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    Coldplay #3 on “Songs for Scientists” List

    speedofsoundcover.pngThe right songs at the right times let you jog faster, feel happier, or wallow in your own personal pit of despair until you feel like emerging. Might such tunes give researchers toiling at the microscope, Petri dish or pipette that extra little bit of auditory inspiration to get through endless days at the lab bench?


    It’s worth a try, and like a bee dancing to direct the hive to honey, Inkling is here to guide you to some sweet options with our Top Ten Songs about Science. May your research reap the rewards. Or just your ears. In reverse order:


    3. Speed of Sound by COLDPLAY Coldplay - X & Y - Speed of Sound

    This ethereal, flowing tune possesses a highly promising title, though it woefully misinforms fans on some important values in the world of math and physics. We begin to see Coldplay’s errant scientific lyricism with, “I look up at night / the planets are moving at the speed of light.” Sadly, Chris Martin, the fastest of the planets, Mercury, moves at 47,900 meters per second, while the speed of light is a smidge faster, at 299,792,458 m/s. The song also states, “Birds go flying at the speed of sound.” Wishful thinking, again, Coldplay. The fastest known bird, widely believed to be the peregrine falcon, parts the air at about 185 miles per hour in a dive (compared to sound’s ripping 769 mph). But if no genius astrophysicists or ornithologists emerge from the next generation of America’s youth, will I blame Coldplay? With notes so sweet and a tune so catchy, I suppose not.

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