Talk:Albert Einstein/Archive 8

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Religion and atheism

I think you sould add the places where he was born/died. That are main information...

It's an interesting piece, but I think this material certainly casts further light on his views. Expansion of the current article may be worthy of attention. --AWF

Another source. [1]

Einstein, Hilbert, Lorentz, and Poincaré dispute

This very very long discussion been moved, as per myself and User:Alvestrand. User:Licorne, please continue your argumentation at Talk:Relativity priority dispute. TIA ---CH 09:47, 28 February 2006 (UTC)

For Paul August: please note above comment and do not revert Licorne's incessant propaganda. He should post his views on Talk:Relativity Priority Dispute. Thank you. The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk • contribs) 2006-02-28 18:00:53 (UTC)

"important contributions to the special theory of relativity"??? Now that Licorne has been diverted to another article, shouldn't this be rephrased? Clarityfiend 17:20, 18 March 2006 (UTC)

That's objective and (nearly) undisputed; if on top of that you want to push for adding a strongly disputed claim you'll have to add the dispute as well. See for example Hendrik Lorentz, Henri Poincaré, relativity priority dispute, with which this article should be consistent. However, a simple link to relativity priority dispute may be a good idea; we could for example add that "The widely held opinion that Einstein created the theory of special relativity has been contested, see [[relativity priority dispute."; but I think such a phrase doesn't belong in the summary. Anyway, I'll add a link now. Harald88 23:25, 18 March 2006 (UTC)

Deficiency in article -- no mention of EPR paper

green 18:51, 12 March 2006 (UTC)

please expand acronym.... --Alvestrand 18:53, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
I supose that should be Einstein-Podolski-Rosen (as in Wormhole). --Stephan Schulz 20:02, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
See EPR paradox. Paul August 03:43, 14 March 2006 (UTC)
I added the link to the "See also" section, but some indication of its signficance should be incorporated in the article along with another internal link. green 18:13, 14 March 2006 (UTC)

cleanup and featured article

How is it that this article is tagged for cleanup, but is still a featured article? vedant (talkcontribs) 07:15, 14 March 2006 (UTC)

The guy who added the cleanup tag didn't like the tone. Perhaps the guys who made it featured a long time ago did like it, or perhaps the tone has changed since then. It only takes one person to place a cleanup tag. --Alvestrand 07:30, 14 March 2006 (UTC)
And one person to remove it ;-) But is the cleanup-tone tag still required? I haven't read the article fully so cannot comment on its tone. vedant (talkcontribs) 03:59, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

I assume you meant Licorne. I don't think we'll be hearing from him any more. I removed the tag. If I was wrong, please reinstate it. –Joke 15:44, 14 March 2006 (UTC) Never mind, I explored the history and it was ⟳ausa کui. We should work to get rid of it ASAP, it's absurd to have it on an FAC and a sure sign that someone will put the article up for FARC. –Joke 15:49, 14 March 2006 (UTC)

The cleanup tag is still there. There are two entries in history to explain this:
  1. (cur) (last) 21:18, 14 March 2006 Joke137 (revert self)
  2. (cur) (last) 21:13, 14 March 2006 Joke137 (rv stupid cleanup tag)
It is apparent that you removed the tag but reverted it. What was the reason for removal of the cleanup tag? vedant (talkcontribs) 03:59, 15 March 2006 (UTC)
Work in progress; and what is "FARC"?! Anyway, from the above discussions it appears that there is concensus that here and there the tone was a bit overdone. And what of this one that is still there: "In his later years, his fame exceeded that of any other scientist in history". I'd say that his fame almost certainly did not exceed that of Isaac Newton, and I even vaguely remember having seen an opinion poll about it - but I don't know how to find it back... Harald88 01:33, 15 March 2006 (UTC)
I think it probably did exceed Newton's fame... he's still famous, but from the mid-40s through the 60s, he was massively, massively popular. But you're right, without a source, it's overdoing it a bit.--ragesoss 04:27, 15 March 2006 (UTC)
FARC is Featured Article Removal Candidates. If you find the tone overdone, why don't you make it normal? Be Bold. vedant (talkcontribs) 04:02, 15 March 2006 (UTC)
Yes, that's what I stated: work in progress. I don't always find the right words to really improve it, and I have limited time, as most of us. I guess that in one or two weeks we'll have improved it enough in a way that we all can live with it, so that we can remove that tag without opposition (and then no need to remove its featured status!). Harald88 10:16, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

I removed the tag thinking that Licorne had added it, as I was doing with some of his other edits on Wikipedia. A detailed look at the history suggested that ⟳ausa کui was actually the one who had added it, and I felt it would be inappropriate to remove his tag. FARC is indeed featured article removal candidates, and I think this article deserves to remain one, but surely someone will nominate it if the cleanup tag remains indefinitely. –Joke 04:32, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

I think the focus should be on improving the article, not maintaining its featured status at any cost. Incidentally, I do think this article still has bad tone problems. ausa کui × 04:53, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

Ok, just making sure. Obviously, I'm not proposing removing the tag without resolving these problems. –Joke 05:13, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

Thanks. I am waiting for the article to improve. As with Joke, it is obvious that I will not remove the tag without resolving the problems. vedant (talkcontribs) 09:31, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

To Ryan Delaney: If you place a clean up tag on an article then it's expected that you explain yourself. A one liner doesn't explain what's wrong with the article especially when it's something subjective as "tone". Specific examples would go a long way in helping others try to clean things up when you haven't done any editting on it in 3 weeks (sans reverts and putting the tag back). That said: what exactly is wrong? Cburnett 06:38, 29 March 2006 (UTC)

I've moved the tag down to the personality section, I don't think there's a problem with the tone of the first section and I hate the tag to be on top of the page. Piet 15:05, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

To Cburnett: Check the archives. I posted on the talk page here when I added the tag. ausa کui × 16:28, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

A quick scan doesn't reveal any obvious problems. If all the prior discussion has disappeared into the archives, it must be somewhat old. How about you re-explain the problems, since (obviously) you don't think they were solved. And why does the tag have to be on the article - it would be better on talk, if anywhere William M. Connolley 16:54, 3 April 2006 (UTC)
For starters, cleanup tags go in the article space so that people who look at the articles will be encouraged to look for and fix the problems. This is a style issue about templates that has substantial precedent and if debated should be debated elsewhere. I'm busy with school right now (I probably shouldn't even be typing this) so I can't reiterate old discussion that I think is still relevant; that is, the problems are still there. You can find more than one example that I gave and is still unfixed, but there are others that I didn't name explicitly, for reasons outlined in the original post. ausa کui × 16:58, 3 April 2006 (UTC)


I found an interesting source on this (see link below). It appears that, though Smoluchowski worked in parallel (and from other sources, starting before Einstein) on Brownian motion, his first publication was not only later than Einstein's, but also not correct (it was also different in methodology than Einstein's). From some other sources, Smoluchowski was concerned first and foremost with explaining Brownian motion, and thus didn't want to publish without experimental confirmation. Einstein's approach was 'here is a theoretical prediction of something that should happen. It may or may not be Brownian motion (his paper explicitly stated the measurements so far were not good enough to confirm agreement one way or the other). This predictive, rather than exlanatory approach allowed him to puplish first. Given this, I have moved the Smoluchowski comment to a footnote, where it is more appropriate to add brief qualifying information. However, I have no problem if someone else suggests or acts on a different way of handling this informaion. I would be interested if someone who has Bjerkne's book (e.g. Harald88) would comment on what it says in reference to Smoluchowski - if it claims (as Licorne did) that Smoluchowski's result is identical and similar in method to Einstein's, then Bjerkne's credibility takes another nosedive. The source is a translation of a paper by Langevin, along with some commentary: --Pallen 05:09, 21 March 2006 (UTC)

As far as I can see, Bjerkness wrote nothing about him. Harald88 22:54, 21 March 2006 (UTC)

Sorry, but despite checking lots of wikipedia help docs, I can't figure out how to give the footnote number a proper sequence without manually changing all following footnotes. Hopefully someone else can fix this or explain how. --Pallen 07:34, 21 March 2006 (UTC)

I've fixed it. Paul August 04:29, 4 April 2006 (UTC)

Footnote Styles

Looking at some other articles, I see that there are at least two self numbering footnote styles available. Why don't we use one of those in this article? --Pallen 19:15, 21 March 2006 (UTC)

On the "disputes" article, I tried to use the Wikipedia:Footnotes style, which uses <ref> tags to generate footnotes. It seems to be easier to maintain than the currently used templates. --Alvestrand 23:06, 21 March 2006 (UTC)

What's with removing all the external links!!

I looked at the 5 pillars article, but I interpret is 'avoid an article consisting primarily or excessively of links'. It is a judgement call, but the recently deleted links (by Jibran1) are much more in the nature of 'references' that you find in any main article in Britannica. In the modern world, web references are the most accessible. I would like to argue in favor of restoring them, but don't want to start an edit war.--Pallen 00:06, 22 March 2006 (UTC)

  • Well, the reason given was not a very compelling one, but in looking over them, I thought most of those removed were unlikely to significantly aid the reader and didn't look like they were being used in the article as references. I am a fan of culling down external links every once in awhile (too many external links gives too much choice to be useful, in my experience), though I don't think the five pillars is a good justification for that. I restored one which was a good site, but we don't need to link to every Einstein-related site on the internet. I removed the letter from Einstein to FDR simply because we already have a whole article on it linked prominently in the text itself, and from there it is accessible both as external links and at Wikisource. --Fastfission 00:30, 22 March 2006 (UTC)

World War II

The WWII part is actually a bit more complicated than presented here. What happened is that when Hitler came to power in 1933 is that Einstein was on the boat for his return trip to Europe. While on the boat he found out that the Nazi's has ransacked his vacation home in Caputh, his bankaccount was blocked, and his beloved sailing boat had been confiscated. When he arrived in the Belgian port of Antwerp he decided to stay there, and not to continue his trip back to Germany. With the help of his Belgian friends (De Groodt and De Donder) he rented a house in the Belgian beach resort of De Haan (Le Coq in French), and stayed there for several months. While there he co-signed a declaration denouncing the newly established Nazi regime, and declared that he did not want to live in a country where basic human freedoms were not guaranteed. Following that there was a official condemnation by the Prussian Academy of Sciences, at which point Einstein resigned as member of the Prussian Academy, and renounced his Prussian citizenship as well. At the end of all this turmoil he was offered a permament position at Princeton, and he returned to the US to never return to Germany.

