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Nothing? (Beyond the Standard Model)

  1. Oct 10, 2011 #1
    It's a bit premature to conclude the LHC won't find Higgs or SUSY but...

    There are a few ideas kicking around that use knots (braids, strings, strands, knotted dimesnsions or whatever) to "explain" the Standard Model. One that catches the eye for its explicit particle mass calculations is "Quantum Knots and New Quantum Field Theory" by Sze Kui Ng (arXiv:math/0004151v3).

    Our Mr Ng has been working on this since about 2000, during which time a lot of progress has been made in understanding knot invariants. Now and again big-name physicists follow Kelvin's precedent and take another look at knots.

    The latest is Ed Witten, so maybe we should sit up and listen?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 10, 2011 #2


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    sneutron, knots have a powerful history, and mythology, in its use for fundamental physics. Vortex theory, for instance. This history makes people to be cautious about them.
  4. Oct 10, 2011 #3
    So far man's ingenuity in devising mathematical models seems to have outstripped nature's
    propensity for creation....at least in this universe. Who knows when or if a new insight will
    trigger a paradigm change....seems like its about time.
  5. Oct 10, 2011 #4
    Hi, Arivero! Does that mean "don't go there?" :rofl: Wouldn't you say knot theory is (at last) coming of age?

    Progress in Physics and Maths seems to be less of a march, more a drunken stagger. It's scary to speculate how much current activity will be seen in 100 years' time as fumbling in a blind alley. It's not polite or even sensible to knock String Theory, especially in the light of so many "miraculous" results. Still...

    For over 30 years the "obvious" way forward has been grander and grander unification, but i'm beginning to wonder if Nature is having a laugh at our expense. "Mmm, F4, E6, E8, monster, that'll keep 'em busy for decades. Now let's make it so simple, they'll wonder how they ever managed to miss it".

    That isn't very funny, of course. All those man-years betting on one horse, a funding desert for alternative research, the pathetic CERN news channel. Shouldn't we just turn off the tap and go turkey in the hope of coming to our senses again? :devil:

    Like many others i've tried to compensate for lack of brain and postgrad to handle the modern abstractions by spending time in a dream world of models. Completely unproductive, despite 30 years of obsession with knots. :cry:

    But i was never discouraged because most of Physics plays out far from Planck energies (even if a bit fuzzily). Why shouldn't geometry-topology be able to explain most of the history of the universe?

    Of course, ahem, always keep an open mind. What did you think of Ken Ono's bombshell on partition numbers? Got a feeling that's going to keep a lot of mathematical physicists very busy for a long time to come!
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
  6. Oct 10, 2011 #5
    Hi, Naty1, good topic for another debate! See also my 2nd post. I'm inclined to think the string theorists haven't actually delivered (yet) on coherent models, though the range of their potential models is absolutely breath-taking.
  7. Oct 10, 2011 #6
    Sorry, the article with those (hadron) calculations is actually arXiv:hep-ph/0208098v1.
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