Keeping Science Honest @jonmbutterworth

Hopefully I’ve made it sufficiently clear that the main reason I’m a fan of Jon Butterworth is because, as far as celeb scientists go, he’s as honest and grounded as they come. Loved this (*) quote from his Grauniad column a couple of weeks ago:

Physics is in an interesting position, now that the Higgs Boson has been discovered. The “Standard Model” doesn’t predict any more new particles, no matter how tiny, and it could be considered internally complete. However, it is very far from being a theory of everything, failing to account for such major experimental facts as gravity, the different amounts of matter and antimatter in the universe, and the 85% or so of stuff that seems to be “Dark Matter”. It also struggles with neutrinos.

It would be good to have some clues to a new theory which might account for those awkward facts.

Accounting for awkward facts is something scientists need to do. Interesting to see Sabine Hossenfelder commenting on “the Anthropic Principle as neither tautological nor useless“, despite being one of those controversial “theories” easier dismissed with smart-ass one liners than thoughtful consideration. The comment thread on her Facebook post gives a clue to the smart-ass dismissers. My agenda has only ever been to keep science, and those who claim scientific rationality, honest.

A rhetorician might say science is only about 1/6th right so far?

[Post Note (*) – I should say, I love it because it effectively publishes what I’ve been paraphrasing I’d heard Jon and his colleagues saying at this event, and confirmed personally with him afterwards.]


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