I intend to clean this up at some point and stick it in the main text. JdH 19:48, 29 March 2006 (UTC)

An Einstein Quote

I came across a powerful quote by Albert Einstein:

“The world is too terrible a place to live in, not because of the bad things that happen, but because of the good people who stand by and do nothing."

I believe it is relevant to this very moment in time.

There are other quotes from Einstein embedded in the existing Article.

I tried to add it to the Einstein Article, but was reversed with the comment “Quotes belong in Wikiquote".

I would like to see this quote inserted in Einstein’s ‘Personality’ Section between his ‘Religious’ and ‘Political’ views. I feel this quote would be more powerful in the flow of the Article itself, than in another link altogether.


Michael David 23:58, 1 April 2006 (UTC)

The problem is that if we start with something like this, pretty soon we'll have a huge list of everybody's favorite Einstein quotes (he has a lot of good ones!). If you want an idea of how out of hand it can get, see our Einstein page at Wikiquote. --Fastfission 00:30, 2 April 2006 (UTC)
We also have to be very careful that they are real Einstein quotes also. As Fastfission says, "he has a lot of good ones", but some of the good ones are actually fake or suspect. See the book, The quotable Einstein, for some examples (which are indicated). --C S (Talk) 14:59, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

Albert Einstein in Relationships


Albert Einstein in Relationships is meant to give the visitor a wide angle view of how Albert Einstein handles his relationships in essence and in practice. It also allows the visitors to examine the characteristics of their own relationships with Albert Einstein.

Both content and test are based on sound astrological knowledge and research and they gained popularity among web surfers.

I believe that even though Astrology is not considered a mainstream science, these knowledge and compatibility tool should be made available to whoever wishes to study Albert Einstein as broadly as possible.

I have no desire to be considered a spammer and I don't want to force Top Synergy on the authors of Albert Einstein's article.

I ask you, authors of Albert Einstein that if you have an objection to placing a link to Albert Einstein in Relationships in the External Links section, please note it here. Else, I’ll place the link hoping that it would be a valid resource for Albert Einstein's fans and researchers.

With appreciation, Midas touch 04:17, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

I see from your contrib list that you have added this crap to a dozen other articles after "asking for permission", so I guess someone has to speak up.
No. Don't do it. It adds nothing (zero, nada, zilch) to our KNOWLEDGE about Einstein; anyone can come up with more THEORIES about Einstein, and with a lot better justification than this. --Alvestrand 08:26, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

extraordinary professor at the University of Leiden

Some clarification seems warranted. "Extraordinary" is in no way intended as a "peacock" phrase. What is stands for is "buitengewoon" in Dutch. This is a pretty common arrangement at Dutch Universities, where somebody who has his main employment somewhere else (often in industry, or at a University or research institute elsewhere) may hold a parttime appointment at the University. Typically for 1 day/week, or -as in Einstein's case- for a few weeks/year. Such a 'buitengewoon' professor has all the privileges of a full professor, may give lectures on special topics, or may supervise graduate students who may do their lab work at the place of his main employment. 'Extraordinary' is the literal translation of 'buitengewoon'; however, as pointed out by ⟳ausa کui, is may raise some unwanted associations. For the time being I have come up with 'parttime appointment'; I don't like it, but it is all I can think of for now. Anybody a better idea? JdH 10:22, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

There's no need to delete perfectly good terminology which is used in plenty of scholarly works. "Extraordinary professor" is the way that term is translated and that's probably why Wikipedia has plenty of articles using that term; it should be noted that "extraodinary professor" does have different meanings though, depending on the country of origin. Some of this is explained in professor, but I don't see the Dutch version. The reasonable course of action here is just to insert the appropriate info in professor, or create a kind of disambig page for extraordinary professor, and use the term in the article, linking to it if someone thinks it really necessary. --C S (Talk) 14:26, 3 April 2006 (UTC)
To say that he was "extraordinary" is ambiguous in English. It might be a good idea to clarify that it is meant as a formal title rather than an adjective, either by capitalizing ("Extraordinary Professor") or putting the original term afterward, for example: "Extraordinary Professor (buitengewoon)." ausa کui × 16:27, 3 April 2006 (UTC)
The term "extraordinary professor" may be ambiguous in English only because we are unfamiliar with its use as a formal title in this country. The aforementioned clarification may solve the problem. If it is of any help, in the U.S. these positions are often referred to as "Adjunct Professors." Rachel 04:25, 18 June 2006 (UTC)


Scanning for clean-up (despite the removal of the tag), I stumbled on "His conclusion [at age 16], that the speed of light is independent of the observer" is probably a fable. I never heard it and it sounds rather doubtful: it can't be considered a fact, except if a written and reliably dated original document is available that proves it beyond doubt, and that's highly unlikely to exist (I think I've seen them all, and I never saw that one!). Anyone who knows the source? BTW, with such passages still in there, I agree to keep the clean-up tag. Harald88 21:20, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

As there was no reaction I now park it here, until someone corroborates it or part of it:

That year, at the age of 16, he performed the thought experiment known as "Albert Einstein's mirror". After gazing into a mirror, he examined what would happen to his image if he were moving at the speed of light; his conclusion, that the speed of light is independent of the observer, would later become one of the two postulates of special relativity.

Also, can anyone corroborate that he really wrote a "scientific work" at age 15? Harald88 22:33, 6 April 2006 (UTC)
This article and Clark's Einstein: The Life and Times confirm that the anecdotes are correct. The work that he wrote when he was fifteen was for his uncle and may not be an actual scientific paper, though it is quite a remarkable achievement at such a young age according to Clark's account. -- 13:56, 10 April 2006

That link can hardly be considered authoritative; it does not even give a reference to where that came from. You need something better than this to appear convincing JdH

Hmm, it resembles a bit the stories about Jesus when he was small (BTW, that article is a good example for how to present such accounts). Perhaps the passage can be put back with a change of tone together with mention of source (also for that "scientific paper"). Harald88 21:48, 10 April 2006 (UTC)

Nova's Einstein's Big Idea documentary reveals that Einstein did perform the thought experiment with the mirror. -- 22:45, 11 April 2006

Documentaries are notoriously unreliable; if I were to believe everything that is presented in documentaries the world should be crowded with Bigfeet and covered with cropcirkels, UFO's are buzzing overhead, and ET's running the government. You need an original source, such as a letter from Einstein himself, or a scholarly biography. JdH 09:16, 12 April 2006 (UTC)
Strange: despite the above discussion, someone put that unsupported material back in - again without source! I'll remove it again... Harald88 19:47, 19 April 2006 (UTC)

"In the spring of 1905, after considering these problems for ten years, Einstein realized that the crux of the problem lay not in a theory of matter but in a theory of measurement." [2] This statement from the Encarta Encyclopedia Albert Einstein article under Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity section shows that Einstein had began tackling conceptual ideas for relativity at the age of sixteen. -- 14:19, 23 April 2006

I found a source in a book (one from Cambridge University Press, too, not some self-published thing). Here, about halfway down the page. Due to this, I'm going to be bold and add that sentence back. --Rory096(block) 22:59, 25 April 2006 (UTC)

I am not aware of any thought experiment involving a mirror with Einstein; however, Jacob Bronowski, in his Book, "The Ascent of Man: A Personal View" by J. Bronowski," which was also produced as a mini-series docu-film version of the book, and in which he relates that Einstein did have a thought experiment on the speed of light while taking the tram to and from the patent office. Einstein had a view of a clock on a tower and apparently wondered what would happen as he receded from the clock at an ever increasing speed until he reached the speed of light so that the wave front reaching Einstein would remain static and the time as shown on the clock would freeze.

removed interesting passage about religious conviction

The following has been removed:

"From a letter written in English, dated March 24, 1954, Einstein wrote, "It was, of course, a lie what you read about my religious convictions, a lie which is being systematically repeated. I do not believe in a personal God and I have never denied this but have expressed it clearly. If something is in me which can be called religious then it is the unbounded admiration for the structure of the world so far as our science can reveal it."

I found it interesting, although perhaps not very important. Whoever removed it, explain why, thanks! Harald88 21:31, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

There was no comment, but I notice that some other similar passages now occur. Thus I won't put it back in, although it's perhaps clearer than some of the current citations... Harald88 19:46, 19 April 2006 (UTC)

Family life

What I noticed is that the subject of family life is spread out all over the place. Somewhere it mentions that he fell in love with Mileva, several paragraphs later it mentions that Mileva and Albert had a daughter out of wedlock, then again several paragraphs later it mentions that they got married, and many paragraphs further down it says that they had two sons, got divored, and that he married Elsa. Wouldn't it make more sense to collect all that in one paragraph upfront, so that the main body of the article can focus on his education, professional carreer, and scientific achievements? JdH 01:18, 4 April 2006 (UTC)

Makes sense to me. Harald88 20:51, 4 April 2006 (UTC)

Story or Article??!!!

