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Additional info for Albert Einstein and the creative act : the case of special relativity

Sample text

Chapter 3 The Origins and Consequences of Certain of J. P. Joule's Scientific Ideas Donald S. L. Cardwell It is easy to assume that inevitability is the hallmark of the historical progress of science; that, in other words, each scientific advance contains the germs of, and points towards, the next advance. It is also easy to believe that every scientific revolution poses a stark choice between right and wrong, between the new theory and the old one. But the inevitability of scientific progress is refuted by the wellknown fact that few, if any, scientists have successfully predicted the future course of science, in general or in particular.

It is also easy to believe that every scientific revolution poses a stark choice between right and wrong, between the new theory and the old one. But the inevitability of scientific progress is refuted by the wellknown fact that few, if any, scientists have successfully predicted the future course of science, in general or in particular. And the choice available at any time of crisis or revolution is seldom a simple one. I hope that the following paper will confirm these elementary truths and, more importantly, throw new light on the origins of James Prescott Joule's scientific ideas and on their immediate consequences.

15. This part of the MS does not survive, but internal references make its existence clear. It corresponded to Propositions LVII-LXIII of the published Principia (pp. 164-169). 16. Cambridge University Library, Add. MS. 3, ff. 7-10. The folios are part of a fascicle of eight folios that belonged to De motu corporum but was somehow separated from the rest. 17. Principia, p. 571. 18. Herivel, Background, p. 297. 19. Correspondence, 2, pp. 437-439. 20. Principia, p. 397. NEWTON'S DEVELOPMENT OF PRINCIPIA 43 21.

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Albert Einstein and the creative act : the case of special relativity by Stanley Goldberg


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