Hiking the Appalachian Trail

I’ll be heading North tomorrow, ultimately ending up in backwoods Maine, hiking the Appalachian Trail, then back home after a week or so. The comment section here will likely be closed for the duration.

Progress is being made on my notes on quantum mechanics and representation theory, based on the course I taught this past year. About 3/4 done with the writing at this point, the latest version is available here.

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10 Responses to Hiking the Appalachian Trail

  1. CIP says:

    We know that you will actually be visiting your girlfriend in Argentina.

  2. Peter Woit says:

    Maybe, but first I have to pick up this suitcase from a friend of hers…

  3. King Ray says:

    Peter, thanks for posting a link to your book, it looks pretty good. You’re very far along on it.

  4. Low Math, Meekly Interacting says:

    I grew up in Maine, and have hiked pretty much the entire ME AT in bits and pieces over the years. There are still stretches of the 100 Mile Wilderness I’ve yet to traverse, but it’s on The List. If you’re up there, don’t skimp on the DEET. Hope your trip is enjoyable and the weather cooperates!

  5. El-Coco says:

    Please be safe on the trail, Peter.

  6. Peter Woit says:


    Thanks, extra DEET was acquired yesterday. Will be up in the 100 Mile Wilderness, but actually planning more hanging around a lodge than strenuous hiking.

  7. Low Math, Meekly Interacting says:

    I was in the vicinity while you were in the Wilderness, with my family on the north end of Schoodic Lake to be precise. Sweltering heat for the region, soup-like humidity, and ravenous deer flies. If I didn’t have a lake to jump into every hour to cool off I probably would have left. Hope one of the many beautiful ponds up there provided adequate post-hike relief!

  8. Peter Woit says:


    Yes, I wasn’t far away, at an AMC lodge on a lake called Long Pond, spent some time hiking nearby at Gulf Hagas, some time on the AT. Weather wasn’t bad the days we were there, and bugs were just at the modest annoyance level. Started out with a few days in New Hampshire, where it rained all the time, and ended up with a couple days on the coast, which was pleasant, but hot for Maine I guess. All in all, a nice break from the city, but I’m glad to be back in bug-free Manhattan enjoying air conditioning…

  9. Vincent says:

    As a mathematician, I’m very happy that there is a book now called quantum mechanics for mathematicians! I have a question about the introduction, though.

    You write: `The strangeness inherent in quantum theory that Feynman was referring to has two rather di fferent sources. One of them is the inherent disjunction and incommensurability between the conceptual framework of the classical physics which governs our everyday experience of the physical world, and the very di fferent framework which governs physical reality at the atomic scale.’

    My question is: what is the other source? Maybe I misread you, but it seems that you use the rest of section 1.1 to explain what you mean by very different in the second sentence, but all this time I am still waiting for the disclosure of the other of the two rather different sources from the first sentence. Can you tell us what it is?

  10. Peter Woit says:


    Thanks for pointing that out, it is really poorly worded. The material from the second paragraph onwards discusses the “second source” referred to, which is the different kind of mathematics basic to quantum theory as opposed to the classical theory. I’ll try and reword that soon, at some point later I’ll likely be rewriting the introduction more extensively.

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