The Last Theory

Mark Jeffery

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The Last Theory is an easy-to-follow exploration of what might be the last theory of physics. In 2020, Stephen Wolfram launched the Wolfram Physics Project to find the elusive fundamental theory that explains everything. On The Last Theory podcast, I investigate the implications of Wolfram's ideas and dig into the details of how his universe works. Join me for fresh insights into Wolfram Physics every other week.

Available episodes

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Oldest first

Jun 1, 2023

Why has there been no progress in physics since 1973?

The twentieth century was a truly exciting time in physics.
From 1905 to 1973, we made extraordinary progress probing the mysteries of the universe: special relativity, general relativity, quantum mechanics, the structure of the atom, the structure of the nucleus, enumerating the elementary particles.
Then, in 1973, this extraordinary progress... stopped.
I mean, where are the fundamental discoveries in the last 50 years equal to general relativity or quantum mechanics?
Why has there been no progress in physics since 1973?
For this high-budget, big-hair episode of The Last Theory, I flew all the way to Oxford to tell you why progress stopped, and why it’s set to start again: why progress in physics might be about to accelerate in the early twenty-first century in a way we haven’t seen since those heady days of the early twentieth century.
—
Eric Weinstein’s claims that there has been no progress in physics since 1973:
* BigThink
* The Joe Rogan Experience
Lord Kelvin
—
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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May 18, 2023

How to find causally invariant rules with Jonathan Gorard

Causal invariance is a crucial characteristic for any rule of Wolfram Physics.
According to Wolfram MathWorld, if a rule is causally invariant, then “no matter which evolution is chosen for a system, the history is the same, in the sense that the same events occur and they have the same causal relationships.”
Causal invariance is one of the assumptions Jonathan Gorard needs to make to derive the equations of General Relativity from the hypergraph. That’s how crucial it is!
Given that not every rule of Wolfram Physics is causally invariant, I asked Jonathan how we find the ones that are.
Here, in another excerpt from our recent conversation, is his answer: how to find causally invariant rules.
—
Jonathan Gorard
* Jonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics Project
* Jonathan Gorard at Cardiff University
* Jonathan Gorard on Twitter
* The Centre for Applied Compositionality
* The Wolfram Physics Project
People and concepts mentioned by Jonathan
* Stephen Wolfram
* Max Piskunov
* Causal invariance
* Wolfram Function Repository
* Wolfram Engine
* Wolfram Mathematica
* Wolfram Programming Lab
* CausalInvariantQ
* TotalCausalInvariantQ
* Associative
* Commutative
* Automated theorem proving
* Undecidable problem
—
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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May 4, 2023

How to knit the universe

Now that I’ve introduced you to the different kinds of edges that might make up a hypergraph – unary, binary and ternary edges, as well as loops and self-loops – we can have some fun.
Some of rules in the Wolfram model give rise to fascinating universes.
Today, I’m going to show you a few rules that seem to fabricate space itself in much the same way as knitting needles might fabricate a blanket.
And if you think that knitting is a far-fetched analogy, just wait until you see my animations!
–
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Apr 22, 2023

Animating the hypergraph with Dugan Hammock

Dugan Hammock creates beautiful animations of three-dimensional cross-sections through four-dimensional spaces.
But his animations aren’t mere mathematical abstractions. He has also applied his geometrical skills to animating the hypergraph of Wolfram Physics, in such a way that it doesn’t jump from frame to frame.
In this second part of my recent conversation with Dugan, we talk about his extending spring-electrical embedding into an additional time dimension...
...and we show some of the beautifully smooth animations that come out of it.
—
Dugan Hammock
* Dugan Hammock’s videos on YouTube
* Dugan Hammock on Twitter
* Dugan Hammock at The Wolfram Physics Project
* Plotting the evolution of a Wolfram Model in 3-dimensions
* Temporally coherent animations of the evolution of Wolfram Models
People and concepts mentioned by Dugan
* Coulomb’s law
* Hooke’s law
* Spring-electrical embedding
* Charles Pooh
—
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Apr 8, 2023

Causal invariance versus confluence with Jonathan Gorard

Causal invariance is one of the most important concepts in the Wolfram model... and one of the most difficult to capture.
So I really wanted to hear Jonathan Gorard’s take on it.
In this excerpt from our conversation, Jonathan addresses the differences between causal invariance and confluence.
Causal invariance means that regardless of the order in which a rule is applied to the hypergraph, the same events occur, with the same causal relationships between them.
Confluence, on the other hand, is the coming-together of different branches of the multiway graph.
Jonathan explores different ways we might determine whether two nodes, two edges or two hypergraphs are the same, and explains that if we identify nodes and edges according to their causal histories, then causal invariance and confluence become the same idea.
I’ve found myself listening to Jonathan’s explanation of causal invariance over and over to make sense of it, but it’s one of the areas where I’m convinced Jonathan has a unique contribution to make.
—
Jonathan Gorard
• Jonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics Project
• Jonathan Gorard at Cardiff University
• Jonathan Gorard on Twitter
• The Centre for Applied Compositionality
• The Wolfram Physics Project
Concepts mentioned by Jonathan
• Causal invariance
• Multiway system
• Causal structure
• Causal Set Theory
• Directed acyclic graph
• Isomorphic
• Space-like separation
• Simultaneity and simultaneity surfaces in relativity
• Lorentz invariance
• Poincaré invariance
• Conformal invariance
• Diffeomorphism invariance
• General covariance
• Confluence
• Church-Rosser Property
—
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Mar 26, 2023

