Talk:Charles Lane Poor

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Ed, this needs to be a less stubby stub to be encyclopedic. Since he's your grandfather (and it's your stub), could you maybe add dates? and what effect, if any, the monograph had (and if it had no effect, is there really any reason for him to be here?)? The bit about your father (uncle?) is also interesting, and he deserves a place as much as Boeing and any other founder of a major corporation. However, IMHO, you should probably remove yourself. As far as you've mentioned, you haven't really done anything to merit more than your own user page -- neither have most of the rest of us wikipedians. Just speaking for myself, but the sentence "klingt falsch" -- it sounds "not right" in the context of an encyclopedia entry. Even if it were Quincy Adams writing an entry on John Adams, it would not be appropriate to have him say "and he's *this* author's dad." JHK

I agree with removing myself. Thank you for doing that for me.

I will add more about my great-grandfather's monograph someday. I just recently found my copy of it (it's out of print). Also, I want to reread what Martin Gardner said about him in his book on pseudoscience.

As for my grandfather and namesake, Ed Poor, eventually I'll add to the Grumman article something about its founding on Long Island and contribution to the war effort in the early 1940s. Ed Poor, Tuesday, May 28, 2002

Maybe I inherited my habit of saying It's not proved yet from my great-grandfather, eh? (But I'm sure he came around to Einstein's way of thinking a few solar eclipses later, when sufficiently accurate observations of bent starlight vindicated relativity.) --Uncle Ed 16:58 Feb 12, 2003 (UTC)

I'm sure there's far too much about me and my ancestors in this article. But Oliver asked, and that stimulated me to write a bit. --Uncle Ed

Oh, don't blame me. What I actually said was, "I'm dying to read more about your great-grandfather, if you happen to know anything more about him." I didn't say that I'm dying to read more about his descendants... As it happens I am interested in people's ancestries, but what I actually meant with respect to this article was that there should be more about his monograph, and his general career, and so on. Did you say you had a copy of the monograph? If so, you could summarise it for the article. :) -- Oliver P. 18:35 Feb 13, 2003 (UTC)


  • CL Poor published a series of papers (see bibliography) that reflect his lack of understanding for the theory of relativity.

Who says that CL Poor had a "lack of understanding" for the theory of relativity? And, whoever said that, did they mean that the observations which the professor criticized at the time actually supported the theory, but that the professor didn't realize this due to his failure to understand the theory? --Uncle Ed (talk) 15:01, 13 April 2010 (UTC)

KillerChihuahua, if someone has opinion about CLP's "lack of understanding", we can quote them. Do you have a quote from the reference you put back, that you'd like our readers to see? Something like:
  • Professor Tobey felt that that Poor didn't understand the theory, or
  • Poor disagreement with the theory, according to Tobey, was less because he felt it was unproven than because he simply misunderstood it.
I think you realize that how we handle viewpoints is crucial to following NPOV policy. --Uncle Ed (talk) 20:13, 7 April 2012 (UTC)
The source states clearly he had a campaign against the theory which promoted hypotheses which were not "scientifically responsible" This can be phrased as he didn't understand, or he did and he was maliciously lying about it - which would probably be a more likely interpretation of the source. I prefer the kinder phrasing, but if you feel that in the interests of NPOV we rephrase to come closer to the source and state that due to his vendetta like campaign against Newton he promoted irresponsible, false science, we can discuss better phrasing. I prefer erring on the side of charity, even though this is not a BLP. KillerChihuahua?!? 02:13, 11 April 2012 (UTC)
Perhaps what you meant to say was that his opponent boldly claimed ...
Do you know enough about physics and astronomy to conclude that Professor Poor's detractor was right?
It would be better to state that (insert other scientist) disagreed with this analysis, saying "... due to his vendetta like campaign against Newton he promoted irresponsible, false science".
Now that would be something interesting for an encyclopedia: an actual scientific dispute, i.e., a fundamental disagreement among scientists about the validity of a major theory. --Uncle Ed (talk) 17:25, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

Are you now claiming you need ANOTHER source, Ed? Let me know how many are needed to satisfy you. 4, 10, 100? You originally only wanted a cite. Now you're moving the bar. I understand your desire to whitewash your relative's bio just a bit, but there have to be some standards here. If you want a hagiography, write one on a blog. Its not even that big a deal. Most physicists didn't understand the theory when Einstein first came out with it. The difference is that CLP wrote a few papers about it which were painfully wrong. KillerChihuahua?!? 20:21, 12 April 2012 (UTC)

Added another.[1] I believe the book Einstein's Jury:The Race to Test Relativity says Poor had "very little understanding" of the theory, but not having a copy handy I can't add page numbers, so I didn't add it. I would think that if you feel more cites are needed, you could get it from your local library. KillerChihuahua?!? 20:37, 12 April 2012 (UTC)

General relativity and light bending[edit]

  • In 1919, after the war had ended, scientific expeditions were sent to Sobral in South America and Principe in West Africa to make observations of the solar eclipse. (Was the specific location of Principe chosen for its name, as a subliminal tribute to Newton’s Principia?) The reported results were angular deflections of 1.98 ± 0.16 and 1.61 ± 0.40 seconds of arc, respectively, which was taken as clear confirmation of general relativity's prediction of 1.75 seconds of arc.

I wonder what objection CL Poor made about general relativity. Is there anything published we can look at?

Were his objections more theoretical, or more experimental? Did he agree that general relativity, if true, should result in light bending by 1.75 seconds of arc? If so, was his quibble with the accuracy of the Sobral observations?

Did he ever modify or discard his objections? If so, why? Did better, more reliable observations convince him, or what? --Uncle Ed (talk) 15:11, 13 April 2010 (UTC)

  • ... there is serious doubt about whether the measurement techniques used by the 1919 expeditions were robust enough to have legitimately detected the deflections which were reported. [2]
Try this DiEb (talk) 09:08, 8 April 2012 (UTC)