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Re: [PrimeNumbers] Re: Maxwell

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  • Paul Leyland
    ... Warning: possible heresy ahead. Aether as the medium of transmission of electromagnetic waves has rather gone out of fashion, and for good reasons, not
    Message 1 of 2 , May 20, 2013
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      On Tue, 2013-05-14 at 20:09 +0000, John wrote:
      > --- In primenumbers@yahoogroups.com, "WarrenS" <warren.wds@...> wrote:
      > >
      > > DJB's recommended "amazing" paper
      > >
      > > J Clerk Maxwell:
      > > A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field. Maxwell, J
      > Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London
      > (1776-1886).
      > >
      > > is available free online here:
      > >
      > > http://archive.org/details/philtrans00041514
      > >
      > > in several formats; "read online" seems for me the best.
      > > Maxwell's seems pretty pitiful to me compared with modern
      > treatments.
      > > Definitely would not recommend that anyone try to learn from this.
      > > It is interesting in showing the magnitude of the struggle he had to
      > endure
      > > and the fact that in various ways he still remained trapped in some
      > false/misleading
      > > notions.
      > Now, concerning Maxwell's ideas and their "false/misleading" I presume
      > were to do with the "ether" in great part. Whatever is in the material
      > world is capable of rudimentary description, and that description
      > becomes in its most sophisticated form the thing called science. Some
      > science uses mathematics in order to attempt to understand and
      > manipulate matter, in which case it makes possible technology, which
      > contains within it aspects of craft and art.
      > I understand that, in scientific circles, the idea of "ether" has not
      > been completely dismissed, but this is possily because the idea of
      > empty space is abhorrent, as in "Nature abhors a vacuum".

      Warning: possible heresy ahead.

      "Aether" as the medium of transmission of electromagnetic waves has
      rather gone out of fashion, and for good reasons, not least the famous
      Michelson-Morley experiment. However, the work of Einstein, Poincare et
      al has shown that space-time has many of the properties of the old

      Consider: space-time is the transmission medium for gravitational
      radiation; aether for electromagnetic radiation. It is invisible to
      anything except gravitational physics (c.f. aether's invisibility to
      anything but electromagnetic physics). It is the most rigid material
      known (the entire mass-energy of the earth is sufficient only to bend
      space-time to a radius of curvature of around one light year) and is
      arguably the most rigid possible (c.f. aether's perfect elasticity).

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