This "article" is more or less like a story. What do you think? (unsigned comment by User:Kingykongy)

If by "story" you mean it has a narrative, then yes, but I don't really see that as being a problem in a biography. If you mean something else by "story", then I'm not sure I understand what you mean. --Fastfission 15:23, 5 April 2006 (UTC)
The article seems to follow an historic timeline: events are arranged according to when they happened, and not categorized in subjects. An example of this is the "family life" issue brought up in the previous paragraph, but it is much more widespread than that. I just noticed the confusion about citizenship; that subject of citizenship is also spread out over paragraphs throughout the article, just like the family life thing. I think that in an encyclopedia you try the subdivide an article in a number of logical subjects; make separate paragraphs about "private life", "youth and education", "professional carreer", and "scientific contributions", perhaps one on "political views" as well, things like that. That way the article would be much more focussed, and also duplication would be avoided as is happening now. However, to rearrange the article that way would be a huge task, and I am not sure whether it is worth the effort. JdH 08:40, 6 April 2006 (UTC)
Well, however you want to do it. Categorization by subject matter and characterization by narrative are just two different approaches. The current is somewhat of a hybrid, which I personally think is fine. I find that articles which try to be overly categorized by subject are often a bit hard to read and often end up being very redundant (since you have to give some of the same context many times over), but anyway, that's just one approach. I think most long biographies exist in a productive tension between the two narrative forms. --Fastfission 16:50, 6 April 2006 (UTC)

Baden-Württemberg in the German Empire?

I took the freedom of editing Baden-Württemberg into Württemberg, as the former did not exist in Imperial Germany: From the respective article:

The state combines the historical states of Baden, Hohenzollern and Württemberg. After World War II the Allied forces established three states: Württemberg-Baden (occupied by the USA), Württemberg-Hohenzollern (France) and Baden (France). In 1952 these states were merged in order to form the State of Baden-Württemberg; the 1949 constitution of West Germany contained a special clause (Article 118) that made this merger possible. --MasterLycidas 21:53, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

"Iconification of Einstein"

A large amount of text was recently added to the Einstein article about his "iconification" and other things, pasted in by User:Slicky from I have removed it for the following reasons:

  1. Most of it was not encyclopedic in style. It is written as a chatty news article, not an encyclopedia. It has a strong POV on a number of points. It editorializes. It is a piece of journalism.
  2. Most of it was copy-and-pasted from other articles on the web. Even if these are from NASA, this is generally discouraged, especially for large amounts of narrative text. If you think the NASA article is important, we can add an external link to it. The NASA page also lists an author credit which generally means that they are supposed to be credited as the author, which we do not do with text edits generally, and so I don't think it works with our licensing.
  3. The article is already very long and has a coherent narrative structure. The added text almost doubled its length, disrupts the narrative completely, repeats things already said, and generally is not compatible with the other text.

I'm happy with the article being added as an external link, or quotes from if there are any specific claims in it which are necessary for the article. But it shouldn't be copied-and-pasted wholesale in any case, which I think should be obvious. --Fastfission 22:34, 16 April 2006 (UTC)

See comment on Fastfission's talk page.

It looks to me like a page by itself and not approriate on the Einstein page. E4mmacro 07:42, 18 April 2006 (UTC)

The section is well researched but needs your, as wikipedians, attention:

Here goes, please improve accordingly and let it trifle into the Einstein article, as it is everything but NPOV due to the fact that Einstein per se is iconified.

PLEASE EDIT THIS SECTION: {{WIP}} — INUSE template (by user talk: Slicky 00:09, 17 April 2006 (UTC)) removed at this time as spotted it in category page. FrankB 04:29, 25 April 2006 (UTC)

Einstein's iconification

Today Einstein is regarded as an icon throughout the world, and his name stands synonymous with genius, intelligence and the revolutionisation of the world, ushering in the atomic age. There are myths ranging from the claim that Einstein donated his brain for further scientific post-mortem analysis, bad school years, to claims that he invented or found the relationship between energy and mass in E=mc². Einstein is constantly featured on various magazine covers, reports, documentations, stamps, comic figures, coins, T-shirts, wallpapers, posters... and lionized by the public at large. The remarkable thing is that Albert Einstein achieved that universality in the pre-television era, without an agent or the help of a public-relations company. His face has become an icon for wisdom, imagination, creativity and concentrated mental power; his brand name so pervasive a synonym for genius that even he once had to confess: "I am no Einstein."

Reasons for Einstein's iconification:

  • The ubiquity of the older Einstein image meant that the concept of the scientific genius became associated with the image of an old fatherly figure
  • Extensive media coverage, whilst concealing the message, thus appealing to people's interest in mystery.

Einstein restored belief in the unintelligibility of science. Everyone knew that Einstein had done something important in 1905 (and again in 1915) but almost nobody could tell you exactly what it was. When Einstein was interviewed for a Dutch newspaper in 1921, he attributed his mass appeal to the mystery of his work for the ordinary person: "Does it make a silly impression on me, here and yonder, about my theories of which they cannot understand a word? I think it is funny and also interesting to observe. I am sure that it is the mystery of non-understanding that appeals to impresses them, it has the colour and the appeal of the mysterious."

  • Relativity soon established as a fashionable notion and scientific hallmark
  • Paraphrasing ideas about space and time by using familiar words, such as mass and energy, but endowing them with new and seemingly richer meanings
  • Bandwagon propaganda: convincing the subject that one side is the winning side, because more people have joined it (appeal of the subject towards stronger, majority groups) [example links & quotes required, Michelson-Moore, etc..]
  • Card stacking: presenting information that supports an idea or proposal and omitting information contrary to it
  • Glittering generalities: words that have different positive meaning for individual subjects, but are linked to highly valued concepts, thus concepts less critically questioned by the subject
  • Lesser of two evils: tries to convince us of an idea or proposal by presenting it as the least offensive option [example links & quotes required, Michelson-Moore, etc..]
  • Transfer: 'E=mc²' as transfer technique. No other scienctist in history has been assigned a similar iconification symbol in such a direct approach
  • Plain folks: 'plain folks device' is an attempt by the propagandist to convince the public that his views reflect those of the common person and are therefore working for the benefit of the common person. This is attempted by the wording targeted at a specific audience as well as using of specific idioms or jokes: "everything is relative"
  • Simplification (stereotyping): reduction to a clear-cut choices e.g. "moving clocks run slow"

(paragraph loosely but precisely based on Nature Essay Einstein as icon) Principles of propaganda, social influence and persuasion outlined here.


Before Einstein, the last scientist who had such a seemingly creative outburst was Sir Isaac Newton. It happened in 1666 when Newton secluded himself at his mother's farm to avoid an outbreak of plague at Cambridge. With nothing better to do, he developed his Theory of Universal Gravitation.

Annus mirabilis

For centuries historians called 1666 Newton's annus mirabilis, or "miracle year." Now those words have a different meaning: Einstein and 1905. The United Nations has declared 2005 "The World Year of Physics" to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Einstein's annus mirabilis.

Superthinker...ordinary man - or both

Modern pop culture paints Einstein as a bushy-haired superthinker. His ideas, we're told, were improbably far ahead of other scientists. He must have come from some other planet--maybe the same one Newton grew up on.

Physicist and science historian Peter Galison from Harvard University says that "He was a man of his time." All of his 1905 papers unraveled problems being worked on, with mixed success, by other scientists. "If Einstein hadn't been born, (those papers) would have been written in some form, eventually, by others".

What's remarkable about 1905 is that a single person authored all five papers (with the help of his wife and friends), plus the original, irreverent way Einstein came to his conclusions.

For example: the photoelectric effect. This was a puzzle in the early 1900s. When light hits a metal, like zinc, electrons fly off. This can happen only if light comes in little packets concentrated enough to knock an electron loose. A spread-out wave wouldn't do the photoelectric trick.

The solution seems simple--light is particulate. Indeed, this is the solution Einstein proposed in 1905 and won the Nobel Prize for in 1921. Other physicists like Max Planck (working on a related problem: blackbody radiation), more senior and experienced than Einstein, were closing in on the answer, but Einstein got there first. Why?

It's a question of authority.


"In Einstein's day, if you tried to say that light was made of particles, you found yourself disagreeing with physicist James Clerk Maxwell. Nobody wanted to do that," says Galison. Maxwell's equations were enormously successful, unifying the physics of electricity, magnetism and optics. Maxwell had proved beyond any doubt that light was an electromagnetic wave. Maxwell was an Authority Figure.

Einstein didn't give a fig for authority. He didn't resist being told what to do, not so much, but he hated being told what was true. Even as a child he was constantly doubting and questioning. "Your mere presence here undermines the class's respect for me," spat his 7th grade teacher, Dr. Joseph Degenhart. (Degenhart also predicted that Einstein "would never get anywhere in life.") This character flaw was to be a key ingredient in Einstein's discoveries.

High School Diploma / Ph.D.

Einstein's High School Diploma. Contrary to urban legend, Albert did great in school.

At the age of 7, Einstein started school in Munich. At the age of 9, he entered the Luitpold-Gymnasium. By the age of 12 he was studying calculus. Now this was very advanced, because the students would normally study calculus when they were 15 years old. He was very good at the sciences. But, because the 19th-century German education system was very harsh and regimented, he didn't really develop his non-mathematical skills (such as history, languages, music and geography). In fact, it was his mother, not his school, who encouraged him to study the violin - and he did quite well at that as well.

