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At Forbes: Wolfram’s new theory “isn’t even science” yet. But wait…


Readers may remember Stephen Wolfram’s new theory of everything, about which leveller heads said, “It is absolutely possible that Wolfram has stumbled upon a deeper truth about the universe. But at the moment, he’s just another physicist with an idea. This idea should be taken as skeptically as any other that claims to explain the entire universe, meaning outside experts should check that it doesn’t contain glaring errors. Any strong hypothesis should be able to tell us something new and testable about the universe.”

Now, Ethan Siegel weighs in at Forbes:

When we use the word “theory” in a conventional sense, we talk about it the same way we’d talk about the word “idea” or “hypothesis.” We mean that sure, we have our conventional way of thinking about things that we generally accept, but maybe things are actually this other way instead.

To a scientist, though, a theory is a far more powerful thing than that. It’s a self-consistent framework that has the quantitative power to predict the outcomes (or sets of probable outcomes) of a large set of systems under a wide variety of conditions.

A successful, established theory goes even farther. It contains a large suite of predictions that agree with established experiments and/or observations. It’s been tested in a large number of independent ways, and has passed every test thus far. It has a range of validity that’s well-understood, and it’s also understood that the theory may not be valid outside of that particular range.

Ethan Siegel, “3 Simple Reasons Why Wolfram’s New ‘Fundamental Theory’ Is Not Yet Science” at Forbes

We can tell what’s wrong with science today when we try to take Siegel’s dead-serious explanation of what he thinks a theory in science is and apply it to: Darwinian evolution theory

Of course, Wolfram’s ideas are not the new Einstein or Schrodinger. But court-enforced rubbish like Darwinism has corrupted the very idea of theory as Siegel tries to explain it.

