That's What it Is

Uncertain principles: Physics Is About Rules, Not Facts

The idea that air resistance forces somehow invalidate Newtonian mechanics is depressingly common, but it’s based on a common misconception of what physics is. Physics is not a collection of facts, it’s a set of rules for understanding the universe– in the specific case of Newtonian physics, rules governing the effect that forces have on the motion of objects. “All objects near the Earth’s surface fall at the same rate” is not a central idea of Newtonian physics, just one of the simplest predictions from it. The central ideas of Newtonian physics are the rules used to quantify the effect of interactions, chiefly the “second law of motion” which says that the rate of change of the momentum of an object is equal to the sum of all the forces acting on it.