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Conventionality of simultaneity

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (2008)

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  1. Kant and the Conventionality of Simultaneity.Adrian Bardon - 2010 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 18 (5):845-856.
    Kant’s three Analogies of Experience, in his Critique of Pure Reason, represent a highly condensed attempt to establish the metaphysical foundations of Newtonian physics. His strategy is to show that the organization of experience in terms of a world of enduring substances undergoing mutual causal interaction is a necessary condition of the temporal ordering even of one’s own subjective states, and thus of coherent experience itself. In his Third Analogy—an examination of the necessary conditions of judgments of simultaneous existence—he argues (...)
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  • Einsteinova sinkronizacija i konvencionalnost istovremenosti.Mladen Domazet - 2006 - Prolegomena 5 (1):53-64.
    Unatoč naslovu koji pokriva iznimno opširno područje, članak se usredotočuje na blisko pitanje da li Specijalna teorija relativnosti nužno zagovara ukidanje ontološke razlike između prošlih i budućih događaja, između prošlosti i budućnosti općenito. Izraženo žargonom koji uvodi Stein: jesmo li u okviru STR prinuđeni birati isključivo između ‘solipsizma’ i ‘determinizma’? Posebice će biti riječi o ulozi koju konvencionalnost istovremenosti u STR ima u pokušaju odgovora na ovo pitanje. Standardni argumenti pozivaju se na relativnost istovremenosti, tvrdnju da STR negira postojanje univerzalne (...)
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  • The Conventionality of Simultaneity in Einstein’s Practical Chrono-Geometry.Mario Bacelar Valente - 2017 - Theoria: Revista de Teoría, Historia y Fundamentos de la Ciencia 32 (2):177-190.
    While Einstein considered that sub specie astern the correct philosophical position regarding geometry was that of the conventionality of geometry, he felt that provisionally it was necessary to adopt a non-conventional stance that he called practical geometry. here we will make the case that even when adopting Einstein’s views we must conclude that practical geometry is conventional after all. Einstein missed the fact that the conventionality of simultaneity leads to a conventional element in the chrono-geometry, since it corresponds to the (...)
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  • Uniqueness of Simultaneity.Domenico Giulini - 2001 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 52 (4):651-670.
    We consider the problem of uniqueness of certain simultaneity structures in flat spacetime. Absolute simultaneity is specifiled to be a non-trivial equivalence relation which is invariant under the automorphism group Aut of spacetime. Aut is taken to be the identity-component of either the inhomogeneous Galilei group or the inhomogeneous Lorentz group. Uniqueness of standard simultaneity in the first, and absence of any absolute simultaneity in the second case are demonstrated and related to certain group theoretic properties. Relative simultaneity with respect (...)
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  • How Hume and Mach Helped Einstein Find Special Relativity.John D. Norton - 2004 - In Michael Friedman, Mary Domski & Michael Dickson (eds.), Discourse on a New Method: Reinvigorating the Marriage of History and Philosophy of Science. Open Court. pp. 359--86.
    In recounting his discovery of special relativity, Einstein recalled a debt to the philosophical writings of Hume and Mach. I review the path Einstein took to special relativity and urge that, at a critical juncture, he was aided decisively not by any specific doctrine of space and time, but by a general account of concepts that Einstein found in Hume and Mach’s writings. That account required that concepts, used to represent the physical, must be properly grounded in experience. In so (...)
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  • Conventionality in Einstein's Practical Geometry.Mario Bacelar Valente - 2017 - Theoria : An International Journal for Theory, History and Fundations of Science 32 (2):177-190.
    While Einstein considered that sub specie astern the correct philosophical position regarding geometry was that of the conventionality of geometry, he felt that provisionally it was necessary to adopt a non-conventional stance that he called practical geometry. here we will make the case that even when adopting Einstein’s views we must conclude that practical geometry is conventional after all. Einstein missed the fact that the conventionality of simultaneity leads to a conventional element in the chrono-geometry, since it corresponds to the (...)
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  • Simultaneity, Convention, and Gauge Freedom.Robert Rynasiewicz - 2012 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 43 (2):90-94.
    As is well know from Einstein the choice of a criterion for distant simultaneity is equivalent to stipulating one-way speeds for the transit of light. It is shown that any choice of non-standard synchrony is equivalent to a Lorentz local time boost. From this and considerations from the hole argument, it follows that there is a non-trivial sense in which distant simultaneity is conventional, at least to the extent that the “gauge freedom” arising in the hole argument is non-trivial.
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  • The Gauge Interpretation of the Conventionality of Simultaneity.Mario Bacelar Valente - 2018 - Lato Sensu, Revue de la Société de Philosophie des Sciences 5 (2):1-13.
