Peter Woit, an able informant on string theory, advises:

On the other coast, today and tomorrow at Princeton there will be a workshop on string cosmology and inflation. They have a list of questions to be addressed, including

Are there any plausible alternatives to string/M-theory as a fundamental theory of physics?

Does string theory make any cosmological predictions? Does it exclude anything?

As far as I can tell, there’s an odd consensus set of answers to these two questions among string theorists. No, string theory makes no predictions about cosmology, but also no, there are no alternatives.

For an interesting discussion of the problems raised by this sort of “no possible predictions, but no alternatives” situation, see this debate involving John Horgan, David Tong and Tara Shears. Horgan does a good job of pointing out the problem. Tong’s defense of string theory relies heavily on claiming that it is highly mathematically rigid, so mathematical consistency is what can give us faith in it. One problem with this is that the whole string theory landscape picture is an extremely ill-defined conjectural framework, the opposite of mathematically rigid. Yes, there are parts of string theory that seem to be mathematically consistent and lead to interesting results. The problem is that those have nothing to do with what is observed about fundamental physics.

No.

See The Science Fictions series at your fingertips (cosmology). And your kids might be learning Cosmos II at school. Read up.

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There has been no real breakthrough in our understanding of matter and cosmology for close to a century. It’s a sign that we are on the verge of a paradigm shift during which many current mainstream assumptions will be thrown out. IMO, the paradigm will shift dramatically as soon as the physics community wakes up from its Einsteinian stupor and realize that one of its most fundamental concepts, space (or distance), is but an abstraction, a mere perceptual illusion. Heck, the time dimension, too, is just imaginary nerd candy.

As to:

Contrary to what they may believe, I firmly believe that there is a viable alternative to string/M-theory.

First, in laying this ‘viable alternative’ case out, it is important to note that even if there were a mathematically unified theory of everything, such as string/M-theory, that that mathematical theory would still would be incomplete.

In other words, Godel has shown, (by studying the ‘logic of infinity’), that the truthfulness of any equation that is precise enough to have counting numbers within itself is not derived from within the mathematical equation itself, but the truthfulness of the mathematical equation is reliant on something outside the equation in order for the equation to derive whatever truthfulness about the world it is said to be describing.

In other words, if physicists and mathematicians want to find ‘The Truth’ that unifies all of reality into a coherent whole then they must ultimately look outside mathematics to find ‘The Truth’:

Even Hawking himself at one time admitted, (and apparently subsequently forgot), that there cannot be a mathematical theory of everything that is ‘complete’ within itself.

The main reason that mathematics, by itself, cannot explain why the universe is as it it is is best summed up in these following articles by George Ellis and Dr. Bruce Gordon:

The Christian founders of modern science understood this distinction between law and law giver, who ‘breathed fire into the equations’, very well

But alas, since the time of the founding of modern science, modern science has all but lost its Judeo-Christian moorings that had laid the foundation for modern science:

But alas, as foreign as it may sound to people who have indoctrinated by the deception that Christianity and science are at war with each other, the fact of the matter is that Christianity, besides providing the necessary epistemological basis in which to practice modern science, Christianity also provides a empirically backed reconcilliation of General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics into the much sought out ‘theory of everything’. In other words, Christianity provides a ‘viable alternative to string/M-theory’.

of note: Kurt Godel, who proved you cannot have a mathematical ‘Theory of Everything’, without allowing God to bring completeness to the ‘Theory of Everything’, also had this to say:

The main problem with trying to unify General Relativity and Quantum Mehanics into a ‘theory of everything’ is known as the zero/infinity problem,,,

Of related note:

General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics are both ‘higher dimensional’ in their mathematical formulation:

Dr. William Dembski in this following comment, though not directly addressing the Zero/Infinity conflict in General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics, offers insight into how this Zero/Infinity conflict between General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics may be dealt with Theologically:

And, contrary to string/M theory, which has no empirical support, Christianity does have empirical support for its contention that Jesus Christ is ‘The Truth’ which unifies all of reality.

Specifically, the resurrection of Christ, as is portrayed on the Shroud of Turin, offers evidence that both Quantum Mechanics and General Relativity were brought together into a ‘new singularity’, i.e. into a ‘theory of everything’:

That gravity, (i.e. General Relativity), was defied in the resurrection of Christ is verified in more detail here:

That Quantum Mechanics was involved in the resurrection of Christ is verified here:

Thus, in so far as empirical science is concerned, and considering the abject failure of sting/M theory to provide a coherent ‘theory of everything’, and also considering that there very well may be ‘no viable alternative to string/M-theory’, and despite the rebellion of many scientists against the Christian foundation of modern science, the resurrection of Christ provides us a very credible, empirically backed, even ‘predicted’, unification of General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics into the much sought after ‘theory of everything’, i.e. into ‘The Truth’ that all these physicists and mathematicians are looking for:

Verses and Music:

What he said.