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I thought I'd share this because of the sheer elegance and beauty of the idea. I'm not sure if it is relevant to the course, but it raises interesting questions.

Disclaimer: Keep in mind I know very little about any of this stuff, I post it because it is inspires me to learn, and understand; not because I believe it or understand it now.

http://www.ted.com/talks/garrett_lisi_on_his_theory_of_everything.html

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=a-geometric-theory-of-everything

Garret Lisi was talking questions in the comments of this one.

http://fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/108

Garrett Lisi candid FAQ

u4842819


Hello,
Thanks so much for sharing! I found that video very fascinating and thought-provoking, but like you, I know very little about how this kind of stuff works!

I just finished reading "The Copernican Revolution" from our required readings and parts of this theory reminded me of how Copernicus and his predecessors felt that the planets must have circular orbits because they were considered beautiful and perfect. Similarly, this theory is permeated by the belief that these particles fit into an aesthetic pattern. Of course, Lisi is simply using the E8 model to predict particles and not desperately trying to make the maths fit the observations. Nonetheless, I found this an interesting correlation that shows humankind's perception of nature as fundamentally orderly and beautiful.

I also found it interesting when Lisi was trying to answer questions at the end - the whole idea that we are reaching a stage where it is extremely difficult to relate models of particles to things we experience in everyday life, or to visualise these particles. This reminded me of what we covered briefly in one of the lectures, "the universe may not be accessible to the human mind at all levels."

Ellen Rykers


Good points and all very relevant.

Jason