Every day I’m amazed by the power of the Internet – to connect, inform and empower people creatively. Then there’s the ability it gives you to see quite how dumb people can get… Witness this post from yesterday’s NYT online. The question is simple: if you put a plane on a treadmill, as big and wide as a runway, and the treadmill runs in the opposite direction to the wheels as fast as the wheels are running – then will the plane take off? The answers being put forward are quite amazing. Apparently the question is not so simple as it might first appear. I mean. What if the treadmill breaks? Or surely the wheels don’t make the plane take off – it’s the engines, so it doesn’t matter how fast or not the wheels are going.
Oh. You want to hear my answer? Hmm. Well it’s quite obvious: the treadmill would be arrested and shot under the PATRIOT act (most likely for carrying a water bottle or farting), and everyone on board the plane would be taken off and searched. Then the plane would take off later, with the evil treadmill’s masterplan foiled. Yay!
No really. That is what would actually happen. I have a Physics Degree, so I know. For those of you who want to work it out for yourselves – here are some useful links:
Ps, 3 points to the first person who makes a video mashup of the Ok, Go! video and a plane trying to take off…