From ScienceDaily:

The theory of eternal inflation that Hawking and Hertog put forward is based on string theory: a branch of theoretical physics that attempts to reconcile gravity and general relativity with quantum physics, in part by describing the fundamental constituents of the universe as tiny vibrating strings. Their approach uses the string theory concept of holography, which postulates that the universe is a large and complex hologram: physical reality in certain 3D spaces can be mathematically reduced to 2D projections on a surface.

…

Hertog and Hawking used their new theory to derive more reliable predictions about the global structure of the universe. They predicted the universe that emerges from eternal inflation on the past boundary is finite and far simpler than the infinite fractal structure predicted by the old theory of eternal inflation.

Their results, if confirmed by further work, would have far-reaching implications for the multiverse paradigm. “We are not down to a single, unique universe, but our findings imply a significant reduction of the multiverse, to a much smaller range of possible universes,” said Hawking.

This makes the theory more predictive and testable. Paper.

open access– S. W. Hawking, Thomas Hertog. A smooth exit from eternal inflation? Journal of High Energy Physics, 2018; 2018 (4) DOI: 10.1007/JHEP04(2018)147 More.

Well yes, of course. It is always possible that there are other universes out there, as the scaled down theory suggests. But that is not what the multiverse is about. It is about all states being true somewhere, which means that no definitive statement can be made about whether any fact about our universe, like fine-tuning, is significant. An infinity of other universes might not appear fine-tuned, so…

In the unlikely event that we could study a finite number of other universes, if they appear fine-tuned, one wonders what explanation will be offered… Creativity is a must for the job of explaining *that* away.

*See also:* Sabine Hossenfelder: Hawking’s final theory is just one of “some thousand” speculations

Did Stephen Hawking discover a means of detecting parallel universes just before he died? This sounds a lot like grief talking but we’ll see.

Post-modern physics: String theory gets over the need for evidence

Cosmic inflation theory loses hangups about the scientific method

and

The multiverse is science’s assisted suicide

Something tells me that Hawking’s new foray into string theory is not going to fare any better than his last foray did:

And from an interview with Larry King in 2010:

Contrary to what Stephen Hawking may say in public, in his writings, via Gödel, he has acknowledged that there will never be a mathematical theory of everything:

Moreover, as Steven Weinberg, (another famous atheist), notes, “I don’t think one should underestimate the fix we are in. That in the end we will not be able to explain the world. That we will have some set of laws of nature (that) we will not be able to derive them on the grounds simply of mathematical consistency. Because we can already think of mathematically consistent laws that don’t describe the world as we know it. And we will always be left with a question ‘why are the laws nature what they are rather than some other laws?’. And I don’t see any way out of that.”

In fact, there are an infinite number of true mathematical theorems that could have described the universe. Which makes Weinberg’s observation that ‘we will always be left with a question ‘why are the laws nature what they are rather than some other laws?’ all the more pressing.

Thus even if Hawking could find a single overarching mathematical theory of everything, we still would be left, via Gödel, with the question of, “Why does that particular mathematical theorem describe the universe and not one of the infinite number of other mathematical theorems that could have described the universe?”

As Dr. Gordon states in the following article, “the transcendent reality on which our universe depends must be something that can exhibit agency – a mind that can choose among the infinite variety of mathematical descriptions and bring into existence a reality that corresponds to a consistent subset of them.”

The forsaking of the Agent Causality of God by atheists is a far bigger problem for them than they apparently realize (or are willing to honestly admit in public).

The forsaking, by atheists, of the Agent Causality of God, and the forsaking of their very own agent causality, in fact, leads to the catastrophic epistemological failure of their entire naturalistic/materialistic, (i.e. Atheistic), worldview:

As far as experimental evidence is concerned, there simply is no reason to, a-priori, via methodological naturalism, exclude the “Mind of God” from consideration in physics. In fact, I would hold that advances in Quantum Physics now demands that the infinite “Mind of God” to be considered very much a viable option.

And when we rightly let the Agent Causality of God “BACK” into the picture of modern physics, as the Christian founders of modern science originally envisioned, then an empirically backed reconciliation between Quantum Theory and General Relativity readily pops out for us in Christ’s resurrection from the dead:

One final note, contrary to popular belief, our best, most precisely validated, theories in science are far friendlier to Christian concerns than anyone would ever gather from the popular scientific press;

Verse:

In post 1, I should have noted that Hawking has recently passed over into the eternity that he had studied for a lifetime.

BA77:

This is an important point.

There is such a tendency among mathematicians to think of their math as the reality (and to expect the rest of us to bow to it as such). It isn’t. It is simply an attempt to describe reality using a particular set of agreed-upon formulations and symbols. Even if we had a mathematical construct that perfectly

describedthe universe, it would not tell us anything about whatcausedthe universe orhowit came to be.—–

Incidentally, on a somewhat related note, sometimes we talk of the “laws of physics” or the “laws of nature” as though they cause things to happen. One author suggested, I think with some merit, that we should not view the laws of physics as prescriptive, but as descriptive.

In other words, what we formulate and articulate as a law of nature is really a description of reality as we understand it. What actually

causesthe behavior — the underlyingforceof nature — is something else.Thoughts?