Physics hunts for the ultimate theory; at least that is what the media and people like L. Susskind
and M. Tegmark tell us incessantly what physics is all about (god particle, ultimate string theory landscape, ultimate ensemble, and all that). If you are after the ultimate theory, Smolin
The time is now. If you are going to fantasize about the possibilities of an extended Tevatron running and how likely it is that your favourite physics model may be tested by CDF and DZERO, you are advised to get in the game.
"I learned the stopping-rule principle from Professor Barnard in conversation in the summer of 1952. Frankly, I then thought it a scandal that anyone in the profession could advance an idea so patently wrong, even as today I can scarcely believe that some people resent an idea so patently right."
Effect of embedding Fe3O4 nanoparticles in silica spheres on the optical transmission properties of three-dimensional magnetic photonic crystals
I am very happy to report here (after having done the same on my Greek blog first
, for a change) that the "Max Planck" medal for 2011 has been assigned to Giorgio Parisi, a distinguished Italian theoretical physicist. I first got the welcome news from Facebook, thanks to my e-friendship with Parisi.
In another thread on Science 2.0 we got onto the nature of existence and what we can say for certain about the universe (if anything). Given that physics and math seem so intimately linked in practice, I often wonder if this link is "real". In other words:
Do numbers and other mathematical entities actually exist, or are they made up by the human mind?
At the Edge you can find a rather interesting discussion
between Lee Smolin
and Leonard Susskind
, involving all the stuff I try to demystify often.
They fought via email, then agreed to each write a final letter on the edge. And today you can read the final judgment right here at the source from somebody who is little prejudiced by his own hidden agenda, which is by the way one of the main charges that Susskind
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A really interesting piece of news comes from the CERN laboratory today. The CMS experiment has detected a handful of Z boson decays in events featuring the collision between heavy ions, accelerated to energies of hundreds of GeV per nucleon.
Here I will explain the difference between matter, anti matter, dark matter, and negative matter in a concise and understandable way. I have seen confusion pop up in various online forums and comments on the recent announced trapping of an anti atom by CERN.
The first thing to know is that for a physicist there are four fundamental forces of nature which are always at work. These are the familiar Gravity and Electromagnetism, as well as the generally unfamiliar strong and weak atomic forces. The atomic forces work on the length scale of atoms, Electromagnetism and gravity work on the length scale of the universe though in fundamentally different ways.
Scientific American features an excellent article by Garrett Lisi and James Owen Weatherell
, with title "A Geometric Theory of Everything
". It is a rather clear explanation of the ideas behind the recent articles published by Lisi on the E8 group and how this exceptionally rich mathematical structure could embed the representation of all particles and forces of nature.