In 1895, he sat the entrance examinations to get into the prestigious Federal Polytechnic School (or Academy) in Zurich, Switzerland. He was 16, two years younger than his fellow applicants. He did outstandingly well in physics and mathematics, but failed the non-science subjects, doing especially badly in French - so he was not accepted. So in that same year, he continued his studies at the Canton school in Aargau (also called Aarau). He studied well, and this time, he passed the entry exams into the Federal Polytechnic School (see diploma to the right).

So how did the myth that he failed high school start?

Easy. In 1896, which was Einstein's last year at the school in Aargau, the school's system of marking was reversed.

A grading of "6", which had previously been the lowest mark, was now the highest mark. And so, a grading of "1", which had been the highest mark, was now the lowest mark.

And so, anybody looking up Einstein's grades would see that he had scored lots of grades around "1" - which under the new marking scheme, meant a "fail".

"In 1905," notes Galison, "Einstein had just received his Ph.D. He wasn't beholden to a thesis advisor or any other authority figure." His mind was free to roam accordingly.

In retrospect, Maxwell was right. Light is a wave. But Einstein was right, too. Light is a particle. This bizarre duality baffles Physics 101 students today just as it baffled Einstein in 1905. How can light be both? Einstein had no idea.

That didn't slow him down. Disdaining caution, Einstein adopted the intuitive leap as a basic tool. "I believe in intuition and inspiration," he wrote in 1931. "At times I feel certain I am right while not knowing the reason."

Although Einstein's five papers were published in a single year, he had been thinking about physics, deeply, since childhood. "Science was dinner-table conversation in the Einstein household," explains Galison. Albert's father Hermann and uncle Jakob ran a German company making such things as dynamos, arc lamps, light bulbs and telephones. This was high-tech at the turn of the century, "like a Silicon Valley company would be today," notes Galison. "Albert's interest in science and technology came naturally."

Last effort

Later in life, it should be remembered, he struggled mightily to produce a unified field theory, combining gravity with other forces of nature. He failed. Einstein's brainpower was not limitless.

Neither was Einstein's brain. It was removed without permission by Dr. Thomas Harvey in 1955 when Einstein died. He probably expected to find something extraordinary: Einstein's mother Pauline had famously worried that baby Einstein's head was lopsided. (Einstein's grandmother had a different concern: "Much too fat!") But Einstein's brain looked much like any other, gray, crinkly, and, if anything, a trifle smaller than average.

Detailed studies of Einstein's brain are few and recent. In 1985, for instance, Prof. Marian Diamond of UC Berkeley reported an above-average number of glial cells (which nourish neurons) in areas of the left hemisphere thought to control math skills. In 1999, neuroscientist Sandra Witelson reported that Einstein's inferior parietal lobe, an area related to mathematical reasoning, was 15% wider than normal. Furthermore, she found, the Slyvian fissure, a groove that normally extends from the front of the brain to the back, did not go all the way in Einstein's case. Might this have allowed greater connectivity among different parts of Einstein's brain?

No one knows.

Not knowing. It makes some researchers feel uncomfortable. It exhilarated Einstein: "The fairest thing we can experience is the mysterious," he said. "It is the fundamental emotion that stands at the cradle of true art and true science."

It's the fundamental emotion that Einstein felt, walking to work, awake with the baby, sitting at the dinner table. Wonder beat exhaustion, every day. (Source: Nasa article)

Einstein's Self Doubts

Einstein himself at various times had expressed doubts about the edifice of modern physics that he had helped to create— witness the remarks that follow. Perhaps his most serious expression of doubt came in a 1954 letter, the year before he died, to his friend Michel Besso: "I consider it quite possible that physics cannot be based on the field concept, i.e. on continuous structures. In that case, nothing remains of my entire castle in the air, gravitation theory included, and of the rest of modern physics."[1] Biographer Abraham Pais hastens to excuse this slip from contemporary certainty about relativity theory, claiming that virtually all physicists think that this self-assessment at the end of Einstein's life was "unreasonably harsh." But just a few years earlier (1948), in an introduction to a popularized book about relativity, Einstein was also circumspect about physics, in a more general sense: ". . .the growth of our factual knowledge, together with the striving for a unified theoretical conception comprising all empirical data, has led to the present situation which is characterized— notwithstanding all successes— by an uncertainty concerning the choice of basic theoretical concepts."[2]

In my estimation, Einstein was a person much more cautious about dogmatic expression than those who have claimed invincibility for his relativity theories. In a letter to J. Lee in 1945, Einstein wrote: "A scientific person will never understand why he should believe opinions only because they are written in a certain book. Furthermore, he will never believe that the results of his own attempts are final."[3]

On the other hand, Dr. James DeMeo has unearthed ambiguities in Einstein's reaction to the threatening experimental results from Dr. Dayton C. Miller, who in June 1933 published in Reviews of Modern Physics, "The Ether-Drift Experiment and the Determination of the Absolute Motion of the Earth."16 In the present issue, DeMeo (p. 72) provides an outstanding critique of the Miller work and its apparently glib rejection by others, such as Einstein's biographers, who dismiss Miller's work outright. Though Miller's extensive experimental work is not crucial to Einstein criticism, Einstein's and others' reaction to it is very telling.


The other great scientific transformation, which occurred as the icon was emerging, concerned the style of scientific work. In the 'brilliant papers of 1905, we see the hallmark of the young Einstein: penetrating ideas, motivated by crucial thought-experiments and finally fashioned into perfect form by mathematics that is "as simple as possible but no simpler".' . During the formulation of GR Einstein was introduced to the power of abstract mathematical formalisms, notably that of tensor calculus. In the following years the blanced of deep physical insight orchestrating the mathematics of GR, tipped the other way and thus a rising fascination with the abstract formalisms themselves. "Rather than using physical arguments or thought-experiments, the strength and degrees of completeness of the formalisms themselves were used to sift their appropriateness as physical theories."

(nature essay)

The stall in progress regarding a unified theory and many other theoretical scientific fields is greatly attributed to this paradim shift, ushered by Einstein's populist-style promotion of his Theory of general relativity: The ill effects of such nonsense have spread throughout western science and culture over the last century. The problem seems to have sprung from the worship of Einstein, who was the first to discard verifiable physical laws altogether and propose a wholly mathematical theory.

Those who would aspire to a theory of everything are told they must undertake "the gruelling complex and abstract mathematics" required for the task. Who says so? Mathematicians of course. It is a chronically narrow view, like looking through the wrong end of the telescope and imagining you see stars. This view has led to elitism in physics based on mathematical ability. Most bizarre have been those who claim to see God in their own image – as a mathematician. (New Scientist, Magazine issue 2529, "Physics' greatest endeavour is grinding to a halt")

One expert on relativity theory attempted to discourage such hubris. He publicly exposed an inconsistency in Einstein's special theory of relativity. Following his experience of other leading experts deliberately misinterpreting and misrepresenting the problem he posed, he wrote: "I am not yet convinced that facility in performing mathematical operations must inevitably deprive its possessor of the power of elementary reasoning, though the evidence against me is strong." (Professor H. Dingle in his Presidential Address to the Royal Astronomical Society in 1953.)

Debunked myths

  • Einstein did not donate his brain for further studies
  • It is true that Einstein's cerebral hemispheres were cut into approximately 240 blocks, each about 10 cm cubed. The blocks were embedded in celloidin, and histological sections were made. The reason is that back at that time advanced Computer Tomography as is now the norm did not exist.
  • The studies of his brain do not show extraordinary features per se or does "resolve the long-standing issue of neuroanatomical substrate of intelligence", but rather corroborates suggestions that "variation in specific cognitive functions may be associated with the structure of the brain regions mediating those functions" [3].
  • Einstein did not win the 1921 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on Relativity but for the works on the photoelectric effect.
  • Einstein did well in school
  • Einstein did not discover the relation of E=mc². A critical paper Albert Einstein: The Incorrigible Plagiarist by Christopher Jon Bjerknes (2002) denotes that "it appears that the physics community and the media invented a comic book figure, "Einstein", with "E = mc2" stenciled across his chest.


Slicky 00:09, 17 April 2006 (UTC)

seldom-taught Maxwell's electromagnetic theory?

"he studied the seldom-taught Maxwell's electromagnetic theory"... As far as I understand, it was commonly taught. According to whom was it "seldom-taught"? Harald88 19:54, 19 April 2006 (UTC)

See the Image and Impact website. -- 1:18, 26 April 2006

Religious views

I agree that the recent additions on "religious views" are too long and too much original research. Good secondary sources would be better than selected isolated quotations. --Macrakis 03:07, 20 April 2006 (UTC)

I agree with the removal; in addition to the other objections raised, the passage upsets the article's style and flow. It may be appropriate to transwiki the quotes to wikiquote:Albert Einstein. --Muchness 03:56, 20 April 2006 (UTC)
I of course agree completely. --Fastfission 13:10, 20 April 2006 (UTC)

Guys... The quotes are not bons mots, they provide a _Concise_ views of Einstein's Well_Thought_Out, Well_Articulated views on religion. I've spent many years studying the topic.

There is no mistaking what Einstein thought, the quotes have links showing the greater context.

The [ now deleted ] section that called Einstein a theist is like calling Charles Darwin a theist... anyone who has taken the time to study his point of view would soon discover that.

General_Relativity's Cosmological_Constant is at the very heart of today's Standard_Model of cosmology, Lambda_CDM, and Einstein was the one who first convinced the world that photons and atoms exist.

Einstein's "Cosmic_Religious_Sense" was inspired by today's standard models of cosmology and particle physics and eschews the "primitive" gods of traditional society.

His non-standard use of the word God does _Not_ invoke an image that one would pray to.

Einstein's metaphysics was very special in that he discovered many causalities _Decades_ before they were empirically proven.

