Matt Strassler Tom Levenson Virtually Speaking Science 02/15 by Jay Ackroyd | Blog Talk Radio
Wednesday, February 15, 2012
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
In 1919, Kaluza sent Albert Einstein a preprint --- later published in 1921 --- that considered the extension of general relativity to five dimensions. He assumed that the 5-dimensional field equations were simply the higher-dimensional version of the vacuum Einstein equation, and that all the metric components were independent of the fifth coordinate. The later assumption came to be known as the cylinder condition. This resulted in something remarkable: the fifteen higher-dimension field equations naturally broke into a set of ten formulae governing a tensor field representing gravity, four describing a vector field representing electromagnetism, and one wave equation for a scalar field. Furthermore, if the scalar field was constant, the vector field equations were just Maxwell's equations in vacuo, and the tensor field equations were the 4-dimensional Einstein field equations sourced by an EM field. In one fell swoop, Kaluza had written down a single covariant field theory in five dimensions that yielded the four dimensional theories of general relativity and electromagnetism. Naturally, Einstein was very interested in this preprint (Link is now dead but what is said here is very important and may help with imagery needed?)
After having formulated general relativity Albert Einstein did not immediately focus on the unification of electromagnetism and gravity in a classical field theory - the issue that would characterize much of his later work. It was still an open question to him whether relativity and electrodynamics together would cast light on the problem of the structure of matter [?]. Rather, in a 1916 paper on gravitational waves he anticipated a different development: since the electron in its atomic orbit would radiate gravitationally, something that cannot occur in reality", he expected quantum theory would have to change not only the "Maxwellian electrodynamics, but also the new theory of gravitation" [?]2. Einstein's position, however, gradually changed. From about 1919 onwards, he took a strong interest in the unification programme3. In later years, after about 1926, he hoped that he would and a particular classical unified field theory that could undercut quantum theory. Such a theory would have to contain the material objects -sources and fields- and their dynamics. He would even expect the distinction between these concepts to fade: \a complete field theory knows only fields and not the concepts of particle and motion" [?]. We will study how he wanted to realize these principles in classical Kaluza-Klein theory, and try to see what his objectives and results were.See: Einstein and the Kaluza-Klein particle
moving on further in the article toward the end...
Bergmann, now in Syracuse, wrote Einstein and asked if they could have a discussion sometime:
As anyone can only be a crank about his own ideas, and as you are someone who combines steadfastness with the ability to acknowledge his hypothesis could go wrong (usually one can only and just one of these qualities, mostly the latter) I would appreciate very much talking to you and hearing your observations; whether we appreciate the same or not, what we want is sufficiently related that we could easily come to an understanding." [?] 2
You are looking for an independent and new way to solve the fundamental problems. With this endeavor no one can help you, least of all someone who has somewhat fixed ideas. For instance, you know that on the basis of certain considerations I am convinced that the probability concept should not be primarily included in the description of reality, whereas you seem to believe that one should first formulate a field theory and subsequently 'quantize' it. This is in keeping with the view of most contemporaries. Your effort to abstractly carry through a field theory without having at your disposal the formal nature of the field quantities in advance, does not seem favorable to me, for it is formally too poor and vague."17 [?] 2
Missing Energy Kicks New Physics Models Off The Board
The signature of large missing energy and jets is arguably one of the most important avenues for the study of potential new physics signatures at today's hadron colliders.
The above concept marks an interesting turn of events: the years of the glorification of charged leptons as the single most important tools for the discovery of rare production processes appears behind us. The W and Z discovery in 1983 by UA1 at CERN, or the top quark discovery by CDF and DZERO in 1995 at Fermilab, would have been impossible without the precise and clean detection of electrons and muons. However, with time we have understood that missing energy may be a more powerful tool for new discoveries.
Missing energy arises when a violent collision between the projectiles -protons against antiprotons at the Tevatron collider, or protons against protons at the world's most powerful accelerator, the LHC- produces an asymmetric flow of energetic bodies out of the collision point in the plane orthogonal to the beams: a transverse imbalance. This is a clear signal that something is leaving the detector unseen. And it turns out that there is a host of new physics signals which can do precisely that.
