Roughly how many people in this world actually know about string theory?

In summary, it is difficult to determine exactly how many people in the world know about string theory, as the definition of "know about" can vary. However, it is likely that only a few hundred individuals have a deep and thorough understanding of string theory, with possibly no one fully understanding it. Additionally, while there is still controversy surrounding string theory and its connection to the physical world, some of the mathematical tools developed for it have applications in other areas of study.
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Roughly how many people in this world actually know about string theory?
I'm guessing no more than a few hundred because the math of string theory is so esoteric.

 
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  • #3
Define "know about". Sounds to me like you mean "fully understand" which is hardly the same thing.
 
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  • #4
caz said:
Looking at https://www.aip.org/statistics/reports/trends-physics-phds-171819 one would guess several thousand, but that would include people who are no longer active.
This appears to be just the number of doctorates awarded each year, which includes physics and all other fields of academic study. I don't think even academics with PhDs in physics necessarily have a deep understanding of string theory because there are so many different areas of study in physics.
Furthermore, I think that perhaps one or two of the ten outstanding scholars who have obtained doctorates in theoretical physics can really understand string theory thoroughly.

phinds said:
Define "know about". Sounds to me like you mean "fully understand" which is hardly the same thing.
Yes, I mean a deep and thorough understanding of string theory.
There are probably no more than a few hundred such geniuses among the billions of people in the world.
 
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  • #5
alan123hk said:
Yes, I mean a deep and thorough understanding of string theory.
That number could be as small as zero. Depending on your definition?
How long is a piece of string?
 
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  • #6
Vanadium 50 said:
How long is a piece of string?

Long enough to reach each end. . . . :-p

.
 
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  • #7
phinds said:
Define "know about". Sounds to me like you mean "fully understand" which is hardly the same thing.
I was going to say that. I'm sure more than a few hundred people know about string theory. It is simply delusional to think otherwise.

To the OP: your question is poorly phrased.
 
  • #8
Vanadium 50 said:
That number could be as small as zero. Depending on your definition?
I look again at the linked video clip from the first post. It seems that string theory itself is not very complete, there is still controversy, and there is no experiment to confirm its authenticity
From this perspective, perhaps until now, no one in the world has really fully understood string theory.
 
  • #9
alan123hk said:
I look again at the linked video clip from the first post. It seems that string theory itself is not very complete, there is still controversy, and there is no experiment to confirm its authenticity
From this perspective, perhaps no one in the world really fully understands string theory.
String Theory, as I understand it, is an elegant mathematical construct that so far has no correlation to the physical world.
 
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  • #10
phinds said:
no correlation to the physical world.
Not so. It may be that matter is not made of strings, but some of the mathematical tools developed for strings have applications elsewhere.
 
  • #11
Vanadium 50 said:
Not so. It may be that matter is not made of strings, but some of the mathematical tools developed for strings have applications elsewhere.
Fair enough. I was really just thinking of String Theory as a description of matter. I may BE such a description, but no way to tell yet.
 

1. How many people in the world are familiar with string theory?

It is difficult to estimate an exact number, but it is believed that a relatively small percentage of the global population is familiar with string theory. This is due to the complex nature of the theory and the fact that it is primarily studied and understood by scientists and researchers in the field of theoretical physics.

2. Is string theory a well-known concept among the general public?

No, string theory is not a well-known concept among the general public. It is a highly specialized and complex theory that is primarily studied and discussed within the scientific community.

3. How many scientists are actively researching and studying string theory?

Again, it is difficult to determine an exact number, but it is estimated that there are thousands of scientists and researchers around the world actively studying and researching string theory.

4. Is string theory a widely accepted theory in the scientific community?

String theory is a highly debated and controversial topic within the scientific community. While some scientists support and study it, others criticize it and question its validity. Overall, it is not yet widely accepted as a proven theory.

5. Are there any famous scientists who have contributed to the development of string theory?

Yes, there are several notable scientists who have made significant contributions to the development of string theory, including Edward Witten, Leonard Susskind, and Brian Greene.

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