Lost in Math by Sabine Hossenfelder
How Beauty Leads Physics Astray

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Even educated readers will struggle to understand the elements of modern physics, but they will have no trouble enjoying this insightful, delightfully pugnacious polemic about its leading controversy.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

A contrarian argues that modern physicists' obsession with beauty has given us wonderful math but bad science
Whether pondering black holes or predicting discoveries at CERN, physicists believe the best theories are beautiful, natural, and elegant, and this standard separates popular theories from disposable ones. This is why, Sabine Hossenfelder argues, we have not seen a major breakthrough in the foundations of physics for more than four decades. The belief in beauty has become so dogmatic that it now conflicts with scientific objectivity: observation has been unable to confirm mindboggling theories, like supersymmetry or grand unification, invented by physicists based on aesthetic criteria. Worse, these "too good to not be true" theories are actually untestable and they have left the field in a cul-de-sac. To escape, physicists must rethink their methods. Only by embracing reality as it is can science discover the truth.

 

About Sabine Hossenfelder

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Published June 12, 2018 by Basic Books. 304 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Science & Math, Law & Philosophy. Non-fiction
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Kirkus

Excellent
on Apr 03 2018

Even educated readers will struggle to understand the elements of modern physics, but they will have no trouble enjoying this insightful, delightfully pugnacious polemic about its leading controversy.

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