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As the name suggests, a pub theory is theory hypothesised whilst under the influence of alcohol.

You're sitting there down at your local, your girlfriend is into the second hour of telling what a bad day she's had and your mind begins to wander. Being a total geek, like me, you dream about the exciting world of physics.

Suddenly you have a moment of clarity. You suddenly realise how to make that perpetual motion machine or travel faster than the speed of light. Why hasn't anyone ever thought of this before?

At this point, if you're lucky, you snap to and go have a go on the fruit machine or get another drink in. If you're unlucky you go on to write a node about it or, even worse, write a proper scientific paper on it. I have heard rumours that Drude's laws of solid-state physics were an example of a pub theory. I doubt that though.

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