A large amount of missing transverse energy may be the result of the decay of a leptoquarks into jets and neutrinos, when the latter leave undetected; or from the silent escape of a supersymmetric neutral particle -the neutralino- produced in the chain of decays following the production of squarks and gluinos; or it may even be due to the escape of particles in a fourth dimension of space -an alternative dubbed "large extra dimensions". (see more in linked title above)
I have been slowly moving through the explanations for the extra-dimensions that are being explained by Matt Strassler:
In this article and the next, we will learn why extra dimensions lead to “Kaluza-Klein (KK) partner” particles (described in the previous article in this series, which you should read before this one.) If a known type of particle of mass m can travel in a dimension of which we are unaware — an “extra” dimension — then we will eventually discover many other types of particles, similar to the known one but heavier, with masses M>m.See: Kaluza-Klein Partners — Why? Step 1
Friday, January 13, 2012
One string theorist even went so far to conclude that a string theory calculation of Kaluza-Klein modes was the "smoking gun" that proved our theory was the same as the string theory that string theorists had already been studying.Warped Passages: Unraveling The Mysteries of the Universes Hidden Dimensions by Lisa Randall Pg 436, Para 4
Putting this together with what is real in our reality is of importance as well. While I may have my own metaphysical development and model building characteristics it was important that I learn the scientific one so that I could see where I may have been wrong in my own development scenario. Wrong in my own intuitions.
Meanwhile I’m continuing to develop the Extra Dimensions series of articles, and I’ve now followed up my examples of extra dimensions with a next installment, a first discussion of what scientists would look for in trying to identify that our world actually has one or more extra dimensions . The new article describes one of the key clues that would indicate their presence. But this is far from the end of the story: I owe you more articles, explaining why extra dimensions would generate this clue, outlining how we try to search for this clue experimentally, and mentioning other possible clues that might arise. All in due course…The Smoking Gun for Extra Dimensions by Theoretical Physicist Matt Strassler
Some may of not been forced to question them-self with what it is that we have to ask of ourselves, as we delve into the world of the sciences and philosophies. To ask ourselves whether we had always been dealing with the truth of our getting to the heart of things.
A professor may have asked what it is exactly what I wanted out of all of this, and to him I have to relay a dream that has manifested because of his question.
In the dream I have been provided a forum for discussing my ideas.....but when it came to the time for speaking, my preparations, I felt lost as to where to begin. So it seems I have come to this point in time, as to "shit or get off the pot" as to what it is I wish to share of importance?
Giving these subjects the numbers of years since 2001, one would have thought had served my own internship, but alas I remain ever the student with no classification. Yet it is the developing of the concepts with what is real in the push to experiment as to find what the real world examples are showing as attributes in the experimental processes as they unfold.
In this example I’m going to map speed to the pitch of the note, length/postion to the duration of the note and number of turns/legs/puffs to the loudness of the note.See: How to make sound out of anything.
Who of us has the foresight to see where the process of the experiment had been developed to share an idea about what it was that we wanted to discover of nature? To see in the mind of the developers as to why the equipment has been superimposed from the schematics of theories to be tested as to discover what we may found in our model building.
Does all this prepare you to looking at the universe different?
The Lagrange Points
In the above contour plot we see that L4 and L5 correspond to hilltops and L1, L2 and L3 correspond to saddles (i.e. points where the potential is curving up in one direction and down in the other). This suggests that satellites placed at the Lagrange points will have a tendency to wander off (try sitting a marble on top of a watermelon or on top of a real saddle and you get the idea). A detailed analysis (PDF link) confirms our expectations for L1, L2 and L3, but not for L4 and L5. When a satellite parked at L4 or L5 starts to roll off the hill it picks up speed. At this point the Coriolis force comes into play - the same force that causes hurricanes to spin up on the earth - and sends the satellite into a stable orbit around the Lagrange point. See: Space Travel and Propulsion Methods
I have to say who has not been touched as if we put on a pair of rose colored glasses to see the Lagrangian world as if the gravitons populated locations of influence. As if they were descriptive as overlapping nodes of sound as to support some acoustical idea about levitation? Satellites that travel through space or held in position as our space station is.
