Author Archives: woit

In a Parallel Universe, Another You

From today’s New York Times, Michio Kaku explains: In physics, the concept of a multiverse is a key element of a leading area of study based on the theory of everything. It’s called string theory, which is the focus of … Continue reading

Posted in Multiverse Mania, Uncategorized | 27 Comments

All Langlands All the Time

I’m about to head to Paris on vacation, quite possibly there will be less blogging for the next couple of weeks. Here are a few Langlands-related items: The big Langlands-related event of the summer will be the July IHES Summer … Continue reading

Posted in Langlands, Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Physicists Discover Never-Before Seen Particle Sitting On a Tabletop

I woke up this morning to find out that a new Higgs particle which could explain dark matter has been discovered, in a table-top experiment at Boston College. For some of the news stories about this, see here and here. … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 19 Comments

Memories of a Theoretical Physicist

Joe Polchinski’s autobiographical Memories of a Theoretical Physicist has just been published, in an open-access version that is freely available. Much of the volume is what appeared here on the arXiv back in 2017, but this has been supplemented with … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | 20 Comments

This and That

Various things that may be of interest: MSRI in Berkeley has announced a \$70 million dollar gift from Jim and Marilyn Simons, and Henry and Marsha Laufer. This gift will make up the bulk of a planned endowment increase of … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 22 Comments

Two Titans

If one tried to pick a single most talented and influential figure of the past 100 years in each of the fields of pure mathematics and of theoretical physics, I’d argue that you should pick Alexander Grothendieck in pure math … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 51 Comments

Brian Conrad on the California Mathematics Framework

Brian Conrad has been doing the state of California a great service by taking a careful look at the drafts of the proposed California Mathematics Framework and the research they are supposedly based on.   He has recently created a website … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 9 Comments

Three Quick Items

Just time for three quick items: There’s a wonderful book out now published by the Simons Center at Stony Brook, with the title Crossings. It tells the story of the center and of various people involved with it through a … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Various and Sundry

Last week a review of the Mochizuki IUT papers appeared at Math Reviews, written by Mohamed Saïdi. His discussion of the critical part of the proof is limited to: Theorem 3.11 in Part III is somehow reinterpreted in Corollary 3.12 … Continue reading

Posted in abc Conjecture, Uncategorized | 24 Comments

Two New Quantum Field Theory Books

I’ve recently noticed that two very good new books on quantum field theory have become available, one aimed more at mathematicians, one purely for physicists. What Is a Quantum Field Theory? Available online now from Cambridge University Press (actual printed … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | 35 Comments