Any new progress on The Theory of Everything (TOE)?

I’m a fanboy of theoretical physics, but I’ve been out of the loop for awhile. However, I did notice the Wikipedia article on the putative Theory of Everything states that the article is in need of an expert on the subject. Has some new discovery been made recently?

I’m especially interested in hearing the status of An Exceptionally Simple Theory of Everything (aka E8 Theory, aka Surfer Dude Theory.) I really think that guy is on to something.

I’m not aware of any recent breakthroughs, but if you’re interested in Lisi’s E8 Theory and haven’t seen this yet, here’s his Ted talk on the subject.

If the guy writing the Wiki article was an undereducated bozo, he’s certainly able to snow me…

As an ordinary layman incapable of grasping the mathematics involved, I am hoping the TOE is not only elegant mathematically but elegant conceptually–elegant enought so that it can be summarized in English in a sentence or two.

I am not able to grasp the math behind Einstein’s conceptual framework, for instance, but I can grasp a simple notion that matter and energy are different forms of the same thing. It seems to me much of the TOE is really an effort to unify mathematical models–perhaps particularly the disparities between quantum descriptions and general relativity descriptions. Such a TOE might be bullet-proof mathematically and still not be a theory of everything.

Right now, among the “proofs” applied to any TOE will be its predictive value for describing the behaviour of particles and predicting their existence. In some sense such a TOE might be a more powerful mathematical model that still doesn’t explain what stuff itself really is.

I’m of the (completely uneducated) opinion that mass (particles) and energy are only two-thirds of what stuff is, and that the third component–space–is completely undescribed. I am of the further (and really uneducated) opinion that a real TOE will show that mass, energy and space are all manifestations of the same thing. In short it seems to me that “particles” is an incomplete concept and the TOE will move beyond the notion that there is an indivisible fundamental particle. Instead we’ll come to consider “particles” as variations of space itself rather than existing “in” space.

It’s not a particle moving in space. It’s space, moving.

On this important :wink: front, I have seen no progress.

I’m certain it will be – the basic fundamentals of math & science are commonly very simple & obvious (once you figure them out), from E=MC[sup]2[/sup] to Kepler’s model of Planetary Motion (compare Kepler to Ptolmey’s model, for example…)

Also, what’s really exciting about Garrett Kisi’s theory is that he’s outside the mainstream, and he simply stumbled upon it. Experts who scoff at his outsider nature have forgotten that this is how scientific discoveries are made! The history of science is filled with “Eureka!” moments (Archimedes’ bathtub, Newton’s apple) and accidental discoveries (Goodyear’s vulcanized rubber, and the guy who discovered penicillin) and while I barely get the math behind E8 Theory, I’ve read enough of Hawking’s book to understand Space/Time and I’m starting to get a grasp of M-Theory, aka M(atrix)-Theory. I have my own personal version of “Matrix Theory” (which is more of a combination of Chaos Theory, M-Theory, the nature of Synchronicity, and the fundamental principles of Science + Philosophy + Religion) and Garrett’s model, as I perceive it, resonates strong within my own personal Matrix – hell, even the name “Garrett” itself, and his Hawaii location, has fantastic synchronicity in relationship to my own vision of the Universe.

Would it help if I told you the “S” in my nickname actually stands for “Space”? Hmm…probably just coincidence, that part. :cool:

A few of the more optimistic models have been ruled out, but there was never really any reason to believe those other than wishful thinking, anyway. The LHC, once it’s up and running, will be able to rule out (or confirm!) a few more. But there’s no experiment we’re even remotely close to being able to perform which could really test the most likely models.

Stupid question:

If they want a really really simple equation for TOE why not just do a guess and check method

That’s not too far off from how it works. The trouble is that a lot of the checking has already been done (i.e., your theory had better fit with the data we’ve collected to date) and the checking that hasn’t been done is really hard to do (N.B. the Large Hadron Collider, which has been many years in the making.)