If you disagree with some portion, then let's discuss it... instead of totally trashing it.

Until I get totally shutdown, I'll continue to insist that Einstein was a Scientist with advanced metaphysical views, not a theist by any standard usage of the word. Jeff Relf 17:28, 20 April 2006 (UTC)

Jeff I think you might be missing the point the others are trying to make here. No one is saying Eistein was a theist or that your information is wrong - just that you are presenting what is apparently a big list of quotes with a lot of original interpretations of those quotes. You are creating the situation where your interpretation of Einstein's meaning is being passed off as the "standard interpretation" which is not necessarily the case. The quotes have a place, but may be better in the WikiQuote area. --Astralusenet 14:03, 21 April 2006 (UTC)

Hi Astral_Usenet,

My comments and quotes are very concise and the links provide the context, further detailing Einstein's views on religion.

I tell of his muses, what drove him to find the deeper causalities, zooming ever farther out/in.

By the way, Astral_Usenet, For some unknown reason, most of what I wrote got munged so I had to revert to an older copy I had, undoing your changes.

Hard coded carriage returns don't show up in the HTML and they make it easier for me to edit the souce-text in Visual_Studio.

Further, they make it _Much_ easier to track changes.

So why did you take them out ?

Also, blank lines makes the text much more readable.

Hello Jeff, The religious views section is straying more and more away from the general style found on wikipedia pages. It is looking like a collection of disparate sentences with no overall coherence. There is little flow between topics and the sequence is jumbled. If you wish to generate a list of his quotes then there is a separate place for that, this is effectively an open source encyclopedia not the place for personal interpretations and opinions. As for the blank lines an forced carriage returns it actually makes the text less readable for most people. While it doesnt directly affect the displayed product, your process of single sentence paragraphs makes for very, very hard reading. The source code is much harder for anyone except you to edit and you increase the amount of the scree which must be used. From what I can see, you are determined to "buck" the conventions used here and do things your own way. Is there any reason for this? --Astralusenet 14:19, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

Hi Astral_Usenet,

The first sentence of the paragraph that you added, right below the stuff I wrote, is basically saying: Jew, Jew, Jew. Nice going.

Einstein was _Not_ raised Jewish, whatever that means, it's enough to say he thought of himself as an ethnic Jew, not a practitioner of Judaism.

Why, for God's sake, do you link to the word Jew and not the term Ethnic Jew ? ! Huh ! I should call an administrator about that one.

What I wrote does have a coherent thread, it does outline his thoughts on God, religion, physics and metaphysics.

What I wrote is concise with very carfully selected quotes. All of my quotes have links to the greater context... providing a plethora of further content.

Einstein was very articulate, a deep thinker, and, although you don't agree with him, there is no mistaking his point of view.

If you have an issue with a particluar word or sentence, let's examine that.

Jeff Relf 01:17, 23 April 2006 (UTC)

Wait, how could Einstein be an "ethnic jew" when there is no jewish ethnicity? -Alex, 20:55, 2 May 2006 (UTC).

Hi Alex, There's a Jewish culture quite aside from genetics or religion... Right ? This Jewish culture was, at it's very heart, Book_Centric and dates back to the time when Egypt was the regional superpower.

Remember the Greek and Hebrew in Library of Alexandria ? Alexandria is where the New_Testiment was first canonised ! Athanasius_of_Alexandria#New_Testament_canon Jeff Relf 14:33, 18 May 2006 (UTC)

Recent edits

I strongly prefer the previous version of this section, before it was reworked here. I propose that we revert to the previous wording, and use it as a basis to add any valuable info from subsequent edits. --Muchness 06:16, 21 May 2006 (UTC)

I agree, too quotaceous - meanwhile I removed a bunch of he saids and reformated w/out all those absurd carriage returns. Vsmith 13:34, 21 May 2006 (UTC)

 Hi  Muchness and Vsmith,
   The previous version was a lot of nonsense about
 Einstein's Jewishness and little about his actual
 convictions that wasn't already said 
 in what I wrote.
    Einstein's religious views were extremely well 
 thought out and he was very articulate so that it's
 hard to mistake his views.  The quotes and the
 links to the greater context further remove 
 any doubt about what he meant.
   I suspect that the real problem is that 
 you two disagree with his views.
   Instead of deleting what I wrote en masse,
 I suggest we agrue it line by line.
 Jeff Relf 23:28, 21 May 2006 (UTC)
Hi Jeff, my objection is that your edits consist of a list of quotes that lack overall flow and coherency; they upset the article's readability and are contrary to Wikipedia's guidelines on content and formatting. Vsmith attempted to address the carriage return problem, but you reverted him. I don't advocate deleting your edits en masse; I advocate reverting to the last edit that was compliant with WP's guidelines, and adding any valuable info from your edits in prose form, instead of as a list of quotes. --Muchness 22:39, 22 May 2006 (UTC)
 Hi Muchness,
   I only removed CRs from the source code,
 the resulting display was uneffected.
 I did that so that changes are easier to track
 and because I find it easier to edit that way.
   The quotes have to be there, otherwise 
 it looks like I'm just making stuff up.
 The quotes come with links to the greater context,
 another essential feature.
   What I wrote does have a definate thread,
 and is _Very_ on topic.
   As I said, the edit you prepose to revert too
 essentially said:  Jew, Jew, Jew.
   You obviously agree with that, and not with
 Einstein's views... you should be ashamed,
 in my opinion.
 Jeff Relf 16:29, 23 May 2006 (UTC)
Jeff, you are now inserting nonsense. To believe that, based on the quote given, that Einstein believed all randomness was pseudorandomness is not only the worst of your own ridiculous interpretations, but it reflects not only a poor understanding of Einstein's views of randomness but a total lack of understanding of what pseudorandomness means. I think you've tried our patience here quite enough, and if you are not going to introduce real secondary literature which espouses your interpretations of Einstein's belief, I am going to be forced to delete all of your additions to them based on our No Original Research policy. Either do things according to our policies, or do them somewhere else. --Fastfission 03:17, 25 May 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Fastfission,  
   Einstein took the very metaphysical, 
 yet very sober view that 
 all randomness is pseudorandom.
   The very famous Einstein-Bohr debates, 
 extending over 20 years, are just one example.
   So, contrary to your suggestion above, 
 it's what Einstein believed, not Original_Research.
 Jeff Relf 08:40, 26 May 2006 (UTC)
It's what you claim Einstein believed, based on your research. But that's against WP policy. You have to find a credible source who offers the argument that this is what Einstein believes, you can't make the argument yourself; you have no authority, no matter how long or thoroughly you have you've looked into the matter or how adamant you are that this is what Einstein believes. Them's the rules. -- Jibal 11:39, 17 June 2006 (UTC)

Einstein's books

In case someone wonders, while the phrase "The World As I See It" is a pretty good translation of the phrase "Mein Weltbild", the book The World As I See It (1934) is a different book than the book Mein Weltbild (Zurich 1953). Portions of both books are contained in the book Ideas and Opinions published in 1954. --Blainster 09:55, 21 April 2006 (UTC)

Solar Eclipse Revisited

I read somewhere (in a newspaper maybe?) that the famous solar eclipse measurements did not really agree with Einstein's calculations, i.e. that a deviation from Newtonian expectations was detected, but not nearly as much as predicted by Einstein. Did anybody else see this? Clarityfiend 05:05, 29 April 2006 (UTC)

I didn't see that one, but the first solar eclipse analysis has been largely discredited as too inaccurate for definite conclusions, even accompanied by a disputed selective use of data. However, later measurements are considered to be conclusively supporting Einstein's prediction. Harald88 10:49, 29 April 2006 (UTC)

Actually, the issue with the measurement of General Relativity by Eddington in 1917 was that the measurement of the star's displacement on the photographic place was on the very edge of limits of the experiment's acceptable errors due the the equipment, weather, etc. In essence, Eddington saw what he wanted to see, although this effect has been measured to far greater precision manytimes over

Well, if Eddington's measurements didn't prove anything, shouldn't the article say that? Clarityfiend 03:53, 20 May 2006 (UTC)
Eddington's claimed results were important for Einstein, as it brought him fame. You are discussing the (ir)relevance for GRT, which is not the main subject for this article. OTOH, this article shouldn't spread fables; thus the phrasing isn't right. With a slight change of phrasing we may make it correct. Harald88 18:14, 23 May 2006 (UTC)
I agree that we should be careful about the wording. The measurements brought Einstein fame and were seen by many as proving his theory. However even at the time their accuracy was doubted, and now we consider them quite poor. We really ought to have a whole page about that particular eclipse, since it is an interesting story and pretty important to the history of physics/Einstein/etc., but we don't at the moment. --Fastfission 20:22, 23 May 2006 (UTC)

Personal Life

Perhaps there should be a section on his personal life, in which informaion about his family would be included. Also, his love of sailing should be mentioned.


Hi, can anyone please provide sources that prove that Einstein is vegetarian? Thanks. --Amir E. Aharoni 06:48, 4 May 2006 (UTC)

Probably only for the last year of his life: See here. 17:49, 10 May 2006 (UTC)

The biographer in Einstein Myth and Muse, pretty much indicates he wasn't a hardcore vegitarian, but did have tendancies in that direction, especially later in his life due to systemic health ailments. Irrc, the author indicates it wasn't a philosphical interest, but physical. Are you looking for a citation? If so, I can dig it out and skim out a quote or three. Drop me a note by email if that's your need. FrankB 03:55, 20 May 2006 (UTC)

Unified Field Theory Blurb

Quote from the IAS/Generalized theory section: "Einstein treated subatomic particles as objects embedded in the unified field, influencing it and existing as an essential constituent of the unified field but not of it.". The "not of it" at the end of the sentence has me puzzled, is there a word missing or something? 17:53, 10 May 2006 (UTC)


This article contains two errors.

