Finally we get to some real substance in the program! (See earlier notes, and thoughts.) Jeff actually mentions all the effort going on string theory and experiments at Brookhaven, and asks that question I keep asking everyone… “why oh why is this never mentioned by the press in these discussions?” I’ve asked this of Peter Woit on his blog a lot too, for example, and have never got much of an answer. Peter and Lee want the world to believe -by reading their books- that the entire field of string theory is just people sitting around discussing the Anthropic Principle and lots of different universes, and blah blah blah… It serves the purpose of the books in question to completely distort the view of what is actually going on in the field. They claim that there is no experimental support (true) or hope for experimental support (how can they know that?) for string theory… but they ignore the fact –they intentionally don’t tell you, dear reader– about the interesting work going on by a huge percentage of the field to use string theory to study the structure of nuclear matter. It is still in its early stages, and may not work, but it is rather interesting. As Jeff put it, about the new form of matter that is constructed in these experiments, string theory is “the only approach that I know of” that currently seems to be able to explain the observed properties….
Lee, about the omission of this huge effort in string theory research from his book: “At least it is alluded to…”
That’s just lame.
He then proceeds to rather poorly attempt to claim that such contact with experiment (if this is indeed the case we don’t know for sure yet, I should say) is essentially beside the point. Nothing to do with whether string theory is a fundamental theory of Nature.
Dear reader, did you think I was exaggerating when I used the words “Storm in a Teacup”, “Self Interest”, and “Counter-Hype”?