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Theories of Everything

Theories of Everything

This radio broadcast discusses the prospects for a Theory of Everything, why we need one, how we might achieve one, and what it would mean if we did. At the end of the last century, some scientists were predicting that all the big questions of physics were on the verge of being answered by a Theory of Everything. The disparity between the physics of the very small would finally be reconciled with the very large, and the four forces of nature would finally be united with a single set of equations. It was suggested that with such a theory we might solve the riddle of black holes, unlock the secrets of the Big Bang, probe other universes and even uncover the mystery of traveling through time. Stephen Hawking, who once said that with a Theory of Everything we would know the mind of God, has changed his mind and in 2004 says that it may not be possible after all. The broadcast discusses observational signposts of strings; what the Large Hadron Collider at CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) may find; how a unified theory is needed to explain parameters such as the electron mass; and why gravity is the hardest force to bring into unification. The broadcast is 43 minutes in...

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