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The birth of a genius. 1905

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The birth of a genius. 1905

Tomasz Bodziony


This article is going to discuss the story behind of the creation and publication of the article entitled "Zur Elektrodynamik bewegter Körper" by Albert Einstein that took place in 1905. One can state that it was one of the most important articles in the history of science. A number of astounding coincidences associated with its publication are going to be considered. A theory explaining said events is also going to be presented.

The article was rejected by several English-language journals and removed (exactly censored) from the academic website arXiv.org with a comments: arXiv admin note: This submission has been withdrawn by arXiv administrators due to inflammatory content and unprofessional language

1. Introduction

1905 was an extraordinary year in the history of science. On 30th of June 30, the editorial office of the German journal Annalen der Physik came into possession of Albert Einstein's work that was unknown to young physicists and entitled "Zur Elektrodynamik bewegter Körper" (On the electrodynamics of moving bodies) [1]. It turned out to be an exceptional work that laid the foundations of the Special Theory of Relativity (STR). Ten years later, in November 1915, Albert Einstein presented his works being the basis of the so-called General Theory of Relativity (GTR). Albert Einstein is widely recognized as a genius. Some consider Einstein to be the greatest scientist in history; others consider Einstein to be as brilliant as other exceptional scientists, namely: Isaac Newton, Galileo, or Archimedes. No one doubts that Albert Einstein was a brilliant mind that has had the greatest influence on the history of science and humanity.

   The circumstances connected with the creation and publication of “Zur Elektrodynamik bewegter Körper's” work from 1905 are not well known by many. There were many amazing coincidences connected with the paper. The predominant purpose of this article is to analyze the creation of the Special Theory of Relativity (STR) through the prism of new publications that have appeared recently, in particular – books published by Russian physicist Anatoly Logunov, "HENRI POINCARÈ AND RELATIVITY THEORY" especially [2]. Professor A. A. Logunov was a theoretical physicist and an expert in the theory of relativity. A. Lagunov's theoretical works may be considered to be controversial, but the aforementioned book is about STR and the story of its creation. The author focuses on the analysis and critical comparison of the works of Henri Poincarè and Albert Einstein. It is the work of a physics theoretician and historian of science. That is why it may be a difficult read for both humanists and physicists, although for various reasons. A. A. Logunov, basing on the original work, minutely analyzes who discovered the discussed phenomenon, who was first, as well as who was second. A. A. Logunov's work is a valuable and inspiring source of information for people who are well-versed in advanced mathematics and interested in the history of STR. 

   The Special and General Theories of Relativity (STR and GTR) are important today. Said theories were used outside the context of physics a long time ago. They have changed our view of the world, our understanding of time, space and matter. This article is an essay on the history of science, not a lecture on relativity. It is rather an attempt to explain a series of amazing coincidences connected with the creation of STR. The invention of GTR was also connected with some extraordinary circumstances, but it is a topic for a separate article. The main protagonist of the publication is Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955). Einstein was the author of over 300 scientific papers, but the Special Theory of Relativity and the generalization of general relativity are considered his most important scientific achievements. Both theories have brought Einstein an extraordinary fame as a scientist. Albert Einstein became a celebrity known worldwide, an icon of the twentieth century, included in numerous films, books, comics, as well as presented on T-shirts, cups, walls, etc. Most powerful people of his times respected his knowledge and opinion. The general opinion is that genius equals Einstein, whose characteristic feature was a full head of gray hair.

 To complete the task, one has to go back to 1905 and the circumstances of the invention of STR, leaving a summary for later. It is not a story on physical theories, but on the people formulating them. The protagonists are geniuses, giants of science. Interestingly enough, people who are phenomenal mathematicians or physicists do not always reach moral heights. In everyday and professional matters, the so-called geniuses often do not differ from ordinary mortals, as they focus on reaching a specific goal by any means, including using convenient shortcuts. Let us move to 1905. It is called Annus Mirabilis - the wonderful year of Einstein. That year, A. Einstein published a number of outstanding scientific papers, including the work explaining the photoelectric effect, Brown movements, his doctoral thesis (in fact, said work concerned the determination of the Avogadro constant), and the work entitled: "Zur Elektrodynamik bewegter Körper" [1] The same year, in another, later work, A. Einstein presented the most famous equation of modern science, namely: E = mc2 that is known even to individuals disgusted with mathematics or physics.

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