Classical and Relativistic Physics
The idea that Newtonian physics proved causal determinism was highly influential in the early modern period. "Thus physical determinism became the ruling faith among enlightened men; and everybody who did not embrace this new faith was held to be an obscurantist and a reactionary". However: "Newton himself may be counted among the few dissenters, for he regarded the solar system as imperfect, and consequently as likely to perish".
Classical chaos is not usually considered an example of indeterminism, as it can occur in deterministic systems such as the three-body problem.
John Earman has argued that most physical theories are indeterministic. For instance, Newtonian physics admits solutions where particles accelerate continuously, heading out towards infinity. By the time reversibility of the laws in question, particles could also head inwards, unprompted by any pre-existing state. He calls such hypothetical particles "space invaders".
John D. Norton has suggested another indeterministic scenario, where a particle is initially situated on the exact apex of an inverted dome.
Branching space-time is a theory uniting indeterminism and the special theory of relativity. The idea was originated by Nuel Belnap. The equations of general relativity admit of both indeterministic and deterministic solutions.
Famous quotes containing the words physics and/or classical:
“We must be physicists in order ... to be creative since so far codes of values and ideals have been constructed in ignorance of physics or even in contradiction to physics.”
—Friedrich Nietzsche (18441900)
“Compare the history of the novel to that of rock n roll. Both started out a minority taste, became a mass taste, and then splintered into several subgenres. Both have been the typical cultural expressions of classes and epochs. Both started out aggressively fighting for their share of attention, novels attacking the drama, the tract, and the poem, rock attacking jazz and pop and rolling over classical music.”
—W. T. Lhamon, U.S. educator, critic. Material Differences, Deliberate Speed: The Origins of a Cultural Style in the American 1950s, Smithsonian (1990)