Einstein's Schizophrenic World: Bacchanalians in Utter Despair
(trop ancien pour répondre)
Pentcho Valev
2017-05-27 14:11:49 UTC
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Neil Turok: "It's the ultimate catastrophe: that theoretical physics has led to this crazy situation where the physicists are utterly confused and seem not to have any predictions at all." http://www2.macleans.ca/2013/09/05/perimeter-institute-and-the-crisis-in-modern-physics/

Peter Woit: "It seems to me that we're now ten years down the road from the point when discussion revolved around actual models and people thought maybe they could calculate something. As far as this stuff goes, we're now not only at John Horgan's "End of Science", but gone past it already and deep into something different." http://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/wordpress/?p=7266

Sabine Hossenfelder: "Many of my colleagues believe this forest of theories will eventually be chopped down by data. But in the foundations of physics it has become extremely rare for any model to be ruled out. The accepted practice is instead to adjust the model so that it continues to agree with the lack of empirical support."

A sad reality, isn't it? A few years ago the orgy was still in full swing:

Michio Kaku, Brian Cox, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Brian Greene, Lisa Randall: "Now, listen carefully. The faster you move, the heavier you get. Light travels at the same speed no matter how you look at it. No matter how I move relative to you light travels at the same speed. No matter who is doing the measurement and no matter what direction you are moving the speed of light is the same. The speed of light is the same no matter what direction or how fast... As you travel faster time slows down. Everything slows down. Everything slows down. Time slows down when you move. Time passes at a different rate. Clocks run slow. It's a monumental shift in how we see the world. It's a beautiful piece of science. It's a beautifully elegant theory. It's a beautiful piece of science. It's a beautiful piece..."

The bacchanalia is over now, replaced by shock and horror. Einstein's malignancy killed science but did not die itself and is now growing unrestrained. Clever Einsteinians know what is going on, silly Einsteinians don't but they are still horrified by the gradual invalidation of the falsification requirement:

"This year, debates in physics circles took a worrying turn. Faced with difficulties in applying fundamental theories to the observed Universe, some researchers called for a change in how theoretical physics is done. They began to argue - explicitly - that if a theory is sufficiently elegant and explanatory, it need not be tested experimentally, breaking with centuries of philosophical tradition of defining scientific knowledge as empirical."

"Do physicists need empirical evidence to confirm their theories? You may think that the answer is an obvious yes, experimental confirmation being the very heart of science. But a growing controversy at the frontiers of physics and cosmology suggests that the situation is not so simple. [...] ...a mounting concern in fundamental physics: Today, our most ambitious science can seem at odds with the empirical methodology that has historically given the field its credibility." http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/07/opinion/a-crisis-at-the-edge-of-physics.html

"In recent years, however, many physicists have developed theories of great mathematical elegance, but which are beyond the reach of empirical falsification, even in principle. The uncomfortable question that arises is whether they can still be regarded as science. Some scientists are proposing that the definition of what is "scientific" be loosened, while others fear that to do so could open the door for pseudo-scientists or charlatans to mislead the public and claim equal space for their views."

Ethan Siegel is the only optimistic Einsteinian nowadays:

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Pentcho Valev
Pentcho Valev
2017-05-28 07:29:39 UTC
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"Moreover, if light consists of particles, as Einstein had suggested in his paper submitted just thirteen weeks before this one, the second principle seems absurd: A stone thrown from a speeding train can do far more damage than one thrown from a train at rest; the speed of the particle is not independent of the motion of the object emitting it. And if we take light to consist of particles and assume that these particles obey Newton's laws, they will conform to Newtonian relativity and thus automatically account for the null result of the Michelson-Morley experiment without recourse to contracting lengths, local time, or Lorentz transformations. Yet, as we have seen, Einstein resisted the temptation to account for the null result in terms of particles of light and simple, familiar Newtonian ideas, and introduced as his second postulate something that was more or less obvious when thought of in terms of waves in an ether. If it was so obvious, though, why did he need to state it as a principle? Because, having taken from the idea of light waves in the ether the one aspect that he needed, he declared early in his paper, to quote his own words, that "the introduction of a 'luminiferous ether' will prove to be superfluous." Banesh Hoffmann, Relativity and Its Roots, p.92 http://books.google.com/books?id=JokgnS1JtmMC

So if light is discontinuous ("consists of particles"), no problem with the Michelson-Morley experiment. If light is a continuous field, as suggested by the ether theory, the Michelson-Morley experiment is incompatible unless one introduces "contracting lengths, local time, or Lorentz transformations". Clearly, as far as the speed of light is concerned, the continuous-field concept of light must be wrong - it needs miraculous fudge factors to match the experiment. Yet Einstein introduced it and ... killed physics:

"The two first articles (January and March) establish clearly a discontinuous structure of matter and light. The standard look of Einstein's SR is, on the contrary, essentially based on the continuous conception of the field."

"And then, in June, Einstein completes special relativity, which adds a twist to the story: Einstein's March paper treated light as particles, but special relativity sees light as a continuous field of waves."

Albert Einstein: "...I introduced the principle of the constancy of the velocity of light, which I borrowed from H. A. Lorentz's theory of the stationary luminiferous ether..."

Albert Einstein (1954): "I consider it entirely possible that physics cannot be based upon the field concept, that is on continuous structures. Then nothing will remain of my whole castle in the air, including the theory of gravitation, but also nothing of the rest of contemporary physics." John Stachel, Einstein from 'B' to 'Z', p. 151 https://www.amazon.com/Einstein-B-Z-John-Stachel/dp/0817641432

Einstein considers it "entirely possible that physics cannot be based upon the field concept, that is on continuous structures" but in Feynman's words the possibility becomes certainty:

Richard Feynman, "QED: The strange theory of light and matter", p. 15: "I want to emphasize that light comes in this form - particles. It is very important to know that light behaves like particles, especially for those of you who have gone to school, where you probably learned something about light behaving like waves. I'm telling you the way it does behave - like particles. You might say that it's just the photomultiplier that detects light as particles, but no, every instrument that has been designed to be sensitive enough to detect weak light has always ended up discovering the same thing: light is made of particles."

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