Wednesday, August 2, 2023

Minkowski Space was the Revolution

From a new paper on relativity:
So, Copernicus, and later Galileo, revolutionized our view on movement, allowing us to become aware of the existence of movements that until then we were unaware of, and this not because they were hidden. As Edgar Allen Poe famously emphasized, the best place to hide something is often right out in the open. We humans were all openly moving together with the planet, but precisely because of that, we were not able to detect the planet’s motion. ...

Einstein’s relativity is the next great revolution about motion, but similarly to Copernican revolution its acceptance does not appear to be easy, and it is the thesis we defend in this article that it has not been fully achieved, because what we physicists have not fully realized is that ‘Mikowski space’ is as real as its little brother ‘Newton space’, hence the material entities move much more and rather differently than the way Copernicus told us.

The paper is really about Minkowski space, not Einstein's relativity. They are not the same.

Minkowski's papers of 1907-8 built on those of Lorentz and Poincare. It is not clear that he learned anything from Einstein's famous 1905 paper.

Poincare wrote in 1905 that he was proposing something revolutionary, like Copernicus. Minkowski also wrote that his spacetime was a whole new way of looking at the world. einstein rejected Minkowski's view for several years.

Einstein did not claim any such radical break from the past. His theory was called Lorentz-Einstein theory, and both Lorentz and Einstein always denied that there were any significant differences between their relativity theories.


  1. Regardless of who invented 'Minkowski space' or space time, how many masses can you put into any given Minkowski space?

    If you answered more than one, you got it wrong.

    Minkowski space does not resemble our universe any more than Ads/CFT does, so it's less than useless as model to base predictions on because it doesn't resemble our universe even simplistically. Nothing can move in a Minkowski space, everything is just static geometry, and nothing can interact a single mass. The compounded silliness gets around this only by introducing time (for the second time since time is already part of the geometry) through the observer looking at the stupid graph. Once again, a model requiring a frame of reference that no one can possibly have much less even observe from (outside of time and space) is required to prop up this dysfunctional piece of math kitsch.

  2. Minkowski space is the model geometry for general relativity spacetime. It is the tangent space.

  3. Roger,
    Minkowski space is just bad mathematical fiction.
    Research exactly how many masses can even be put in a given frame of of space time. I dare you. If you answer more than one, myself and everyone else interested in actual physics would love to hear from your Nobel prize winning solution of how to insert additional masses into the highly non-linear math... without bullshit. Newtonian gravity is linear...and even it can't handle more than two masses.

    If your answer is 'just one single mass' I would ask what the hell you can possibly do with a model of gravity which can only handle a single mass, and can't handle an impulse to motion (like a rocket) or gravitational interaction. A single mass model is useless to tell us anything useful about our universe or gravity.

    I am quite aware that the media likes to show ridiculous 'SCIENCE' PR animations of gridded rubber sheet space time containing more than one mass, and even then be even more ridiculous and animate it moving around, which absolutely nothing whatsoever can do in space time. I am also quite aware that there are no field equations of Einstein (or anyone else) that exist that can accommodate or actually do this, without a ton of 'just trust us, we said so'.