The origins of Einstein's use of formal asymmetries

Annals of Science 38 (2):191-206 (1981)

Patrick H. Byrne
Boston College
Several authors have used the expression ‘formal asymmetry’ to characterize Einstein's method of introducing conceptual innovations. Prior to his use of formal asymmetries, however, Einstein relied upon analogy to introduce his major concepts, but without satisfactory results. He gradually refined another technique, reflection upon empirical problems, into the method of formal asymmetries, with impressive results. This historical study, based upon a textual analysis of Einstein's publications, raises a series of questions regarding the place of formal asymmetries in his work
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DOI 10.1080/00033798100200201
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The Logic of Discovery.Norwood Russell Hanson - 1958 - Journal of Philosophy 55 (25):1073-1089.

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