Main Question or Discussion Point
I guess this is more of an anthropological post. Is there any pattern to which sign convention people prefer? Or is it just a matter of which you were exposed to first?
No. It's much, much more usual to see the timelike coordinate placed first in the list. As someone else already said, the degree to which you use/prefer either (-+++) or (+---) depends on what field you work in. (+---) is ubiquitous in QFTs, while (-+++) is seen most often in GR, string theory (where it's actually (-+++...+)), and so on.Just wondering...isn't +++- more prominent than -+++?
Which is what puzzled me about metric sign switching. Physics guys are often sticklers about convention (& for good reasons, i think). It seems too pervasive given the amount of time its been around & I was curious why.(IMHO, it's okay to switch signature conventions in private or among friends. However, for presentations (research or pedagogical), one should stick to one and be consistent.)
Green, Schwartz and Witten use -+++ (or rather -+++++++++ :tongue: ) in their book and that's Green's personal preference too.Most of what I've read (in GR) uses the Landau-Lifschitz spacelike convetion, i.e. -+++. I don't read much about string theory, QFT, etc.
Sounds like an argument about the metric SYSTEM.I never used to understand why they didn't just nail down a convention once and for all, but I suppose it's now past the point of no return, since there's so many textbooks and lecture courses using various conventions and plenty of researchers stuck in their ways. Too late to do much about it now which wouldn't just annoy loads of people.
I always thought that -+++ was used by mathists, and +--- by physistsGreen, Schwartz and Witten use -+++ (or rather -+++++++++ :tongue: ) in their book and that's Green's personal preference too.
do much about it now which wouldn't just annoy loads of people.
Especially particle physicists.Yes, but some physicists don't like the equation p^2=-m^2.