© Harold Aspden, 1998

Research Note: 2/98: March 25, 1998

I am writing this after reading an article by Robert Matthews, Science Correspondent of the British newspaper: The Sunday Telegraph. The article was entitled 'Take a Spin'. It appeared at pp. 24-28 in the February 28, 1998 issue of the British publication: New Scientist.

What captured my attention was the statement:

"The spin property of particles has convinced those searching for the Theory of Everything that there must be a way to bridge the great spin schism and thus unify all particles."

How true that is! However, why is it that those who search for that Holy Grail cannot find what they are looking for? Well, the reason is hidden in a few other words that Robert Matthews contrived to work into his article. It is owing to the

"Not invented here syndrome."

Well, I am familiar with the 'NIH factor'. It was part of our vocabulary in IBM, as long ago as the early 1960s, my field being concerned with protecting inventions arising from IBM's many different Development Laboratories. What, however, I see as very apt is the use of this 'NIH' expression in an article concerned with the theoretical physics of electrons. Are we really in a world where 'invention' describes the work of the theoretical physicist? Is that 'Theory of Everything' going to be the product of 'invention'?

What happened to my understanding that there is a line of demarkation as between 'invention' and 'discovery'? If electrons spin, whatever that might mean, they certainly have been doing that for eons of time past. Invention is a term applied to something new, something not presented to us by Mother Nature, but rather something created by mankind.

However, what I see in the theoretical treatment of the electron does seem to me to be the product of an 'inventive' mind, rather than a discovery founded in experimental research. I would urge Robert Matthews to take stock of the subject he has written about and consider not 'the great spin schism' but simply two numbers connected with electron spin, both numbers being a direct consequence of experimental observation. They are the numbers 2 and 1.001159652193. Now, numbers are not 'inventions', but a numerical result presented to us by Mother Nature can be 'discovered'.

Concerning these numbers, they are combined in an equation for what is known as the 'g-factor', the 'anomalous' property of the electron exhibited in the ratio of its magnetic moment to its angular momentum. The relationship is:

g/2 = 1.000 159 652 193

When I was active on my Ph.D. research into anomalous energy activity in the ferromagnetism of electrical power transformers, I 'discovered' that the factor-of-2 anomaly was attributable to the way in which energy is stored in .. dare I say it? .. the aether, that being a word in my vocabulary meaning space devoid of matter. However, the 'inventive' mind of the theoretical physicist had conjured up the concept of 'electron spin'. Well, read what Robert Matthews has to say on that subject and see if you can understand the conventional 'wisdom' that guides those in search of that 'Theory of Everything'.

Mother Nature says: "If you deposit energy in my energy bank in space I will pool that energy with other such deposits. I will set the 'wheels in motion' that make it possible to keep track of how much energy I owe you and they will tap the energy pool to give energy back to you on demand, when, that is, you stop 'spinning those wheels of yours' that supplied the original energy input."

So 'spin' induces a 'spin' reaction, but what is that 'spin'? One cannot just invent 'spin'. However, I can say that 2 plus 2 is 4 and 2 minus 1 is 1. So if I can find a way of measuring the combined spin of my input action as offset by the 'field' reaction, and the net magnetic moment of that combination, I might see a ratio of magnetic moment to angular momentum that is double the ratio I calculate from my knowledge of the charge and mass of the electrons that are involved in my half of this process.

Well, I do not propose to go into that here. Suffice it to say that the g-factor of 2 was easily explained, once I explored the way energy optimizes in its deployment in that magnetic field reaction. However, when in the latter part of the 1950s I urged attention to my interpretation of that anomaly-of-2 in the g-factor, I was told not to question Paul Dirac's work and firmly told that there was no aether and that Einstein's Theory of Relativity was beyond challenge. I was not told how empty space has a mechanism for storing energy, not to mention its way of providing that universal regulating quantum of angular momentum which we denote as h/2π. I did know that this quantum featured in the unit of magnetic moment, the 'Bohr magneton', a term having special significance in my study of ferromagnetism. More to the point, however, I was told to go away and read about the wonderful way in which quantum electrodynamics explains the precise value of the g/2 factor, not that factor of 2, but that number 1.001159652193, though its value was not known to that extreme order at the time.

So, for want of an insight into the way in which space performs on the energy scene, physicists have lost sight of how to 'discover' their Holy Grail, the 'Theory of Everything'. Necessity is the mother of invention and so they have resorted to 'invention', only to encounter the 'NIH' factor. They are, in fact, running around in circles and are not even seeing that what they call 'spin' is really something 'running around in circles'. That factor-of-2 is, they believe, evidence that ferromagnetism is not produced by electrons describing circular orbits but rather by electrons complying with the spin doctor's abstract formalism.

That 'way to bridge the great spin schism and thus unify all particles', which Robert Matthews mentioned is so clear. All one has to do, as I have done in my analysis of all this in the 1950s, is to explain that factor-of-2 by aether reaction attributable to orbital charge motion. As to that g/2 factor, well, that is another problem and I invite you to press the link button below to see where my research findings can take you.

I conclude by saying that I believe I am the victim of the 'NDI' factor, the 'not discovered here' factor, because I developed my theory outside the academic world, at least from 1954-1983, and, though back in academia from 1983-1992, I was in a Department of Electrical Engineering and so the 'NDI' factor was still at work. Electrical engineers cannot expect to be heeded if they venture into the realm of the theoretical physicist, far less, if they trespass onto the territory of the mathematician who thrives on the philosophical notions of Einstein's theory.

However, a 'Theory for Everything' has to embrace 'everything', be it the mathematician's challenge of Fermat's Last Theorem or the engineer's 'energy-everywhere-in-space' challenge.

A Quotation

"There are ordinary geniuses, whose achievements one imagines other people might emulate, with enormous hard work and a bit of luck. Then there are the magicians, whose inventions are so astounding, so counter to all the intuitions of their colleagues, that it is hard to see how any human could have imagined them. Dirac was a magician."
The words of:
Sir Michael Berry, Royal Society Research Professor
H H Wills Physics Laboratory, University of Bristol.
Page 40 of the February 1998 issue of Physics World.

Such is the legacy bequeathed to future generations of physicists, the inventions of a magician! However, that 'Theory of Everything' has still to be 'invented' by a wave of the magician's wand, as well as that energy storage medium which functions by magic in empty space but yet has no name other than 'space-time'. Thankfully, there remains some scope for those of us who are not magicians but, with 'enormous hard work and a bit of luck', might be able to emulate a genius!

Harold Aspden