Thursday, November 15, 2007

Theory of Everything

Big news today: Someone's theory of everything is undergoing peer review... or something. It seems like he'd have to have it reviewed by other semi-homeless, over-educated athletes. Is he a nomadic genius? Is he a crank? Is his work going to get a fair shake, or will it (and its originator) be discounted because they're coming from outside The System?

As I understand it, folks with a theory of everything are typically referred to as "The crazy guy who roams campus barking at people for cigarettes," and I find it curious that, in this case, it's international news.

Anyone want to talk about academic mavericks?


Rufus said...

I've got the flu today, so I might be less-than-coherent. But I'd assume that there must be a good number of academic maverics at this point, judging by how many people seem to leave the system.

There have been a few people with theories of everything in history. The problem tends to be that their theories should predict future human activities and they fail to. But, I guess it's possible to call Marx a theoretician of every human civilization, and he got a pretty good trial period before people got sick of his theories.

As for theoretical physics, I'd think it would be easy to develop theories outside of a university, but impossible to test them. So, hopefully, he'll get his day in court.

gregvw said...

If it turns out that his theory passes muster, I will take it upon myself to finally learn Lie Algebra.

Rufus said...

I probably will not. However, feel free to post your own research here. Apparently, posting things like this on the Internet works fairly well.