Smolin has a new book (Time Reborn) coming out this month. Amazon has a page on it, with advance reviews. He gave a talk on the main ideas at Perimeter in February. I was impressed by the depth and cogency. It is a 60 minute talk followed by a lengthy discussion with Rob Myers, Laurent Freidel, Neil Turok and other members of the Perimeter audience. Here's the video: http://pirsa.org/13020146/ The first 35 minutes lays out the main ideas for wide audience and is readily understandable. I think it would well repay anyone's time to listen to it. He presents certain principles (buttressed by quotes from Dirac, Feynman, Wheeler, Peirce) some going back to Leibniz. In the next 25 minutes he presents new work on a spacetime and quantum dynamics based on those principles which he and a collaborator are currently attempting to simulate in toy version on computer. Some advanced background is needed to understand the final 25 minutes of the talk. He constructs one or more actions/Lagrangians based on simplified models under study. The enterprise is high risk. As I recall, the most active audience member is Rob Myers, who keeps commenting and asking questions both during the first hour and in the following 20 minute discussion. But Laurent Freidel is pretty active too. The enterprise could clearly fail. However I find it very interesting and having a real potential to change the foundations. I'd appreciate comment from anyone who has listened to (at least the first half hour or so of) the talk.