14 October 2008
About this talk
Physicist and surfer Garrett Lisi presents a controversial new model of the universe that -- just maybe -- answers all the big questions. If nothing else, it's the most beautiful 8-dimensional model of elementary particles and forces you've ever seen. (Recorded February 2008 in Monterey, California. Duration: 21:26.)
Garrett Lisi: Physicist
Physicist Garrett Lisi has proposed a new "theory of everything" -- a grand unified theory that explains all the elementary particles, as well as gravity.
Why you should listen to him:
Working from principles of differential geometry, physicist Garrett Lisi is developing a new unified theory that purports to explain all the elementary particles, and gravity, in one elegant model. His theory is based on a mathematical shape called E8. With 248 symmetries, E8 is large, complex and beautiful -- and Lisi believes the relationships of its symmetries correspond to known particles and forces, including gravity.
His work, explained in his paper "An Exceptionally Simple Theory of Everything," and in an ongoing discussion on FQXi, is still on science's speculative fringe. But some physicists believe he could be pointing the way toward a truly unified theory.
"This is an 'all or nothing' kind of theory -- meaning it's going to end up agreeing with and predicting damn near everything, or it's wrong. At this stage of development, it could go either way."
Garrett Lisi on physicsforums.com