„The conclusion seems to be irresistible that such laws of nature as the principle of conservation of energy, the principle of conservation of momentum and the law of gravitation are necessary consequences of our modes of measurement. They are, in fact, elaborately disguised identities which could have been predicted a priori by a being of sufficiently powerful analytical insight who fully understood all that is implied in the way we measure space-time intervals.“

—  Ernest William Barnes, As quoted by Gerald James Whitrow, The Structure of the Universe: An Introduction to Cosmology (1949)
Ernest William Barnes Foto
Ernest William Barnes
englischer Mathematiker und Theologe 1874 - 1953
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„Matter… could be measured as a quantity and… its characteristic expression as a substance was the Law of Conservation of Matter… This, which has hitherto represented our knowledge of space and matter, and which was in many quarters claimed by philosophers as a priori knowledge, absolutely general and necessary, stands to-day a tottering structure.“

—  Hermann Weyl German mathematician 1885 - 1955
Space—Time—Matter (1952), Context: The Greeks made Space the subject-matter of a science of supreme simplicity and certainty. and certainty Out of it grew, in the mind of classical antiquity, the idea of pure science. Geometry became one of the most powerful expressions of that sovereignty of the intellect that inspired the thought of those times. At a later epoch, when the intellectual despotism of the Church... had crumbled, and a wave of scepticism threatened to sweep away all that had seemed most fixed, those who believed in Truth clung to Geometry as to a rock, and it was the highest ideal of every scientist to carry on his science "more geometrico". Matter... could be measured as a quantity and... its characteristic expression as a substance was the Law of Conservation of Matter... This, which has hitherto represented our knowledge of space and matter, and which was in many quarters claimed by philosophers as a priori knowledge, absolutely general and necessary, stands to-day a tottering structure. Introduction<!-- p. 1-2 -->

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„Intelligence and free will here come into play, and these mystic forces are outside the law of conservation of energy as understood by physicists.“

—  William Crookes British chemist and physicist 1832 - 1919
Address to the Society for Psychical Research (1897), Context: The clock runs down. I lift the weight by exerting the proper amount of energy, and in this action the law of conservation of energy is strictly obeyed. But now I have the choice of either letting the weight fall free in a fraction of a second, or, constrained by the wheelwork, in twenty-four hours. I can do which I like, and whichever way I decide, no more energy is developed in the fall of the weight. I strike a match; I can use it to light a cigarette or to set fire to a house. I write a telegram; it may be simply to say I shall be late for dinner, or it may produce fluctuations on the stock exchange that will ruin thousands. In these cases the actual force required in striking the match or in writing the telegram is governed by the law or conservation of energy; but the vastly more momentous part, which determines the words I use or the material I ignite, is beyond such a law. It is probable that no expenditure of energy need be used in the determination of direction one way more than another. Intelligence and free will here come into play, and these mystic forces are outside the law of conservation of energy as understood by physicists.

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„We must never forget that it is principles, not phenomena, — laws not insulated independent facts, — which are the objects of inquiry to the natural philosopher.“

—  John Herschel English mathematician, astronomer, chemist and photographer 1792 - 1871
A Preliminary Discourse on the Study of Natural Philosophy (1831), Context: We must never forget that it is principles, not phenomena, — laws not insulated independent facts, — which are the objects of inquiry to the natural philosopher. As truth is single, and consistent with itself, a principle may be as completely and as plainly elucidated by the most familiar and simple fact, as by the most imposing and uncommon phenomenon. The colours which glitter on a soapbubble are the immediate consequence of a principle the most important, from the variety of phenomena it explains, and the most beautiful, from its simplicity and compendious neatness, in the whole science of optics. If the nature of periodical colours can be made intelligible by the contemplation of such a trivial object, from that moment it becomes a noble instrument in the eye of correct judgment; and to blow a large, regular, and durable soap-bubble may become the serious and praise-worthy endeavour of a sage, while children stand round and scoff, or children of a larger growth hold up their hands in astonishment at such waste of time and trouble. To the natural philosopher there is no natural object unimportant or trifling. From the least of nature's works he may learn the greatest lessons. The fall of an apple to the ground may raise his thoughts to the laws which govern the revolutions of the planets in their orbits; or the situation of a pebble may afford him evidence of the state of the globe he inhabits, myriads of ages ago, before his species became its denizens. And this, is, in fact, one of the great sources of delight which the study of natural science imparts to its votaries. A mind which has once imbibed a taste for scientific inquiry, and has learnt the habit of applying its principles readily to the cases which occur, has within itself an inexhaustible source of pure and exciting contemplations. One would think that Shakspeare had such a mind in view when he describes a contemplative man as finding

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„The Law of conservation of energy tells us we can't get something for nothing, but we refuse to believe it.“

—  Isaac Asimov American writer and professor of biochemistry at Boston University, known for his works of science fiction and popular … 1920 - 1992
General sources, Book of Science and Nature Quotations (1988)

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„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“