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Simultaneous discoveries

  1. Jul 27, 2004 #1
    The more I read about physics the more cases I find of discoveries being made at the same time by completely different people independently.

    The most logical explanation for these coincidences must be that people all have access to roughly the same body of information that is circulated among the science community. This allows people to put the pieces together and come up with things at the same time.

    So how many simultaneous discoveries can we list?

    'Calculus' - Newton and Leibniz

    'Klein - Gordon equation' – A few people at the same time.
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  3. Jul 27, 2004 #2


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    Special relativity, Einstein and Poincare published papers on it within months of each other.

    General Relatitivity, Einstein reached the final equations only days before Hilbert got the Lagrangian.

    Quantum Mechanics, Dirac showed that Heisenberg's Matrix mechanics and Schroedinger's Wave mechanics were the same theory from different points of view.

    Quantum Electrodynamics, Dyson showed that Schwinger's and Tomonaga's independent theories were the same physics as Feynmann's independent theory.

    Electroweak gauge theory, Weinberg and Salam discovered independently
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2004
  4. Jul 28, 2004 #3


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    And on the experimental side-

    Back when I was just a lad starting to read a bit beyond the science that was taught in grade school, the team at Stanford Linear Accelerator and the team at Brookhaven National Laboratory were closing in on the charm/anti-charm meson, called "J" by one team and "psi" by the other.
  5. Jul 28, 2004 #4
    Hmmm. Sounds like two cases of Simultaneity of Relativity.
  6. Jul 28, 2004 #5
    boyles law was dicovered independently by a french man.

    imagine how annoyed he must have been when he found out someone had spotted it a few years before.
  7. Jul 28, 2004 #6
    Natural Selection by Darwin and some other guy I can't remember the name of. I do remember that he sent a letter to Darwin explaining his theory to him.
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