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[–]d3rr 5 insightful - 1 fun5 insightful - 0 fun6 insightful - 1 fun -  (5 children)

Thanks this part did it for me:

Wondering how electrons can be so slow and still have electricity go so fast? Imagine a long plastic tube filled with ping-pong balls. You gently press on the ball at one end so that a different ball falls out the other. Both the information that you had pressed, and the energy to dislodge the ball, travel much faster than the ball you pressed.

[–][deleted] 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (3 children)

Want something which will really screw with your mind?

Turns out that the atoms in the stick move as a matter wave with a speed limited by the speed of light, with the surprising consequence that the rigidity of a material is limited by the speed of light.

[–]magnora7 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

Yeah the shock wave moves down the stick at the speed of sound in that material. In extremely rigid materials the speed of sound approaches the speed of light, but can never surpass it.

[–][deleted] 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

It's why a perfectly rigid material is impossible.

[–]magnora7 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Good point. I suppose anything that's "material" and has rest mass can't travel at the speed of light by definition