Monday, February 18, 2013

There is No "Theory of Everything"

Whenever I see a reference to a "Theory of Everything" in physics, I can't believe that people seriously discuss such an absurd concept.

I understand that it usually refers to the goal of unifying general relativity & quantum mechanics, but the name gives the false impression that there's some way to mathematically model all the physical systems in The Universe in a formulaic manner.

It's nice to know there are scientists who don't buy into that fantasy.

Lisa Randall in New Scientist:

Even Stephen Hawking came to his senses:

Physics Buzz:
It's been many years since taking any courses on the subject, but I still enjoy learning about physics. The more I learn, though, the more apparent it becomes that Reality is relatively infinite in complexity & cannot be fully defined by any set of man-made symbols.

Equations can calculate (& scientific theories can generalize) many different phenomena in this world. However, despite the modelling power of calculus, fractals, & other mathematical tools, they are still very limited. The Universe has dimensions & properties that we haven't even discovered yet. How can we accurately model something we can't fully comprehend?

Physicists will continue to describe & measure the many fascinating aspects of this world. They will continue to try to simplify & consolidate general theories. In response, The Universe will continue to grow in detail as people peer ever-deeper into its mysteries.

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