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Supersymmetry at a crossroads? No kidding! Again?

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Or is it the same crossroads, circumnavigated any number of times?

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5 dimensions in 2

Scientific American’s May edition will feature “Supersymmetry and the Crisis in Physics”:

For decades physicists have been working on a beautiful theory that has promised to lead to a deeper understanding of the quantum world. Now they stand at a crossroads: prove it right in the next year or confront an epochal paradigm shift – By Joseph Lykken and Maria Spiropulu More. (paywall)

This seems to be a way of getting around to saying now what Peter Woit at Not Even Wrong (and others) have been saying for at least a decade: These new cosmologies are not supported by evidence and are not advancing our understanding.

Betting here is: They won’t really confront any “epochal paradigm shift” no matter what happens because the standard is subtly changing. In cosmology, evidence matters less now and conformity with other naturalist theories matters more. If that were not so, this stuff would have been abandoned a while back. It’s always about to be abandoned, and then they remember.

See also: Multiverse cosmology: Assuming that evidence still matters, what does it say?

and

In search of a road to reality

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10 Replies to “Supersymmetry at a crossroads? No kidding! Again?

  1. 1
    Dionisio says:

    Interesting. Thank you.

    BTW, here’s a minor observation:

    This seems to be a way of getting around to saying now that Peter Woit at Not Even Wrong (and others) have been saying for at least a decade: These new cosmologies are not supported by evidence and are not advancing our understanding.

    Should the bold word ‘that’ be ‘what’ instead?
    Not sure, just trying to learn. Thank you.

  2. 2
    News says:

    Yes, thanks.

  3. 3
    bornagain77 says:

    News, I think Peter Woit and George Ellis would get along very well:

    News, I also think you may enjoy the last 15 minutes of this lecture by George Ellis

    Infinities and Cosmology – George F.R. Ellis – video (interesting conclusions at 34:15 minute mark)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=SlU2_0DIVNQ#t=2055

  4. 4
    lukebarnes says:

    Supersymmetry is particle physics, not cosmology.

  5. 5
    scordova says:

    lukebarnes!

    Wow! Thanks for visiting. We’re honored.

  6. 6
    Mapou says:

    lukebarnes:

    Supersymmetry is particle physics, not cosmology.

    I’m pretty sure the structure and properties of matter at the particle level have a direct influence on the cosmos at large. There are excellent reasons to believe that nonlocality is the norm, not the exception. Conservation laws are nonlocal and this is the basis of quantum entanglement.

    IMO, physics is about to undergo, not a paradigm shift, but a paradigm reversal. Some of the old Aristotelian stuff that was thrown out by the cognoscenti will suddenly resurface with a vengeance. Several cherished theories will fall by the wayside. Heads will roll, as they say.

    One of the biggest problems facing the Standard Model is the finding that the electron is not as elementary as once thought. The discovery of the quarter electron has thrown a monkey wrench into the works.

    One word always jumps to my mind when I think about the future of physics: upheaval.

  7. 7
    lukebarnes says:

    scordova: I try to drop in when I’m needed: http://letterstonature.wordpre.....oductions/

    “I’m pretty sure the structure and properties of matter at the particle level have a direct influence on the cosmos at large.” Yep. But the supersymmetry crisis referred to by the Scientific American has nothing to do with cosmology. It is certainly not one of “these new cosmologies”. Supersymmetry is a theory about how particles behave.

    This is just physics. We observed a fact. We postulated what seemed to be the simplest theory to explain the fact. We spent billions of dollars on a 27km long particle smasher to see if we were right. It looks like we weren’t. And thus, we learned a bit more about nature. We’re still working on it.

  8. 8
    Dionisio says:

    lukebarnes @ 7

    This is just physics. We observed a fact. We postulated what seemed to be the simplest theory to explain the fact. We spent billions of dollars on a 27km long particle smasher to see if we were right. It looks like we weren’t. And thus, we learned a bit more about nature. We’re still working on it.

    Interesting. Thanks.

    Can the “27km long particle smasher” be reused on other experiments?

    When you wrote that “It looks like we weren’t” right, did you mean that there’s still a possibility that you were right?

    Now that you “learned a bit more about nature”, can you see what was wrong in your thinking when you “postulated what seemed to be the simplest theory to explain the fact”?

    While you’re “still working on it” can you see any light at the end of the tunnel yet?

    How close do you think you are to postulating what may seem to be another “theory to explain the fact”?

    Thank you.

  9. 9
  10. 10
    Axel says:

    ‘At a crossroads’ or, perhaps, ‘at the end of a cul-de-sac’?

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