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## Intro unnecessarily slanted towards overly simplistic (textbook) POV

First of all, good project initiative! But I have immediately a suggestion about the presentation:

In view of the article [1], stating this project as being about "Albert Einstein's theories of special and general relativity" could suggest a kind of tunnelvision or partisan approach as well as taking a stand (POV) in an issue that --if I understand it well-- is not the scope of this project (right?).

Thus I advise to instead put it as it's commonly put: "The theories of special and general relativity".

That would also avoid the suggestion that this project intends to promote exclusively a single person's idea's and interpretations (philosophies) concerning those theories of physics.

It's certainly a detail, but nevertheless an important one IMHO.

Cheers, Harald88 13:48, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

That's a good point. I'll fix that once I get the chance. MP (talk) 16:58, 29 October 2006 (UTC)
Fine but... it only takes 10 sec. to fix it. Perhaps you were you in a hurry? I'll do that now. Harald88 19:25, 30 October 2006 (UTC)
Yes, I was in a hurry. Thanks for fixing it. MP (talk) 22:25, 1 November 2006 (UTC)

## Got a doozy for you

We've got a weird situation over at GA Review - we have someone who is claiming that his math proves Einstein's theory of special relativity is false and so should lose its GA rating and he won't go away until someone checks his math :-P We're not mathematicians, etc., so was going to see if someone here might be able to put this to rest? --plange 15:40, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

Hmm... I'm afraid that the question is wrong: his/her math is irrelevant for Wikipedia -- see WP:NOR+WP:V. BTW, usenet has a long experience with people who claim that a well verified theory is "wrong": it's rarely possible to make them change their mind with logical (mathematical) arguments.
But what needs to be accurate for a "good" article is the article's description of the subject. Wikipedia specifically refuses to decide for the reader what is "true". Harald88 20:14, 29 October 2006 (UTC)
Yep, thanks for posting to the review page too! We tried arguing about OR and V until we were blue in the face. Seems like a crank to me and we keep telling him to go and publish that we were not the publisher of last resort but he's hinging his whole argument on the fact that since the WikiProject Mathematics project tag has GA on it, it means they checked the math and he says its wrong. Sigh. I will close it... --plange 20:35, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

## Recommended general relativity sources

Hi MPatel,

I would like to recommend the following scholars as sources: Michel Janssen and John Norton Generally, I would like to recommend the writings of the scholars who are involved in the Einstein Papers project such as John Stachel, Robert Rynasiewicz Jürgen Renn and other staff members of the Einstein papers project.

These scholars are physicists who in the course of their career have shifted to the history of science/physics and the philosophy of physics. The writing of these scholars is focused on critical examination of underlying concepts of physics theories. The following two articles by John Norton were very important sources of information for me.

What was Einstein's principle of equivalence? (PDF-document, 376 KB, viewable with Acrobat Reader 6 or higher.) John Norton discusses that the version of the Equivalence principle that is commonly offered in expositions of general relativity fundamentally differs in content from the principle that Einstein presented in his papers. Norton judges Einstein's version to be superior.

General Covariance and the Foundations of General Relativity: Eight Decades of Dispute (PDF-document, 460 KB, viewable with Acrobat Reader 6 or higher.) For as long as the general theory of relativity has been around there has been dispute about the question whether there is any physical content in a concept of a "principle of general covariance". At the end of this painstaking monograph, Norton arrives at the conclusion that the concept of a "principle of general covariance" is indeed physically vacuous. (Of course, this has no consequences for GTR, which does not need a "principle of general covariance".) At the same time, Norton argues how it can be seen that the diffeomorphism invariance of GTR does have physical significance.

I have a user subpage article about special relativity. There are several animation in that article (manufactured by me; Creative Commons license).

I also have a website of my own with physics articles, including an article about the general theory of relativity. Check it out.

Large parts of the wikipedia Sagnac effect article were written by me. I watch the Sagnac effect article, and will discuss any changes to it. --Cleonis | Talk 19:03, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

Any theory can be written in a generally covariant form (as Misner-Thorne-Wheeler point out). So general covariance is not, in itself, a physical constraint on a theory. However, the mathematical simplicity and asthetic beauty of a theory has long been recognized as a heuristic criterion for preferring some theories over others. And the significance of general covariance is that that criterion should be applied to the generally covariant forms of the competing theories (rather than a form which assumes a particular type of reference frame or coordinate system). Why? Because we believe that coordinate systems are a human creation rather than part of the natural world. JRSpriggs 06:50, 31 October 2006 (UTC)
Naturally I endorse the point of view that coordinate systems are a human creation. However, in my opinion (adopted from John Norton), that is unrelated to the physical significance of diffeomorphism invariance.
What is not a human creation, in my opinion, is that it is possible in the first place to map spacetime. We can define a unit of length, say a meter, with this unit of a meter defined as the distance that light travels in a particular amount of time. With that unit of spatial distance and that unit of time we can map a region of spacetime. The sheer possibility of mapping spacetime is what gives rise to the sheer possibility of formulating laws of motion. In the case of newtonian space and time and in the case of Minkowski spacetime, an immutable background is assumed, and motion is mapped with respect to that background structure.
Pre-GTR theories assert that when spacetime is thus mapped, the mapping will be found to be linear. There is an equivalence class of spacetime mappings, related by transformation rules. Pre-GTR theories assert that inertial mass couples to spacetime, giving rise to the phenomenon of inertia. In pre-GTR theories the coupling is assumed to be uni-directional: spacetime is acting upon inertial mass.
GTR of course asserts that the coupling of inertial mass to spacetime is bi-directional. Spacetime is acting upon inertial mass (inertia), and inertial mass is acting upon spacetime, with the corresponding curvature of spacetime acting as the mediator of gravitational interaction.
In pre-GTR theories, setting ap an equation in dynamics has the immutable background as a constant factor. In GTR, in setting up the Einstien Field equations, the very background, spacetime itself, is a dynamical factor in the equations.
This, argues Norton, is why GTR finds its natural formulation in a form with diffeomorphism invariance. The problem that Einstein was up against was how to formulate a theory of motion when the very background, spacetime, is a dynamic variable, acting upon inertial mass and being acted upon by inertial mass. Since finding the future shape of spacetime is what the Einstein Field Equations are set up for, the equations find their natural formulation in a form that is uncommitted to any choice of mapping spacetime.
Summarizing: coordinate systems are a human creation but the fact that spacetime can be mapped at all is what makes is possible at all to formulate laws of motion. (More generally 'laws of motion' can be taken as 'laws that govern how processes develop over time'). The diffeomorphism invariance provides the necessary freedom to handle the fact that the structure of spacetime is a dynamic variable. --Cleonis | Talk 11:36, 31 October 2006 (UTC)

## Should this be made a sub project of Wikipedia Project Physcis?

See Wikipedia:WikiProject_Physics and SCZenz's comments under [2]

He argues that it's better to include this inside the physics project, and I think that he has a good point. However, how would that work out in practice? Are there existing exmples of other projects with sub projects? Harald88 19:33, 30 October 2006 (UTC)

Yes, there are several, the most notable being WP:BIOGRAPHY and WP:MILHIST which have "work groups" and "task forces" respectively to handle sub-projects --plange 19:36, 30 October 2006 (UTC)
Looks OK to me. Harald88 19:46, 30 October 2006 (UTC)
Sure there are, but I don't think relativity will have enough activity to warrant a separate project or a subproject. That is to say, the activity on physics is light enough that everybody can keep track of it without difficulty; I'd support sub-projects only if the main physics activity got too heavy. -- SCZenz 01:58, 1 November 2006 (UTC)

## How to improve relativity-related articles

Above I have pointed out the community of editors of the Einstein Papers project as a major source of information. Among them, John Norton and Michel Janssen have made many of their papers available for download as PDF-file. Since their articles are so available, I take them as main references.

Underlying in any presentation of special and general relativity should be the notion that relativistic physics is a field theory. It should be emphasized that The Einstein Field equations are in fact field equations.

