World Science Scholars

1.6 The Standard Model

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    • Do you think we will ever be able to comprehensively describe all of nature in a single elegant equation? Why or why not?

    • “Elegant” is a curious word. Never-the-less, I do hope we are able to condense all of nature into a single equation. Now more than ever physicists are challenging the construction and continued usage of the current formalism. I am excited to see what physicists are able to produce in the next 50 years.

    • yes i think we {the scientists} will be able to find an ELEGANT THEORY OF EVERYTHING within 100 years …i think a set of mind blowing discoveries and hypothesis will be provided within 10 or 25 years or so, and these theories and discoveries will change our view…here i think M THEORY and super symmetry has more chances to be discovered with remarkably new experiments and high energetic particle accelerators

    • I have high hope in science that one day well be able to produce single equation that could explain everything. For the past decades physics developed and discovery many things and unravel so many mystery. Who knows 10yrs or mores from now we would be able to find ways to prove if graviton does really exist or not, or unravel the mystery behind consciousness and the fate of out universe. I do really hope that day would come.

    • The picture of the cube really got me thinking – it’s almost as if the only reason it shows that 360 = 1/2 spin is because there are wires attached to each surface. Does this mean that the spin is not quite as intrinsic, but somehow arrives from a shared interaction?

    • In a short and sweet version ,YES, absolutely we will find…….

    • Maybe we will, it would be very disappointing indeed if we find that we are “chasing a mirage” by following such a Theory, but if we do, it will be quite wonderful but there wouldn’t be anything to work on after that. . . Physics will be over

      • Physics will be over?!?
        Knowing the theory of everything doesn’t do you any good by itself. Presumably 99.9999999999% of the work is in the application of the processes to get things to do what we want them to do. You cannot just point to the equation and tell anyone who wants to put it to practical use to ‘just plug in the numbers’. Actually turning this theory into real world use is where it is at.

    • If particles acquire mass thru interaction with the Higgs field (or is it the Higgs boson?) do the also acquire their other properties through interactions with other fields, e.g. they have charge only because of their interaction with the EM field? (And their angular momentum only through the “Spin Field”, as yet undiscovered?)

      • To my questionable understanding;
        A field is mediated by its particle representation, therefore, the Higgs field is mediated through an exchange with the Higgs boson.
        I think technically speaking, the individual properties do not define the elementarity of the elementary particles, and therefore it is not required to have a field for every property, however, if a function of space and time has properties of energy, momentum, and force associated with it the definition for a field is fulfilled.

    • The equation might be a single one, but it will unlikely be “elegant” (by elegant I think of Einstein’s E=mc² or even his EFE, having in mind that there are lots of shortcuts for each term). Probably the best reason to see it this way is shown right here in the lecture by the 2 shown Langrangians. Examining each element you might come to the result that the equation is indeed a single one describing all of particle physics – but in its entirety by no means elegant.

    • I do think we will come closer and closer to the underlying formulation in terms of the fundamental physics of our Universe. When it comes to describing nature at the energy and length scales of our everyday experience, we nailed it pretty much. It’s in the extreme regions of spacetime where we’re still reaching in the dark.

      However, I also think that the phrase “all of nature” makes it difficult to answer as it seems slightly ambiguous. Assuming human beings are a subset of “nature”, I’m not sure that a “fundamental equation of the Universe” will ever count as a satisfying description of emergent phenomena such as psychology, language, economy, politics, paintings, music, poetry, etc.

      So, “all of nature”? In a way, yes, since this as of yet unknown single expression should underlie all of the Universe. Or, put differently, all known and unknown laws of physics ought to be derivable from this single expression.

      In a way, no, since it still won’t give you an algorithm for the experience of listening to a mesmerizing poetry slam performance, for instance.

      I heard Prof Gerard ‘t Hooft say in one of his lectures in Utrecht, my hometown, that he is completely familiar with wave mechanics—classical and quantum. He knows how to calculate and predict the state of every single wave at any given moment in time. However, he’s still unable to surf.

      As for the term “elegant”, well, I think it’s only appropriate to try and care as much for elegance as the Universe cares for it.