Like different musical instruments, different types of stars produce different types of sound waves. Small stars produce a sound with a higher pitch than bigger stars, just like the 'piccolo' produces a higher sound than the cello
Thus it is as ones can see differently that I look upon the world as to discover what things we may not know of our own selves that we had missed in understanding our own physical evolution, that it is more then the matter with which we use and are made up of?
This recording was produced by converting into audible sounds some of the radar echoes received by Huygens during the last few kilometres of its descent onto Titan. As the probe approaches the ground, both the pitch and intensity increase. Scientists will use intensity of the echoes to speculate about the nature of the surface. Radar echos from Titan's surface
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Using the anti–de Sitter/conformal field theory correspondence to relate fermionic quantum critical fields to a gravitational problem, we computed the spectral functions of fermions in the field theory. By increasing the fermion density away from the relativistic quantum critical point, a state emerges with all the features of the Fermi liquid. See:String Theory, Quantum Phase Transitions, and the Emergent Fermi Liquid
Conformal Field Theory
If your not sure what I mean, have a look at what is happening on the surface of the sphere, as a means from which a 2D description, is describing the black hole in a 5d space. Have you seen this image before?
Page 171 and 172 0f, Three Roads to Quantum Gravity by Lee Smolin
Pg 198, The Universe in Nutshell, by Stephen Hawking
Conformal Field Theory
A conformal field theory is a quantum field theory (or statistical mechanics model at the critical point) that is invariant under the conformal group. Conformal field theory is most often studied in two dimensions where there is a large group of local conformal transformations coming from holomorphic functions.
If your not sure what I mean, have a look at what is happening on the surface of the sphere, as a means from which a 2D description, is describing the black hole in a 5d space. Have you seen this image before?
Recreating the conditions present just after the Big Bang has given experimentalists a glimpse into how the universe formed. Now, scientists have begun to see striking similarities between the properties of the early universe and a theory that aims to unite gravity with quantum mechanics, a long-standing goal for physicists.
“Combining calculations from experiments and theories could help us capture some universal characteristic of nature,” said MIT theoretical physicist Krishna Rajagopal, who discussed these possibilities at the recent Quark Matter conference in Annecy, France.
One millionth of a second after the Big Bang, the universe was a hot, dense sea of freely roaming particles called quarks and gluons. As the universe rapidly cooled, the particles joined together to form protons and neutrons, and the unique state of matter known as quark-gluon plasma disappeared.See: String theory may hold answers about quark-gluon plasma
TWO UNIVERSES of different dimension and obeying disparate physical laws are rendered completely equivalent by the holographic principle. Theorists have demonstrated this principle mathematically for a specific type of five-dimensional spacetime ("anti–de Sitter") and its four-dimensional boundary. In effect, the 5-D universe is recorded like a hologram on the 4-D surface at its periphery. Superstring theory rules in the 5-D spacetime, but a so-called conformal field theory of point particles operates on the 4-D hologram. A black hole in the 5-D spacetime is equivalent to hot radiation on the hologram--for example, the hole and the radiation have the same entropy even though the physical origin of the entropy is completely different for each case. Although these two descriptions of the universe seem utterly unalike, no experiment could distinguish between them, even in principle. by Jacob D. Bekenstein
Consider any physical system, made of anything at all- let us call it, The Thing. We require only that The Thing can be enclosed within a finite boundary, which we shall call the Screen(Figure39). We would like to know as much as possible about The Thing. But we cannot touch it directly-we are restrictied to making measurements of it on The Screen. We may send any kind of radiation we like through The Screen, and record what ever changes result The Screen. The Bekenstein bound says that there is a general limit to how many yes/no questions we can answer about The Thing by making observations through The Screen that surrounds it. The number must be less then one quarter the area of The Screen, in Planck units. What if we ask more questions? The principle tells us that either of two things must happen. Either the area of the screen will increase, as a result of doing an experiment that ask questions beyond the limit; or the experiments we do that go beyond the limit will erase or invalidate, the answers to some of the previous questions. At no time can we know more about The thing than the limit, imposed by the area of the Screen.
