
The analysis of collective behavior is quickly becoming crossdisciplinary. I wrote a few years ago about a study that analyzed the coordination of starling flocks. That post was based on the work of Thierry Mora and William Bialek, presented in their paper Are Biological Systems Poised at Criticality. The paper was published in the Journal […]
As I read more discussions of the relationship between mathematics and physics, I find that what mathematics might reveal about how physical science progresses becomes an increasingly interesting question.
I recently found the text of a lecture given by Paul Dirac in 1939. It was reproduced on the occasion of the Dirac Centennial Celebration organized […]
In the August issue of Scientific American, Meinard Kuhlmann addresses, yet again, the conceptual difficulties inherent in the interpretations of experimental data of modern physics.
…the particle interpretation of quantum physics, as well as the field interpretation, stretches our conventional notions of “particle” and “field” to such an extent that ever more people think the […]
Step by step, our ideas about the nature of our reality have moved far from the sensory constructions of space and time that define our immediate experience. And once fully outside the knowledge brought with sensation, we lose our footing. It’s difficult to manage ‘what can’t be sensed.’ But our conceptual difficulties with quantum mechanics […]
I am intrigued by the current debate in physics concerning the significance of the wave function in quantum theory. The nature of the debate opens the door to a host of philosophical issues surrounding both physics and mathematics. In an article appearing in the June issue of Scientific American, I was introduced to a relatively […]
There was once what many call a ‘foundational crisis in mathematics’ – disputes among mathematicians about both their ideas and their methods. But while one needn’t now address the relationship between mathematics and reality in order to pursue a successful career in mathematics, the conceptual and experimental puzzles of modern physics likely reflect a similar […]
In my guest blog for Scientific American, I wrote about the work of Bob Coecke who has designed a graphical mathematics, based on a branch of mathematics called category theory. He uses this diagrammatic calculus to describe and investigate quantum mechanical processes. Coecke’s work has found application in biology and linguistics, suggesting some interesting links […]
My post appeared on the Scientific American Guest Blog this morning. Here’s the link:
Quantum Mechanical Words and Mathematical Organisms
I’m short on time today and working on a guest blog which I hope to be able to provide a link to shortly. But I did begin exploring a website that has short video interviews with some of my favorite thinkers. I found among a list of participants on the website Closer To Truth, Gregory […]
I read another New Scientist article today. The article was written by Brian Greene. While it didn’t give me a lot of new information, it made an interesting point about what it means (and when is it particularly effective) to take our mathematics seriously. He talked about Einstein’s insight regarding the speed of light. It […]


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