One final note, when we allow the Agent causality of God ‘back’ into physics, as the Christian founders of modern science originally envisioned,,,, (Isaac Newton, Michael Faraday, James Clerk Maxwell, and Max Planck, to name a few of the Christian founders),,, and as quantum mechanics itself now empirically demands (with the closing of the free will loophole by Anton Zeilinger and company), rightly allowing the Agent causality of God ‘back’ into physics provides us with a very plausible resolution for the much sought after ‘theory of everything’ in that Christ’s resurrection from the dead provides an empirically backed reconciliation, via the Shroud of Turin, between quantum mechanics and general relativity into the much sought after ‘Theory of Everything”. https://uncommondesc.wpengine.com/intelligent-design/physicists-need-courage-to-confront-the-collider-dilemma-says-boson-pioneer/#comment-682050 Moreover, the overturning of the Copernican principle by both General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics adds considerable weight to my claim that Jesus’s resurrection from the dead is the correct ‘theory of everything’
July 2019 – Overturning of the Copernican Principle by both General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics https://uncommondesc.wpengine.com/intelligent-design/we-are-invited-to-consider-a-simpler-perspective-on-the-laws-of-physics/#comment-680427
Colossians 1:15-20 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
Moreover, and as mentioned previously, my critique that the standard model is NOT a true superseding theory of quantum theory does not mean that the standard model has not been extremely successful in making accurate predictions in its own right. In fact, the standard model has reached, what I term to be, 'platonic perfection'. Ever since modern science was born in medieval Christian Europe, science has had a history of looking for ‘platonic perfection’, and assuming the Mind of God to be behind that ‘platonic perfection’. That is to say, that science has a history of reaching for perfect agreement between the immaterial mathematics that might describe a facet of this universe and the experimental results that measure those mathematical predictions (within the limits of what we are able to accurately measure with our scientific instruments). Copernicus, (who was heavily influenced by Platonic thinking), imagined (incorrectly) that the planets move in perfect circles (rather than ellipses). Later, Newton, for allowing God could adjust the orbits of the planets, was chastised by Leibniz, (and even by Laplace) for having a “very narrow ideas about the wisdom and the power of God.”.. i.e. For having a narrow view of the perfection of God.
“Leibniz, in his controversy with Newton on the discovery of infinitesimal calculus, sharply criticized the theory of Divine intervention as a corrective of the disturbances of the solar system. “To suppose anything of the kind”, he said, “is to exhibit very narrow ideas of the wisdom and power of God’.” – Pierre-Simon Laplace https://books.google.com/books?id=oLtHAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA73&lpg=PA73
For most of the history of modern science in the Christian west, finding ‘platonic perfection’ for mathematical descriptions of the universe has been a very elusive goal. This all changed with the discoveries of Special Relativity, General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics (and with the Standard Model). That is to say, (as far as experimental testing will allow), there is no discrepancy to be found between what the mathematical descriptions of Relativity and Quantum Mechanics predict and what our most advanced scientific testing of those predictions are able to measure.
“Recent experiments have confirmed, to within one part in one hundred million billion (10^17), that the speed of light does not change when an observer is in motion.” Douglas Ell – “Counting To God” – pg. 41 – 2014 “When this paper was published (referring to the circa 1970 Hawking, Penrose paper) we could only prove General Relativity’s reliability to 1% precision, today we can prove it to 15 places of decimal.” Hugh Ross PhD. Astrophysics – quote taken from 8:40 mark of the following video debate Hugh Ross vs Lewis Wolpert – Is there evidence for a Cosmic Creator https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VLMrDO0_WvQ Experimental non-classicality of an indivisible quantum system – Zeilinger 2011 Excerpt: Page 491: “This represents a violation of (Leggett’s) inequality (3) by more than 120 standard deviations, demonstrating that no joint probability distribution is capable of describing our results.” The violation also excludes any non-contextual hidden-variable model. The result does, however, agree well with quantum mechanical predictions, as we will show now.,,, https://vcq.quantum.at/fileadmin/Publications/Experimental%20non-classicality%20of%20an%20indivisible.pdf Introduction to The Strange World of Quantum Mechanics Excerpt: quantum mechanics is the most successful theory that humanity has ever developed; the brightest jewel in our intellectual crown. Quantum mechanics underlies our understanding of atoms, molecules, solids, and nuclei. It is vital for explaining aspects of stellar evolution, chemical