Newb question about relativistic mass

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vanhees71
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I'm not aware of it, but who knows what the people in the very early days of relativity have come up with to make their lives difficult. The real understanding of the math of special relativity is due to Hermann Minkowski, whose original article on the subject is really very good and should be read by every physicist:

https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Translation:Space_and_Time
 
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  • #27
Mister T
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Out of curiosity: does anyone know whether proponents of "relativistic mass" ever expressed kinetic energy in mass units ("kinetic mass")?
I don't. The closest I've seen to that kind of thing is the use of the term rest mass energy. To distinguish it from, I guess, "relativistic mass energy". The difference would then be the "kinetic mass energy". All silliness, of course, since I've never seen anyone use "relativistic mass energy" or "kinetic mass energy".
 
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I would like to just interject a comment. Comments like "making it appear...to get thinner" are a pet peeve of mine. Lengths along the relative velocity direction do get shorter; how they appear depends on the position of the observer and could be shorter, longer, or the same.
 
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Ibix
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I would like to just interject a comment. Comments like "making it appear...to get thinner" are a pet peeve of mine. Lengths along the relative velocity direction do get shorter; how they appear depends on the position of the observer and could be shorter, longer, or the same.
Careful. Certainly how they appear (in the sense of observing them with a camera or the old Mk I eyeball) depends on where you are. But "do get shorter" isn't an assumption-free statement either. It depends on using Einstein's synchronisation convention. Einstein's convention is eminently sensible, but you aren't required to adopt it and the relationship between lengths measured by observers in different states of motion depends on the convention you do adopt.
 

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