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theoretical physics

The theoretical physicist Joe Polchinski, who died Feb. 2, left a tremendous professional and personal legacy, says a friend and collaborator.
Quantized Columns

Physicists Mourn Joe Polchinski, Developer of Deep Ideas and Paradoxes

The theoretical physicist Joe Polchinski, who died Feb. 2, left a tremendous professional and personal legacy, says a friend and collaborator.

Cosmologists have shown that it’s theoretically possible for a contracting universe to bounce and expand. The new work resuscitates an old idea that directly challenges the Big Bang theory of cosmic origins.
cosmology

How the Universe Got Its Bounce Back

Cosmologists have shown that it’s theoretically possible for a contracting universe to bounce and expand. The new work resuscitates an old idea that directly challenges the Big Bang theory of cosmic origins.

For decades, physicists have struggled to create a quantum theory of gravity. Now an approach that dates to the 1970s is attracting newfound attention.
Quantized Columns

Why an Old Theory of Everything Is Gaining New Life

For decades, physicists have struggled to create a quantum theory of gravity. Now an approach that dates to the 1970s is attracting newfound attention.

A complete classification could lead to a wealth of new materials and technologies. But some exotic phases continue to resist understanding.
condensed matter physics

Physicists Aim to Classify All Possible Phases of Matter

A complete classification could lead to a wealth of new materials and technologies. But some exotic phases continue to resist understanding.

The mother of all string theories passes a litmus test that, so far, no other candidate theory of quantum gravity has been able to match.
Abstractions blog

Why Is M-Theory the Leading Candidate for Theory of Everything?

The mother of all string theories passes a litmus test that, so far, no other candidate theory of quantum gravity has been able to match.

Edward Witten reflects on the meaning of dualities in physics and math, emergent space-time, and the pursuit of a complete description of nature.
Q&A

A Physicist’s Physicist Ponders the Nature of Reality

Edward Witten reflects on the meaning of dualities in physics and math, emergent space-time, and the pursuit of a complete description of nature.

Physicists theorize that a new “traversable” kind of wormhole could resolve a baffling paradox and rescue information that falls into black holes.
theoretical physics

Newfound Wormhole Allows Information to Escape Black Holes

Physicists theorize that a new “traversable” kind of wormhole could resolve a baffling paradox and rescue information that falls into black holes.

The universe has not cooperated with physicists’ hopes. In desperation, many are looking for new ways to search for surprises at the Large Hadron Collider.
particle physics

How the Hidden Higgs Could Reveal Our Universe’s Dark Sector

The universe has not cooperated with physicists’ hopes. In desperation, many are looking for new ways to search for surprises at the Large Hadron Collider.

Reductionism breaks the world into elementary building blocks. Emergence finds the simple laws that arise out of complexity. These two complementary ways of viewing the universe come together in modern theories of quantum gravity.
Quantized Columns

To Solve the Biggest Mystery in Physics, Join Two Kinds of Law

Reductionism breaks the world into elementary building blocks. Emergence finds the simple laws that arise out of complexity. These two complementary ways of viewing the universe come together in modern theories of quantum gravity.