The natural terminology of presenting a field theory is to express physics taking place in terms of particles coupling to the described field. (Another matter of terminology: there is the name 'Minkowski spacetime' for a manifold with a (-, +, +, +) signature metric, but the spacetime of GTR, Riemannian manifold with a (-, +, +, +) signature metric, does not have a specific name. I will call the spacetime as described by the Einstein field equations: 'Einstein spacetime'.)

GTR is a theory that describes interaction of inertial mass with a field: inertial mass couples to Einstein spacetime. Spacetime is acting upon inertial mass, and inertial mass is acting upon Einstein spacetime, inducing spacetime curvature.

This offers a perspective on the question why special relativity is unsatisfactory. GTR describes that spacetime is acting upon inertial mass, giving rise to the phenomenon of inertia. In retrospect, special relativity looks odd in the sense that it describes a uni-directional field-coupling. Spacetime is acting upon inertial mass, but Minkowski spacetime itself is assumed to be immutable. As we all know, GTR resolves that tension.

The number one stumbling block for novices
For novices, the problem that arises most frequently is that they are sometimes led to expect that relativistic physics is a theory that asserts that spacetime does nothing at all. Sometimes, they are led to a line of reasoning that goes as follows: "Einstein showed he didn't need an Lorentzian ether, this shows that spacetime is just emptyness and not involved at all." That erroneous pattern of expectation then blocks understanding of relativistic physics. What needs to be emphasized is that according to relativistic physics Minkowski spacetime and Einstein spacetime are participants in the physics taking place.

The concept of Lorentzian ether and the concept of Minkowski spacetime have in common that they both are physical entities, participating in the physica taking place. The one distinction that needs to be emphasized is that in the context of special relativity velocity with respect to Minkowski spacetime does not enter the theory as a matter of principle. --Cleonis | Talk 09:53, 5 November 2006 (UTC)

Just as a reminder, it's not a good idea to bias Wikipedia towards one or two easily available sources, and relativity theory is certainly not limited to Einstein's papers. But indeed, Einstein's papers are of course important and I also find Janssens's papers a very useful and illuminating background source; their easy availability is a plus. Harald88 12:40, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
I suppose I should have emphasized Norton's and Janssen's accomplishments in the philosophy of physics, rather than mentioning that they have served as editors in the Einstein papers project. (I assume that the people that are invited to serve as editor on the Einstein papers project are chosen for their understanding of the philosophy of physics and specific historical knowledge of relativistic physics.)
Einstein was a trailblazer, and while he was ultimately successful, many of his choices along the way turned out to be dead ends. Because of that, I think Einstein's own views (varying wildly until settling on his mature views in the mid 1920's) are not particularly helpful in education. Einstein's writings are studied by historians of science for the sake of reconstructing the developments in Einstein's thinking. For the purpose of elucidating GTR itself as much as possible, Einsteins writings can only play a minor part.
Norton's article 'Eight decades of dispute' is for the most part a painstaking survey of expositions of GTR. As far as I can tell, Norton has acquired all textbook expositions of GTR, stretching from 1921 to the early 90's, and he compares the views of the authors, documenting the extend of disagreement about what consitutes the foundations of GTR. In being a survey, the aim of 'eight decades of dispute' is to present an overview that is as unbiased as the possible, just like an encyclopic article.
Your emphasis about philosophy is useful and at the same time it should serve as a warning: philosophy of physics is not physics but physics-related philosophy. Where such philosophy enters physics articles, readers should be warned that it's philosophy and not hard science.
Norton's overview of criticism sounds very useful for GRT. Harald88 23:59, 6 November 2006 (UTC)
Unfortunately, the word 'philosophy' has for many people negative connotations. I did not have any of those in mind. I am not referring to physics-related philosophy, I am referring to theoretical physics. Examination of (assumptions underlying) the theoretical framework itself is part of the endeavour of theoretical physics. This is key to science education. An introduction to relativistic physics for novices must concentrate on the barest essentials. For an encyclopedic article, the task of identifying barest essentials is everything. --Cleonis | Talk 12:12, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
Assumptions that underlie a theoretical framework cannot be tested and quite often, incompatible assumptions result in the same theory of physics. They are part of natural philosophy. But I'm not against philosophy at all and philosophy of physics does include philosophy (surprise?). For example, Janssen also gave his opinion about the "neo-Lorentzian interpretation" of relativity which according to the philosopher Mauro Dorato[3]. was motivated for "the rescue of a mind-independent becoming" . Harald88 20:29, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
Einstein showed that the principle that a particle (which is not affected by forces other than gravity) follows a geodesic thru space-time is a consequence of his field equations, i.e. it is the only way that the metric of the surrounding vacuum can be matched to the Schwarzschild metric generated by the particle. So the action of mass upon the geometry produces the reaction of geometry upon mass. (This leads me to the conclusion that electromagnetic forces act on charges via changing the geometry -- the charge is deflected, not directly by the electric field, but by the gravitational effect of the cross-term in the stress-energy tensor between the particle's field and the ambient field.) JRSpriggs 05:05, 6 November 2006 (UTC)

## New category for Relativists

I created a new category Category:Relativists to replace the category "Contributers to general relativity" which was deleted (CFD-ed). This one includes people involved in special relativity as well as general relativity. Please add or delete people as appropriate. JRSpriggs 05:58, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

## Mass in SR

There is currently some discussion (verging on an edit war) concerning mass in special relativity. That page looks like it needs some work. Also, the separate page on invariant mass seems to me to be unnecessary. Are you editors able to become involved in this? Timb66 12:03, 29 May 2007 (UTC)

## Userbox

A userboxe is the center of any wikiproject. Well, maybe not, but I made one anyway. Beast of traal T C _ 21:41, 2 November 2007 (UTC)Beast of traal

Oh, and the color matches the color of the heading of the project page. Beast of traal T C _ 21:42, 2 November 2007 (UTC)Beast of traal

 This user is a participant of WikiProject Relativity.

## Missing articles

I noticed that some missing articles are still red-links even when there is a comment saying that it "exists as" another article. In this case, why have you not changed the red-link into a redirect? -- JRSpriggs (talk) 21:08, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

Because I have more important things to do in my life. MP (talkcontribs) 19:10, 17 November 2007 (UTC)
It only takes about a minute to create a redirect. I would do it myself, if I was sure that there was no affirmative reason why they were not created. JRSpriggs (talk) 07:27, 18 November 2007 (UTC)
Done. JRSpriggs (talk) 21:42, 18 November 2007 (UTC)

## Rationale for redirecting some red links

Some redlinks have comments stating that the topic under consideration already exists in another article (e.g. Einstein static universe exists as part of Static universe). Sometimes it's better to have a separate article with more details. If more details can't be included yet, then a new article probably should not be created. But then again, a stub article can encourage more editors to contribute. I suppose it's a matter of individual judgement. In the Einstein static universe case, I would like to see a separate article with more details. MP (talkcontribs) 13:43, 18 November 2007 (UTC)

## Recruiting editors for Black hole

I am currently trying to improve the quality of the Black hole article. (which has devolved in quite terrible state.) I thought some of the GR specialists here might want to help contribute to it. I especially need help find references/identifying statements that probably need referencing. Any help would be kindly appreciated. (TimothyRias (talk) 14:59, 13 May 2008 (UTC))

## Agreeing on a consistent metric for SR

I am not quite sure if this is the appropriate place to suggest this. But, is there any way that the Relativity working group can decide on a consistent metric for SR. Right now I am seeing at least three different metrics: -+++ (most common) , +--- spacetime and four-vector, and -c^2+++ Special relativity and four-momentum. As a physicist who deals with similar stuff it is a small irritant that won't go away. For anyone without experience with different conventions and trying to understand relativity, it must be a major stumbling block. For what it is worth, I have expressed my preference on the Special relativity page. TStein (talk) 15:34, 19 June 2008 (UTC)

