May

28

 An article in the Guardian raises a few hackles and starts a debate about how and where science is best done. Meanwhile the theory draws interest.

1)

…'In Weinstein's theory, called Geometric Unity, he proposes a 14-dimensional "observerse" that has our familiar four-dimensional space-time continuum embedded within it. The interaction between the two is something like the relationship between the people in the stands and those on the pitch at a football stadium - the spectators (limited to their four-dimensional space) can see and are affected by the action on the pitch (representing all 14 dimensions) but are somewhat removed from it and cannot detect every detail.'

and

'Whatever happens, says Frenkel, Weinstein is an example of how science might change in future. "I find it remarkable that Eric was able to come up with such beautiful and original ideas even though he has been out of academia for so long (doing wonderful things in other areas, such as economics and finance). In the past week we have learned about an outstanding result about prime numbers proved by a mathematician who had been virtually unknown, and now comes Eric's lecture at Oxford.'

2) and from de Sautoy's Op-Ed:

'Weinstein begins the paper in which he explains his proposal with a quote from Einstein: "What really interests me is whether God had any choice in the creation of the world." Weinstein's theory answers this in spades. Very little in the universe is arbitrary. The mathematics explains why it should work the way it does. If this isn't a description of how our universe works then frankly I'd prefer to move to the universe where it does!'

3) Jennifer Ouellette at Scientific American in defense of academic science:

…"This is what truly free and open scientific discussion of brave/bold new ideas looks like. The tradition is alive and well in that stuffy old academic establishment. I'll let Pontzen have the last word: At what point during this long and difficult process does it become legitimate to proclaim a breakthrough? It's a line in shifting sands, but that line has certainly been crossed. Du Sautoy – the University of Oxford's professor of the public understanding of science, no less – has short-circuited science's basic checks and balances. Yesterday's shenanigans were anything but scientific. Preach it."


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