seem
to
point
to it.
Once the question of how the three components of
elasticity
affect the
velocity
of
an
ether
wave
has been
solved,
one
could
proceed
with the
investigation
of the magnetic field. To properly
understand
the state of the ether in the
magnetic field,
one
would
have to
distinguish
three
cases:
1.
Lines
of force that unite at the north
pole
in
a
pyramid-like
fashion
2. Lines of force that unite at the south pole in
a
pyramid-like
fashion.
3. Parallel
lines
of force.
In
these
cases
one
should
investigate
the
propagation
velocity of
a wave
in
the
direction
of
the
lines of
force
and
perpendicular
to
them.
This
will
undoubtedly yield the elastic deformations along with
the
cause
of their formation
once
sufficiently
accurate instruments
for the measurement of the
wave
length
have been
constructed.
The most
interesting,
and also most
subtle,
case
would be the
direct experimental
investigation
of the
magnetic
field formed around
an
electric
current,
because
the
exploration
of the elastic state of
the ether in this
case
would
permit
us a
look into the
enigmatic
nature of
electric
current. The
analogy
would also
permit
us
to draw
sure
conclusions about the state of the ether in the
magnetic
field
surrounding
the electric
current,
provided
the
previously
mentioned
investigations
attain their ends.
Quantitative investigations
on
the absolute magnitudes of the
density
and the elastic force of the ether cannot
begin,
in
my
opinion,
until
there
are
available
qualitative
results
bound to firm
conceptions;
I believe that I must
say
only
one more
thing.
Should
it
turn out that the
wave
length
is not
proportional
to
-JA
+
k
, where
A
denotes the elastic
ether forces
a
priori and hence
is
a
constant that
has to be found
empirically,
and
k
denotes the
(variable)
intensity of
the
magnetic field,
which is, of
course,
proportional
to the relevant
elastic forces
produced,
then the
reason
for it should be
sought
in
the
density changes
of the
moving
ether
produced by
the
elastic
deformation.
First of all,
however, it
has to be
possible
to
prove
that there
does exist
a
passive resistance
against
the
production
of the
magnetic
field
by
the electric
current,
and that
this [resistance] is
proportional
to the
length
of the current
circuit
and
independent
of
the
cross
section and material of the conductor.
6.
TO
CAESAR
KOCH
[Pavia,
Summer
1895]
My
dear uncle!
I
am
realy
very
you are
still interested
in
my
humble
doings
despite
the fact that
we
could not
see
each other for such
a
long time and that I
am
such
a
terribly lazy letter
writer.
All the
same,
I hesitated to send
you
this
writing,
because it deals with
a
very
special
topic; besides, it is
rather naive and
imperfect,
as
might be expected from such
a
young
fellow like
myself.
I shall not
be
the least offended if
you
do not read the stuff at
all;
however, I
hope
that
you
will
appreciate
it
as
a
timid
attempt of
mine
to
6
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