically change physics as we know it. I'd really enjoy that.
More or less drastically than the possibility that photons actually do have a tiny mass?
What's funny is that I'm applying Occam's Razor here. Assuming the measurements are correct, then assuming that the current measured speed of photos in a vacuum is *not* actually the fastest speed a particle can travel (That's "C" btw, which works in the equations regardless what we use to measure it) is the simplest explanation. Assigning a very very small mass to photons is honestly the least disruptive way to allow for that finding. There are others as well, which require assuming ambient conditions in the vacuum which we have previously assumed don't slow down photons at all (which I explained in an earlier post as well).
Barring that, you kinda have to re-write whole sections of our understanding of physics. At it's most basic Smash, if neutrinos really are traveling faster than the measured speed of light, then the measured speed of light cannot actually be C
, without tossing out the entire meaning of the value of C in physics. Edited, Sep 23rd 2011 6:25pm by gbaji