Page 171 and 172 0f, Three Roads to Quantum Gravity by Lee Smolin
The strings move in a five-dimensional curved space-time with a boundary. The boundary corresponds to the usual four dimensions, and the fifth dimension describes the motion away from this boundary into the interior of the curved space-time. In this five-dimensional space-time, there is a strong gravitational field pulling objects away from the boundary, and as a result time flows more slowly far away from the boundary than close to it. This also implies that an object that has a fixed proper size in the interior can appear to have a different size when viewed from the boundary (Fig. 1). Strings existing in the five-dimensional space-time can even look point-like when they are close to the boundary. Polchinski and Strassler1 show that when an energetic four-dimensional particle (such as an electron) is scattered from these strings (describing protons), the main contribution comes from a string that is close to the boundary and it is therefore seen as a point-like object. So a string-like interpretation of a proton is not at odds with the observation that there are point-like objects inside it.
Holography encodes the information in a region of space onto a surface one dimension lower. It sees to be the property of gravity, as is shown by the fact that the area of th event horizon measures the number of internal states of a blackhole, holography would be a one-to-one correspondance between states in our four dimensional world and states in higher dimensions. From a positivist viewpoint, one cannot distinquish which discription is more fundamental.
Pg 198, The Universe in Nutshell, by Stephen Hawking
In 1919, Kaluza sent Albert Einstein a preprint --- later published in 1921 --- that considered the extension of general relativity to five dimensions. He assumed that the 5-dimensional field equations were simply the higher-dimensional version of the vacuum Einstein equation, and that all the metric components were independent of the fifth coordinate. The later assumption came to be known as the cylinder condition. This resulted in something remarkable: the fifteen higher-dimension field equations naturally broke into a set of ten formulae governing a tensor field representing gravity, four describing a vector field representing electromagnetism, and one wave equation for a scalar field. Furthermore, if the scalar field was constant, the vector field equations were just Maxwell's equations in vacuo, and the tensor field equations were the 4-dimensional Einstein field equations sourced by an EM field. In one fell swoop, Kaluza had written down a single covariant field theory in five dimensions that yielded the four dimensional theories of general relativity and electromagnetism. Naturally, Einstein was very interested in this preprint .(sorry link now dead)
Monday, July 12, 2010
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
There have been many theories of everything proposed by theoretical physicists over the last century, but none has been confirmed experimentally. The primary problem in producing a TOE is that the accepted theories of quantum mechanics and general relativity are hard to combine. Their mutual incompatibility argues that they are incomplete, or at least not fully understood taken individually. (For more, see unsolved problems in physics).
Based on theoretical holographic principle arguments from the 1990s, many physicists believe that 11-dimensional M-theory, which is described in many sectors by matrix string theory, in many other sectors by perturbative string theory is the complete theory of everything, although there is no widespread consensus and M-theory is not a completed theory but rather an approach for producing one.
Historical antecedentsLaplace famously suggested that a sufficiently powerful intellect could, if it knew the position and velocity of every particle at a given time, along with the laws of nature, calculate the position of any particle at any other time:
An intellect which at a certain moment would know all forces that set nature in motion, and all positions of all items of which nature is composed, if this intellect were also vast enough to submit these data to analysis, it would embrace in a single formula the movements of the greatest bodies of the universe and those of the tiniest atom; for such an intellect nothing would be uncertain and the future just like the past would be present before its eyes.
Although modern quantum mechanics suggests that uncertainty is inescapable, a unifying theory governing probabilistic assignments may nevertheless exist.— Essai philosophique sur les probabilités, Introduction. 1814
Ancient Greece to EinsteinSince ancient Greek times, philosophers have speculated that the apparent diversity of appearances conceals an underlying unity, and thus that the list of forces might be short, indeed might contain only a single entry. For example, the mechanical philosophy of the 17th century posited that all forces could be ultimately reduced to contact forces between tiny solid particles. This was abandoned after the acceptance of Isaac Newton's long-distance force of gravity; but at the same time, Newton's work in his Principia provided the first dramatic empirical evidence for the unification of apparently distinct forces: Galileo's work on terrestrial gravity, Kepler's laws of planetary motion, and the phenomenon of tides were all quantitatively explained by a single law of universal gravitation.
