Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The Physics of Red Bulletin


Lately on some Sundays, my L.A. Times newspaper has included an intriguing new insert called “The Red Bulletin: A Beyond the Ordinary Magazine.”  Aside from interesting articles on extreme sports, travel, arts and music there is a particular regular column that always catches my eye: Winning Formula. The article always features a large picture of some sporting activity: free throw shot in basketball, skateboard kickflip, high-wire acrobat on a bicycle, freeclimbing, weightlifting, etc. 

The inset image is from the Winning Formula June 11, 2012 column featuring the physics of Tim Lincecum’s pitch ( the ace pitcher from the San Francisco Giants). What I like most about these articles is how they graphically superimpose Newtonian mechanics formulae over the photo to demonstrate the physics involved. Then in the text of the article, the equations and principles are discussed.
   
I’m pretty sure the demographic of this publication is something like Males (18-30) – just a guess – so having math and physics appearing on a regular basis is absolutely delightful.  Who knows, it may be enough to convince more than a few young people that science is no longer nerdy if it can be applied directly to something they can readily identify with. Thanks Red Bulletin for educating us!