There is no global standard for selecting -+++ (Misner, Wheeler, Thorne) over +--- (some editions of Landau-Lifshitz) (although my preference is for -+++, which seems to be the wiki standard), but the use of -c^2+++ is horrendous and, AFAIK, completely unsupported by the literature (see the refs I've added at four vector); where C is explicit (i.e. not set to 1) it is attached to the four vector, not the metric. Unfortunately one rather determined editor has been inserting the ugly and original researched factor of c^2 everywhere attached to the metric (e.g. see Talk:Stress-energy_tensor#Dimension_problem., in addition to the dialogue at Special relativity page that TStein mentioned). --Michael C. Price talk 17:28, 13 September 2008 (UTC)
As the editor whom MichaelCPrice is criticizing, I request the privilege of replying.
Most importantly, what I am doing in this case is not original research. It is based on "Post, E.J., Formal Structure of Electromagnetics: General Covariance and Electromagnetics, Dover Publications Inc. Mineola NY, 1962 reprinted 1997.". In chapter 2, "Transformation behavior and dimensional properties of physical fields", he explains the correct method of assigning dimensions to the components of tensors as it was developed by Dorgelo and Schouten.
"Their considerations led them to distinguish an invariant factor in the dimensional characterization of physical quantities, called the absolute dimension. The actual dimensions of the components of a physical quantity are then determined by this absolute dimension times a multiplicative contribution which solely determined by the transformation behavior of the physical quantity." (page 23)
"However, the common dimensional identification of position and time coordinates is acceptable only as an expedient. It facilitates the exploration of the basic physical relations in four-dimensional garb, but it is unacceptable as a lasting feature, because it eliminates the undeniable differences in dimensional individuality of time and space coordinates. The tacit assumption of dimensional homogeneity is bound to lead to obstacles because it ignores a fundamental principle, the principle of causality." (page 24)
"For a linear frame in E1+3 the relative dimensions of the components of a tensor field can be found by adding to the absolute dimension a factor l or t for every contravariant index, a factor of l-1 or t-1 for every covariant index, depending on whether the index is a space label or a time label. A density of weight + k obtains in addition a common factor t-kl-3k." (page 29)
"The line element with a length dimension implies that the fundamental tensor gab should carry an absolute dimension of [l-2 as stipulated by Dorgelo and Schouten." (page 34)
Thus I am merely following their directions, not performing original research.
Also, let me point out that tensors are very flexible and one could associate a separate unit of one's choice with each of the four principal directions. However, using the SI units (seconds, meters, meters, meters) seems the most practical to me, and most consistent with non-relativistic equations. Remember that tensor equations are really just arrays of ordinary equations; and tensors are just arrays of ordinary real-valued physical variables.
I am just saying, let us group the appropriate unaltered equations together rather than doing an unnecessary conversion of units every time one processes a quantity associated with time.
The speed of light is a feature of the metric in fact. Without the metric, one could not even say what that speed was. So why do some people want to divorce it from the metric? Only because they have been misled by the myth that all components of a tensor must have the same units. JRSpriggs (talk) 21:21, 13 September 2008 (UTC)
A number of points
1) Even the quotation from a rather obscure E.J.Post admits that this is a minority viewpoint when he/she refers to the "dimensionless-metric" stance as the "the common dimensional identification of position and time coordinates". IOW the author is arguing for a position that even in 1962 was already a minority position.
2) If we attach dimensions to the metric, as E.J.Post suggests, then not only does an arbitrary tensor $T_{\mu \nu} \,$ have different dimensions from $T_{\mu}^{\nu}\,$ and $T^{\mu \nu} \,$ but even $T^{0j}\,$ differs from $T^{ij}\,$. Dimensional analysis, instead of being a useful and easy sort of checksum becomes a complete nightmare. By contrast, with the modern, conventional standard of making the all metric components dimensionless all the components (time, space, or mixed) of a tensor have the same dimension, whether covariant, contravariant or mixed.
3) Most textbooks sidestep the problem by setting c=1 before they define the lorentz coordinates; all the textbooks I've found which are explicit on the issue set $x^0 = ct$, not $x^0 = t$. This includes the rather definitive Misner, Wheeler, Thorne tome, Gravitation.
So, in summary, there is no reason to adopt such a confusing standard. It is not supported by the modern literature, and for good reason. --Michael C. Price talk 08:25, 14 September 2008 (UTC)
Regarding dimensional analysis as a sort of checksum:
To convert a tensor component from my convention to your convention, you can simply multiply it by ci-j-k where i is the number of contravariant time indices, j is the number of covariant time indices, and k is the weight of the tensor density (which is zero for ordinary tensors). If you have made sure that the indices are properly balanced in your tensor equation (which you should do anyway), then these factors of c will cancel out. Thus you can do your dimensional analysis in the same way as you usually do, if you just apply it consistently to the purely spatial components.
So there is no "nightmare". If you bother to really understand my convention, then you will see that it is just as simple as yours. And it avoids a lot of unnecessary factors of c in the conversion between tensors and the non-relativistic equivalents. JRSpriggs (talk) 07:45, 17 September 2008 (UTC)
I guess the contradiction in the statement If you bother to really understand my convention, then you will see that it is just as simple as yours. is lost on you? And please don't assume I don't understand "your" convention; I do, but it is not supported by the literature, as I have previously explained. So it is just your OR. --Michael C. Price talk 07:17, 22 September 2008 (UTC)
On a side issue, ideally we should not be using a variety of versions of a tensor with the indices raised or lowered (unless that is unavoidable for historical reasons). If one does use them, then one is hiding copies of the metric tensor. This is contrary to the spirit of general covariance which is to make everything explicit. So as far as possible, we should define a tensor to have one form with each index specified as contravariant or as covariant and with a specified weight. JRSpriggs (talk) 15:08, 17 September 2008 (UTC)
Requiring that each tensor be specified with some precise contravariant/ covariant mix is an unfortunate effect of JRSpriggs's standard...... Need I say more? --Michael C. Price talk 07:17, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

## Exact Solutions Template

I propose to create a new template, something which incorporates important features of an exact solution. Such features could include things like: Petrov Type, Segre Type and Energy-Momentum tensor type (e.g. perfect fluid). Global properties such as possible singularities and geodesics (timelike, null) could also be incorporated. Local as well as global symmetry vector fields may be mentioned where important (the global ones are probably the most important, though). I'd like some ideas about this please. Thanks. :) MP (talkcontribs) 15:24, 3 August 2008 (UTC)

## Intro to General theory

Introduction to general relativity has been nominated for a featured article review. Articles are typically reviewed for two weeks. Please leave your comments and help us to return the article to featured quality. If concerns are not addressed during the review period, articles are moved onto the Featured Article Removal Candidates list for a further period, where editors may declare "Keep" or "Remove" the article from featured status. The instructions for the review process are here. Reviewers' concerns are here.

I noticed that WP Relativity, WP Fluid dynamics and WP Acoustics all have low level of participation, if any. I would propose making them taskforces of WP Physics rather than WikiProjects due to the relatively low number of articles under their wings. I think participation in them would increase if they were made taskforces, as well as make it easier to coordinate efforts. Any thoughts?

