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Jerk, Jounce And Rates Of Change

Yesterday I tweeted from the Heat Signature account about avoiding a tricky problem with homing missiles by just increasing their acceleration over time – I called it AccelerationAcceleration. Today, Coriolinus replied to say that the scientific name for this is actually ‘jerk‘. This is amazing, and so is the Wikipedia page about it.

“A passenger in a vehicle with zero jerk will feel a constant force.”

“Excessive jerk may result in an uncomfortable ride on elevators, trams and the like.”

“A device that measures jerk is called a “jerkmeter”.”

“A jerk system is a system whose behavior is described by a jerk equation”

“How long the squooshing takes determines the jerk.”

Better still, the rate of change in jerk is called ‘jounce‘. After that, though, physicists seem to run out of juicy, evocative words:

“The fourth, fifth and sixth derivatives of position as a function of time are sometimes somewhat facetiously referred to as “Snap”, “Crackle”, and “Pop” respectively.”

I feel like we can do better than that. So here’s my proposal for the first thirteen derivatives of position over time:

Change in position: velocity
Change in velocity: acceleration
Change in acceleration: jerk
Change in jerk: jounce
Change in jounce: hyperjerk
Change in hyperjerk: meta-jounce
Change in meta-jounce: binge warp
Change in binge warp: migrational spank
Change in migrational spank: barflurch
Change in barflurch: dark jaunt
Change in dark jaunt: catastrophic snap
Change in catastrophic snap: whipfuck
Change in whipfuck: Newton’s torment

Anyone want to take it beyond thirteen?


Duncan Wintle: Change in Newton's torment: Newton's justice.

David: Leibniz's revenge?

Fin C: Change in Newton's justice: morbid ferocity

Anna Harren: I made a simulator for this: http://iirelu.github... ...ajerk.html

Kingluke2222: Change in Morbid Ferocity: Falcon Punch.

Diego: I swear I once flew in an airplane that whipfucked the whole travel from take off to landing.

noffle: Migrational spank or whipfuck may be my favourite. Anything that plays on 'whiplash' is good fun sport.

Ade: Less fun, but here's the (supposed) list of the first ten: ...rivatives/

Random internet dude: I'm a physics undergrad and didn't know anything about jerks until now!

So many derivatives...

BadBannana: Change in Falcon Punch: Kestral Hunt

Kingluke2222: Change in Kestral Hunt: Window Jump

entropy: Change in Window Jump: Help I'm Trapped In a Cosmological Constant Factory