Author Archives: woit

Steven Weinberg 1933-2021

I heard this morning the news that Steven Weinberg passed away yesterday at the age of 88.  He was arguably the dominant figure in theoretical particle physics during its period of great success from the late sixties to the early … Continue reading

Posted in Obituaries | 4 Comments

The Problem of Quantization

I’ve been watching Witten’s ongoing talks about geometric Langlands mentioned here, and wanted to recommend to everyone, mathematician or physicist, the first of them, on The Problem of Quantization (pdf here, video here, the question session is very worthwhile). For … Continue reading

Posted in Quantum Mechanics, Quantum Theory: The Book, Uncategorized | 11 Comments

Deterioration of the World’s Thinking About the Deepest Stringy Ideas

For quite a few years now, I’ve been mystified about what is going on in string theory, as the subject has become dominated by AdS/CFT inspired work which has nothing to do with either strings or any visible idea about … Continue reading

Posted in Strings 2XXX | 4 Comments

Even More Langlands

Various news at least tangentially related to the Langlands program: Cambridge University Press this month is publishing a volume edited by Julia Mueller, entitled The Genesis of the Langlands Program. The chapters by various authors concentrate on Langlands himself and … Continue reading

Posted in Langlands | 3 Comments

Strings 2021

Strings 2021 started today, program is available here. Since it’s online only, talks are much more accessible than usual (and since it’s free, over 2000 people have registered to in principle participate via Zoom). Talks are available for watching every … Continue reading

Posted in Strings 2XXX | 34 Comments

Various Math Items

Some math-research items: Mura Yakerson has been doing a really wonderful series of interviews with mathematicians, available at her math-life balance web-page or Youtube channel. I’ve just started listening to some of them, including ones with Peter Scholze and Dustin … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 17 Comments

Non-empirical Physics

I haven’t been paying much attention in recent years to the philosophers of science studying “Non-empirical” or “Post-empirical” physics or theory confirmation. At various times I did write fairly extensively about this, see for instance here, here and here. By … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 27 Comments

The Evolution of the Physicist’s Picture of Nature

Reading this Nautilus article about Julian Barbour led me recently to something I don’t think I’ve ever read before, Dirac’s 1963 Scientific American article The Evolution of the Physicist’s Picture of Nature. There is a very famous quote from this … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 20 Comments

Some History

I’m heading out soon for a 10 day vacation in the Rocky Mountains, blogging likely to change from sparse to non-existent for the next couple weeks. I’ve come across the following things that people with an interest in the recent … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Finished Some Things

I’ve now finished with two things that I’ve been working on over the last year or so: The paper explaining my proposal for “Twistor Unification” is now done and uploaded to the arXiv, see here. I’ve finished lecturing for the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 22 Comments