I'm also posting this on the relavant WP talk pages.Headbomb {ταλκκοντριβςWP Physics} 22:20, 10 November 2008 (UTC)

Does your project care about what happens to the talk pages of articles that have been replaced with redirects? If so, please provide your input at User:Mikaey/Request for Input/ListasBot 3. Thanks, Matt (talk) 01:50, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

## Albert Einstein

...is at peer review. Help get it back to FA. Casliber (talk · contribs) 11:34, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

## GA Reassessment of Special relativity

I have done a GA Reassessment of the Special relativity article as part of the GA Sweeps project. I have found the article to need quite a bit of referencing. I have placed the article on hold for a week pending work. I am notifying all interested projects of this review which can be found here. If there are any questions please contact me on my talk page. H1nkles (talk) 18:00, 19 June 2009 (UTC)

## Changes to popular pages lists

There are a few important changes to the popular pages system. A quick summary:

• The "importance" ranking (for projects that use it) will be included in the lists along with assessment.
• The default list size has been lowered to 500 entries (from 1000)
• I've set up a project on the Toolserver for the popular pages - tools:~alexz/pop/.
• This includes a page to view the results for projects, including the in-progress results from the current month. Currently this can only show the results from a single project in one month. Features to see multiple projects or multiple months may be added later.
• This includes a new interface for making requests to add a new project to the list.
• There is also a form to request a change to the configuration for a project. Currently the configurable options are the size of the on-wiki list and the project subpage used for the list.
• The on-wiki list should be generated and posted in a more timely and consistent manner than before.
• The data is now retained indefinitely.
• The script used to generate the pages has changed. The output should be the same. Please report any apparent inconsistencies (see below).
• Bugs and feature requests should be reported using the Toolserver's bug tracker for "alexz's tools" - [4]

-- 00:31, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

## Disentangling General Relativity

I've been trying to learn General Relativity by reading Wikipedia articles. In doing so, I've become aware of several serious problems.

The first is the entanglement of the mathematics of GR's pseudo-Riemannian manifold with the mathematics of Riemannian manifolds. This leads to awkward discussion of GR within articles that are really about mathematics of Riemannian manifolds. Spacetime in GR is NOT a Riemannian manifold. It is a pseudo-Riemannian manifold because it has a pseudo-metric, not a metric.

The second is that links often are to articles that define a concept in much more generality than is needed for a discussion of GR.

A third is an apparent missing link between the fundamental principles on which GR is based and the Einstein-Hilbert action that is the customary starting point for the derivation of the field equations. I looked in vain for it and finally stumbled on the article "Theoretical Motivations for General Relativity", which has numerous severe problems and doesn't seem to be exactly what is wanted anyway.

Fourth, sometimes notations and terms are used that do not have obvious meanings yet lack any link to explanatory material.

Anyway, when I feel energetic enough, I'll try to get back to this topic and see if I can lay out a structure for GR articles that will cover the subject adequately and will disentangle it from confusion with metric spaces and articles on mathematics of much greater generality than is needed for GR.

I also agree with others here that there need to be some standards developed for notations and conventions to be used on all the GR pages. Thinkor (talk) 23:48, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

I was not aware of the article Theoretical motivation for general relativity until you mentioned it here. I disagree with the approach used in that article because it is not generally covariant.
Wikipedia is not the best place from which to learn a complicated subject such as general relativity. Articles in wikipedia may contain serious errors or vandalism, and they are not organized by a unifying intelligence because they have many rather than a single author. It would be better to read Misner, Thorne, and Wheeler or any of many other textbooks on general relativity.
Outside wikipedia, I have not seen a firm distinction made between Riemannian manifolds and pseudo-Riemannian manifolds. For practical purposes the mathematics is almost identical in so far as it applies to general relativity. However, wikipedia must serve a community which is interested in applications of Riemannian manifolds to other things than just general relativity, so the articles must compromise (another reason wikipedia is not the place to study GTR).
Indeed, general covariance and the equivalence principle are not sufficient to derive GTR since they cannot distinguish it from some other alternatives to general relativity such as f(R) gravity. The cosmological term in the Hilbert action represents the "surface tension" (minimization of hyper-volume) of space-time while the R term represents the "stiffness" (resistance to bending) of space-time.
Einstein noted that it is unnecessary (and wrong) to have a separate rule (e.g. geodesic motion) for the path of a particle since that is determined by matching the solution for a single particle (black hole) to the back-ground metric. See my comment at #How to improve relativity-related articles. JRSpriggs (talk) 14:37, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

## WP 1.0 bot announcement

This message is being sent to each WikiProject that participates in the WP 1.0 assessment system. On Saturday, January 23, 2010, the WP 1.0 bot will be upgraded. Your project does not need to take any action, but the appearance of your project's summary table will change. The upgrade will make many new, optional features available to all WikiProjects. Additional information is available at the WP 1.0 project homepage. — Carl (CBM · talk) 03:50, 22 January 2010 (UTC)

## Einsteins Nobel Prize

We are in need of the help of an expert at the Nobel Prize page. A source has been found that says the Photoelectric Effect was one proof of the Theory of Relativity. A few editors are questioning the accuracy of that statement. The help of someone who understands Einsteins Theory better than me would be appreciated. Regards AIRcorn (talk) 01:30, 19 February 2010 (UTC)

Thank you to Paradoctor and Michael C Price for responding. We have sorted out the problem. AIRcorn (talk) 01:42, 24 February 2010 (UTC)

## RfC on WP Physics coordinators

Please take a look and feel free to comment (or not). Headbomb {ταλκκοντριβς – WP Physics} 23:41, 23 February 2010 (UTC)

## Unreferenced living people articles bot

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Thank you. Okip 02:50, 28 March 2010 (UTC)

## Heim theory

I need help with improving this article--Novus Orator 08:11, 18 September 2010 (UTC)

Is this fringe theory actually notable enough to be covered by Wikipedia? JRSpriggs (talk) 11:27, 18 September 2010 (UTC)
Would anyone on this taskforce be willing add their input on including a relevant template in the article?--Novus Orator 14:01, 6 November 2010 (UTC)
Can someone follow this link (to a relevant discussion on the Physics forum) to see if they can get an expert on Heim theory to work on the article?--Novus Orator 06:44, 12 December 2010 (UTC)
To Terra Novus: Would you not be the best person to do that? JRSpriggs (talk) 08:38, 12 December 2010 (UTC)
I would be, but I had a long and problematic conflict with other editors who disagreed on the focus of this article; in which I finally agreed not to personally get involved with the actual article, just to cool things down a little. I hoped that by leaving this link someone will be able to pick up the baton since I can't.--Novus Orator 04:27, 13 December 2010 (UTC)

## Relativity articles have been selected for the Wikipedia 0.8 release

Version 0.8 is a collection of Wikipedia articles selected by the Wikipedia 1.0 team for offline release on USB key, DVD and mobile phone. Articles were selected based on their assessed importance and quality, then article versions (revisionIDs) were chosen for trustworthiness (freedom from vandalism) using an adaptation of the WikiTrust algorithm.

We would like to ask you to review the Relativity articles and revisionIDs we have chosen. Selected articles are marked with a diamond symbol (♦) to the right of each article, and this symbol links to the selected version of each article. If you believe we have included or excluded articles inappropriately, please contact us at Wikipedia talk:Version 0.8 with the details. You may wish to look at your WikiProject's articles with cleanup tags and try to improve any that need work; if you do, please give us the new revisionID at Wikipedia talk:Version 0.8. We would like to complete this consultation period by midnight UTC on Monday, October 11th.

We have greatly streamlined the process since the Version 0.7 release, so we aim to have the collection ready for distribution by the end of October, 2010. As a result, we are planning to distribute the collection much more widely, while continuing to work with groups such as One Laptop per Child and Wikipedia for Schools to extend the reach of Wikipedia worldwide. Please help us, with your WikiProject's feedback!

For the Wikipedia 1.0 editorial team, SelectionBot 23:32, 19 September 2010 (UTC)

## Citation templates now support more identifiers

Recent changes were made to citations templates (such as {{citation}}, {{cite journal}}, {{cite web}}...). In addition to what was previously supported (bibcode, doi, jstor, isbn, ...), templates now support arXiv, ASIN, JFM, LCCN, MR, OL, OSTI, RFC, SSRN and Zbl. Before, you needed to place |id={{arxiv|0123.4567}} (or worse |url=http://arxiv.org/abs/0123.4567), now you can simply use |arxiv=0123.4567, likewise for |id={{JSTOR|0123456789}} and |url=http://www.jstor.org/stable/0123456789|jstor=0123456789.

