Journal of Physics Research and Applications

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Inaccuracy that Makes Learning Difficult to Study the Article “On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies”

The existence of semantic inaccuracy of 2 articles by A. Einstein “On the electrodynamics of moving bodies”, illustrating the principle of the relativity of simultaneity. In a sentence “The observers co-moving with the moving rod would thus find that the two clocks do not run synchronously while the observers in the system at rest would declare them synchronous”, the preposition “not” must be moved and placed before the word “synchronous”, at the end of the sentence. The criterion for synchronism of the clocks on the rod is the time it takes for the beam to travel from clock A to clock B and back, and for observers on the rod it will be the same both when the rod is at rest and when the rod is moving. Otherwise, observers on the rod would have had at their disposal an experiment that would allow them to determine whether the rod is moving or at rest, which contradicts the first postulate of the Special Theory of Relativity. The inaccuracy is found unchanged in modern editions in English and Russian, and can become a source of difficulties when teaching the basics of the Special Theory of Relativity based on primary sources, as well as make it difficult to understand the author’s logic when studying independently. Nobel laureate R. Feynman, having expanded and modified A. Einstein's thought experiment, eliminated the inaccuracy described in the article.

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