World Science Scholars

Courses

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A Beautiful Universe: Black Holes, String Theory, and the Laws o...

with Cumrun Vafa | Breakthrough Prize Winner, Physicist | Professor of Mathematicks and Natural Philosophy, Harvard University

Through the use of puzzles, Breakthrough Prize winner Cumrun Vafa explores the mathematical underpinnings of some of the fundamental laws of nature, and explains how to appreciate their beauty.

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Big Brains, Small Brains

with Suzana Herculano-Houzel | Neuroscientist | Associate Professor of Psychology, Associate Director for Communications, Vanderbilt Brain Institute, Vanderbilt University

Pioneer Suzana Herculano-Houzel discusses the challenges and solutions of comparing brain size and function across species, and shares her groundbreaking insights into the uniqueness, or lack thereof, of the human brain.

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A swirling, glowing mass of gas in outer space

Endless Universe: Beyond the Big Bang

with Paul Steinhardt | Physicist | Professor of Physics, Princeton University

Paul Steinhardt is one of the biggest critics of the inflationary model. He claims that inflation is "immune" to experiment and discusses a radical alternative to this long-standing paradigm.

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A cancerous cell

Foundations of Understanding and Combating Cancer

with Harold Varmus | 1989 Nobel Laureate, Oncologist | Professor of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medicine

Nobel Laureate Harold Varmus illuminates the importance of genes and mutations to the development and treatment of cancer. Learn how precision medicine reveals new treatments and explore immunotherapy and how CRISPR is advancing research.

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How Biology and Physics Processes Differ

with George Ellis | Cosmologist | Professor Emeritus, Applied Mathematics, University of Cape Town

This course explores the difference between physical laws and biological properties. Through a number of examples, the course shows the difference between physics and biology results from a modular hierarchy of structure and causation.

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Illuminating the Mysteries of Black Holes

with Shep Doeleman | Astronomer | Founding Director, Event Horizon Telescope Project

Breakthrough Prize winner Shep Doeleman and the EHT Team produced the first photograph of a black hole, confirming Einstein’s theory of relativity. Discover the latest research on black holes and insights from theory and imaging.

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Inflationary Cosmology

with Alan Guth | Breakthrough Prize Winner, Kavli Prize Laureate, Cosmologist | Professor of Physics, MIT

Breakthrough Prize winner Alan Guth developed the theory of inflation to answer to our cosmic origins. It's one of the most studied and debated theories in cosmology, with research propelling Guth’s work to the forefront of scientific conversation.

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Life as the Next Frontier in Physics

with Sara Walker | Astrobiologist | Assistant Professor, Arizona State University

Astrobiologist Sara Walker challenges our understanding of life and how we might search for life in the universe, especially when our theories of nature can explain much more about the atoms in our bodies than they can explain us as a living system.

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Loop Quantum Gravity

with Carlo Rovelli | Theoretical Physicist | Director, Quantum Gravity Group, Center for Theoretical Physics

Carlo Rovelli is the discoverer of a theory that attempts to bridge the divide between quantum mechanics and general relativity. Join him as he gives a detailed overview of loop quantum gravity.

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Mathematics, The Language of Nature

with Edward Frenkel | Mathematician | Professor of Mathematics, UC Berkeley

Mathematician Edward Frenkel takes a look at the elegant formalism of mathematics, discussing the Langlands program and the ideas of mathematical unification through symmetry.

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Rise of Quantum Mechanics and General Relativity

with Gerard 't Hooft | 1999 Nobel Laureate, Theoretical Physicist | Distinguished Professor of Theoretical Physics, Utrecht University

Nobel Laureate physicist Gerard 't Hooft explores how seemingly simple yet tremendously deep physical laws and rules govern our universe and, collectively, give rise to quantum mechanics and general relativity.

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The Black Hole Information Paradox

with Samir Mathur | Physicist | Professor of Physics, The Ohio State University

String theorist Samir Mathur has been working for years to resolve the conflict arising from the quantum nature of black holes. He also has a radical solution to the so-called information paradox.

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The Edges of the Universe

with Andrew Strominger | Breakthrough Prize Winner, Physicist | Professor of Physics, Harvard University

Breakthrough Prize winner Andrew Strominger and world-renowned string theorist Cumrun Vafa famously worked on the microstates of black holes. Join Strominger for an overview of our scientific progress in understanding the fundamental laws of nature.

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The History of the Universe: A Work in Progress

with Matias Zaldarriaga | MacArthur Fellow, Physicist | Professor, Institute for Advanced Study

Physicist Matias Zaldarriaga discusses the status of the quest to reconstruct the history of our Universe from fossils and reports on what we might expect to learn from the next generation of cosmological observations.

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The Nexus of Matter & Sound

with Markus Buehler | Material Scientist | Professor of Engineering, MIT

Professor Markus Buehler discusses how scientists can design new proteins that can revolutionize materials engineering, through manipulating vibrations that have been changed from matter into sound and from sound back into matter.

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The Past and Future of Unification

with Robbert Dijkgraaf | Mathematical Physicist | Director and Leon Levy Professor, Institute for Advanced Study

A history of the unification theories and the connection between the very big and infinitesimally small.

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Universe or Multiverse?

with Andrei Linde | Kavli Prize Laureate, Cosmologist | Professor of Physics, Stanford University

Theoretical physicist and Kavli Prize winner Andrei Linde was responsible for proposing the ideas of an inflationary multiverse and eternal inflation. Join Linde’s course on the evolution of these ideas and what the future of cosmology holds.

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