In 1820, Hans Christian Ørsted discovered a connection between electricity and magnetism, triggering decades of work that culminated in James Clerk Maxwell's theory of electromagnetism. Also during the 19th and early 20th centuries, it gradually became apparent that many common examples of forces—contact forces, elasticity, viscosity, friction, pressure—resulted from electrical interactions between the smallest particles of matter. In the late 1920s, the new quantum mechanics showed that the chemical bonds between atoms were examples of (quantum) electrical forces, justifying Dirac's boast that "the underlying physical laws necessary for the mathematical theory of a large part of physics and the whole of chemistry are thus completely known".
Attempts to unify gravity with electromagnetism date back at least to Michael Faraday's experiments of 1849–50. After Albert Einstein's theory of gravity (general relativity) was published in 1915, the search for a unified field theory combining gravity with electromagnetism began in earnest. At the time, it seemed plausible that no other fundamental forces exist. Prominent contributors were Gunnar Nordström, Hermann Weyl, Arthur Eddington, Theodor Kaluza, Oskar Klein, and most notably, many attempts by Einstein and his collaborators. In his last years, Albert Einstein was intensely occupied in finding such a unifying theory. None of these attempts were successful.
New discoveriesThe search for a unifying theory was interrupted by the discovery of the strong and weak nuclear forces, which could not be subsumed into either gravity or electromagnetism. A further hurdle was the acceptance that quantum mechanics had to be incorporated from the start, rather than emerging as a consequence of a deterministic unified theory, as Einstein had hoped. Gravity and electromagnetism could always peacefully coexist as entries in a list of Newtonian forces, but for many years it seemed that gravity could not even be incorporated into the quantum framework, let alone unified with the other fundamental forces. For this reason, work on unification for much of the twentieth century, focused on understanding the three "quantum" forces: electromagnetism and the weak and strong forces. The first two were unified in 1967–68 by Sheldon Glashow, Steven Weinberg, and Abdus Salam as the "electroweak" force. However, while the strong and electroweak forces peacefully coexist in the Standard Model of particle physics, they remain distinct. Several Grand Unified Theories (GUTs) have been proposed to unify them. Although the simplest GUTs have been experimentally ruled out, the general idea, especially when linked with supersymmetry, remains strongly favored by the theoretical physics community.
Modern physicsIn current mainstream physics, a Theory of Everything would unify all the fundamental interactions of nature, which are usually considered to be four in number: gravity, the strong nuclear force, the weak nuclear force, and the electromagnetic force. Because the weak force can transform elementary particles from one kind into another, the TOE should yield a deep understanding of the various different kinds of particles as well as the different forces. The expected pattern of theories is:
|Theory of Everything|
|Gravity||Electronuclear force (GUT)|
|Strong force |
|Electroweak force |
SU(2) x U(1)
|Weak force |
|Electric force||Magnetic force|
Electroweak unification is a broken symmetry: the electromagnetic and weak forces appear distinct at low energies because the particles carrying the weak force, the W and Z bosons, have a mass of about 100 GeV, whereas the photon, which carries the electromagnetic force, is massless. At higher energies Ws and Zs can be created easily and the unified nature of the force becomes apparent. Grand unification is expected to work in a similar way, but at energies of the order of 1016 GeV, far greater than could be reached by any possible Earth-based particle accelerator. By analogy, unification of the GUT force with gravity is expected at the Planck energy, roughly 1019 GeV.
It may seem premature to be searching for a TOE when there is as yet no direct evidence for an electronuclear force, and while in any case there are many different proposed GUTs. In fact the name deliberately suggests the hubris involved. Nevertheless, most physicists believe this unification is possible, partly due to the past history of convergence towards a single theory. Supersymmetric GUTs seem plausible not only for their theoretical "beauty", but because they naturally produce large quantities of dark matter, and the inflationary force may be related to GUT physics (although it does not seem to form an inevitable part of the theory). And yet GUTs are clearly not the final answer. Both the current standard model and proposed GUTs are quantum field theories which require the problematic technique of renormalization to yield sensible answers. This is usually regarded as a sign that these are only effective field theories, omitting crucial phenomena relevant only at very high energies. Furthermore, the inconsistency between quantum mechanics and general relativity implies that one or both of these must be replaced by a theory incorporating quantum gravity.
|Is string theory, superstring theory, or M-theory, or some other variant on this theme, a step on the road to a "theory of everything", or just a blind alley?|
In the late 1990s, it was noted that one problem with several of the candidates for theories of everything (but particularly string theory) was that they did not constrain the characteristics of the predicted universe. For example, many theories of quantum gravity can create universes with arbitrary numbers of dimensions or with arbitrary cosmological constants. Even the "standard" ten-dimensional string theory allows the "curled up" dimensions to be compactified in an enormous number of different ways (one estimate is 10500 ) each of which corresponds to a different collection of fundamental particles and low-energy forces. This array of theories is known as the string theory landscape.