The full list of supported identifiers is given here (with dummy values):

• {{cite journal |author=John Smith |year=2000 |title=How to Put Things into Other Things |journal=Journal of Foobar |volume=1 |issue=2 |pages=3–4 |arxiv=0123456789 |asin=0123456789 |bibcode=0123456789 |doi=0123456789 |jfm=0123456789 |jstor=0123456789 |lccn=0123456789 |isbn=0123456789 |issn=0123456789 |mr=0123456789 |oclc=0123456789 |ol=0123456789 |osti=0123456789 |rfc=0123456789 |pmc=0123456789 |pmid=0123456789 |ssrn=0123456789 |zbl=0123456789 |id={{para|id|____}} }}

Obviously not all citations needs all parameters, but this streamlines the most popular ones and gives both better metadata and better appearances when printed. 03:16, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

## Wikipedia:Bot requests/Archive 41#Bibcode bot

I've made a request for a bot to try and guess bibcodes for the most popular astronomy journals / journals with the biggest presence in the ADSABS database. Feedback is welcome. 04:04, 16 March 2011 (UTC)

## Inconsistencies in special relativity articles and categories

I have taken note of the following issues in the organization of special relativity articles and categories. There may be good reasons for these issues, but they should be examined for improvement in clarity and organization. I will participate in correcting these issues, but correcting these requires community collaboration.

1. General relativity has a subarticle Tests of general relativity that is linked in the main article.
2. Tests of general relativity also has a corresponding category: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Tests_of_general_relativity.
3. Special relativity does not have a corresponding test article Tests of special relativity. There is an article that looks as if it might perform the same function: Status of special relativity. This should be examined for consistency and either corrected or explained.
4. There does not appear to be a category for special relativity tests: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Tests_of_special_relativity which would be useful in the same way that http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Tests_of_general_relativity is useful.
5. There is additionally another article, Test theories of special relativity. There are multiple problems with this article: it is not clear where it fits into the group of articles on special relativity, the article is of generally poor quality and should probably be considered for a deletion or merge, it is not linked anywhere in the Special relativity article, it links confusingly to Tests of general relativity.
6. Tests of general relativity contains editor's notes in comments that make absolutely no sense and should be resolved in favor of making changes easier.

That about does it for my list of observations, thank you for your consideration.Jarhed (talk) 16:04, 26 April 2011 (UTC)

Tests of special relativity are described in a couple of different articles (see Template:Tests of special relativity). The article Test theories of special relativity is about an important framework to evaluate experimental outcomes concerning special relativity. --D.H (talk) 08:32, 27 April 2011 (UTC)
That template is good, but I looked everywhere I could think to look for a list that corresponds to Category:Tests_of_general_relativity and I couldn't find one. It would be helpful for all of these resources to be more obviously available to a reader. If Test theories of special relativity is indeed a good and useful article, its purpose in the article mix needs to be clarified and it needs to be made more available to the reader.Jarhed (talk) 19:32, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

## Imaginary relativity

I am suspicious of the article Imaginary relativity, that either this is a hoax, or just an article by "Mehran Rezaei, Bachelor of Electronic Engineer, Esfahan Azad University, Shahinshahr, Isfahan, Iran" to promote a completely non-notable theory. See the second paragraph:

This idea first was published “[[Journal WSEAS TRANSACTIONS on COMMUNICATIONS, Volume 9 Issue 2, February 2010]]” <ref> [http://www.wseas.us/e-library/transactions/communications/2010/89-404.pdf Imaginary Relativity], Journal WSEAS TRANSACTIONS on COMMUNICATIONS, Volume 9 Issue 2, February 2010</ref> by Mehran Rezaei. .

Assistance with this article by someone who knows physics would be appreciated. --DThomsen8 (talk) 14:45, 16 June 2012 (UTC)

This whole article seems to be based on a single non-notable paper published in a journal that isn't widely read by physicists (I'd never heard about the journal before). It seems as though the page may have been created by the author of that paper, and the article also contains text copy-and-pasted from the paper. I had a quick look at the paper and wasn't very impressed, it is unlikely to be correct or even interesting. The page is a good candidate for deletion. CodeTheorist (talk) 15:42, 16 June 2012 (UTC)
I've flagged the page for deletion, here is the discussion page: Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Imaginary relativity. CodeTheorist (talk) 08:45, 17 June 2012 (UTC)

## No evidence for length contraction

I hope this is the appropriate place for this request for clarification of the guidelines for inclusion of non-mainstream articles/papers on the length contraction aspect of SR. (I put in a similar request in the general "request for comments" section yesterday, but that section is not specific to relativity, so may be overlooked by SR physicists, and there have been no comments yet.) I find a general consensus that there is no direct empirical evidence for physical length contraction or contraction of the distance between objects in space. Yet this consensus is not allowed so much as a mention in the "Length contraction" section of relativity. Specifically the usual argument from "time dilation for muons" does not physically require a shorter distance traveled, as a slower rate of decay (at higher velocity) allows for an extended range of travel. Further, all cases of theoretical "physical length contraction" are (theoretical) observer/frame dependent measurement variations, which do not require physical contraction of objects or distances. Disambiguation is required to distinguish between changes in the 4-D "spacetime" *model* (as virtually viewed from different frames) and changes in physical objects themselves (and the distances between them.) Comments, please. LCcritic (talk) 20:00, 9 November 2013 (UTC)

Please see Tests of special relativity#Time dilation and Length contraction and Test theories of special relativity. JRSpriggs (talk) 22:00, 9 November 2013 (UTC)
- DVdm (talk) 10:45, 10 November 2013 (UTC)

## Criticism of relativity not allowed

The whole section on Criticism of Relativity is a sham created by restrictive Wiki editorial policy because no substantive criticism is allowed.

Conclusion of the section's opening statements: “Even today there are some critics of relativity (sometimes called "anti-relativists"); however, their viewpoints are not taken seriously by the scientific community.” In other words, no criticism of relativity is to be “taken seriously by the scientific community.” So, according to the Wiki editor who wrote that, the whole section on criticism of relativity should just end there and dismiss all criticism.

Opening statement in the Philosophical Criticism sub-section: “The consequences of relativity, such as the change of ordinary concepts of space and time, as well as the introduction of non-Euclidean geometry in general relativity, were criticized by some philosophers of different philosophical schools. It was characteristic for many philosophical critics, that they had insufficient knowledge of the mathematical and formal basis of relativity, consequently the criticisms often missed the heart of the matter.”

In other words, philosophy is irrelevant to the math and physics of relativity. Philosophers are “not to be taken seriously." The Philosophical Criticism section should end there, though that sub-section would already be precluded by the opening section. Even the most fundamental philosophical criticism, “at the very heart of the matter” is “not allowed,” i.e., that Einstein’s philosophy was that there is *no real world,* that it all depends on differences in observation. So the obvious argument that, for instance, Earth’s diameter does not change with how it might be observed (i.e., there is in fact a "real world/Earth") is “not allowed.”

