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The World's Shortest Physics Lecture

Videos of the event now available here!

And a gallery of pictures as well.

"Two marvellous examples of the power of shedworking from the Highland Science Festival" - the news website Wikio.

Just give us two minutes of your time, we said. (And a further minute to get you into the world's smallest lecture theatre and out again.) Just let us know in advance what you'd like, we said, relativity or quantum theory, and we'll book you in and sit you down and make the whole world seem like a better place. (Or a better and a worse one simultaneously.)

The world's shortest physics lecture took place at Borders Bookstore, Inverness, on Saturday 1 November with Howie Firth and Bill Graham. (And many would say the world's best coffee as well.) There were twenty lecture slots every hour, and by the end of the day 65 people had listened to one of the lectures and received a specially-designed commemorative certificate together with a copy of the lecture and follow-up notes to work though. There was a great atmosphere in Borders, as the Festival team took each member of the audience forward for their two minutes and then whisked them out again. 

And around the world, the shedworkers are taking us to their hearts! Till now, sheds have been used for potting, pottering, painting but not  for physics lectures. We are delighted to break new ground for the shed world and you can see us on!

This opens up some new thoughts for the future. Have famous physicists had their own sheds? And could these have infleunced their work?

Did Newton sit in an apple shed, absently picking up some of them and dropping them on the floor?

Did Einstein find the space in his shed shrinking and the time going by more slowly or the other way round?

Did Schrödinger's cat come from Schrödinger's shed?

And was Heisenberg uncertain about whether he had a shed or not?

Or could a Shed be the ultimate unit of matter?

One shed = the amount of stuff that one man can accumulate in ten years of marriage.

Indeed, could it be that we will soon see strings going out? and sheds coming in!


"I had been upstairs drinking coffee and eating a sandwich of smoked salmon and rocket when I spotted men erecting a garden shed down among the bookcases. This turned out to be the lecture theatre." - Jim Miller's column in the Inverness Courier

The world's shortest physics lecture took place in the world's smallest lecture theatre specially provided by Noble Timber Buildings of Forres.

The company specialise in wooden buildings and supply everything from wooden kennels to wooden houses and now lecture theatres!

They very kindly adapted their traditional potting shed design for the event and there was plenty of space for the speaker and a lectern, and for a seat for the audience.

Or, expressed mathematically,

One Noble Timber Shed = ample space for two people.

Latest news: See Potting shed physics lectures bid.

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