By Palle Yourgrau
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Extra resources for A World Without Time: The Forgotten Legacy Of Godel And Einstein
Amazingly, although bullets shot from a moving train have a velocity that is increased by the speed of the engine, the measurable velocity of a light beam sent" out from this same engine is unaffected by the train's speed. The classical principle of "addition of velocities" was in peril. Into the breach stepped the Dutch physicist Hendrik Antoon Lorentz, Einstein's father figure and another of his heroes. It was Lorentz who, having already perfected the form of Maxwell's equations, appeared now to save the day by supplying the exact equations, the "Lorentz transformations," that made measurements in one reference, or inertial, frame equivalent to those obtained in another, including the "absolute" rest frame of the postulated ether.
His admirers included the young poet Hugo von Hofmannsthal, a member of the artistic circle Young Vienna, who would become famous as the librettist for the operas of the composer Richard Strauss. Mach advocated a "critique," somewhat in Kant's sense, of physical science, attempting to purge it of all elements not verifiable by sensory experience. "Pseudoproblems" he called the traditional concerns of philosophy (a term for which Carnap' developed a strong attachment); "antimetaphysical" he subtitled the introductory remarks to one of his books.
Nelbock would show up in class, glaring over his spectacles at the mild professor, and later make menacing phone calls when the lecturer had retired to his home. Deeply concerned, Schlick notified the police and acquired a bodyguard, but to no avail. Early on the morning of June 21, 1936, the deranged student encountered him on the steps of the philosophy building and with an automatic pistol fired four rounds point blank, killing him instantly. " he is reported to have screamed as he stood over Schlick's body, the gun smoking in his hand.