Prof. Eric Dahl will help you build your science fiction world!


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Prof. Eric Dahl

Let physics professor Eric Dahl help you solidify your science fiction world!

Whether you just want to do away with the pesky speed-of-light limit or are inventing an entirely new reality, there are some ways to do physics that just feel more real than others.  This auction gets you one physics professor’s critique of your world building — what laws are broken, what is or is not consistent, and what crazy inventions your ever-attentive readers might create for your universe….

The winner should submit no more than 7k words describing their world (plus figures if you’d like). Eric will give feedback on this submission.

“If someone points out to you that your pet theory of the universe is in disagreement with Maxwell’s equations — then so much the worse for Maxwell’s equations. If it is found to be contradicted by observation — well, these experimentalists do bungle things sometimes. But if your theory is found to be against the second law of thermodynamics I can give you no hope; there is nothing for it but to collapse in deepest humiliation.”

-Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington, The Nature of the Physical World (1915), chapter 4

Prof. Eric Dahl hunts dark matter.  That’s the stuff in the universe that outweighs normal matter (what we’re made of) five-to-one, but that somehow we’ve never actually caught a glimpse of.  So Eric and others like him invent detectors to look for this unseen stuff, take them thousands of feet underground in abandoned or not-so-abandoned mines, and wait for dark matter to show up.  While they’re waiting they read sci-fi and fantasy novels, because clearly what they do is not fantastical enough.

Eric also teaches physics at Northwestern University, and has won several awards for his research that he’s too modest to point out – but don’t worry, we googled him. He’s won the PECASE award (Presidental Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers), awarded by the White House to only 100 people a year; and the Primakoff Award from the American Physical Society, which awards one per year to young(-ish) particle physicists.

NOTE: Eric is acting as a private citizen, and not representing Northwestern University. He is speaking and writing for himself, and not for the institution.

At the end of the auction, we will get everyone in touch with each other via email.

Worldbuilders is very grateful to Prof. Eric Dahl for this donation.