Modern physics in the form of relativity theory and quantum mechanics was born from a perceived impossibility of solving the following "problems" using methods of classical deterministic continuum physics:
- Second law of thermodynamics (irreversibility in formally reversible systems).
- Blackbody radiation (including avoidance of an ultraviolet catastrophe).
- Existence of a unique aether medium for propagation of electromagnetic waves.
Planck "solved" 2. introducing a smallest quantum of energy, thus giving up the classical continuum of rational mechanics.
Einstein "solved" 3. by freeing electromagnetics from an aether, thus giving up classical coordinates of space and time describing reality.
- ...the whole procedure was an act of despair because a theoretical interpretation had to be found at any price, no matter how high that might be...
- Natural phenomena should be traced back to the movements of material objects which possess inalterable motive forces that are dependent only on spatial relations.
- Science, the goal of which is the comprehension of nature, must begin with the presupposition of its comprehensibility and proceed in accordance with this assumption until, perhaps, it is forced by irrefutable facts to recognise limits beyond it may not go.