David Gross gave the concluding talk at a recent string conference in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv http://video.tau.ac.il/Lectures/Exact_Sciences/Physics/stringfest// I am having difficulty getting the slides and video, which Peter Woit says are online. This talk by Gross (Nobelist, director of Santa Barbara ITP) is likely to be interesting. If anyone has a better link, experiences or figures out the problem, please share what you know. Lacking the original video talk by Gross, here is Woit's blog summary of it: ==quote from N.E.W.== Gross ended the conference with a remarkable discussion of the current state of string theory. He put up various cartoons illustrating the fact that the public perception of string theory has turned rather negative (including the recent one from the New Yorker: “Is String Theory Bullshît?”), but took solace in a recent use of string theory in an advertisement for women’s bikinis. He declared that “I am still a true believer in the sexiness of string theory”, and that he continued to think it is clearly on the right road. But, after giving the standard list of string theory achievements, he did admit that he was much less optimistic than 20 years ago, and spent some time discussing what he sees as the main failure to date: the continuing lack of a fundamental dynamical principle behind string theory. The question “what is string theory?” still has no real answer, and he has “the very uneasy feeling that we’re missing something big, that semi-classical intuition fails”, and that this will make the landscape disappear. Perhaps most remarkably, Gross admitted to some discouragement about AdS/CFT. He noted that the recent Klebanov et. al. results promoted by press release as connecting string theory with physics were actually due to an impressive gauge theory calculation. According to him, what has happened is that gauge theory techniques have proved more powerful than string theory techniques. He went on to discuss the landscape, explaining that he found the anthropic principle impossible to falsify, completely against the way physics has made progress in the past, and just “an easy way out”. Gross ended his talk by pointing out that 90 percent of the conference talks used supersymmetry, and that currently there was a “really weird situation”: supersymmetry was an essential tool, but there was absolutely no evidence for it. He said that he continues to believe that supersymmetry will be found at the LHC and has been willing to take 50/50 bets on the subject for bottles of wine, etc. ==endquote== more links to try http://stringfest.tau.ac.il/final_program.html Ahh, I see they say that the videos require a Windows system. So Mac users can't get Gross' talk.