reactions, and the interaction of light with matter. It underlies the operation of lasers, transistors, magnets, and superconductors. I could cite reams of evidence backing up these assertions, but I will content myself by describing a single measurement. One electron will be stripped away from a helium atom that is exposed to ultraviolet light below a certain wavelength. This threshold wavelength can be determined experimentally to very high accuracy: it is 50.425 929 9 ± 0.000 000 4 nanometers. The threshold wavelength can also be calculated from quantum mechanics: this prediction is 50.425 931 0 ± 0.000 002 0 nanometers. The agreement between observation and quantum mechanics is extraordinary. If you were to predict the distance from New York to Los Angeles with this accuracy, your prediction would be correct to within the width of your hand. In contrast, classical mechanics predicts that any wavelength of light will strip away an electron, that is, that there will be no threshold at all. http://www.oberlin.edu/physics/dstyer/StrangeQM/intro.html
As well, quantum electrodynamics (QED), which, to repeat, is a combination of special relativity and quantum mechanics, also now joins the list of perfect mathematical descriptions of the universe in which we can find no deviation from what the mathematics predict and what our best experimental testing can discern (again, at least to within the measurement uncertainty).
The Most Precisely Tested Theory in the History of Science – May 5, 2011 Excerpt: So, which of the two (general relativity or QED) is The Most Precisely Tested Theory in the History of Science? It’s a little tough to quantify a title like that, but I think relativity can claim to have tested the smallest effects. Things like the aluminum ion clock experiments showing shifts in the rate of a clock set moving at a few m/s, or raised by a foot, measure relativistic shifts of a few parts in 10^16. That is, if one clock ticks 10,000,000,000,000,000 times, the other ticks 9,999,999,999,999,999 times. That’s an impressively tiny effect, but the measured value is in good agreement with the predictions of relativity. In the end, though, I have to give the nod to QED, because while the absolute effects in relativity may be smaller, the precision of the measurements in QED is more impressive. Experimental tests of relativity measure tiny shifts, but to only a few decimal places. Experimental tests of QED measure small shifts, but to an absurd number of decimal places. The most impressive of these is the “anomalous magnetic moment of the electron,” expressed is terms of a number g whose best measured value is: g/2 = 1.001 159 652 180 73 (28) Depending on how you want to count it, that’s either 11 or 14 digits of precision (the value you would expect without QED is exactly 1, so in some sense, the shift really starts with the first non-zero decimal place), which is just incredible. And QED correctly predicts all those decimal places (at least to within the measurement uncertainty, given by the two digits in parentheses at the end of that). http://scienceblogs.com/principles/2011/05/05/the-most-precisely-tested-theo/
In other words, as far as we can tell from what measurement accuracy will allow, ‘platonic perfection’ has, for all practical purposes, been reached for QED as well as for Quantum Mechanics and both theories of Relativity. But what is the correct explanation for the "platonic perfection'' that is found in these theories? As Nima Arkani-Hamed himself, the discoverer of the amplituhedron, stated “It seems inconceivable that this intricate web of perfect mathematical descriptions is random or happenstance. This mystery must have an explanation.”,,,
Physicist: It’s Not The Answers We Lack, It’s The Question – February 24, 2019 Excerpt: “It seems inconceivable that this intricate web of perfect mathematical descriptions is random or happenstance. This mystery must have an explanation. But what might such an explanation look like?” Nima Arkani-Hamed https://uncommondesc.wpengine.com/intelligent-design/physicist-its-not-the-answers-we-lack-its-the-question/
Well, to the consternation of Atheists, the correct explanation for such 'platonic perfection' is that the mathematics that describe our universe are the product of he Mind of God. But hey, don't take my word for it, Both Einstein and Wigner are on record as to regarding it as a 'miracle' that mathematics should so accurately describe the universe. Shoot, Einstein went so far as to chastise 'professional atheists' in the process of calling it a 'miracle':
