Author Archives: woit

Mathematics Without Apologies

If you’d asked me ten years ago to describe a book I’d love to read that could be characterized as part of an “incredibly unlikely trend in books about math for the general public”, I might have chosen “brilliant meditations … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | 3 Comments

Snowpocalypse 2015

For the last few days the media in New York have been filled with continuous frantic warnings of the deadly storm of the century bearing down on the city. Grocery stores have been emptied, with long lines of desperate people … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 35 Comments

The NSA, NIST and the AMS, Part II

Last summer I wrote here about an article in the AMS Notices which appeared to make misleading claims about the NSA’s involvement in putting a backdoor in an NIST cryptography standard known as DUAL_EC_DRBG. The article by Richard George, a … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 22 Comments

Short Items

The latest issue of the New York Review of Books has an article about the new Turing film, explaining in detail how it gets pretty much everything completely wrong about Turing and his story (see my review here). In related … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 18 Comments

Back

Now back from vacation, and as far as I can tell, not much happened while I was away. Here are a few things I’ve seen that may be of interest: Mochizuki has posted a long progress report on “activities devoted … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 32 Comments

Winter Break

Blogging here should be light to non-existent for a while, with family holiday celebrations tomorrow and departure for a trip to Europe the day after. Travel plans still in flux, but the general idea is to head south after arriving … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Dualities

There’s a very interesting new paper on the arXiv by Joe Polchinski, a survey article for Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics, entitled just Dualities. It’s an unusually lucid summary of the story of dualities in quantum field … Continue reading

Posted in Multiverse Mania | 61 Comments

Quick Links

The Planck data release has been delayed yet again. December 22, is now off the table, the latest plan is “before the end of January 15″, see here. Some peeks at their results are in slides from the Ferrara conference, … Continue reading

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Defend the Integrity of Physics

This week’s Nature features a call to arms from George Ellis and Joe Silk, entitled Scientific method: Defend the integrity of physics. I’m very glad to see well-known physicists highlighting the serious problem for the credibility of science raised by … Continue reading

Posted in Multiverse Mania | 34 Comments

Weinberg on the Desert, Seiberg on QFT

Last week Steven Weinberg gave a Lee Historical Lecture at Harvard, entitled Glimpses of a World Within. There’s a report on the talk at the Harvard Gazette. In essence, Weinberg argues in the talk for an idea that first started … Continue reading

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