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This paper explores the metaphysics of Newtonian space-time, with the aim to discover the true meaning of Newton's three laws of motion. The common misconception is that the "universal" laws pertain to a universal and objective reality, whereas they pertain to nothing more than a certain method of setting up experiments, and this the paper aims to establish. It also shows how this throws light on the interpretation of quantum mechanics, and then draws significant parallels between classical physics and the modern philosophy of existentialism.
From the Paper:"Newton's laws of motion have a subtext that always escapes scrutiny at the first instance. This is Newtonian space-time, the metaphysical framework that underpins the laws. This framework consists of three spatial dimensions, chalked out as perpendicular to each other and emerging from a unique origin of coordinates. This is Cartesian space. If we add to this the extra dimension of linear time we obtain Newtonian space-time. The laws of motion make sense only when we assume them to be taking place in Newtonian space-time. And when we add the epithet "universal" to the three laws of motion then we have underhandedly made Newtonian space-time infinite in all 6 dimensional directions and have mapped this framework to reality."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Heisenberg, Werner. Physics and Philosophy: The Revolution in Modern Science. New York: Harper and Row, 1958.
- Huxley, Aldous. Along the Road. Section 2. "Views of Holland". New edition. London: Flamingo, 1994.
- Pais, Abraham. The Genius of Science: A Portrait Gallery. New York: Oxford University Press, USA, 2000.
Cite this Term Paper:
Newtonian Space-Time (2007, July 16) Retrieved May 25, 2013, from http://www.academon.com/term-paper/newtonian-space-time-96844/
"Newtonian Space-Time" 16 July 2007. Web. 25 May. 2013. <http://www.academon.com/term-paper/newtonian-space-time-96844/>