I started out optimistic, or at least trying to be. “In the physics community we have a process for evaluating new ideas called ‘peer review.’ Based on that initial impression, it seemed possible that one or a few people were harassing him across multiple platforms, changing usernames to look like more people. He found a way to define energy and momentum in his system, as “fluxes of causal edges”. For now, I’ll just say that I probably shouldn’t have read a 90 page pop physics treatise before lunch, and end the post with that. He earned his PhD in physics at the age of 20, a long long time ago; so if your goal was to “pull rank”, you are right; he has much better credentials than you. I was tempted to get snarkier in this post, to throw in a reference to Lewis’s trilemma or some variant of the old quip that “what is new is not good; and what is good is not new”. “Oh his paper doesn’t make sense to me; I don’t understand the fact that he doesn’t follow a specific paper-writing convention that I’m used to and therefore he’s a hack and his model has automatically zero merit to it, also he uses his own name a lot”. About “first”, I don’t think Wolfram is doing that and I didn’t give the presentation I read any more importance than what I was seeing in front of me; it’s what I was reading that impressed me. The whole “picking a username to mirror his” is also weird. Any strong hypothesis should be able to tell us something new and testable about the universe. We’ve tried to make the general outline of what we’re doing as broadly accessible as possible. I did read your article, only I read like 90% of it and saw it was not what I was looking for (coincidentally, one of the paragraphs I missed was the one where you explicitly mentioned you had read the article I just shared). While a Q+A on the matter says that the theory produces testable predictions, it also contains a worrying statement: Basically, Wolfram says that his idea cannot be proven wrong, writing that “Any particular rule could be proved wrong by disagreeing with observations, for example predicting particles that do not exist. I study scattering amplitudes in N=4 super Yang-Mills, but I'm also interested in N=8 supergravity, and I'd love to find out whether the four-graviton amplitude diverges. I get that it’s irritating when a crackpot gets mainstream attention. Now by default they’re “.wl”, “Wolfram Language” files.) How to submit a review. That’s what happens when senior people are “reasonable” and stay silent. It’s absolutely true that Wolfram is a smart man; he has a particle physics PhD from CalTech, which he finished at the age of 20. the Einstein field equations. In Wolfram’s case, at best the work is correct, and history will remember Wolfram’s name for research that was done by many people as part of the Wolfram Physics Project. That doesn’t automatically mean that he’s right and you’re wrong, but it does mean that you’ll need something more than a mostly-vacuous comment about how “obviously wrong he is” to challenge his work of decades. In it, he claims to have found a potential “theory of everything”, unifying general relativity and quantum physics in a cellular automata-like form. (You should also check out Will Kinney’s criticism, that I linked in my post.). I came across this article precisely because I was looking for actual criticism against his theory and all I can find is vague, knee-jerk, weak-sauce reactionary stuff like his comment (no offense). We’ve got our hands full studying one theory, so unless your theory is directly connected to what we’re working on, we’re not realistically going to be able to look at it. It may boggle your mind, but opinions are usually shared amongst people; it’s hard to find a topic where anybody has a completely original opinion on a subject. In this picture, Wolfram sees the basis for the ultimate theory underlying all of physical law. So I compromised. Partly, that’s because it’s similar to pieces written by actual crackpots. Second: Have you read the technical paper? It’s set up to run immediately in any. In doing this, it introduces new concepts that are different from those in existing physics. But there are only so many 500 page chunks of physics we can read in a week, and we tend to prioritize ones that look like they’re going somewhere. I haven’t read his technical summary. Almost all of my work is coded in Mathematica, and while it has some flaws (can someone please speed up the linear solver? Even the papers he has submitted to journals about this are completely empty — a typical section of the papers begins with several trivial definitions involving graphs, then some incredibly vague text that doesn’t even use the few definitions there are, followed by a triumphant declaration that he has derived, e.g. if (typeof siteads.queue !== 'undefined') { siteads.queue.push( {"site":"gizmodo","pagetype":"article","ad_type":"article","sec":"science-health","amp":false,"ctype":"article","article":"the trouble with stephen wolframs new fundamental theory of physics","article-tags":["debunkery","physics","Science & Health","stephen wolfram","wolfram alpha"],"native":["null"],"aggregate":["debunkery","physics","Science & Health","stephen wolfram","wolfram alpha"],"pageID":["null"],"sub-sec":"","cat":"science-health","cat1":"","item":{"objectid":1213404,"title":"The Trouble With Stephen Wolfram’s New ‘Fundamental Theory Of Physics’","text":" Stephen Wolfram, computer scientist, physicist, and CEO of software company Wolfram Research (behind Wolfram Alpha and Mathematica) made headlines this week when he launched the Wolfram Physics Project. The closest thing to an insult in my comment was the word “pathetic”, but that’s just my assessment of Anonymous Chicken’s reaction; not intended as an insult. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. It is absolutely possible that Wolfram has stumbled upon a deeper truth about the universe. As a multi-millionaire (probably billionaire) who mirrors the stereotype of the solitary, white, male genius, Wolfram is able to build a beautiful website, corral collaborators, and garner lots of media coverage in order to push his idea to the forefront, outside the framework that other scientists have to operate in. Not the person who did say something at least a bit substantive (which you apparently didn’t read, since you didn’t know whether I had read the piece I explicitly based it on), not the person who was more insulting, but the person who spent most of their comment complaining that they felt alone. In sum, the universe is the way it is, and we’ll figure it out sooner, later, or never. But in our model, it’s not just a definition, and in fact we can successfully derive it. Quantum mechanics and general relativity—both introduced more than a century ago—have delivered many impressive successes in physics. A bigger-picture look at Wolfram’s work and publishing strategy reveals the unequal way new scientific ideas are treated. siteads.queue.push( {"site":"gizmodo","pagetype":"article","ad_type":"article","sec":"science-health","amp":false,"ctype":"article","article":"the trouble with stephen wolframs new fundamental theory of physics","article-tags":["debunkery","physics","Science & Health","stephen wolfram","wolfram alpha"],"native":["null"],"aggregate":["debunkery","physics","Science & Health","stephen wolfram","wolfram alpha"],"pageID":["null"],"sub-sec":"","cat":"science-health","cat1":"","item":{"objectid":1213404,"title":"The Trouble With Stephen Wolfram’s New ‘Fundamental Theory Of Physics’","text":" Stephen Wolfram, computer scientist, physicist, and CEO of software company Wolfram Research (behind Wolfram Alpha and Mathematica) made headlines this week when he launched the Wolfram Physics Project. So to reiterate; discredit his (Wolfram’s) theory, disprove it, criticize it, whatever. This is just my tone, and me being straightforward; I don’t intend to insult neither him nor you. Here’s the background. And since his is also likely made up on the spot for this purpose, it’d be unlikely in any case that I were some past “bully” of his who had somehow tracked him down to “harass” him. The project that it defined was long hibernated, but restarted in late 2019. All physics faculty are too busy to write a thorough response, and too smart to just go out and call it the bullshit it is. Basically, it’s saying that the universe runs on a core set of rules, like a computer does, out of which more complexity arises. If he figures that “senior people don’t bother”, then maybe he should. (There’s a type of Mathematica file that used to be called “.m”. What’s A Graviton? You are a “physics graduate student”. There is a pernicious effect here that Wolfram is taking advantage of. There’s his live-streamed meetings. There is a pernicious effect here that Wolfram is taking advantage of. A few days ago, he released an update: a sprawling website for “The Wolfram Physics Project”.