They are not principally data-driven:
For decades, it was believed that our simple model of the early universe, characterized by a small number of parameters, was naive and the result of scarce data. By the turn of the 21st century, we had collected enough to verify that the universe indeed started from the simplest possible initial state, being nearly homogeneous and isotropic with small fluctuations that developed into the complex structures we find in it today. This simple cosmological model, which has existed for a century, is the foundation for modern cosmology.
In today’s fierce job market, fledgling scientists sometimes attempt to impress their senior colleagues with lengthy derivations marked by challenging mathematical complexity. Another postdoc told me recently: “The most fashionable trend for demonstrating exceptional skills in my research field involves writing extensive papers, sometimes hundreds of pages long, or longer. I am facing the strategic dilemma of choosing between two options for my future career: long complicated projects or short insightful papers?”
It is clear that accomplishing long projects requires more sweat; but is science supposed to be hard labor? Not necessarily. Our task as scientists is to explain phenomena based on the simplest theory whose predictions can be tested further by new experiments. And in the spirit of Occam’s razor, if the answer is simple, why make it complicated?Abraham Loeb, “The Simple Truth about Physics” at Scientific American
If he thinks evidence is important, that should rule out the multiverse.
Note: Abraham Loeb is the Harvard astronomer who spotted Oumuamua, a space rock, passing through the solar system in 2018 and raised the idea that it might be an extraterrestrial light sail. See: Astronomer: We’re Too Dumb To Think Space Object Oumuamua Was an Extraterrestrial Lightsail
2 Replies to “Harvard astronomer tells us why ultra-complex physics theories come to exist”
As to the title.
That reminds me of these comments from Dr. Walter Bradley (a distinguished retired professor of engineering)
That mathematics would describe the universe is such a simple and elegant way is simply devastating to the reductive materialism that undergirds Darwinian thought. Mathematics itself exists in a beyond space and time “Platonic Realm” that simply is not reducible to the reductive materialistic explanations of Darwinian evolution.
As Dr. Egnor explains, “Mathematics is entirely about concepts, which have no precise instantiation in nature,,,”
Simply put, Mathematics itself, contrary to the materialistic presuppositions of Darwinists, does not need the physical world in order to exist. And yet Darwinists, although they deny that anything beyond nature exists, need this transcendent world of mathematics in order for their theory to be considered scientific in the first place. The predicament that Darwinists find themselves in regards to denying the reality of this transcendent, immaterial, world of mathematics, and yet needing validation from this transcendent, immaterial, world of mathematics in order for their theory to be considered scientific in the first place, should be the very definition of a scientifically self-refuting worldview.
As David Berlinski states in the following article,“There is no argument against religion that is not also an argument against mathematics.”
Moreover, the fact that man himself has access to this transcendent, beyond space and time, “Platonic” world of mathematics, offers fairly compelling proof that man must also possess a transcendent, beyond space and time, mind and/or soul. As Charles Darwin’s contemporary, Alfred Russel Wallace himself stated, “Mathematics is alone sufficient to prove in man the possession of a faculty unexistent in other creatures. Then you have music and the artistic faculty. No, the soul was a separate creation.”
As to this comment on “sudden illumination” in Loeb’s article,
This appeal to “sudden illumination” is very similar to Kurt Godel’s contention that humans had access to the ‘divine spark of intuition’. A ‘divine spark’ which Godel contended enables humans to transcend the limits that Alan Turing had found in Godel’s incompleteness theorem for computers (i.e. ‘halting problem’).
It is also interesting to note that Alan Turing, although he himself believed that humans were merely machines, nonetheless, Turing’s insight into computers came to him, as he himself confessed, suddenly, ‘in a vision’,
Thus although Turing himself may have believed himself to be nothing more than a computing machine, the fact of the matter is that Turing’s very own sudden ‘flash of insight’, which laid the foundation for computers themselves, proves that man is not merely a computing machine.
In fact, Turing’s halting problem, in and of itself, is proof that man cannot merely be a computing machine. As Gregory Chaitin explains, “but his (Turing’s) very first paper is smashing machines. Its creating machines and then its pointing out their devastating limitations.”
Of supplemental note on computer programs and computers themselves:
As Ellis himself noted “Hence, although they are the ultimate in algorithmic causation as characterized so precisely by Turing, digital computers embody and demonstrate the causal efficacy of non-physical entities.”,,, “The mind is not a physical entity, but it certainly is causally effective: proof is the existence of the computer on which you are reading this text. It could not exist if it had not been designed and manufactured according to someone’s plans, thereby proving the causal efficacy of thoughts, which like computer programs and data are not physical entities.”
Thus in conclusion, aside from the ontology of “Platonic” mathematics itself being completely incompatible with the reductive materialism of Darwinian evolution, the creation and existence of computer programs, and computers, themselves also offers fairly compelling proof that man must possess a immaterial mind and/or soul.