Since no critic of relativity can get credentialed in the field, all such critics are considered “cranks from the fringe,” ("Catch 22") so references to these critics (and there are many) are “not allowed.” The result in summary is that those who criticize relativity are not credialed references, so their criticisms are “not allowed.” Will this task force on relativity please reconsider the basic editorial policy on what “is allowed” as criticism? Thanks. Ps: I hope DVdm is "not allowed" to censor this on any number of technicalities, like "forum shopping" just because there is no place "allowed" in this encyclopedia for legitimate criticism of relativity (i.e., that there is no such thing as legitimate criticism of relativity.) LCcritic (talk) 19:33, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

Note - see our chat at Talk:Criticism of the theory of relativity#Einstein's denial of a "real world" as the basis for SR. - DVdm (talk) 20:00, 20 November 2013 (UTC)
Einstein did not say that there is no real world. That is not the thrust of his theory. What you are saying makes about as much sense as if a flat-Earther were to criticize the (roughly) spherical globe as a denial of the reality of the Earth.
What "relativity" means is that certain relationships which were previously thought to depend on only a few things must now be understood as depending on a few more things as well. For example, when I say that "the table is near", I mean that the table is near to me. In other words, the notion "near" is relative to the observer rather than being absolute. It makes no sense to say that a table is near (or far) without reference to an observer. Similarly, the velocity of an object depends on the observer. And the special theory of relativity tell us that the length of an object also depends on the observer. And the rate at which processes proceed depends on the observer. Why is that so terrible? JRSpriggs (talk) 10:50, 21 November 2013 (UTC)
While there is a case that the problem would fit under "Philosophical criticism", adding it would give it WP:UNDUE weight. Can you find better sources than Lindner and Physics Essays for Einstein's position on realism and comments thereupon? Paradoctor (talk) 12:56, 21 November 2013 (UTC)
First, my 'chat' with with DVdm which he linked above resulted in no changes to the Criticisms of Relativity Wiki text, for all the technical reasons he cited. My suggested additions were stonewalled. Secondly, Einstein DID deny the "real world." Here it is again: He explicitly denied the statement, “The physical world is real.”... "It appears to me that the 'real' is an intrinsically empty, meaningless category... This division is, to be sure, not an arbitrary one, but instead... I concede that the natural sciences concern the 'real,' but *I am still not a realist.*" (my *...* emphasis.) See full text of quote in the linked 'chat' with DVdm above.
Next, Lindler's lack of praises from credentialed relativity theorists disqualifies him from being a 'legitimate critic' only because of the "Catch 22" exclusion policy, which does not allow any substantive criticism of relativity, as I explained above. He is a philosopher with a very basic, very valid criticism, again: "If we accept the theory that *a physical Cosmos exists*, and that **our sensations and measurements result from our interactions with the Cosmos**, then we should not restrict our physics, as Einstein did, to the modeling of our sensations and measurements." (again, my *, ** emphasis.)
Godel's article, via title alone, relates relativity theory to idealistic philosophy, which denies a "real world" independent of changing observations of it. “The Relationship Between Relativity Theory and Idealistic Philosophy.”
Regarding (again) the opening statement in the Philosophical Criticisms sub-section (my * emphasis):
“The consequences of relativity, such as the change of ordinary concepts of space and time, as well as the introduction of non-Euclidean geometry in general relativity, were criticized by some philosophers of different philosophical schools. *It was characteristic for many philosophical critics that they had insufficient knowledge of the mathematical and formal basis of relativity.*”
Here is an example of a philosopher, Kelley Ross, who has a thorough understanding of the transition from Euclidean to non-Euclidean geometry and cosmology yet criticizes many of the *assumptions* required for that transition: http://www.friesian.com/curved-1.htm
Examples: See the section, Curved Space and Non-Euclidean Geometry regarding intrinsic vs extrinsic (imaginary models of) curvature. See also the section on Geometry in Einstein's Theory of Relativity:
“Intrinsic curvature, which was introduced by Riemann to explain how straight lines could have the properties associated with curvature without being curved in the ordinary sense, is now used to explain how something which is obviously curved, e.g. the orbit of a planet, is really straight. Something has gotten turned around.”
Finally, see his Conclusion (same notation for my emphasis):
"Just because the math works doesn't mean that we understand what is happening in nature. *Every physical theory has a mathematical component and a conceptual component, but these two are often confused.* Many speak as though the mathematical component confers understanding,...
Nevertheless, there is often still a kind of deliberate know-nothing-ism that **the mathematics is the explanation. It isn't.** Instead, **each theory contains a conceptual interpretation that assigns meaning to its mathematical expressions.** In non-Euclidean geometry and its :::: application by Einstein, the most important conceptual question is over **the meaning of "curvature" and the ontological status of the dimensions of space, time, (ed: and ‘”spacetime”)**...
Finally, JRspriggs said, "And the special theory of relativity tell us that the length of an object also depends on the observer. And the rate at which processes proceed depends on the observer. Why is that so terrible?" It is "terrible" because the length of Earth's diameter, as a very obvious example of a massive physical object, does not change with the speed and direction of an approaching relativistic observer, as relativity theory insists. It is "terrible" because Earth is a "real" physical object not just a 4D "spacetime model" subject to change with how one looks at it from various speeds and directions. The realism vs idealism philosophical debate is bedrock fundamental to the validity (or not) of an Earth which changes shape... or to the claim that the distances between stars depends on how interstellar travelers might someday measure them from various relativistic speeds and directions of travel. But this philosophical debate is **not allowed!** (Yes, DVdm, this is a "discussion" among editors, and he asked the question.)LCcritic (talk) 21:19, 21 November 2013 (UTC)
The criteria for reliable sources can be found at WP:RS. Can you find anything satisfying these criteria not already in the article? Paradoctor (talk) 22:14, 21 November 2013 (UTC)
Regarding "Lindler's lack of praises from credentialed relativity theorists..." to make Lindler worth mentioning here as legitimate critic: note that wp:secondary sources need not praise the author to make his critisism worth a mention in Wikipedia. We need such credentialed sources to mention (perhaps by praising or even by denouncing—see Dingle) and discuss that author to begin with. Any MD with a hobby can play the critic of anything they weren't properly trained in, but if they are ignored, they have no place here. And that is by this place's very design. If you want to change that, you wil need to change some of the core policies.
Regarding your "length of Earth's diameter as a very obvious example of a massive physical object": that length, as measured by an approaching relativistic observer, does change with the speed and direction of an approaching relativistic observer. Why is that so terrible? The speed, kinetic energy and momentum of a massive physical bullet also depend on who is making the measurements. We don't find that terrible. - DVdm (talk) 22:41, 21 November 2013 (UTC)
My point is that the "criteria for reliable sources" is based on credentials as approved by relativity theorists and that Wiki states specifically (opening the Criticisms section) that no critics of relativity qualify as "reliable sources" in the "scientific community" (of relativity theorists.) The "rules" exclude all philosophical discussion of the most basic issue, relativity's idealism excluding the opposing argument, realism (a world independent of observation.) Realists do not have the 'proper credentials' because they are disregarded by that community as critics of relativity, ergo "cranks" by whatever derogatory label. And around it goes. Realists argue that the changing measurements (of Earth in the above example) from all different frames do not reflect actual physical changes it Earth itself. Idealists, relativity theorists in this case, insist that that Earth does change shapes with variations in how it might be observed from relativistic frames. But that argument is not allowed as "Philosophical Criticism"... because, of course, philosophical realists are not properly credentialed by the community of relativity theorists. Is anyone following this? LCcritic (talk) 03:31, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
