Oct
14
2008

Mathematics to explain everything

Garrett Lisi uses math to describe everything

E8: the largest and most complex of the exceptional simple Lie algebras
E8: the largest and most complex of the exceptional simple Lie algebrasCourtesy Claudio Rocchini
Surfer dude, Garrett Lisi lives in his van on a beach in Maui. Using a type of algebra he calls E8, Garrett has developed an exceptionally simple theory of everything -- a grand unified theory that explains all the elementary particles, as well as gravity. (link to pdf of paper found below)

Lisi describes how gravity, the standard model bosons, and three generations of fermions can be unified as parts of an E8 superconnection. This unified field theory attempts to describe all fundamental interactions that physicists have observed in nature, and stands as a possible theory of everything, unifying Albert Einstein's general relativity with the standard model of particle physics.

"I think the universe is pure geometry - basically, a beautiful shape twisting and dancing over space-time. Since E8 is perhaps the most beautiful structure in mathematics, it is very satisfying that nature appears to have chosen this geometry."

"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

This video explains how mathematics predicts reality

Warning, even though I have a degree in physics education, the material presented was way over my head. I will watch it again though, because it does give me a glimpse of how mathematics can lead to understanding, perhaps even someday making possible something like electrogravity. Click this link if the video below does not work

Learn more
Garrett Lisi forum frequently asked personal questions
Garrett Lisi forum frequently asked questions about E8 and Theory of Everything
31 page paper (pdf) An exceptionally simple theory of everything

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Gene's picture
Gene says:

We also mentioned Lisi on Science Buzz last year. Good stuff!

posted on Wed, 10/15/2008 - 7:50am
ARTiFactor's picture
ARTiFactor says:

Thanks for the link, Gene. I remembered your post, but was not finding it. The Large Hadron Collider project might find some new particles that Lisi is predicting.

posted on Thu, 10/16/2008 - 12:19pm
darcyb's picture
darcyb says:

darcy the monkey

who created math and numbers? where do these things even come from???

posted on Wed, 10/15/2008 - 11:28am
ARTiFactor's picture
ARTiFactor says:

Sounds like a good topic for a research project. Numbers were first used about 30,000 B.C. (click on this to learn more).

posted on Thu, 10/16/2008 - 12:31pm
lmoran's picture
lmoran says:

simply put, E8 is amazing!!

posted on Mon, 10/20/2008 - 9:23pm
sugar bear's picture
sugar bear says:

mathematics can't explain every thing .

posted on Mon, 10/27/2008 - 12:57pm
Alic's picture
Alic says:

That sounds kind of freaky
what if everything could be scientificly explained?
would there be any reason to live if we couldn't find, if we couldn't explore?
think about it.

posted on Fri, 02/27/2009 - 4:04pm
Gene's picture
Gene says:

Well, there's always pizza.

posted on Fri, 02/27/2009 - 5:15pm

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <h3> <h4> <em> <i> <strong> <b> <span> <ul> <ol> <li> <blockquote> <object> <embed> <param> <sub> <sup>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • You may embed videos from the following providers vimeo, youtube. Just add the video URL to your textarea in the place where you would like the video to appear, i.e. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pw0jmvdh.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Images can be added to this post.

More information about formatting options