Author Archives: woit

Last Night’s Hype

If you’re a Friend of the IAS ($1750/year and up), you were invited to a talk last night, at which IAS member Thomas Rudelius promised to explain to you How to Test String Theory. The video of the talk is … Continue reading

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Breaking News

Two midday breaking news items: The ACME II experiment is reporting today a new, nearly order of magnitude better, limit on the electric dipole moment of the electron: $$|d_e|\leq 1.1 \times 10^{-29} e\ cm$$ The previous best bound was from … Continue reading

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This Week’s Hype

The story of string theory as a theory of everything has settled into a rather bizarre steady-state, with these three recent links providing a look at where we are now: At his podcast site, Sean Carroll has an interview with … Continue reading

Posted in Swampland, This Week's Hype | 14 Comments

High Life

I spent yesterday night at the New York Film Festival, watching Claire Denis’s new film High Life. For a detailed and accurate review of the film, see the one at Variety. This film is about a voyage to a black … Continue reading

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Various and Sundry

First, news related in some way to Australia: This summer the Sydney Morning Herald published a nice profile of Geordie Williamson. By the way, the ICM plenary lectures are finally available on video, with Williamson’s among those worth watching. The … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews, Uncategorized | 30 Comments

Scholze and Stix on the Mochizuki Proof

As discussed here a couple months ago, Peter Scholze and Jakob Stix believe they have found a serious problem with Mochizuki’s claimed proof of the abc conjecture, and traveled to Kyoto in March to discuss it with him. Their write-up … Continue reading

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This Week’s Hype

The Stanford string theory group is not taking the attack by Harvard’s Cumrun Vafa lying down. After an arXiv barrage of papers defending KKLT (see here), they’ve now enlisted the Stanford press office, which has produced a five part promotional … Continue reading

Posted in Multiverse Mania, This Week's Hype | 19 Comments

Is Quantum Mechanics a Probabilistic Theory?

There is a simple question about quantum theory that has been increasingly bothering me. I keep hoping that my reading about interpretational issues will turn up a discussion of this point, but that hasn’t happened. I’m hoping someone expert in … Continue reading

Posted in Quantum Mechanics | 74 Comments

Beyond Weird

Philip Ball’s Beyond Weird is the best popular survey I’ve seen of the contemporary state of discussions about the “interpretation” of quantum mechanics. It appeared earlier this year in a British edition (which I just read a copy of), with … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | 14 Comments

Quick Links

A collection of links that may be of interest: Talks from the SM at 50 conference held earlier this summer are available here. A detailed expose of the “Fake Science Factory” is here, a related Nature story is here. For … Continue reading

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