"credentials as approved by relativity theorists" Please cite WP:RS where it says that, I can't find it.
"relativity's idealism" Which reliable source says that relativity is an idealist theory?
"Is anyone following this?" You can use "Page information" in the page toolbox. Paradoctor (talk) 04:04, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
Re "relativity theorists in this case, insist that that Earth does change shapes with variations in how it might be observed from relativistic frames": no, for the n-th time, relativity says that the Earth, as measured by other frames, does change shapes with variations in how it might be observed from these frames. You consistently omit that qualifier, and it is essential. - DVdm (talk) 08:04, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
In the Identifying Reliable Sources guidelines:
"This means that we publish the opinions only of reliable authors, and *not the opinions of Wikipedians who have read and interpreted primary source material for themselves.*” (My *)
The opening statement in the Criticisms of Relativity section violate this guideline, as per the final statement in that opening (quoted again for easy reference): "Even today there are some critics of relativity (sometimes called "anti-relativists"); however, their viewpoints are not taken seriously by the scientific community.”
“Wikipedia articles are required to present a neutral point of view.” The whole Criticisms section violates that with the stated opinion quoted above, which prevails throughout the section, i.e., that criticisms of relativity are “not taken seriously." This is an example of the editor, presenting as an expert on relativity, discrediting all critics, i.e., none with "approved credentials, in answer to Paradoctor's challenge. Regarding your challenge: "'relativity's idealism' Which reliable source says that relativity is an idealist theory?" Claiming that there is no real world, that there is no "reality" independent all different varieties of ways to observe the same object (as relativity does) IS idealism. Yet no discussion of that in the Philosophical Criticism subsection is allowed.
DVdm, your "for the n-th time..." condescending, professorial attitude is not productive, nor is it civil, as required by the guidelines. JRspriggs said, "And the special theory of relativity tell us that the length of an object also depends on the observer." That is the prevailing claim.
The Length Contraction section opens with: "In physics, *length contraction is the phenomenon of a decrease in length* measured by an observer of objects which are traveling at any non-zero velocity relative to the observer." (my * emphasis) The phenomenon is said to be a decrease in length of an object. The way that claimed decrease is measured varies, not the object itself, as implied in the structure of the sentence.
The most common example of length contraction is probably the pole/ladder and barn thought experiment. The claim is that a 20 foot pole will fit into a 10 foot barn, *as measured from a given relativistic frame.* However the “as measured from” phrase will not allow the above long pole to fit into the shorter barn. Differences in how objects are observed/measured can not cause differences in the physical objects themselves. Even the claim that the pole's atoms are compacted by high velocity (resulting in shorter physical length) can not possible apply to Earth's diameter with a high velocity relative to an approaching observer.
A typical example from an “ask the physicist” website Q&A (I verified this by asking); Q: "According to relativity theory, what is the length of Earth’s diameter?" A: “It depends on who is observing it.” Clearly this is idealism in denial of realism.
I gave an example of a well credentialed philosopher criticizing the assumptions upon which non-Euclidean geometry/cosmology and relativity are based. This was in direct reply to the claim in the "Philosophical Criticism" subsection (the personal opinion of the editor presenting that section!) that no philosophers understand the transition to non-Euclidean. My example has so far been ignored here, presumably in keeping with the editorial *opinion and policy* here that all critics of relativity are cranks.LCcritic (talk) 20:16, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
LCcritic, while I am still willing to extend the benefit of doubt to you, your behavior is quickly approaching the point where this does not seem warranted to me. WP:INDENT, it's not difficult, and it's part of how we do things around here. If you want an exception, state your case. I'm not linking to policy and guidelines out of boredom.
You criticized the lead of Criticism of the theory of relativity. I took that as a request for this edit. Note that the applicable policy is WP:V, not WP:RS, as the statement is not sourced currently. You could have done this yourself, and nobody would have bat an eyelid. Even deleting the statement with an appropriate edit summary like "unsourced" would have been acceptable.
"This is an example of the editor, presenting as an expert on relativity, discrediting all critics" Please assume good faith. The editor who added this sentence to the article probably thought that it fairly represented the literature. I know I do. You want a source for that, that's entirely apropriate, and you'll get it soon enough, I think.
Update Fast service courtesy of D.H. Paradoctor (talk) 15:15, 23 November 2013 (UTC)
"in answer to Paradoctor's challenge" You didn't answer my request to cite WP:RS where it says "credentials as approved by relativity theorists". Note that WP:RS is about publications, not people. "Credentials" are mentioned only in reference to self-published sources.
"Which reliable source says that relativity is an idealist theory?" That is the question I want you answer, because it is you who is making the claim: "most basic issue, relativity's idealism".
If I was you, I'd rethink accusing DVDm of being incivil. IMHO, he is showing restraint. I've seen experienced Wikipedians react considerably harsher in situations like this. Maybe reading WP:COOL would be a good idea.
"Length Contraction section" There is no such section in Criticism of the theory of relativity. Which article are you talking about?
"most common example of length contraction" Please link to articles, and talk about statements in these articles, so we have something that is appropriate to discuss here. This is core behavior in discussing articles, and not optional, per WP:NOTFORUM.
"well credentialed philosopher" Which credentials would that be? I'm not aware that Ross holds a chair in physics, or has published in the field. Neither am I aware of his work in idealistic philosophy. If you wish to make a case that his self-published paper should count as a reliable source, provide reliable sources for such credentials.
""Philosophical Criticism" subsection (the personal opinion of the editor presenting that section!)" That is not an acceptable reading of the intentions of the editors who have produced this section, and provided it with 22 citations.
Paradoctor (talk) 23:57, 22 November 2013 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────First, I apologize yet again for my obvious lack of skill at navigating this site and my ineptitude at implementing all the many required technicalities. I am a retired philosopher/psychologist who came late in life to this wonderful world of complex technology. My primary criticism of the Criticisms of Relativity section is that relativity is based on idealism in denial of a "real world," so the philosophy of realism is rejected out of hand, as are all "criticisms of relativity," (making the section title a sham), and I have cited Einstein's own words as the "father of relativity" in conformation of his denial of a real, objective world independent of observation. (I don't know how to link to that quote directly. It can be found in DVdm's link to our 'chat' above in this section.) I also cited Kurt Godel as confirming the above. Here is a link discussing his article, “A remark about the relationship between relativity theory and idealistic philosophy”: http://theinductivistturkey.wordpress.com/2013/04/17/godel-on-idealism-and-time-travelling/ Godel said: "Following up the consequences [of the relativity theory, particularly of the general one] [...] one obtains an unequivocal proof for the view of those philosophers who, like Parmenides, Kant, and the modern idealists, deny the objectivity of change and consider change as an illusion or an appearance due to our special mode of perception. (p. 202)" I am told that Henry Lindler's philosophy (see* below) confirming the above is not acceptable, as he is just an MD with a "hobby" of philosophy and has no proper "training" in relativity, the requirement for credentials in the field. Yet no one who criticizes relativity can acquire such credentials. (See the problem?)*Beyond Relativity and Quantum Theory to Cosmic Theory. (the latter saying that the world is in fact "real," and independent of our measurements of it, which "result from our interactions with the cosmos," i.e., that each different measurement does not create a different "world.")