1. The 1918 solar eclipse observation did not really confirm Einstein's prediction. The results were in the margin of error. Only later, more accurate observations of the solar eclipse really confirmed Einstein's theory. Actually, the 1918 eclipes observation did convince most everyone Einstein's theory was correct, but in reality it should not have do so. As it really did not confirm Einstein's prediction.

2. Einstein signed not one, but two letters to FDR alerting him to the need that the US needed to investigate the possibility of an atomic bomb.

This second point I learned from a History Channel special on Szilard's attempt to warn FDR. Both letters were probably written by Szilard.

Michael D. Wolok 16:21, 26 May 2006 (UTC)

Oops, I had corrected (1) in the body but overlooked that it also is in the intro. Maybe someone else knows how to improve that sentence.
I have no idea about point (2). Harald88 08:00, 27 May 2006 (UTC)
On point 2: there were actually four total letters to Roosevelt from Einstein, all most likely written by Szilard. But the first one is the one which is known as the Einstein-Szilard letter and is credited with being not only received by Roosevelt but having produced a little bit of action. --Fastfission 14:19, 27 May 2006 (UTC)

V0.5 nomination

This article won't get into V0.5 with that cleanup template. Those who work on this article, please take steps to remove it. Thanks. NCurse 10:37, 27 May 2006 (UTC)

Failed on quality: not up to par with the clean-up tag still there, which is valid based on article talk. Chuck(척뉴넘) 01:49, 29 May 2006 (UTC)

It was sent to held, I would place it back to the failed section per the protection. Thanks Jaranda wat's sup 16:24, 10 June 2006 (UTC)


I cleared this whole paragraph since it was completely useless. It's funny though. The person who did this was, which have a habit of vandalizing articles. "In 1902 Einstien had a dream he was bing chased by black midgets who tried to eat his mothers cranberries. The midgets were Moe Chirs and Craig therefore MC squared. The night before he was told that Elderberries taste like rainber sherbert straightr from the leprachauns behind. thats where the E came from. After having this dream he invented the flux cupassitor which enabled him to go back in time and eat the rainbow sherbert straight from the lepraxhauns behind because its better that wa. He soon found out that in 1641 that leprachauns were too ugly to eat from so he had to settle for the creamsicle sherbert from the unicorns behind. This unicorn feces tasted incredible . He couldn;t believe what he came upon. He was going to go back and tell the world but someone through a spare testicle from a three baller and it hit thim right in the gwigglesposher. This put him into a coma for 62 years straight and when he woke up he kept saying E=MCsquared over and over again. Brock Lee a man from the time that he was in took Einsteins idea and told it to his kids so they could grow up and invent bombs. HE named his kid Albert Einstein and that Albert Einstien is the one who invented bombs and is wanted in 36 countries. To this day people think he is alive becuase he invented a solution consisting of unicorn feces a beard form an irish goblin and the neck of the fattest kid he knew (his name was Phil) this concoction gave him eternal life and he is believed to live somewhere in the mideast under the name Chris parker but his friends call him osama been lame man."--RNAi 06:58, 3 June 2006 (UTC)

German pronunciation - ogg-file

Im a german and i just want to note that the pronunciation of the forename is not quite correct. Since the pronunciation is good for a non-native speaker i don't want to delete the link to the file, but if someone is able to deliver a better pronunciation-file, please do so. -- 17:44, 5 June 2006 (UTC)

Prank edit?

Section 1.1 6th paragraph should read: "excelled," not "was expelled." A google search reveals that "excelled" was in an earlier version, so either edit protection came too late or someone hacked the protection. Thomasmeeks 01:07, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Old vandalism repaired. Vsmith 12:00, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

New erroneous intro

To my surprise I see that now the intro reads:

He independently developed the special and general theories of relativity.

Apparently someone added "independently". This is known to be factually erroneous, as pointed out in discussions on this Talk page and other Wikipedia articles explain it in detail. In this way this article is never going to make it. :-( -- Harald88 09:23, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Removed the word independently per Harald88 and earlier disc. Vsmith 12:05, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Einstein's Religious Views

The religious views section is very overdue for some proper editing. It has started to get the reading style of an eight year old back from their summer holidays and the two worst offending paragraphs cite a single source for references. On visiting the source ( it appears that the interpretations made from that source are very distant from the NPOV standard.

There is no reason to think Einstein ever thought the things attributed to him here and the bit about "pseudorandomness" is gibberish. Isnt there a separate area for quotes?

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Astralusenet (talkcontribs) 17:42, 10 June 2006.
 Hi  Astral_Usenet,
 It's unprofessional/uncivil to label me an
 " eight year old back from his summer holidays. "
Jeff, what makes you think I was taklking about you specifically?--Astralusenet 09:15, 11 June 2006 (UTC)
 Einstein's views on pseudorandomness
 and block time are _Extremely_ clear, 
 numerous and well documented.
 You are Exhibit_A on why the quotes,
 along with links to the greater context,
 _Must_ be there.  Jeff Relf 20:37, 10 June 2006 (UTC)
Again, this is not true. You have taken your interpretation of a comment and moved it out of context to support your ideas. This is far from a neutral point of view and it is, basically, an example of original research. Can you not see how this is not what is accepted behaviour here? --Astralusenet 09:15, 11 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Astralusenet,
 This section is only about _Einstein_'s views,
 not mine or yours, so _Einstein_'s words 
 must be there, along with footnotes showing
 the greater context.
     It's no secret what Einstein thought 
 on this topic he discussed it 
 in public for decades, including in 
 a 1955 Scientific_American article.
 Jeff Relf 02:15, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
Astralusenet, I think you are absolutely correct. Unfortunately a single user, Jeff Relf, refuses to listen to anyone else, and thinks that he understands Einstein's religious views. Additionally, Jeff confuses Einstein's religion and Einstein's metaphysics in a rather ridiculous ways, and attributes notions to Einstein that show a definite lack of understanding. Note, for example, Jeff's consistent misuse of the idea of pseudorandomness — he thinks it refers to the believe that all random phenomena is at heart deterministic, when in reality it refers to the ability to simulate random phenomena by use of determinist methods, an entirely different thing. Jeff does not care nor understand how articles are written or formatted on Wikipedia, and has clearly never understood our policy on Wikipedia:No original research. My hope is that someone will take the time to write a few short paragraphs on Einstein's religious beliefs, will source them with secondary sources, and then we can have a pointless yet apparently necessary straw poll as to whether it is better than Jeff's personal Einstein. --Fastfission 22:22, 10 June 2006 (UTC)
I fully support a rewrite. Guess that's my pre pointless yet apparently necessary straw poll vote :-) Vsmith 23:36, 10 June 2006 (UTC)
I concur! This is getting silly. It strikes me that a single individual's refusal to incorporate the accepted policies of wiki is the source of all the problems here. I will see if I can find some one willing to produce a few (NPOV, cited) paragraphs on the topic. --Astralusenet 09:15, 11 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Fastfission,  The Wiki entry on the word
 Pseudorandomness begins:
 " A pseudorandom process is a process that 
   appears random but is not. 
   Pseudorandom sequences typically exhibit
   statistical randomness while being generated by
   an entirely deterministic causal process."
 As you can see, the meaning is not restricted
 to computer simulations.
     As the quotes from Einstein reveal,
 Nothing I wrote was Original_Research.
 In fact, that's why the quotes Must_Be there,
 no matter how much you disagree with Einstein.
 Jeff Relf 03:54, 11 June 2006 (UTC)
But all you have done is reproduce quotes, out of context, with occasional (incorrect) assumptions about what those quotes were supposed to mean. I am sorry that you think this is acceptable. --Astralusenet 09:15, 11 June 2006 (UTC)
That's an interesting claim. Please prove it - verifiability rules! Harald88 20:38, 11 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Astralusenet,
 The footnotes provide the context,
 Einstein's views are perfectly clear,
 and well documented over many decades.
 People need the quotes because, like you,
 they don't know, or can't accept, Einstein's views.
    The clash between Einstein 
 and traditional religion is even greater than
 that between Darwin and traditional religion,
 I believe.
 Jeff Relf 21:48, 11 June 2006 (UTC)

Unfortunately the biggest problem with this section is that Jeff is trying to evaluate the views of someone when he doesn't strictly understand the science of the person, let alone the religous views. The "pseudo-random" quote above is babble and it would actually improve the article on AE no end by striking this section from the entry.

Wikipedia shouldn't be able to be hijacked by any one person with a particular agenda, however for this entry it seems that is the case. --Desdinova 11:40, 11 June 2006 (UTC)

 Hi  Desinova,  
 Roulette wheels are fully predictable,
 -- pseudorandom --,
 the casinos would go broke if they weren't.
   Likewise, Einstein maintained that every part of
 the Physical Cosmos can be, 
 or might someday be, observable
 given current or future theories/technologies.
   Are you an unhappy gambler ? complaining here ?
 Jeff Relf 21:38, 11 June 2006 (UTC)

God not only plays dice, he sometimes rolls them where they cannot be seen.

And what you are doing is trying to impose your particular interpretation of the issue into an encyclopedia entry.

That renders the whole entry suspect in many peoples eyes.--Desdinova 23:55, 11 June 2006 (UTC)

 Hi  Desdinova,
 While I'm sure _You_ believe  " God plays dice ",
 can you show me where _Einstein_ believed that ?
 Remember this entry is supposed to be about
 Einstein's views, not yours.
 Jeff Relf 02:06, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
Remember this entry is supposed to be about
 Einstein's views, not yours.

