From the blog

Guess What I Learned? Episode 1: The Zeroeth Law

So, one of the awesome things about writing—even writing fiction—is that there’s research involved. I get to learn all sorts of random stuff.

I love learning new things!

To me, this is one of the big bonuses of having a writing career. I can’t think of another career where I’d be studying the platypus one day and thermodynamics the next.

Why do I even bother with research since I’m making it all up anyway?

My thinking is that if you’re going to create a universe, it has to have rules. That applies even more so if you’re designing a system of magic. So I will tell you that things in my Housekeeper universe are ROUGHLY based in science. That is, I get an idea, then I research a scientific thing that relates to that idea, and then I use that as a jumping-off-point to do the fictional thing I have in mind. So, I wind up needing to know about science-y things that I have no background in. Like (may the gods have mercy) physics.

This means that often I’m coming across random goodness. And when there’s goodies, I like to share. So, I figure I can share fun facts that I learn with you.

Groovy?

Okay!

Since I mentioned it above, let’s start with a fun fact about thermodynamics (we’ll talk about the platypus later, I promise). There’s a principle in thermodynamics called the “zeroeth law of thermodynamics.” Why the weird name? Well, the scientists had already come up with three laws of thermodynamics before they figured this one out, and it’s more fundamental than the other ones, so they made it come first by naming it “zeroeth.” Way to retcon guys!

And just what is this law? And what the hell is thermodynamics anyway? Basically, it’s the area of physics that deals with heat. And the zeroeth law says that when you’ve got two things that have different temperatures, they’re going to exchange heat until their temperatures become equal. Certainly, things can affect and interfere with this race to equilibrium. But I think it’s kind of nice that nature’s “go-to,” its preset, is to get everybody to be equal.

Pretty neat, right?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.