Archives for: December 2013
The Jewel that May Save Quantum Physics

An absolutely fascinating new discovery in the science of physics last week….

Physicists reported this week the discovery of a jewel-like geometric object that dramatically simplifies calculations of particle interactions and challenges the notion that space and time are fundamental components of reality.

Original story reprinted with permission from Quanta Magazine, an editorially independent division of SimonsFoundation.org whose mission is to enhance public understanding of science by covering research developments and trends in mathematics and the physical and life sciences.
“This is completely new and very much simpler than anything that has been done before,” said Andrew Hodges, a mathematical physicist at Oxford University who has been following the work.

The revelation that particle interactions, the most basic events in nature, may be consequences of geometry significantly advances a decades-long effort to reformulate quantum field theory, the body of laws describing elementary particles and their interactions. Interactions that were previously calculated with mathematical formulas thousands of terms long can now be described by computing the volume of the corresponding jewel-like “amplituhedron,” which yields an equivalent one-term expression.

“The degree of efficiency is mind-boggling,” said Jacob Bourjaily, a theoretical physicist at Harvard University and an author of the first of two papers detailing the new idea. “You can easily do, on paper, computations that were infeasible even with a computer before.”

The new geometric version of quantum field theory could also facilitate the search for a theory of quantum gravity that would seamlessly connect the large- and small-scale pictures of the universe. Attempts thus far to incorporate gravity into the laws of physics at the quantum scale have run up against nonsensical infinities and deep paradoxes. The amplituhedron, or a similar geometric object, could help by removing two deeply rooted principles of physics: locality and unitarity.

“Both are hard-wired in the usual way we think about things,” said Nima Arkani-Hamed, a professor of physics at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, N.J., and the lead author of the two new papers, which were posted on the physics preprint site arXiv.org, one last December, and one last week. “Both are suspect.”

The implications of this are not yet entirely realized and could indeed be mind boggling. Using this new technique could revolutionize the way we understand the universe. We could gain a new understanding of gravity and space and time – Doctor Who eat your heart out, we’re in for some exciting new discoveries….

Source: Wired

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New Batman Game in 2014 from Arkham City Devs

Software development company Rocksteady has created some of the best Batman titles in the video games series. Looks like Arkham City Devs Rocksteady is working on a new Batman game for 2014 based on comments from long time Batman voice actor Kevin Conroy and a job posting on Rocksteady.com and CGHub.com. Check out this video piece from IGN:

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Matt Smith Says Farewell to Doctor Who

If you are a “Whovian” or a scifi geek who can’t get enough of time travel or british humor, you will know who we are talking about when we mention the name Matt Smith. Matt Smith has played the roll of “The Doctor” on the BCC’s Doctor Who for the past few years and by all Whovian accounts, he has done an absolutely brilliant job wearing the Doctor’s shoes. The 50th Anniversary Doctor Who has just aired and the episode is one big ball of awesome rolled up into 75 minutes. Before Matt Smith was to depart, he got spend time with 2 previous doctors and be part of one of the most compelling stories in the history of the Doctor Who franchise – If you haven’t seen it, tune in to the BBC and watch, you will not be disappointed :-) Most of us knew Matt Smith would go out with a bang! Watch this video as Matt Smith reflects on his time spent on Doctor Who –

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