A speculative solution is that many or all of these possibilities are realised in one or another of a huge number of universes, but that only a small number of them are habitable, and hence the fundamental constants of the universe are ultimately the result of the anthropic principle rather than a consequence of the theory of everything. This anthropic approach is often criticised[who?] in that, because the theory is flexible enough to encompass almost any observation, it cannot make useful (as in original, falsifiable, and verifiable) predictions. In this view, string theory would be considered a pseudoscience, where an unfalsifiable theory is constantly adapted to fit the experimental results.
With reference to Gödel's incompleteness theoremA small number of scientists claim that Gödel's incompleteness theorem proves that any attempt to construct a TOE is bound to fail. Gödel's theorem, informally stated, asserts that any formal theory expressive enough for elementary arithmetical facts to be expressed and strong enough for them to be proved is either inconsistent (both a statement and its denial can be derived from its axioms) or incomplete, in the sense that there is a true statement about natural numbers that can't be derived in the formal theory. In his 1966 book The Relevance of Physics, Stanley Jaki pointed out that, because any "theory of everything" will certainly be a consistent non-trivial mathematical theory, it must be incomplete. He claims that this dooms searches for a deterministic theory of everything. In a later reflection, Jaki states that it is wrong to say that a final theory is impossible, but rather that "when it is on hand one cannot know rigorously that it is a final theory." 
Freeman Dyson has stated that
|“||Gödel’s theorem implies that pure mathematics is inexhaustible. No matter how many problems we solve, there will always be other problems that cannot be solved within the existing rules. [...] Because of Gödel's theorem, physics is inexhaustible too. The laws of physics are a finite set of rules, and include the rules for doing mathematics, so that Gödel's theorem applies to them.||”|
—NYRB, May 13, 2004
|“||Some people will be very disappointed if there is not an ultimate theory, that can be formulated as a finite number of principles. I used to belong to that camp, but I have changed my mind.||”|
—Gödel and the end of physics, July 20, 2002
Related critique was offered by Solomon Feferman, among others. Douglas S. Robertson offers Conway's game of life as an example: The underlying rules are simple and complete, but there are formally undecidable questions about the game's behaviors. Analogously, it may (or may not) be possible to completely state the underlying rules of physics with a finite number of well-defined laws, but there is little doubt that there are questions about the behavior of physical systems which are formally undecidable on the basis of those underlying laws.
Since most physicists would consider the statement of the underlying rules to suffice as the definition of a "theory of everything", these researchers argue that Gödel's Theorem does not mean that a TOE cannot exist. On the other hand, the physicists invoking Gödel's Theorem appear, at least in some cases, to be referring not to the underlying rules, but to the understandability of the behavior of all physical systems, as when Hawking mentions arranging blocks into rectangles, turning the computation of prime numbers into a physical question. This definitional discrepancy may explain some of the disagreement among researchers.
Another approach to working with the limits of logic implied by Gödel's incompleteness theorems is to abandon the attempt to model reality using a formal system altogether. Process Physics is a notable example of a candidate TOE that takes this approach, where reality is modeled using self-organizing (purely semantic) information.
Potential status of a theory of everythingNo physical theory to date is believed to be precisely accurate. Instead, physics has proceeded by a series of "successive approximations" allowing more and more accurate predictions over a wider and wider range of phenomena. Some physicists believe that it is therefore a mistake to confuse theoretical models with the true nature of reality, and hold that the series of approximations will never terminate in the "truth". Einstein himself expressed this view on occasions. On this view, we may reasonably hope for a theory of everything which self-consistently incorporates all currently known forces, but should not expect it to be the final answer. On the other hand it is often claimed that, despite the apparently ever-increasing complexity of the mathematics of each new theory, in a deep sense associated with their underlying gauge symmetry and the number of fundamental physical constants, the theories are becoming simpler. If so, the process of simplification cannot continue indefinitely.
