ABC of Relativity by Bertrand Russell PDF

By Bertrand Russell

ISBN-10: 0415473829

ISBN-13: 9780415473828

First released in 1925, Bertrand Russell’s ABC of Relativity used to be thought of a masterwork of its time, contributing considerably to the mass popularisation of technological know-how. Authoritative and obtainable, it offers a notable introductory advisor to Einstein’s idea of Relativity for a common readership. essentially the most definitive reference publications of its variety, and written by way of one of many 20th century’s such a lot influential philosophers, ABC of Relativity remains to be as suitable this present day because it was once on first publication.

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He realized that if such a process were carried to its natural conclusion then Earth would eventually be worn quite smooth. Yet everywhere around him there were hills. Clearly there had to be some additional process, some form of renewal and uplift, that created new hills and mountains to keep the cycle going. The marine fossils on mountaintops, he decided, had not been deposited during floods, but had risen along with the mountains themselves. He also deduced that it was heat within the Earth that created new rocks and continents and thrust up mountain chains.

To the continuing exasperation of his fellow scientists, he often alluded in published work to the results of contingent experiments that he had not told anyone about. In his secretiveness he didn’t merely resemble Newton, but actively exceeded him. His experiments with electrical conductivity were a century ahead of their time, but unfortunately remained undiscovered until that century had passed. Indeed the greater part of what he did wasn’t known until the late nineteenth century when the Cambridge physicist James Clerk Maxwell took on the task of editing Cavendish’s papers, by which time credit had nearly always been given to others.

According to the science historian J. G. Crowther, he also foreshadowed “the work of Kelvin and G. H. Darwin on the effect of tidal friction on slowing the rotation of the earth, and Larmor’s discovery, published in 1915, on the effect of local atmospheric cooling . . ” Finally, he left clues that led directly to the discovery of the group of elements known as the noble gases, some of which are so elusive that the last of them wasn’t found until 1962. But our interest here is in Cavendish’s last known experiment when in the late summer of 1797, at the age of sixty-seven, he turned his attention to the crates of equipment that had been left to him—evidently out of simple scientific respect—by John Michell.

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ABC of Relativity by Bertrand Russell

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