On the Rational Order of the World: a Letter to Maurice Solovine - Albert Einstein - March 30, 1952 Excerpt: "You find it strange that I consider the comprehensibility of the world (to the extent that we are authorized to speak of such a comprehensibility) as a miracle or as an eternal mystery. Well, a priori, one should expect a chaotic world, which cannot be grasped by the mind in any way .. the kind of order created by Newton's theory of gravitation, for example, is wholly different. Even if a man proposes the axioms of the theory, the success of such a project presupposes a high degree of ordering of the objective world, and this could not be expected a priori. That is the 'miracle' which is constantly reinforced as our knowledge expands. There lies the weakness of positivists and professional atheists who are elated because they feel that they have not only successfully rid the world of gods but “bared the miracles." -Albert Einstein http://inters.org/Einstein-Letter-Solovine The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences - Eugene Wigner - 1960 Excerpt: ,,certainly it is hard to believe that our reasoning power was brought, by Darwin's process of natural selection, to the perfection which it seems to possess.,,, It is difficult to avoid the impression that a miracle confronts us here, quite comparable in its striking nature to the miracle that the human mind can string a thousand arguments together without getting itself into contradictions, or to the two miracles of the existence of laws of nature and of the human mind's capacity to divine them.,,, The miracle of the appropriateness of the language of mathematics for the formulation of the laws of physics is a wonderful gift which we neither understand nor deserve. We should be grateful for it and hope that it will remain valid in future research and that it will extend, for better or for worse, to our pleasure, even though perhaps also to our bafflement, to wide branches of learning. http://www.dartmouth.edu/~matc/MathDrama/reading/Wigner.html
While I agree with Ethan Siegel's "3 Simple Reasons Why Wolfram's New 'Fundamental Theory' Is Not Yet Science", I do have a minor quibble with one of Siegel's auxiliary claims. First, Siegel's 3 reasons why Wolfram's fails as a new fundamental theory are as such,
1. You have to reproduce all the successes of the currently prevailing theory; your new idea must succeed in all the places where the prior one succeeds. 2. You need to explain at least one existing observation or measurement that the current theory struggles with; you have to demonstrate why this new idea is more compelling than the one it's seeking to replace. 3. You need to make at least one new prediction that differs from the leading theory's predictions that you can then go out and measure; if your new idea is right, there must be a way to validate or refute it.
Prior to laying out his 3 reasons, Siegel claims,
Einstein's General Relativity replaced Newtonian gravity, quantum physics replaced our classical view of the Universe, and the quantum field theory-based Standard Model superseded the early-20th century version of our quantum Universe.
And again, right after he lists his 3 reasons, Siegal again claims,
General Relativity succeeded everywhere that Newtonian gravity does, but also where it does not. It has a larger range of validity. Relativistic quantum mechanics superseded the version developed by Bohr, Pauli, Heisenberg and Schrodinger, only to later be superseded itself by quantum field theory and the eventual arrival of the Standard Model.
While it is certainly true that General Relativity succeeded everywhere that Newton's theory did, and also succeeded where Newton's theory failed to make accurate predictions, it simply is not accurate to claim that "the quantum field theory-based Standard Model superseded the early-20th century version of our quantum Universe" in the same way that Einstein's General Relativity superseded Newton's theory. First and foremost, and as Nobel Laureate Sheldon Lee Glashow stated, “Although quantum field theory is fully compatible with the special theory of relativity, a relativistic treatment of quantum measurement has yet to be formulated.”
Not So Real – Sheldon Lee Glashow – Oct. 2018 Review of: “What Is Real? The Unfinished Quest for the Meaning of Quantum Physics” by Adam Becker Excerpt: Heisenberg, Schrödinger, and their contemporaries knew well that the theory they devised could not be made compatible with Einstein’s special theory of relativity. First order in time, but second order in space, Schrödinger’s equation is nonrelativistic. Although quantum field theory is fully compatible with the special theory of relativity, a relativistic treatment of quantum measurement has yet to be formulated. https://inference-review.com/article/not-so-real
Thus, although they unified special relativity and quantum mechanics together in "the quantum field theory-based Standard Model", this unification between special relativity and quantum mechanics into "the quantum field theory-based Standard Model" came at the unacceptable cost of leaving the entire enigma of Quantum Measurement on the cutting room floor. Yet, Quantum measurement is precisely where conscious observation makes its presence fully known in quantum mechanics.
The Measurement Problem https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qB7d5V71vUE
As the following researcher stated, “It proves that measurement is everything. At the quantum level, reality does not exist if you are not looking at it.”
