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An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Natural Knowledge by Alfred North Whitehead

By Alfred North Whitehead

Alfred North Whitehead (1861-1947) was once a renowned English mathematician and thinker who co-authored the hugely influential Principia Mathematica with Bertrand Russell. initially released in 1919, and primary republished in 1925 as this moment variation, An Enquiry about the ideas of common wisdom ranks between Whitehead's most crucial works; forming a point of view on clinical commentary that included a posh view of expertise, instead of prioritising the placement of 'pure' feel information. along significant other volumes the idea that of Nature (1920) and the main of Relativity (1922), it created a framework for Whitehead's later metaphysical speculations. this is often a massive booklet that would be of price to an individual with an curiosity within the courting among technological know-how and philosophy.

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8·6 Then, for example, If a consentient set a have a non-uniform translatory kinematic relation to members of the Newtonian group, the particles of the material universe would, when their motions are referred to the a-space, appear to be acted on by forces parallel to a fixed direction, in the same sense along that direction, and proportional to the mass of the particle acted on. Such an assemblage of forces cannot be expressed as an assemblage of reciprocal stresses between particles. Again if a consentient set f3 have a non-translatory kinematic relation to the members of the Newtonian group, then, when motion is referred to the f3-space, 'centrifugal' and' composite centrifugal' forces on particles make their appearance; and these forces cannot b"e reduced to stresses.

For on the relational theory it would seem to be the mutual relations of the earth's parts which constitute space. and yet the dynamical theory of the bulge does not refer to any body other than the earth, and so is not affected by the catastrophe of annihilation. It has been asserted that after all the fixed stars are essential, and that it is the rotation relatively to them which produces the bulge. But surely this ascnption of the centrifugal force on the earth's surface to the influence of Sirius is the last refuge of a theory in distress.

Be the rectangular axis system in the space of a, and (O':XfJ'Y/Z/) be the rectangular axis system in the space of f3. FIrst consider the tradItional theory of relativity. Then the time-system is indep~ndent of the consentient set of reference. Z'II Z"I j I I 0 .. otJ • ~ O~ (x... xS> . }' At the time t let the event-particle which ~instantaneously happens at-ute point Ojz in the space of a happen at OfJ in the space of fl, and let the event-particle which happens at 0/ in the space of fl happen at Ojz' in the space of a.

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