There is a philosophical debate within the physics community as to whether a theory of everything deserves to be called the fundamental law of the universe. One view is the hard reductionist position that the TOE is the fundamental law and that all other theories that apply within the universe are a consequence of the TOE. Another view is that emergent laws (called "free floating laws" by Steven Weinberg), which govern the behavior of complex systems, should be seen as equally fundamental. Examples are the second law of thermodynamics and the theory of natural selection. The point being that, although in our universe these laws describe systems whose behaviour could ("in principle") be predicted from a TOE, they would also hold in universes with different low-level laws, subject only to some very general conditions. Therefore it is of no help, even in principle, to invoke low-level laws when discussing the behavior of complex systems. Some[who?] argue that this attitude would violate Occam's Razor if a completely valid TOE were formulated. It is not clear that there is any point at issue in these debates (e.g., between Steven Weinberg and Philip Anderson) other than the right to apply the high-status word "fundamental" to their respective subjects of interest.
Although the name "theory of everything" suggests the determinism of Laplace's quotation, this gives a very misleading impression. Determinism is frustrated by the probabilistic nature of quantum mechanical predictions, by the extreme sensitivity to initial conditions that leads to mathematical chaos, and by the extreme mathematical difficulty of applying the theory. Thus, although the current standard model of particle physics "in principle" predicts all known non-gravitational phenomena, in practice only a few quantitative results have been derived from the full theory (e.g., the masses of some of the simplest hadrons), and these results (especially the particle masses which are most relevant for low-energy physics) are less accurate than existing experimental measurements. The true TOE would almost certainly be even harder to apply. The main motive for seeking a TOE, apart from the pure intellectual satisfaction of completing a centuries-long quest, is that all prior successful unifications have predicted new phenomena, some of which (e.g., electrical generators) have proved of great practical importance. As in other cases of theory reduction, the TOE would also allow us to confidently define the domain of validity and residual error of low-energy approximations to the full theory which could be used for practical calculations.
Some of the biggest problems facing current TOE attempts are related to Einstein's theories of relativity. None of the current attempted TOEs give a structure of matter that gives rise to the special relativity corrections to mass, length and time when a particle moves. Those corrections are just imposed as if it is some unknown property of space. Also Einstein introduced an approximation when he derived his gravitational field equations in his general theory of relativity. Trying to match a theory to an approximation is always going to be difficult. It is believed[who?] that success will be easier when those two factors are taken into consideration.
Theory of everything and philosophyThe status of a physical TOE is open to philosophical debate. For example, if physicalism is true, a physical TOE will coincide with a philosophical theory of everything. Some philosophers (Aristotle, Plato, Hegel, Whitehead, et al.) have attempted to construct all-encompassing systems. Others are highly dubious about the very possibility of such an exercise. Stephen Hawking wrote in A Brief History of Time that even if we had a TOE, it would necessarily be a set of equations. He wrote, “What is it that breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe?”. Of course, the ultimate irreducible brute fact would then be "why those equations?" One possible solution to the last question might be to adopt the point of view of ultimate ensemble, or modal realism, and say that those equations are not unique.
- An Exceptionally Simple Theory of Everything based on Wilhelm Killing's E8 proposed by Antony Garrett Lisi
- Beyond the standard model
- Electroweak interaction
- Holographic principle
- Standard Model (mathematical formulation)
- ^ Ellis, John (2002). "Physics gets physical (correspondence)". Nature 415: 957.
- ^ Ellis, John (1986). "The Superstring: Theory of Everything, or of Nothing?". Nature 323: 595–598. doi:10.1038/323595a0.
- ^ Shapin, Steven (1996). The Scientific Revolution. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0226750213.
- ^ Dirac, P.A.M. (1929). "Quantum mechanics of many-electron systems". Proceedings of the Royal Society of London A 123: 714. doi:10.1098/rspa.1929.0094.
- ^ Faraday, M. (1850). "Experimental Researches in Electricity. Twenty-Fourth Series. On the Possible Relation of Gravity to Electricity". Abstracts of the Papers Communicated to the Royal Society of London 5: 994–995. doi:10.1098/rspl.1843.0267.
