Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Non-homogeneous; anisotropic

  1. Apr 24, 2008 #1
    i find in the literature
    1. space is homogeneous and isotropic and time homogeneous, at least if judged by observers at rest in S(0).
    2. in the isotropic system S(0) the velocity of light is "c" in all directions, so that clocks can be synchronized in S(0) and one way velocities relative to S(0) can be measured.
    3. the two way velocity of light is the same in all directions in all inertial systems.
    4. clock retardation takes place with the usual velocity dependent factor when clocks move with respect to the isotropic reference frame S(0).
    In my oppinion the properties of the system S mentioned above are merely the consequence of the fact that a change in the clock synchronization procedure takes place and given that there are many synchronization procedures which are in accordance wirh Einstein's one, there are many S reference frames in which the transformation equations for space and time have a non=-standard shape?
    Your oppinion is highly appreciated.
    Thanks in advance.
    I have learned from somewhere that each problem has three answers:
    mine, yours and a third which is the correct one.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 24, 2008 #2

    Ken G

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Yes, I think you are pointing out that some of those postulates are not directly supported by observations, they are merely consistent with observations. Hence they reflect a certain bias on the part of the scientist to build a system with certain pleasing traits. Some might say that's just applying Occam's razor to what agrees with the data, others say Occam's razor is subjective and it's still just reflecting prejudice about what "simplest" means. Personally I think it is useful to separate what is actually directly supported by observation from what is only one out of a class of interpretations or conventions that relativity could use and still work fine. It sounds like you are complaining that this separation is not made clear in most relativity texts, and I think you are right about that.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook