Category Archives: This Week’s Hype

This Week’s Hype

Quanta Magazine has over the past couple years been establishing a well-deserved reputation as the smartest and best science journalism around. At the opposite extreme, over many years of interacting with science journalists, the most embarrassingly incompetent one I’ve run … Continue reading

Posted in This Week's Hype | 25 Comments

This Week’s Hype

One possible reaction to the phenomenon of hype in fundamental physics is to not worry much, figuring that it should be a self-limiting process. While there’s a huge appetite in the media and elsewhere for the “exciting new idea”, overhyped … Continue reading

Posted in Multiverse Mania, This Week's Hype | 9 Comments

Back

Now back after a satisfying vacation amidst very large trees. Here are some things of note from the past couple weeks: For those fascinated by the arguments over string theory, you might want to look at a document sent to … Continue reading

Posted in This Week's Hype, Uncategorized | 34 Comments

This Week’s Hype

The June issue of Discover magazine has an article entitled The Fall and Rise of String Theory (sorry it’s behind a paywall). I had added this as an update to the last posting, but just looked at it more carefully … Continue reading

Posted in This Week's Hype | 1 Comment

This Week’s Hype

It occurred today that the past year or so there haven’t been as many editions here of This Week’s Hype, with in particular the previously common “Scientists finally find a way to test string theory!” stories now less common than … Continue reading

Posted in This Week's Hype | 9 Comments

This Week’s Hype

This week’s dramatic announcement of the discovery of gravitational waves was a major milestone for the fields of physics and astrophysics. The LIGO observation validates a lot of previously untested aspects of our understanding of general relativity, and promises the … Continue reading

Posted in Multiverse Mania, This Week's Hype | 30 Comments

Run 2 and SUSY

What surprised me most about today’s Run 2 results (see here) was that CMS and ATLAS were able to already significantly push up limits on superpartner masses, especially the gluino mass. Limits on the gluino mass went from 1.3-1.4 TeV … Continue reading

Posted in This Week's Hype, Uncategorized | 16 Comments

Today’s Hype

Joe Polchinski’s contribution to the ongoing Munich meeting has now appeared on the arXiv, with the title String Theory to the Rescue. Evidently he’s not actually to be at the meeting, I’m not sure how his paper will be presented. … Continue reading

Posted in Multiverse Mania, This Week's Hype | 39 Comments

Next Week’s Hype

Next week there will be a workshop in Munich with the title Why Trust a Theory? Reconsidering Scientific Methodology in Light of Modern Physics. It’s organized by Richard Dawid, to discuss his ideas about “non-empirical theory confirmation”, developed to defend … Continue reading

Posted in This Week's Hype, Uncategorized | 54 Comments

This Week’s Hype

This week’s string theory hype comes to us from USC physicists Clifford Johnson and Nick Warner, courtesy of the USC press office (see here and here). It’s garden variety hype of this kind, exactly the same claims about strings and … Continue reading

Posted in This Week's Hype | 22 Comments