6 December 2012

Who is really working on a theory of everything?

String theory is wrong. Loop quantum gravity is not a theory of everything. Garrett Lisi is wrong. Who then is working on a theory of everything? In the arxiv there are no proposals.

Let me summarize. Imagine that you are a young physicist. You dream about working on the theory of everything. You study physics and start putting your nose into research. What do you experience?


If somebody explores an option for the theory of everything, the first experience is what happens to string theorists. Caught between the obligation to follow Witten and his aggressive followers or to agree with the aggressive critics.

And both camps agree on one thing: if a young physicist does some research, even outside string theory, he is an idiot or crazy. Everybody in the field knows: whatever the young researcher does, he gets hostile criticism. Of course, the same happens to old physicists. The consequence? Nobody actually works on the theory of everything. Of the two or three-thousand researchers in high energy physics, "nobody" is actually working of the theory of everything.

Aggression is the reason that the theory of everything is still lacking. Homo homini lupus. If you have a story to tell, you are welcome to write me.


  1. Clara,
    Just found your blog. I read most of the recent ones. I really can't tell what's sarcasm and what's real opinion, so I'll just assume that you are interested in hearing alternative explanations to the 'consensus' views of string theory, supersymmetry, multiverse, inflation, and universes from nothing.

    I have no story to tell and I don't have a Theory of Everything, but there are a few people working on the Neutrino Minimal Standard Model and Entropy as the source of dark energy, which I try my best to summarize at my blog. (Perhaps you are already well aware, and I'd like to get your thoughts on these ideas.)

    Similarly, I am working on explaining Dark Matter and Dark Energy. (Though, as I said, it's not a Theory of Everything because it doesn't attempt to explain all of the those ~20 nasty experimental constants in the SM.)
    What I'm trying to do is to see whether neutrinos can explain dark matter and whether the T asymmetry of the weak nuclear force can explain the expansion of the universe. In other words, our 4D sphere we call time-space expands when there are space-time irreversible interactions involving the nuclear force. This is likely why the universe expanded so rapidly after the Big Bang, and then the expansion slowed down after all of the high mass quarks settled down into up/down quarks.

    My guess is that the physics community will be much more open in the future to new ideas now that data from CERN is slowly ruling out supersymemtry, and hence string theory. But there will likely still be large number of physicists who will defend string theory, multiverses, inflation, universes from nothing, and supersymemtry until the end. But that's fine. Life would be boring if there weren't people to critique one's ideas.
    I'd love to get your thoughts on neutrinos as dark matter and weak nuclear interactions as the source of the expansion of the universe.
    Check out some of the recent posts at my blog:

  2. Neutrinos as dark matter is an old proposals. We'll have to wait for the results of the Planck satellite to know more. It seems disfavored at present, but who knows?

    We also need to wait that all supersymmetry fas die out. That will take some time.