      • Poetry, paintings, music, etc., along with their appreciation as an experience, WOULD also emerge from the theory of everything. From a purely reductionist perspective, those things emerge from consciousness, which in turn must emerge from interactions of fundamental constituents: energy and information. In principle, a complete understanding of interactions from a fundamental level will produce emergent qualities such as consciousness and all the rest. The theory would reveal, as a result of interactions of fundamental constituents, why we appreciate music, and a rock does not, even though we and the rock are built from the same fundamental constituents.

    • Does the universe use a single elegant equation to produce itself and develop over time? When we consider the apparent complexity of the Mandelbrot set and the simplicity of its underlying equation, it does seem possible that a single simple equation could be located at the heart of the universe.

    • I don’t think a single equation is enough. Even after the Universe reaches “universal” 0 K temperature it would be impossible task. This description in a single equation model, or even single elegant equation model could have been possible in white hole singularity. Whether it is possible in black hole, I don’t believe that either as the region inside the event horizon is essential part of the Universe.

    • We create equations and mathematical methods. Some times we discover aspects of reality that we can shoe horn into those equations, sometime it happens the other way around. As we go deeper down the rabbit hole, I see no reason to believe reality is such it can be fully described by any language including math.
      Of course we will have more math and language as we try to spiral into deeper aspects of reality.
      I see no end in sight.

    • Furthermore, From Kurt Gödel’s incompleteness theorem. In a non trivial system of mathematics there are trues we know that cannot be proved.
      We can never have a complete theory.

      • @mark s
        That is a misunderstanding. Gödel’s incompleteness theory does NOT mean we cannot have a unified theory (including quantum gravity). It merely means that in any logic system AS A WHOLE, there are statements that cannot be proven to be correct, even if they are. Those statements are specially crafted statements, and not your ‘normal’ statements.

    • I think so, although the equation would be too complex and long, but surely at some point it will be achieved, either by putting together a bunch of equations or discovering an elegant new formula.

    • We can find from an honest perspective, but we have to work really hard mathematically to avoid infinities while doing Quantum Gravity.

    • Why Past is not different from Future in the mathematical concepts of Quantum Gravity??

    • It would have been nice to have the PDF set of slides that the professor is using available as a download. I am used to this from and As it is, I am using a Linux screenshot app to capture each slide at the right moment when it is not covered up, challenging my hand to eye coordination!

    • @mark s – “Never” is a long time. Maybe we will have a complete theory by the time Andromeda mixes with the Milky Way.

    • The beauty of science is that no matter what you discover, you’ll find something deeper and deeper than you could’ve imagine.
      There are a lot of questions about physics that is still unanswered, and truth will be reviled no matter what.
      There is no ending in world of science and that is the beauty of it.

    • Do you think we will ever be able to comprehensively describe all of nature in a single elegant equation? Why or why not?

      I certainly hope so, even today, we have found a candidate for the theory of everything whic is string theory. Even though we’re not able to test it yet, it is mathematically consistent, which is very important for a theory. I think as our technology advances, we will get better instruments so we can not only improve our theory, but we will also have the capability to test it.

    • The answer to this question is maybe. I know I’m hedging. I have begun to think about spacetime as a sort of basis on which everything is placed, and that quantum mechanics is already built into it, but we haven’t found out how.

    • I guess yes, maybe with the super string theory. I hope so

    • mankind is intelligent, curious, passionate and resilient when it comes to uncovering the nature of our universe, so i really don’t see why we won’t be able to put down a theory of everything

    • I’m skeptical. Is that equation going to have a finite number of degrees of freedom? Or countable even? Will that be provable or a NP-hard problem? Also, in my humble experience, most physical (or dynamical) systems exhibit chaotic behavior, in time, even the simplest ones. How about in a frame-dragged spacetime instead?

      So even such an equation would exist, it would most probably only limit the space of possible solutions, but probably be not very good at specific predictions. Only time will tell. Fingers crossed.

    • Hello Ladies and Gentlemen,

      The equation for the standard model is SU(3) X SU(2) X U(1) or the strong nuclear, weak nuclear and electromagnetism.

      Where is the fourth force of gravity in this? I think Prof. knows.

      In the Standard Model, this equation seems to be the all-equation.

      So we have this course to allow us to find gravitons, on the GRADAR.

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