Panic in Einstein Schizophrenic World
Neil Turok: "It's the ultimate catastrophe: that theoretical physics has led to this crazy situation where the physicists are utterly confused and seem not to have any predictions at all."
Steve Giddings: "What really keeps me awake at night (...) is that we face a crisis within the deepest foundations of physics. The only way out seems to involve profound revision of fundamental physical principles."
Neil Turok: "It looks like the founding principles of modern physics - quantum theory and relativity - have played out and they have not given us the answers we need. And so we have to go back and question those founding principles..."
Needless to say, Einsteinians have already questioned the founding principles. They have discovered that the consequences of Einstein's 1905 constant-speed-of-light postulate are absurd, which means that the postulate is false:
"Baumgarte began by discussing special relativity, which Einstein developed, 10 years earlier, in 1905, while he was employed as a patent officer in Bern, Switzerland. Special relativity is based on the observation that the speed of light is always the same, independently of who measures it, or how fast the source of the light is moving with respect to the observer. Einstein demonstrated that as an immediate consequence, space and time can no longer be independent, but should rather be considered a new joint entity called "spacetime."
What scientific idea is ready for retirement? Steve Giddings: "Spacetime. Physics has always been regarded as playing out on an underlying stage of space and time. Special relativity joined these into spacetime... (...) The apparent need to retire classical spacetime as a fundamental concept is profound..."
Nima Arkani-Hamed (06:11): "Almost all of us believe that space-time doesn't really exist, space-time is doomed and has to be replaced by some more primitive building blocks."
Joao Magueijo, Faster Than the Speed of Light, p. 250: "Lee [Smolin] and I discussed these paradoxes at great length for many months, starting in January 2001. We would meet in cafés in South Kensington or Holland Park to mull over the problem. THE ROOT OF ALL THE EVIL WAS CLEARLY SPECIAL RELATIVITY. All these paradoxes resulted from well known effects such as length contraction, time dilation, or E=mc^2, all basic predictions of special relativity. And all denied the possibility of establishing a well-defined border, common to all observers, capable of containing new quantum gravitational effects."
"...Dr. Magueijo said. "We need to drop a postulate, perhaps the constancy of the speed of light."
"Einstein introduced a new notion of time, more radical than even he at first realized. In fact, the view of time that Einstein adopted was first articulated by his onetime math teacher in a famous lecture delivered one century ago. That lecture, by the German mathematician Hermann Minkowski, established a new arena for the presentation of physics, a new vision of the nature of reality redefining the mathematics of existence. The lecture was titled Space and Time, and it introduced to the world the marriage of the two, now known as spacetime. It was a good marriage, but lately physicists passion for spacetime has begun to diminish. And some are starting to whisper about possible grounds for divorce. (...) Einstein's famous insistence that the velocity of light is a cosmic speed limit made sense, Minkowski saw, only if space and time were intertwined. (...) Physicists of the 21st century therefore face the task of finding the true reality obscured by the spacetime mirage. (...) Andreas Albrecht, a cosmologist at the University of California, Davis, has thought deeply about choosing clocks, leading him to some troubling realizations. (...) "It seems to me like it's a time in the development of physics," says Albrecht, "where it's time to look at how we think about space and time very differently."
"...says John Norton, a philosopher based at the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Norton is hesitant to express it, but his instinct - and the consensus in physics - seems to be that space and time exist on their own. The trouble with this idea, though, is that it doesn't sit well with relativity, which describes space-time as a malleable fabric whose geometry can be changed by the gravity of stars, planets and matter."
New Scientist: "Saving time: Physics killed it. Do we need it back? (...) Einstein landed the fatal blow at the turn of the 20th century."
"[George] Ellis is up against one of the most successful theories in physics: special relativity. It revealed that there's no such thing as objective simultaneity. Although you might have seen three things happen in a particular order – A, then B, then C – someone moving at a different velocity could have seen it a different way – C, then B, then A. In other words, without simultaneity there is no way of specifying what things happened "now". And if not "now", what is moving through time? Rescuing an objective "now" is a daunting task."
"And by making the clock's tick relative - what happens simultaneously for one observer might seem sequential to another - Einstein's theory of special relativity not only destroyed any notion of absolute time but made time equivalent to a dimension in space: the future is already out there waiting for us; we just can't see it until we get there. This view is a logical and metaphysical dead end, says Smolin."
"Was Einstein wrong? At least in his understanding of time, Smolin argues, the great theorist of relativity was dead wrong. What is worse, by firmly enshrining his error in scientific orthodoxy, Einstein trapped his successors in insoluble dilemmas..."
"Rethinking Einstein: The end of space-time (...) The stumbling block lies with their conflicting views of space and time. As seen by quantum theory, space and time are a static backdrop against which particles move. In Einstein's theories, by contrast, not only are space and time inextricably linked, but the resulting space-time is moulded by the bodies within it. (...) Something has to give in this tussle between general relativity and quantum mechanics, and the smart money says that it's relativity that will be the loser."
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