New Mind-blowing Experiment Confirms That Reality Doesn’t Exist If You Are Not Looking at It – June 3, 2015 Excerpt: Some particles, such as photons or electrons, can behave both as particles and as waves. Here comes a question of what exactly makes a photon or an electron act either as a particle or a wave. This is what Wheeler’s experiment asks: at what point does an object ‘decide’? The results of the Australian scientists’ experiment, which were published in the journal Nature Physics, show that this choice is determined by the way the object is measured, which is in accordance with what quantum theory predicts. “It proves that measurement is everything. At the quantum level, reality does not exist if you are not looking at it,” said lead researcher Dr. Andrew Truscott in a press release.,,, “The atoms did not travel from A to B. It was only when they were measured at the end of the journey that their wave-like or particle-like behavior was brought into existence,” he said. Thus, this experiment adds to the validity of the quantum theory and provides new evidence to the idea that reality doesn’t exist without an observer. http://themindunleashed.org/2015/06/new-mind-blowing-experiment-confirms-that-reality-doesnt-exist-if-you-are-not-looking-at-it.html
The following video goes into more detail showing that there is indeed a extremely tight correlation between quantum mechanics and defining attributes of the immaterial mind.
How Quantum Mechanics and Consciousness Correlate – video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4f0hL3Nrdas
Thus, to brush the entire enigma of quantum measurement, and therefore consciousness itself, under the rug in the formulation of the Standard Model is simply unacceptable for any theory that hopes to be the correct step towards the ‘theory of everything’. Moreover, for Siegal to imply that "the quantum field theory-based Standard Model superseded the early-20th century version of our quantum Universe" in the same way that Einstein's General Relativity superseded Newton's theory is simply disingenuous to the facts at hand. Again, "the quantum field theory-based Standard Model' has left the entire enigma of quantum measurement on the cutting room floor, and thus fails Siegal's own criteria of,,,
1.,, "your new idea must succeed in all the places where the prior one succeeds."
Now, I'm not saying that the standard model does not make extremely accurate predictions in its own right, I'm simply saying that the standard model most certainly has NOT succeeded in "all the places where the prior one (quantum theory) succeeds." And thus, by Siegal's own criteria that he himself laid out, the standard model is not truly a successful theory in terms of supposedly completely superseding quantum theory in all its predictions as Siegal had implied it had done in his article. Now that I got my gripe out of the way, and while I am on this subject, it is interesting to note that Richard Feynman (and others) were only able to unify special relativity and quantum mechanics into Quantum Electrodynamics (QED) by quote unquote “brushing infinity under the rug” with a technique called Renormalization.
THE INFINITY PUZZLE: Quantum Field Theory and the Hunt for an Orderly Universe Excerpt: In quantum electrodynamics, which applies quantum mechanics to the electromagnetic field and its interactions with matter, the equations led to infinite results for the self-energy or mass of the electron. After nearly two decades of effort, this problem was solved after World War II by a procedure called renormalization, in which the infinities are rolled up into the electron’s observed mass and charge, and are thereafter conveniently ignored. Richard Feynman, who shared the 1965 Nobel Prize with Julian Schwinger and Sin-Itiro Tomonaga for this breakthrough, referred to this sleight of hand as “brushing infinity under the rug.” http://www.americanscientist.org/bookshelf/pub/tackling-infinity
This “brushing infinity under the rug” with QED never set right with Feynman. In the following video, Richard Feynman expresses his unease with “brushing infinity under the rug” in Quantum-Electrodynamics:
“It always bothers me that in spite of all this local business, what goes on in a tiny, no matter how tiny, region of space, and no matter how tiny a region of time, according to laws as we understand them today, it takes a computing machine an infinite number of logical operations to figure out. Now how can all that be going on in that tiny space? Why should it take an infinite amount of logic to figure out what one stinky tiny bit of space-time is going to do?” – Richard Feynman – one of the founding fathers of QED (Quantum Electrodynamics) Quote taken from the 6:45 minute mark of the following video: Feynman: Mathematicians versus Physicists – video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=obCjODeoLVw
Now, while Feynman may have been upset about it “Taking ‘an infinite amount of logic to figure out what one stinky tiny bit of space-time is going to do’, personally I found great comfort in that fact in that “Taking ‘an infinite amount of logic to figure out what one stinky tiny bit of space-time is going to do’ because that, (i.e an infinite amount of logic describing space-time no matter how small that chunk of space-time is), happens to be fully compatible with Christian presuppositions
“Why should it take an infinite amount of logic to figure out what one stinky tiny bit of space-time is going to do?” – Richard Feynman John1:1 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” of note: ‘the Word’ in John 1:1 is translated from ‘Logos’ in Greek. Logos is also the root word from which we derive our modern word logic http://etymonline.com/?term=logic

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