Midnight In The Desert — string theory

Is Hyperspace Pure Science Fiction? Not If You Look Hard at String Theory

Posted by K R on

Is Hyperspace Pure Science Fiction? Not If You Look Hard at String Theory

The science fiction canon is thick with ideas about how to make faster-than-light travel possible. Some writers favor wormholes, some filmmakers go in for time dilation, some graphic novelists use warp drives that folds space time up — the list of possibilities, unencumbered by physics, are endless. But one of the genre’s classic tropes for making interstellar travel possible is worth a second look: hyperspace. This blurred line visual shorthand for interstellar travel is not science fact, but it isn’t purely science fiction either. Punch it! Hyperspace is accessible to ships that have hyperdrives. Exactly what that means, presumably varies...

Read more →

String Theory Might Merge With the Other Theory of Everything

Posted by K R on

String Theory Might Merge With the Other Theory of Everything

EIGHT DECADES HAVE passed since physicists realized that the theories of quantum mechanics and gravity don’t fit together, and the puzzle of how to combine the two remains unsolved. In the last few decades, researchers have pursued the problem in two separate programs—string theory and loop quantum gravity—that are widely considered incompatible by their practitioners. But now some scientists argue that joining forces is the way forward. Among the attempts to unify quantum theory and gravity, string theory has attracted the most attention. Its premise is simple: Everything is made of tiny strings. The strings may be closed unto themselves...

Read more →

Is String Theory Science?

Posted by K R on

Is String Theory Science?

Is string theory science? Physicists and cosmologists have been debating the question for the past decade. Now the community is looking to philosophy for help. In December, some of the feuding physicists met with philosophers of science at an unusual workshop aimed at addressing the accusation that branches of theoretical physics have become detached from the realities of experimental science. At stake is the integrity of the scientific method, as well as the reputation of science among the general public, say the workshop’s organizers. Held at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich in Germany on December 7-9, the workshop came...

Read more →