What Is Convergence?

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Convergence, in relation to physics, is the physical joining together of light. Discover how to identify convergence with a curved mirror with help from a science teacher in this free video on life science.

Part of the Video Series: Physical & Life Science
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Steve Jones and I'm going to explain what convergence is. Well, I'm first of all going to explain the physical term so then end philosophical term. So let's start with the physics. If I have a lens like this, I call it a converging lens because of what it does to light. Light traveling in this direction is focused to a point here and this is a point to which they converge. So this, you might describe as convergence. Also, if I have a mirror like this, a curve mirror. This is the reflecting side on the right, this is not, so the light comes in parallel like this and as it reflected, it converges to a point. So this is converges; this is convergence and this is what we call the focus. So this creates a focus from convergence. Philosophically, we can think of it in the same way. We can think of convergence as the coming together of two points of view. This is a point of view 1 and this is a point of view 2. And convergence therefore is simply when those two points of view come together in agreement. So when you're looking for convergence, for example in financial terms, they also talk about your European uni, union entry and the financial convergence conditions. It means that the finances of the country that wants to come get to be very similar to the finances of the overall union. And eventually they reach a point of convergence where they essentially the same and they can be much together. And therefore, they can produce a focus, you might say. So, what is convergence? The answer is it's a coming together either physically of light, if we're talking about physics or philosophically of points of view to find an agreement. So that is what convergence is.

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