- ^ Pais (1982), Ch. 17.
- ^ Weinberg (1993), Ch. 5
- ^ There is one GUT not linked to super symmetry that has not been eliminated by experiment. That is the four universe theory of George Ryazanov. It has been tested once in a lab at Hebrew University informally. The results were reported to be positive. But the test has not been repeated elsewhere. See http://george-ryazanov.com/book4/03-Physics_of_Unity.html. However Ryazanov's theory does involve Lorentz violation. If the Fermi Glast project does not find Lorentz violation, this will be a blow to the Ryazanov Theory.
- ^ Potter, Franklin (15 February 2005). "Leptons And Quarks In A Discrete Spacetime". Frank Potter's Science Gems. http://www.sciencegems.com/discretespace.pdf. Retrieved 2009-12-01.
- ^ Jaki, S.L. (1966). The Relevance of Physics. Chicago Press.
- ^ Stanley L. Jaki (2004) "A Late Awakening to Gödel in Physics," p. 8-9.
- ^ Schmidhuber, Jürgen (1997). A Computer Scientist's View of Life, the Universe, and Everything. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Springer. pp. 201–208. doi:10.1007/BFb0052071. ISBN 978-3-540-63746-2. http://www.idsia.ch/~juergen/everything/.
- ^ Schmidhuber, Jürgen (2000). "Algorithmic Theories of Everything". arΧiv:quant-ph/0011122 [quant-ph].
- ^ Schmidhuber, Jürgen (2002). "Hierarchies of generalized Kolmogorov complexities and nonenumerable universal measures computable in the limit". International Journal of Foundations of Computer Science 13 (4): 587–612. doi:10.1142/S0129054102001291.
- ^ Feferman, Solomon (17 November 2006). "The nature and significance of Gödel’s incompleteness theorems". Institute for Advanced Study. http://math.stanford.edu/~feferman/papers/Godel-IAS.pdf. Retrieved 2009-01-12.
- ^ Robertson, Douglas S. (2007). "Goedel’s Theorem, the Theory of Everything, and the Future of Science and Mathematics". Complexity 5: 22–27. doi:10.1002/1099-0526(200005/06)5:5<22::AID-CPLX4>3.0.CO;2-0.
- ^ Hawking, Stephen (20 July 2002). "Gödel and the end of physics". http://www.damtp.cam.ac.uk/strings02/dirac/hawking/. Retrieved 2009-12-01.
- ^ Cahill, Reginald (2003). "Process Physics". Process Studies Supplement. Center for Process Studies. pp. 1–131. http://www.ctr4process.org/publications/ProcessStudies/PSS/2003-5-CahillR-Process_Physics.shtml. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
- ^ Einstein, letter to Felix Klein, 1917. (On determinism and approximations.) Quoted in Pais (1982), Ch. 17.
- ^ Weinberg (1993), Ch 2.
- ^ Equation 20 in Einstein, Albert (1916), "Die Grunlage der allgemeinen Relativätstheorie", Annalen der Physik 49: 769
- ^ as quoted in [Artigas, The Mind of the Universe, p.123]
- John D. Barrow, Theories of Everything: The Quest for Ultimate Explanation (OUP, Oxford, 1990) ISBN 0-099-98380-X
- Stephen Hawking 'The Theory of Everything: The Origin and Fate of the Universe' is an unauthorized 2002 book taken from recorded lectures (ISBN 1-893224-79-1)
- Stanley Jaki OSB, 2005. The Drama of Quantities. Real View Books (ISBN 1-892548-47-X)
- Abraham Pais Subtle is the Lord...: The Science and the Life of Albert Einstein (OUP, Oxford, 1982). ISBN 0-19-853907-X
- John Thompson "Nature's Watchmaker: The Undiscovered Miracle of Time". (Blackhall Publishing Ltd. Ireland, 2009) ISBN 1842181742 
- Steven Weinberg Dreams of a Final Theory: The Search for the Fundamental Laws of Nature (Hutchinson Radius, London, 1993) ISBN 0-09-1773954
- "At War With Odds: The Theory of Everything" (Roads, 2009)