PRECISELY! Its not YOUR views either. If you don't understand my dice quote, then you certainly shouldn't be enforcing your views of Einstein's religous views on Wikipedia. --Desdinova 02:15, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

Jeff, reference the "God plays dice" comment - I agree with Desdinova here, if you cant follow the reference, and what is implied, then you need to stop re-wording the religious views sections. Especially with your odd habit of inappropriate underscores. -- 17:43, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

 Hi  Desdinova,  My interpretation of the word God
 is _Nothing_ like Einstein's, nothing at all.
 I say the word God denotes a postion:
 I'm God's slave, and God to my slaves.
   For example, if you raise mice 
 to feed your snake, then you're God to those mice, 
 because you created/controlled/destroyed them.
 Jeff Relf 02:27, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

But yet you insist of pushing YOUR interpretations of Einstein's views, to the detriment of all others, --Desdinova 02:38, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

Jeff - you seem insistent on challenging the comments people have made here, yet all you do is create more meaningless word combinations. Your last post was completely irrelevant and if anything simply highlighted the fact that you have your interpretation of the words used and think it acceptable for this Wiki entry to reflect that. This is not the purpose of this site / system. If you want to push your own interpretaion of history on to people then please, set up your own site to that effect. -- 17:43, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi,  The purpose of my post above
 was to illustrate that my religious views have
 _Nothing_ to do with Einstein's views.
 WikiPedia should not claim Einstein said
 " God Plays Dice "  unless that's exactly what
 Einstein said, over and over again, 
 in public, for decades.
 Jeff Relf 19:30, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

But your version of events relies on a SINGLE source, and is your own interpretation of his views. Its a travesty. --Desdinova 21:01, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

 Hi  Desdinova,  you obviously haven't read
 the links in the footnotes, they provide
 many sources and the greater context.
 Einstein's religious views were very public,
 very clear, very famous, very numerous,
 and spanned decades.
 Jeff Relf 21:59, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

And you still don't understand - its YOUR interpretation of them that is suspect, plus your pig-headed insistence that yours is the only way - seen from your insistence of an unusual edit style and your continual revert strategy. --Desdinova 22:25, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

 Hi  Desdinova,  WikiPedia needs to be professional.
 Please don't bring your Usenet-style flames here.
 Which so-called interpretation
 of mine do you find suspect ?
    As for the so-called reversions,
 in one 24 hour period, I...
 1. Added line breaks, by hand, to the edit 
    that first added the _Ref_ tags,
    ...that was not a revert.
 2. Added titles to the _Ref_ tags.
    Although many CRs were added by hand,
    as I prefer, that was not a revert,
    ...the end-user saw no other changes.
 3. Reverted 3 times to the version 
    with CRs in the source code,
    but those too were not a true reverts,
    as the end-user saw no changes.
 Jeff Relf 03:00, 13 June 2006 (UTC)

Again - you are trying to force your way on wikipedia. Are you really so blind? --Desdinova 10:39, 13 June 2006 (UTC)

It would be useful for other editors if Astralusenet and Desdinova pinpoint what exactly they claim to be erronous or biased in that section. Harald88 14:10, 13 June 2006 (UTC)
The bits and peices that various contributors have added to the Religious Views section has descended it into a collection of phrases surrounding a quote, attributed to Einstein but often available from a single website source. In addition to this, there are meaningless sections like Einstein postulated that time is pseudo-directional because randomness is always pseudorandom, i.e. the future is just as immutable as the past, saying: "The scientist is possessed by the sense of universal causation.The future, to him, is every whit as necessary and determined as the past." This begins from a premise (time is pseudo-directional) which may, at a push, be supported by the quote however it is then followed by the nonsense randomness is always pseudorandom which is far from supported by the quote. The implication here is that time and randomness are implicitly linked - this is not supported by the quote and can only be assumed to be original research. --Astralusenet 17:12, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
Thanks, that sounds rather convincing! TObviously all non-sourced (internet included) information should be deleted. Harald88 19:42, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
Well I concur :-). Seriously, part of the problem appears to be Jeffs sheer selfish stubborness and refusal to accept any sitewide standards. This is even evinced by his chosen method of posting replies in the debates. It appears that his chosen method of editing and updating the text has to take precedence over others - and this approach to social interactions is mirrored in his approach to the entry. Jeff has his ideas of what Einstein thought and determined to keep posting them over and over again - with or without supporting evidence. It is a shame, as this section is letting down what is an otherwise fine page. --Astralusenet 16:18, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Astralusenet and  Harald88,
 The quote:
   " But the scientist is possessed by the sense of universal causation.
     The future, to him, 
     is every whit as necessary and determined as the past. "
 was taken from the abridged edition of Einstein's book 
 " The World As I See It. "
 In this edition the essay appears on pp. 28-29.
 See:  www.EinsteinAndReligion.COM/sciencereligious.html
 It is also in Einstein's " Ideas and Opinions " book
 where the essay is entitled:  " The Religious Spirit of Science "
     If that wasn't enough, we have decade after decade,
 quote after quote, where Einstein said essentially the same thing.
 I can and will list them all for you, one at a time, right here.
   General Relativity's time-like dimension is symmetrical,
 meaning it works the same way no matter the direction of time,
 and it has _Spatial_ units:  ( - ( c * t ) ^ 2 ) ^ .5
 See  Block_time.
   A complete lack of acausality means randomness is always pseudo-random,
 that's why Einstein wrote:
   " I do not believe in freedom of the will. Schopenhauer's words:
     “ Man can do what he wants, but he cannot will what he wills ”
     accompany me in all situations throughout my life 
     and reconcile me with the actions of others
     even if they are rather painful to me.
       This awareness of the lack of freedom of will
     preserves me from taking too seriously myself
     and my fellow men as acting and deciding individuals
     and from losing my temper. "
 Astralusenet doesn't agree with this philosophy, I know.
 But that doesn't alter that fact that Einstein had this POV.
 Jeff Relf 22:04, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
 Astral_Usenet quoted Jeff_Relf saying:
  General Relativity's time-like dimension is symmetrical,
 meaning it works the same way no matter the direction of time,
 and it has _Spatial_ units:  ( - ( c * t ) ^ 2 ) ^ .5
 See  Block_time.
Jeff, I really have no idea where you are getting this from. Both general and special relativity imply that time is a dimension, yet it is not the same type of dimension as the three we are used to dealing with. Spatial dimensions have special characteristics, not found in the temporal dimension. The units of Time in relativity are not spatial in nature. Can I point out two additional things here. First off this is nothing to do with the Wiki entry on Albert Einstein - I get the feeling you are trying to troll wiki and divert this off into different directions. If you want to start a debate on the dimensional nature of time then please find the appropriate place. Secondly, this is an example of how you put forward your own ideas with irrelevant referencing. Jeff, I see you have been on Wiki for some time so can you please spend a little while reading on accepted behaviour and what sort of things should and shouldnt be posted. --Astralusenet 16:18, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Astral_Usenet,
     You interpretation of General and Special
 Relativity does not jibe with Einstein's,
 nor is it scientifically correct.
     Time is parochial and symmetrical
 in the standard models of particle physics
 and cosmology... the direction of time
 is irrelevant to the models.
 That's why Einstein wrote:
 " People like us, who believe in physics,
   know that the distinction between 
   past, present, and future 
   is only a stubbornly persistent illusion."
 Now, who's POV should prevail here ?
 Yours or Einstein's ?
 Jeff Relf 20:46, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
 Astral_Usenet quoted Jeff_Relf saying:
   A complete lack of acausality means randomness is always pseudo-random,
 that's why Einstein wrote...
What is the citation for this following excerpt? Is there anything which supports the phrase randomness is always pseudo-random or is that simply how you interpret the quote you have cited? If so, then please identify and admit to that fact. --Astralusenet 16:18, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Astral_Usenet,
     Einstein's philosophy of time
 and the total lack of acausality
 was strongly influenced by General_Relativity
 and it's explained well enough by Einstein himself 
 in the many books he wrote.
   But if you took out what I wrote
 there'd be nothing but quotes.
 My wording simply adds emphasis and clarity
 to what Einstein wrote.
     Do you have a better way to add 
 emphasis and clarity to Einstein's POV ?
 If so, let's here what they are.
 Jeff Relf 20:32, 15 June 2006 (UTC) 

Its based on research from a single source, and has no mention of any OTHER sources that validate it. Besides, a cursory reading of this page would have revealed this.--Desdinova 14:55, 13 June 2006 (UTC)

Nothing prevents you from adding POV's from other sources, insofar as they differ. And in case that subsequently the section becomes too long, one may discuss on how to trim it while keeping a balanced POV - that's the Wikipedia way. Harald88 20:52, 13 June 2006 (UTC)

Requested Edit

I have a request that an admin edit the external links section. Currently, it has a box containing various links to sister projects, but above that it has 2 boxes linking to the same places. These 2 boxes should be deleted.--Max Talk (add) 22:04, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Einstein developed ?

How can we say that Einstein developed relativity when the article further down states that Poincare had discovered it first ? ?

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) sockpuppet of banned User:Licorne.

Someone can create the framework for something, and an later person can develop it into a fuller framework--Desdinova 10:38, 13 June 2006 (UTC)

Sir you are incorrect. Poincare completed the full framework before Einstein's first paper even appeared.
—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) sockpuppet of banned User:Licorne
For SRT that word may be slightly exaggerated, while for GRT it may be an understatement. An intro attemps to sketch achievements in a few words; the main text of the article provides greater detail, and therewith improved accuracy.
About Poincare, certainly he didn't do all; for example, he didn't publish a derivation of the LT's from first principles, and he didn't come up with time dilation experiments - which is an important application of SRT. Harald88 20:49, 13 June 2006 (UTC)

If you'd read my reply, you'd see I was talking in the general...

