Confused at a higher level

The view from a liberal arts college physics department (and deanery)

The Theory of Everything

Posted by Arjendu on January 17, 2013

Greetings.  I am emerging from a deanly silence to post an link to an interesting video.

Since Newton’s classical apple cart was upset by relativity and quantum theory, physicists have been seeking a theory that would unify the macroscopic and the microscopic and explain “everything” (for sufficiently small values of the word ‘explain’ and large values of the word ‘everything’).

CERN theoretical physicist and coiner of the term “theory of everything”, John Ellis, best-selling Oxford physicist Frank Close, and philosopher of science Nicholas Maxwell have a conversation about the limits of knowledge in this video.

The discussion ranges from physics to philosophy,  methodological to metaphysical, with [a Standard Model t-shirt wearing] John Ellis bemoaning physics failure in devising a means of experimentally testing String Theory.

It’s fun. And it’s made/posted by a (new to me) endeavor called the Institute of Art and Ideas.

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