In physics, many problems were known at their time to be very challenging, for example the notion of heat, or how to understand the ideal gaz law, or the phase transition criticial behaviors, etc. And they were then solved. I'm wondering if people have studied if there are common trends in these problems : what makes some scientific questions difficult but interesting, and what are the various strategies which were used to solve them, especially in the fields of physics. Any advice for bibliographic references about this ? Thanks !

  • $\begingroup$ It's an interesting question of course. If you could add an example of one it would help, both to show a bit of prior effort, and to help readers better understand the kinds of examples you're looking for. $\endgroup$ – uhoh Mar 31 at 4:03
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    $\begingroup$ A few examples : the cinetic theory of gaz by Maxwell and Boltzmann which finally allows to explain the ideal gas law, or the free electron model by Pauli and Heisenberg to explain the behaviors of metals, or the superconductivity explained by Bardeen, Cooper, and Schrieffer after 40 years of struggle, or the phase transitions explained by Wilson with renormalization theory... The point here is not to focus too much on a specific discovery but to see if there are recurring patterns in why some problems are hard to solve and what are the main strategies to solve them. $\endgroup$ – A.J Beahv Apr 1 at 6:54

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