Sunday, October 28, 2007

Loose Strings: Pressure Mounts To Tie String Theory To The Real World

This is a news report on the talk that David Gross gave at Los Alamos. It has been described more as a "progress report" of String Theory. It would have been interesting to hear it, since it isn't much of a "progress".

This week of advanced science talks at the lab culminated in a lecture by Gross who offered a note of apology about the string theory of reality, to which he has been a major contributor

"It hasn't led to any big observational payoffs," he said.

I think that's a huge understatement. I think most of the audience probably feels the same way as this comment, because I certainly do:

A member of LANL's Theoretical Division, astrophysicist Salman Habib said after the talk that string theory remains difficult to assess.

"It's a funny field to look at from the outside because it has yet to connect with the outside world," he said. "Mathematically, it's very pretty and theorists like to do fundamental mathematical computations, but they have not led to any big observational payoffs so far.


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