Re: "God Does Not Play Dice..." --was Re: That idiot Darwin

From: John Marrek (
Date: Sun Jan 14 2001 - 17:01:43 MST

The fact remains: He was an outsider, a mathematician, and not
someone trained in the discipline of physics, which is where he
stirred things up. Unless you consider "self-study" to be equivalent
to training. I suspect, perhaps incorrectly, that you equate only
formal study with 'training in the discipline.'

Yah; he read this stuff as a student. Access to papers and colleagues
was a bit different later, in the patent office, where he developed
his theories.

You wrote:

 You're right - biological evolution is indeed `just a
theory' - that is, an always provisional broad framework for
organizing our
many observations of the living world and allowing competent
trained in the discipline to make powerful, unexpected and
predictions. In the same way, the *theories* of relativity (the
universe at
the very large, very fast scale) and quantum theory (the universe at
very smallest scale) are also *theories*.

john marlow


On 14 Jan 2001, at 23:58, Damien Broderick wrote:

> At 10:49 PM 13/01/01 -0800, our trollish pal wrote: > > >**Einstein is generally acknowledged to have been, > >primarily, a mathematician. He had little professional > >contact or acces to the literature of physics > > This is so preposterous I wonder why the man bothers. I suppose somebody > needs to spell out exactly how dumb this claim is. Let's turn to the > authoritative scientific biography by Abraham Pais, SUBTLE IS THE LORD. > > p. 44: `... on the whole Einstein did not excel in regular course > attendance. He relied far more on self-study. As a student he read the > works of Kirchoff, Hertz and Helmholtz; learned Maxwell theory from the > first edition... by August Foppl... read Mach's book on mechanics, `a book > which, with its critical attitudes toward the basic concepts and basic > laws, made a deep and lasting impression on me'; and studied papers by > Lorentz and Boltzmann. Among other subjects which drew his attention was > the work of Darwin.' > > p. 46: ` "Since September 15, 1901.. I wrote my doctoral dissertation on a > topic in the kinetic theory of gases..." This work was not accepted as a > thesis, however. This setback was the last one in Einstein's career, however.' > > 58: following work on the foundations of statistic mechanics, and his > epochal paper on the light-quantum hypothesis, `Completion of the PhD > thesis on a new determination of molecular dimensions.' > > > Damien Broderick

John Marrek

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