    In this work we will consider gauge interpretations of the conventionality of simultaneity as developed initially by Anderson and Stedman, and later by Rynasiewicz. We will make a critical reassessment of these interpretations in relation to the “tradition” as developed in particular by Reichenbach, Grünbaum, and Edwards. This paper will address different issues, including: the relation between these two gauge interpretations; what advantages or defects these gauge approaches might have; how “new” Rynasiewicz’s approach in relation to the previous ones is; (...)
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  • Eternity and Time in Science: What Role Do Theories of Relativity Play in the Formation of a Coherent Model of Eternity.F. Lawson - unknown
    Historically models of eternity have been grounded in divine attributes rather than the intrinsic structure of space-time. I examine the topology of Minkowski spacetime in comparison to the Euclidean space of Newtonian Mechanics, before highlighting five common approaches to eternity. Both atemporal and temporal models of eternity are examined to establish what they tell us about the nature of eternity outside the divine attributes, before being evaluated for their coherence with the Special Theory of Relativity. I argue that the most (...)
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  • Time, Objects, and Identity.Ian Gibson - unknown
    This is a copy of my DPhil thesis, the abstract for which is as follows: The first third of this thesis argues for a B-theoretic conception of time according to which all times exist equally and the present is in no way privileged. I distinguish "ontological" A-theories from "non-ontological" ones, arguing that the latter are experientially unmotivated and barely coherent. With regard to the former, I focus mainly on presentism. After some remarks on how to formulate this (and eternalism) non-trivially, (...)
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  • Time in Cosmology.Chris Smeenk - 2013 - In A. Bardon & H. Dyke (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to the Philosophy of Time. Oxford: Blackwell. pp. 201-219.
    This essay aims to provide a self-contained introduction to time in relativistic cosmology that clarifies both how questions about the nature of time should be posed in this setting and the extent to which they have been or can be answered empirically. The first section below recounts the loss of Newtonian absolute time with the advent of special and general relativity, and the partial recovery of absolute time in the form of cosmic time in some cosmological models. Section II considers (...)
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  • Conventionality of Simultaneity and Reality.Vesselin Petkov - unknown
    An important epistemological lesson can be learned from the impossibility to determine the one-way velocity of light and the immediate implication that simultaneity is conventional. The vicious circle -- to determine whether two distant events are simultaneous we need to know the one-way velocity of light between them, but to determine the one-way velocity of light we need to know that the two events are simultaneous -- is an indication of the need for a profound change of our view on (...)
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  • Apparent Simultaneity.Hanoch Ben-Yami - unknown
    I develop Special Relativity with backward-light-cone simultaneity, which I call, for reasons made clear in the paper, ‘Apparent Simultaneity’. In the first section I show some advantages of this approach. I then develop the kinematics in the second section. In the third section I apply the approach to the Twins Paradox: I show how it removes the paradox, and I explain why the paradox was a result of an artificial symmetry introduced to the description of the process by Einstein’s simultaneity (...)
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  • Simultaneity as an Invariant Equivalence Relation.Marco Mamone-Capria - 2012 - Foundations of Physics 42 (11):1365-1383.
    This paper deals with the concept of simultaneity in classical and relativistic physics as construed in terms of group-invariant equivalence relations. A full examination of Newton, Galilei and Poincaré invariant equivalence relations in ℝ4 is presented, which provides alternative proofs, additions and occasionally corrections of results in the literature, including Malament’s theorem and some of its variants. It is argued that the interpretation of simultaneity as an invariant equivalence relation, although interesting for its own sake, does not cut in the (...)
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  • Simultaneity in Minkowski Spacetime: From Uniqueness to Arbitrariness. [REVIEW]Fabien Besnard - 2012 - Foundations of Physics 42 (9):1115-1134.
    Malament (Noûs 11:293–300, 1977) proved a certain uniqueness theorem about standard synchrony, also known as Poincaré-Einstein simultaneity, which has generated many commentaries over the years, some of them contradictory. We think that the situation called for some clarification. After reviewing and discussing some of the literature involved, we prove two results which, hopefully, will help clarifying this debate by filling the gap between the uniquess of Malament’s theorem, which allows the observer to use very few tools, and the complete arbitrariness (...)
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  • Comment On: “The Role of Dynamics in the Synchronization Problem”, by Hans C. Ohanian.Alan Macdonald - 2005 - American Journal of Physics 73 (2).
    Hans C. Ohanian 1 claims to “defeat” the conventionalist thesis of clock synchronization using an argument based on dynamics. My aim here is to show that his argument does not succeed.
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