Unformatted text preview: Based on this principle, Einstein formulated the principle of general covariance, which forms the basis of his general theory of relativity. This maxim states that the laws of physics are the same in all (i.e., both inertial and gravitational) reference frames. This extends the first postulate of special relativity to include accelerating frames of reference as well. Basically, with his general covariance principle, Einstein applied the equivalence principle to special relativity: given that the laws of physics are the same in all inertial reference frames and that inertial and gravitational masses are equivalent, the laws of physics are the same in all accelerating frames as well. One consequence of this principle is that spacetime in the presence of matter is curved. (Spacetime is the fourdimensional continuum of time and space in which any curved....
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 Fall '09
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 Special Relativity, shortest distance, spacetime, general covariance principle

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