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PILING CONJECTURE UPON CONJECTURE John Horgan and Peter Woit on string theory delusions

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Uploaded on May 13, 2011

John Horgan: http://www.johnhorgan.org/

Peter Woit: http://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/wo...

PILING CONJECTURE UPON CONJECTURE: Horgan and Woit on string theory

"For the last eighteen years particle theory has been dominated by a single approach to the unification of the Standard Model interactions and quantum gravity. This line of thought has hardened into a new orthodoxy that postulates an unknown fundamental supersymmetric theory involving strings and other degrees of freedom with characteristic scale around the Planck length. ... It is a striking fact that there is absolutely no evidence whatsoever for this complex and unattractive conjectural theory. There is not even a serious proposal for what the dynamics of the fundamental 'M-theory' is supposed to be or any reason at all to believe that its dynamics would produce a vacuum state with the desired properties. The sole argument generally given to justify this picture of the world is that perturbative string theories have a massless spin two mode and thus could provide an explanation of gravity, if one ever managed to find an underlying theory for which perturbative string theory is the perturbative expansion."

- Peter Woit, http://arxiv.org/abs/hep-th/0206135

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