Friday, October 17, 2008

Deferential Geo-whatamy?

There are many things in this world that I will probably never truly understand (women being one of them ;-) but I like to hear people who do understand or at least understand many orders of magnitude more than I do try and explain things in simple terms. Quantum Mechanics and particle physics are two of those things that I have little hope of ever really understanding, but ideas like String Theory and big toys like the Large Hadron Collider simply fascinate me. I ran into a great TED presentation by Garrett Lisi who is an adventure sports enthusiast (aka surf and snow bum) and is an up and comer in the world of theoretical physics. About a year ago Lisi released a paper called "An Exceptionally Simple Theory of Everything," which uses a complex, multi-dimensional, differentiable manifold shape called the E8 to try and unify all of the forces of physics. It presents yet another alternative to String Theory, which the LHC should help to prove or disprove, but until then you can watch the following great presentation to see how things might work:

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