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Get your head around the field of physics, which is the science that deals with matter and energy and the interactions between them. Physics, the foundation of all other sciences, is an attempt to provide a comprehensive rational explanation of the structure and workings of the universe.
The field of physics is commonly subdivided into two large, main categories: classical and modern physics. The dividing line between these two categories was drawn in the early 1900s, when a number of revolutionary new concepts about the nature of matter were proposed. Included among these were Albert Einstein’s theories of general and special relativity, Max Planck’s concept of the quantum, Werner Heisenberg’s principle of indeterminacy, and the concept of the equivalence of matter and energy.
In general, classical physics deals with topics on the macroscopic scale—that is, on a scale that can be studied with the largely unaided five human senses. Modern physics, in contrast, concerns the nature and behavior of particles and energy at the submicroscopic level. As it happens, the laws of classical physics are generally inapplicable or applicable only as approximations to the laws of modern physics.
Like other fields of science, physics is commonly subdivided into a number of more specific fields of research. In classical physics, those fields include mechanics, thermodynamics, sound, light and optics, and electricity and magnetism. In modern physics, some major subdivisions include atomic, nuclear, and particle physics, and interdisciplinary fields like astrophysics.
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