Regarding Kelley Ross, his website http://www.friesian.com/ross/ has a list of his contributions to the field. But, of course, he does criticize the assumptions underlying relativity, so he is "not to be taken seriously" according to the editors here. I'll leave it for now and invite further comments. Ps: Wiki" Length Contraction section I mentioned is of course not a subsection of the Criticisms section being discussed here. Sorry I did not make that clear. I was replying to DVdm's statement about contracting objects (like Earth's diameter) vs variations in measurements of those objects. Also there is s section in Wiki on the ladder and barn paradox https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ladder_paradox to which I referred. Again, I need to learn proper link notation.LCcritic (talk) 20:58, 23 November 2013 (UTC)

You are not "told that Henry Lindler's philosophy confirming the above is not acceptable, as he is just an MD with a "hobby" of philosophy and has no proper "training" in relativity". You are told about his lack of credentials, wich by the way is entirely irrelevant for Wikipedia. But it seems to be very relevant for the fact that we can't find any reliable secondary sources about him and his criticism. That lack of reliable secondary sources is the reason why we cannot include him here. As I said before, "any MD with a hobby can play the critic of anything they weren't properly trained in, but if they are ignored, they have no place here." This is just Wikipedia by design. You will have to accept that. - DVdm (talk) 21:37, 23 November 2013 (UTC)
"lack of skill at navigating this site and my ineptitude at implementing all the many required technicalities" Nobody is out to WP:BITE new editors. If you have questions, ask them. Wikipedians are generally quite willing to help out their fellow editors with information and advice. Don't forget to listen to the answers, though. You can learning about linking at WP:LINK. The central starting pointing for help is at Help:Edit. If you have questions, just ask.
This discussion does not turn on "technicalities", but on a core principle of Wikipedia. Let me spell it out as brutal as possible.
principle Whatever opinion you have, Wikipedia is not interested. Wikipedia is also not interested in discussing it.
qualifier If and when your opinion is published in a reliable source, and carries due weight, then it can and should be included.
This implies that whatever statements you want to include must be sourced to reliable sources when challenged to do so. You have been told that Ross' and Lindler's websites do not qualify because they are self-published, and the authors have not been shown to be experts in the field. Ross himself only lists one(!) peer-reviewed publication. This implies that, whatever opinion he holds is either a WP:FRINGE viewpoint, or there are better sources for the same opinion.
The Einstein quote does not, in my opinion, support your claim that Einstein denied the existence of a real world. If you wish to use it in this way, find a reliable source saying that the quote is to be interpreted in this manner, or find other reliable sources to support this position. Again, do not bother to bring up opinions from self-published or otherwise unreliable sources again.
Gödel is at least a plausible starting point. Now, before we try to find out whether this quote actually supports your claim, the first thing we need is the source of this quote. Some random blog merely claiming that Gödel said it is not good enough. Quotes are misattributed all the time. Can you provide the necessary information? For more info on citing, see WP:CITE. Take your time, there is a lot of info, and I know from experience that finding what you need to know can take quite some time. If you get stuck, you can always ask at the help desk. Qapla'! Paradoctor (talk) 23:08, 23 November 2013 (UTC)
I already sourced the Godel quote: http://theinductivistturkey.wordpress.com/2013/04/17/godel-on-idealism-and-time-travelling/ I have no idea what better reference you are asking for. His article is extant, historical and available. You said: "The Einstein quote does not, in my opinion, support your claim that Einstein denied the existence of a real world." Please re-read the full text of the quote. He did deny the statement affirming a 'real world' and he did grant that regardless of Study's defense of natural science investigating the "real world," that he, Einstein, was still "not a realist."

Your opinion as stated above (regardless of your seniority here) does not automatically negate my opinion that he said exactly what he meant, that he was not a realist. What do you think is the alternative to realism? It is idealism. I taught the difference as a university professor. What are your credentials supporting your opinion, as stated? LCcritic (talk) 01:03, 24 November 2013 (UTC)

I think that you are misunderstanding what Einstein was trying to say. He is not denying that things exist. Rather he is questioning what the word "real" means when applied to them. Are we to categorize existents as real existents versus unreal existents? What then is an unreal existent? What properties do real things have that unreal things lack (or vice versa)?
In ordinary speech, "reality" is a property that may or may not apply to ideas. We have an idea of chairs. This idea is real because chairs actually exist with the properties which we think they have. We have an idea of fairies. This idea is unreal because fairies do not exist. However, you are not using the word "real" in this sense. You are using it to mean something else. What do you mean by it? JRSpriggs (talk) 02:04, 24 November 2013 (UTC)
That you didn't indent your reply strengthen my impression that you are not exercising proper attention to detail. If you can't be bothered with simple things like that, what does that tell about your attention to Wikipedia's content rules? I didn't fix it for you this time, do it yourself.
As regards the source for the Gödel quote, you did not take into consideration what I said before, so I repeat it: A blog is not a reliable source. Also, I'm pretty sure that Gödel never blogged. So, from what reliable source does this quote originate? Note that the WP:BURDEN of proof is on you. It is not my job to hunt for possible citations for material you want to add. If you can't clear this hurdle, then you are in the wrong place, and some other forum would be better suited to your needs.
"He did deny the statement affirming a 'real world'" That is your opinion, but I don't share it. If you wish an explanation, mail me. We will not discuss this here, as it would violate WP:NOTFORUM. Again, the WP:BURDEN of proof here is on you, as you want to put this in the article.
"your seniority here" You have a misconception about this community. There is no concept of "seniority" on Wikipedia. I did not once make reference to myself as an authority for anything. If there were requests not sourced to community rules, cite them and I'll correct that.
"my opinion that he said exactly what he meant, that he was not a realist" I quote from my previous post: "Wikipedia is not interested in your opinion." Or mine, for that matter.
"What do you think is the alternative to realism? It is idealism. I taught the difference as a university professor." In that case, you better head over to philosophical realism. The article is in very poor shape, and would benefit very much from an expert adding reliable sources and expanding it.
"your credentials supporting your opinion" If you're referring to my opinion on the Einstein quote, then none are required, as stated above.
Don't forget to fix your indentation. Paradoctor (talk) 02:53, 24 November 2013 (UTC)
I hope the (:) fixed my indent above and indented this properly.(Still struggling with it.) Regarding Paradoctor's: “So, from what reliable source does this quote originate?" [Kurt Godel ref: “A remark on the relationship between relativity theory and idealistic philosophy”, Albert Einstein: Philosopher-Scientist (Library of Living Philosophers), P. Schilpp (ed.), La Salle, IL: Open Court, 1949, pp. 555–562. Reprinted in Gödel 1990, pp. 202–207.] In the article he makes the case that relativity is based on idealism, which philosophy does in fact deny a "real world" independent of observation. As I have directly quoted here, Einstein denied the statement, "The physical world is real," and in fact said, "I concede that the natural sciences concern the “real,” but I am still not a realist." That philosophy became the basis of SR's insistence that measurements determine the length of things and the distances between them, even though measurements of the same object or distance will vary with the relativistic frame from which measurements are taken.
Regarding the editorial denial, in the Philosophical Criticisms subsection, that any philosophers understand the non-Euclidean basis of relativity, I cited Kelley Ross, a credentialed philosopher of science, demonstrating a thorough understanding and intelligent criticisms of the underlying assumptions, yet his contribution is not here deemed an acceptable philosophical criticism. The lead statement of the Criticisms section still stands with no debate allowed, that no criticisms of relativity are to be taken seriously. (See again my "Catch 22" reference.)Paradoctor suggests that I take my expertise on the philosophies of realism and idealism over to the Philosophical Realism section. There, "scientific realism" is presented as the new version realism, based on the preposition that measurements determine what is real (ergo, different measurements of, say Earth's diameter mean that it varies with the frame measuring it.) I see no reason to believe that my editorial contributions there would be any more acceptable than in the section discussed here. Measurements as determining "reality" remain the bedrock philosophy for relativity. (Seriously, a 4000 mile Earth diameter is considered "equally valid" with the proper length diameter measured from at rest with the Earth frame... "no preferred frame.") Proper indentation and sourcing protocol seem to be considered more important among the editors here than any fair representation of critical perspectives on relativity. LCcritic (talk) 19:57, 27 November 2013 (UTC)
"I hope" [...] "indented this properly.(Still struggling with it.)" [...] "Proper indentation and sourcing protocol seem to be considered more important among the editors here than any fair representation of critical perspectives on relativity." You shouldn't "hope", you should know. The instructions are simple enough: indent one level more than the comment you're replying to. That has not happened. Assuming that you're trying to comply leaves the conclusion that you have serious trouble understanding the instructions. Indenting is simple. Content rules are not quite as simple. You have been repeatedly told by several experienced editors that the content rules do not allow the changes you propose, and you have been given reasons and links for that. If you're neither capable of following instructions nor willing to listen to advice from the community, you don't belong here, plain and simple.
The "sourcing protocol" you refer to is fundamental to a "fair representation of critical perspectives on relativity". If you don't understand that, you don't belong here, plain and simple.
Gödel: Closer, but still not a proper citation. Since you at last moved in the right direction, I'll make this one easy for you: WP:SAYWHEREYOUGOTIT means that the full citation includes the blog where you found it. Which isn't a reliable source.
For the sake of discussion, let's assume you actually read Gödel's paper, and the quote was in it. It still would not support your claim that Einstein denied that "The physical world is real.". It would at most allow saying that according to Gödel, relativity implies the claim made by some philosophers that change is not real. This is much less than saying that the world is not real. If you disagree with this interpretation of Gödel, that is just fine. But then you'll have to support your interpretation with reliable sources explicitly stating your point of view. In a work anyone can edit, this is not optional. Works the same for all of us.
"I cited Kelley Ross" Do not bring Ross up again here. You have been told that his site is not a reliable source. If you disagree, go to WP:RSN. Read and comply with the instructions at the top of the page before posting anything there.