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If i had only was born 100 years ago

  1. Oct 6, 2004 #1
    If i had only was born 100 years ago....

    I wished i was born when phsyics was easy,perhaps i could have developed realtivity if i had born 100 years ago,i don,t think Einstein was a genius but only was lucky enogh to be born in a time and a country when physics was easy,the same case can be applied to Newton,i don,t know why these two men are considered to be the best physicist ever when most of their jobs could have been developed by anybody that knew how to sum or integrate,nowadays i am a mediocre student but if i had been born in the time of Einstein and Newton and with the same oportunities they had i could be also considered a genius.

    Hamilton Himself could have developed relativity and quantum mechanics,he only had to put Phi=exp(iS/a) wit a an small quantity,i don,t know why he didn,t i could have done it,i also could have developed the Maxwell equations but of course nowadays physics is almost over so there are no great things to discover or they,re too hard to understand,i only wish i had been a physicist 100 or 200 hundreds years ago to became famous.
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  3. Oct 6, 2004 #2


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    if it were so easy.. why weren't the theories developed 500 years before, or even earlier?

    there is a time for everything
  4. Oct 6, 2004 #3


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    Its amazing (and pretty neat) that what really did take a genius to figure out even 100 years ago can be undersood by anyone with a decent high school education today.

    The part you are missing, eljose, is that you can derive the laws of motion because you already know the answer. Had your physics prof opened the first class by telling you to derive Newton's laws (and no books), you would have been utterly lost.

    Add to that the fact (in Newton's case), it wasn't a simple matter of derivation - the math required to do the derivations didn't exist. He had to invent that too.
  5. Oct 6, 2004 #4


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    You may want to move that back at least 100 yr more.

    It is my understanding that Joesph Priestly started his scientific research career by reading the then new book by Newton, Principia Mathematica, this was all that was needed to be a research scientist, basically a freshman course in Calculus and Physics. So, yes, 100 yrs ago it was much easier to learn the the state of the art. All that you needed then was essentially a BS of today.

    It seems to me there is going to be a natural limit coming into effect, soon! History revels that most major advancements are made by young scientists, generally in their 20s, by the time you are 30, if you have not made a major breakthrough chances are you won't. But now most Physicists are nearly 30 before they have learned the current state of the science. How can the "young man" breakthroughs occur if the the young men do not yet understand enough to make the breakthrough.

    NO! you cannot make a breakthrough without the education! Forget that approach, even before you start to see this as a reason we should open the TD forum again.
  6. Oct 6, 2004 #5
    The derivative f(x+h)-f(x)/h with h small, Newton only had to take the limit i don,t think this is very hard,the same questions happens with Gravity motion only take Kepler,s second law T^2=Kr^3 and take that acceleration is (w^2)r is nothing more than that...¡¡how difficult¡¡¡.

    The same thing happen with Schroedinguer equation (i developed it by myself in three ways),Dirac,s equation, Photoelectric effect and Maxwell equation (in fact hte last equation is only to get Gauss Law and the continuity equation) anybody could have discovered it by himself (or herself) with no aid at all,Newton discovered a new math yes but it was to easy (as easy as to discover Hamilton,s variatonal principle from Euler,s equation)
  7. Oct 6, 2004 #6


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    How do you take the limit when there is no such thing as a limit?
  8. Oct 6, 2004 #7


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    russ waters pinpoints the difficulty with your argument, eljose:
    At the time when the "ancients" lived, you:
    1) Did not have all the smart pre-notions we have today which simplify our work.
    2) Had a lot of fallacious and/or unproductive notions floating about which we today have mercifully forgotten/not learned about.
    For example:
    At Newton's time, mathematics was (almost) inextricably linked to ideas we today only know as numerology and occultism.
    (Did you know that Newton was one of the leading occultists of his time?)

    In all probability, there is today an equal amount of "unproductive" notions floating about, research lines which in 50/100 year's time will be regarded as essentially worthless.
    The problem is, we don't know which notions we use today which are counter-productive..

    The crucial feature of the good researcher/genius is that he is able to smash his way through his own time's state of conceptions, and bring his time to a higher level (i.e, furthering the actual knowledge of his time).
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2004
  9. Oct 6, 2004 #8
    -To russwater you can think about an small quantity as newton did, in fact did you know that fermat and Newton,s teacher Barrow put the notion of derivative f(x+h)-f(x)/h before Newton?..Newton only had to say "let,s take this quantity to be small"

    -In relativity before Einstein Lorentz and Fitzgerald introduced the concept of lenght contraction and the factor sqrt(1-v^2/c^2) much more before Eisntein,one only had to take a lookto the contraction to apply it to time and space and to derive the Lagrangian L=sqrt(1-v^2/c^2)

    -In ancient times math was much more easier,in fact more of the nobel prizes between 1900-1930 are usually trivial math and physics conclusions,if math today was easier i could develope a final theory,for example Einstein and other did not have this math obstacle,if math was easier to understand we would have now the final theory and i could do a Ph D about it.
  10. Oct 6, 2004 #9


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    eljose, with so many questions already answered, the information you already have available as stepping stones and modern technology (computers, calculators, ability to collaborate, etc...) a brilliant young person such as yourself should find it easier to make amazing discoveries than the people 100 years ago who had none of these benefits.

    I think this thread has run it's course.
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