--Desdinova 22:25, 13 June 2006 (UTC)

GTR is only a theory of gravity. Poincare certainly did derive STR from first principles, his principle of relativity. Einstein in no way developed relativity.

—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) sockpuppet of banned User:Licorne

I think an earlier formulation "Einstein made major contributions to SR", was a better formulation. SR really was, like calculus, a set of ideas whose time was ripe. The totality of Lorentz and Poincare's work before Einstein covers a large majority of the ideas and results of Einstein's first two papers on SR. Unlike Licorne, I think Einstein's contribution was substantial and deservedly influential, but 'developed' seems to me an over statement. (I don't mean to stir the pot here, and should point out I will remain minimally involved in wikipedia until the fall or so, due to increased work commitments.)--Pallen 00:20, 14 June 2006 (UTC)

I agree with Pallen. Harald88 20:11, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
Agreed then Harald and Pallen, let's make your suggested change then. Let's do it already.

Line break edit war

It appears that the article has been protected because Jeff Relf wants the source of the sections he wants to edit to have very short lines, while others (all who have acted so far) want to use the same style as the rest of Wikipedia - long lines that wrap in the edit window.

Since things that cause "protect" should have an entry on the talk page, IMHO.. I'm adding this section. I know it's been discussed in [#Religious views] multiple times - but let's separate the discussions. --Alvestrand 06:08, 14 June 2006 (UTC)

 Hi  Alvestrand, I use a code editor, Visual_Studio,
 set at 80 columns, monospaced.
 This makes for more deliberate edits, I find,
 instead of  " quickies ".
     I find it extremely difficult to compare
 entire paragraphs... stupid me.
 But why not compare shorter lines instead ?
    I only add the carriage returns to 
 the souce code that I'm working on,
 ...a small section to be sure.
 I welcome alternate assessments of 
 Einstein's religious views, so long as
 some of my assessments are also allowed, somewhere,
 along with some quotes and supporting footnotes.
 Jeff Relf 07:38, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
I strongly suggest that you use another editor for Wikipedia. I believe that 95% of those who edit Wikipedia actually edit in the edit window on the Web page; if you inconvenience 95% of the community by your unique preferences, that is not a win. And yes, it is definitely an inconvenience for me to try to edit text in the format you use. --Alvestrand 10:11, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Alvestrand, I didn't write much,
 just a part of a section on 
 Einstein's Religious views.
   I require the line breaks in order to
 track changes, I can't compare whole paragraphs.
 Any edits/readings I make to this subsection
 will have the line breaks in them.
   This does _Not_, I repeat, not,
 effect 95 percent of WikiPedia's contributers.
 Jeff Relf 22:16, 14 June 2006 (UTC)
I'm sorry, it will affect every other user of Wikipedia, the lines look wrong and it breaks the flow of reading the article to suddenly change to short choppy lines part way through (like no other article). Wikipedia provides its own tools for tracking changes, so try using them as everyone else manages to. David Underdown 09:49, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
I am with David Underdown here. Everyone I know who makes / edits entries on Wikipedia use the normal editing interface provided by the site. Jeff, as you have deliberately chosen to use an alternatative method, can you explain why everyone else should have to struggle with code which becomes harder to read and less comprehensive when they use the more normal method? The wiki software provides an excellent system which can track changes and the like. Obviously what you have is not better - so why not use the wiki software?--Astralusenet 16:22, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  David_Underdown and Astral_Usenet,
     WikiPedia compares lines, 
 that comparison is almost useless when
 each line is one paragraph long.
     I'm only reading/editing
 the 7 paragraphs I wrote for 
 the Religious_Views section.
     I will add line breaks to the source code
 when I edit/read it, just like you remove them
 when you read/edit it... that's that, BFD.
   The end-user and most WikiPedia contributers
 are not effected in the least.
 Jeff Relf 20:10, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
Jeff, I have no clue what you are talking about with WikiPedia compares lines, that comparison is almost useless when each line is one paragraph long. When I click on diff on my watchlist for example, Wikipedia produces a comparison screen right there in my browser. That screen contains two side-by-side columns of text all neatly word-wrapped with any differences highlighted in red or green. It only messes up occaisionally such as when some vandal enters a very long text string. I assume the others here see the same thing. Now, your comment suggests that you are using some other comparison method or else something is weird with your browser. Also, please note that we are not writing source code - rather we are writing an encyclopedia which is written in prose, not programming code. And that point is a BFD.
Now, you can stubbornly do it your way and have more to worry about, to quote from your talk, or you could try working with other editors - the Wikipedia way. If you persist in your stubbornness - your option - you will meet resistance and conflict. Cheers, Vsmith 21:06, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Vsmith,  I require a black background.
 I've been coding since 1976, professionally
 ever since the start of 1982... my eyes are bad.
     That means I _Must_ use something like 
 the style sheet override listed below.
     I'll see what changes I can make to it
 that might allow me to see WikiPedia's colors.
     I never said I was writing programming code,
 I was just using the term Source_Code to describe
 WikiPedia's syntax.
     As you can see, 
 whitespace is a very personal issue,
 each of use reserves/deserves the right
 to use it as we will.
 Jeff Relf 22:21, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
Wikipedia provides the ability to over-ride the style of with your own customisations. In this case, you could copy that style sheet into User:Jeff Relf/monobook.css (if you are using the monobook skin), and then perform a hard refresh. Jude (talk) 00:53, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Bookofjude,  FireFox's userContent.CSS
 is already in effect, what difference would
 making it my monobook.css make ?
     I looked at the source of the diff page
 and I didn't see which tags I could change
 to ensure that diffs get highlighted using
 cyan on black.
     Paritally blind people like me require
 a pure-black background.
 Jeff Relf 09:02, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

Consensus --[[User:Desdinova|] 23:52, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

Not relevant, if you're concerned with Wikipedia's usage of the word.--jpgordon∇∆∇∆ 00:20, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

The point is... there is a consensus agreement on the methods of wiki, which JR seems incapable of understanding. --Desdinova 00:41, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

's ok - its 2AM here so I'll confess ;-) Throw myself on the mercy of the court ;-)

Should have really expanded. As free as wiki is, certain rules must be adhered to to avoid chaos. While I understand that in certain cases rules can be bent, his justifications for not following the wiki rules is pretty weak.

--Desdinova 00:50, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

    • Yeah. I haven't been following this talk page for a few weeks -- jeepers! sure is hard to read...y'know, every diff I've used has had an option to ignore whitespace. Maybe this one should too... --jpgordon∇∆∇∆ 00:53, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Jpgordon, a carriage return is white space
 and I've yet to see a diff that would ignore them.
     I'm partially blind, I have to use 
 Win_XP's high contrast mode, yellow on black.
 I also have to use FireFox's userContent.CSS to
 insure that the background color is always black.
     Highlighted/selected text is cyan on black,
 both in Win_XP and in all web pages I view.
     Because WikiPedia ignores these accessability
 issues I find it almost impossible to compare
 changes hidden deep inside long paragraphs.
    Adding line breaks to the source I wrote,
 7 paragraphs in the Religious_Views section,
 allows me to compare changes.
 Seldom do I edit any other section.
    Here are three possible solutions
 to this edit war:
    1. The admin gives me a pass on
       the line breaks I need in the source.
    2. WikiPedia's coders _Respect_ 
       my meed for a black background.
    3. Make WikiPedia's diff ignore line breaks
       and compares x number of words at a time.
 Jeff Relf 08:06, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
I'm not really involved, but since Wikipedia uses relatively clean CSS, shouldn't it be possible to overwrite the system setting, e.g. by appropriately editing your monobook.css? I'm not a CSS (or monobook) expert, but someone should be able to set this up for you. It's always good to find a technical solution to a social dispute ;-). If you are interested, I can try to look for someone competent - I think this should be a useful thing for all Wikipedia. --Stephan Schulz 08:14, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
    • I especially like the fact that the three "solutions" to the "edit war" were for everyone else to submit to Jeff's idea of how things should be / look.

--Astralusenet 08:28, 21 June 2006 (UTC)

 Hi  Stephan Schulz,
     Sure, I use FireFox's userContent.CSS to ensure
 I always have a black background.
 Cyan on black is what selected/highlighted
 text looks like.
     I examined the Page_Source of a diff
 but I couldn't figure out which tags needed
 what forground/background colors.
     Partially blind people like me
 _Require_ pure-black backgrounds.
 Jeff Relf 08:51, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
Hi Jeff! The relevant classes seem to be
  • diff-context
  • diff-addedline
  • diff-deletedline
  • diffchange (this one is probably the one you want to highlight in your best colour scheme).
--Stephan Schulz 09:17, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Stephan Schulz,
 Now I feel stupid, I should've seen that.
 All I needed was:
   span[class="diffchange"] { 
     color: rgb( 99, 155, 188 ) !important; 
     background: black !important; }
 Jeff Relf 22:06, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
I'm glad that it works. Have fun editing! --Stephan Schulz 22:19, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
 Hi  Stephan Schulz,  Thanks for your help.
 That should reduce the line-break edit wars.
 Jeff Relf 05:25, 17 June 2006 (UTC)
I've unprotected the article in that case. Hopefully we can now iron out an acceptable "religious views" section, referencing secondary sources primarily and with as little individual interpretation as possible, as that is what is currently making this article a blemish. --Fastfission 14:56, 17 June 2006 (UTC)