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Comments for Not Even Wrong

Last Build Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2018 19:12:14 +0000


Comment on Various and Sundry by Peter Woit

Tue, 20 Feb 2018 19:12:14 +0000

I took a longer look at the Arkani-Hamed talk. It's the usual story he has been telling for about ten years now, that new ways of computing scattering amplitudes in terms of volumes and combinatorics of geometric objects indicate a grand synthesis, in which spacetime and quantum theory will be emergent notions. He just doesn't yet know what that grand synthesis is. For an insightful comment from him about these kinds of claims, see this posting and this quote: "So, usually I’ll get up when I talk about scattering amplitudes and give a long introduction about how spacetime is doomed, we have to find some way of thinking about quantum field theory without local evolution in space time and maybe even without a Hilbert space and blah-blah-blah. This is all very high-falutin stuff, this is stuff that Lance wouldn’t be get caught dead saying. I think none of these guys would ever say something that sounds so pretentious, but I have to say it, you know I have to say it, because this is the only way I can get up in the morning, and like “I suck again, OK, here we go, I’m doing it because spacetime is doomed, I swear to God, right”."

Comment on Various and Sundry by Peter Woit

Tue, 20 Feb 2018 03:23:23 +0000

Timothy, Thanks, hadn't seen that before. I confess though that it's still unclear to me why spacetime "must" be emergent, and what it is supposed to be emerging from. Back in the good old days when people were talking about quantum gravity I could tell exactly what their quantum gravity theory was, nowadays I often have no idea what the actual theory being discussed is.

Comment on Various and Sundry by Timothy

Tue, 20 Feb 2018 02:25:30 +0000

Check out this nice talk from Nima Arkani-Hamed, entitled "The Doom of Space Time". He turns into quite the comedian at 1 hour 40 minutes into the talk, citing "violins, chellos, Nova specials." Great explanations about how space-time must be emergent and offers an intro to his own stab at the problem.

Comment on Various and Sundry by Shantanu

Sun, 18 Feb 2018 04:58:57 +0000

Peter something else : John's ellis talk on still believing super-symmetry at Joe Silk's 75th birthday fest

Comment on Various and Sundry by Peter Woit

Fri, 16 Feb 2018 22:44:00 +0000

a1, That's a nice article, much of it very similar to the story I wrote about in chapter 10 of "Not Even Wrong". I quite agree with the final sentiment: "If mathematics and physics are in so many respects in equipoise, then the differences between them may be less a matter of their content than their technique; and that, in the end, they serve to show that there is only one reality to which they both appeal. Wouldn’t it be lovely to think so?" see

Comment on Various and Sundry by a1

Fri, 16 Feb 2018 22:19:40 +0000

I thought that you might be interested to read: "String theory is a quantum theory of gravity. Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity emerges naturally from its equations...."

Comment on Various and Sundry by Shantanu

Fri, 16 Feb 2018 16:56:19 +0000

Peter , OT: An article in economist about failure to detect proton decay. (I cannot read the full article, but am sure you have access to it)

Comment on Muon g-2 Anomaly Gone? by cedric bardot

Tue, 13 Feb 2018 16:35:58 +0000

A very brief arxiv paper ( from February the 13th may point quite educationally the erroneous tacit assumption made in the first Japanese paper namely taking a coordinate time for a physical one... "When we are moved ... by a thirst for knowledge, then the error, like the pain or the sadness, passes us without ever being lost, and the trace of its passage is a renewed knowledge" (Alexander Grothendieck in "Harvests and Seeds")

Comment on Muon g-2 Anomaly Gone? by vmarko

Sun, 11 Feb 2018 13:02:09 +0000

Dale, They will reply if they find his rebuttal worthy of attention. If I were them, I wouldn't. Best, :-) Marko

Comment on Muon g-2 Anomaly Gone? by Wyman

Sun, 11 Feb 2018 05:37:55 +0000

I am having trouble understanding these objections based on the equivalence principle. The authors appear to be working in the Schwarzschild metric, and instead of referring to a quantity named like r_s / r they refer to the equivalent "gravitational potential of the Earth", which is uniquely defined by identifying it with the term in the metric.