Author Archives: woit

Road Trip

Blogging will be light to non-existent for the next ten days or so, as I head out west on a road trip to see next Monday’s solar eclipse. Current plan is to fly to Denver tomorrow, pick up a vehicle, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 10 Comments


In recent years a hot topic in some theoretical physics circles has been the 2013 “ER=EPR” conjecture first discussed by Maldacena and Susskind here. Every so often I try and read something explaining what this is about, but all such … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 29 Comments

Cosmology for the Curious

There’s a new college-level textbook out, Cosmology for the Curious, targeted at physics courses designed to explain basics of cosmology to non-physics majors. The authors are Delia Perlov and Alex Vilenkin. Back in 2006 Vilenkin published a popular book promoting … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews, Multiverse Mania | 26 Comments

Quick Links

For representation theory aficionados, George Lusztig has put on the arXiv a long document with comments on his papers (for a bit more about him, see this). For a new idea exemplifying the potential grand unification of mathematics and physics, … Continue reading

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A Few Items

Just a few items: The Simons Foundation has announced a new Origins of the Universe initiative, which will fund efforts to “develop testable predictions about string theory, quantum gravity and a cosmological ‘Big Bounce.’” I don’t think even all of … Continue reading

Posted in Langlands, Uncategorized | 10 Comments

What the Hell is Going On?

I’ve looked at the talks from a few of the HEP experiment and phenomenology summer conferences. If anyone can point me to anything interesting that I’ve missed, please do so. The lack of new physics beyond the Higgs at the … Continue reading

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Summer Conferences: Physical Mathematics

I’ve finally found some time to look around the web to see what has been happening at conferences this summer. In this blog post I’ll point to a few on the math/physics interface featuring interesting talks. This area now (I … Continue reading

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This Week’s Hype

Commenter CIP pointed out that today’s New York Times has one of the worst examples of string theory hype I’ve seen in a while. Based on this observation of an expected QFT anomaly effect in a condensed matter system, the … Continue reading

Posted in This Week's Hype | 54 Comments

Various Links

Some links to things that may be of interest: There’s an excellent article at FiveThirtyEight about the issue of publicizing math research, taking as example the Atlas of Lie Groups and Representations project (which will soon be having a workshop). … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 14 Comments

Last Week’s Hype

Now back from vacation, more regular blogging should resume imminently. While away, lots of press stories about claims that LIGO could be used to get “evidence for string theory”. As usual, these things can be traced back to misleading statements … Continue reading

Posted in This Week's Hype | 9 Comments