Loops and self‑loops in the hypergraph

So many of the most complex and most promising graphs and hypergraphs of Wolfram Physics involve loops and self-loops.
They can play a crucial role in the evolution of graphs and hypergraphs... which means that they might play a crucial role in the evolution of the universe itself.
Loops and self-loops matter, because including them in our models reduces the number of arbitrary assumptions we need to make in Wolfram Physics, making it more complete.
–
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Mar 16, 2023

Living in the fourth dimension with Dugan Hammock

Dugan Hammock lives in the fourth dimension.
As Jonathan Gorard mentioned in our recent conversation on How to draw the hypergraph in Wolfram Physics, Dugan has worked on plotting the evolution of the hypergraph over time.
We get into that in the second part of our conversation, but in this first part, I get to know Dugan as a mathematician and artist.
Enjoy his amazing animations of three-dimensional cross-sections through four-dimensional hypershapes!
—
Dugan Hammock
* Dugan Hammock’s videos on YouTube
* Dugan Hammock on Twitter
* Dugan Hammock at The Wolfram Physics Project
* Plotting the evolution of a Wolfram Model in 3-dimensions
* Temporally coherent animations of the evolution of Wolfram Models
People mentioned by Dugan
* Max Cooper
* George K. Francis
* William Thurston
—
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Feb 23, 2023

Why I changed my mind about computational irreducibility with Jonathan Gorard

Computational irreducibility means that there are no shortcuts when we apply rules to the hypergraph.
I used to think that our existing theories of physics, such as general relativity and quantum mechanics, were examples of computational reducibility: shortcuts that allow us to make higher-level generalizations about how the application of rules to the hypergraph gives rise to our universe.
Jonathan Gorard used to think this, too.
But it turns out that over the last couple of years, he has changed his mind on this quite radically.
General relativity and quantum mechanics, he now thinks, aren’t examples of computational reducibility, they’re consequences of computational irreducibility.
I truly appreciated this part of our conversation, because it radically changed my mind, too, about this crucial concept in Wolfram Physics.
—
Jonathan Gorard
* Jonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics Project
* Jonathan Gorard at Cardiff University
* Jonathan Gorard on Twitter
* The Centre for Applied Compositionality
* The Wolfram Physics Project
Concepts mentioned by Jonathan
* Computational reducibility
* Computational irreducibility
* General relativity
* Quantum mechanics
* Fluid mechanics
* Continuum mechanics
* Solid mechanics
* Partition function
* Boltzmann equation
* Molecular chaos assumption
* Ergodicity
* Distribution function
* Chapman-Enskog expansion
* Stress tensor
* Navier-Stokes equations
* Euler equations
—
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Feb 9, 2023

What’s beyond the universe?

There are two questions about Wolfram Physics I’m asked a lot:
What’s beyond the hypergraph?
And what’s between the nodes and edges of the hypergraph?
There’s a simple answer to this question.
Nothing.
There’s nothing beyond the hypergraph.
There’s nothing beyond the universe.
But it’s not a very effective answer.
So here’s a deeper response to the age-old question:
What’s beyond the universe?
–
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Jan 26, 2023

How to draw the hypergraph in Wolfram Physics with Jonathan Gorard

The hypergraph is the universe.
So if we want to see the universe, we need only draw the hypergraph.
The question is: how?
The nodes and edges of the hypergraph are determined by the rules of Wolfram Physics. But how we draw those nodes and edges is not determined.
The drawing of the hypergraph is not the universe, it’s just a way of visualizing the universe.
So I asked Jonathan Gorard how we might decide where to position the nodes and edges when we draw the hypergraph, so that we can see what’s really going on in Wolfram Physics.
—
Jonathan Gorard
* Jonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics Project
* Jonathan Gorard at Cardiff University
* Jonathan Gorard on Twitter
* The Centre for Applied Compositionality
* The Wolfram Physics Project
People mentioned by Jonathan
* Charles Pooh
* Dugan Hammock
* Plotting the evolution of a Wolfram Model in 3-dimensions by Dugan Hammock
* Temporally coherent animations of the evolution of Wolfram Models by Dugan Hammock
Concepts mentioned by Jonathan
* Spring electrical embedding
* Spring embedding
* Layered embedding
* Causal graphs
* Coulomb’s law
* Hooke’s law
—
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Jan 19, 2023

What is the Big Bang in Wolfram’s universe?

What is the Big Bang in Wolfram Physics?
There’s a straightforward answer to that question.
It’s the point in the evolution of the universe where the hypergraph goes from nothing to something.
It’s the start of the explosion that eventually yields the uncountable particles, planets, stars and galaxies of our universe.
So that’s pretty straightforward, isn’t it?
Well, yes, except that there’s one phrase above that demands further explanation: nothing to something.
How does the universe go from nothing to something?
–
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Jan 5, 2023

Graphs v hypergraphs in Wolfram Physics with Jonathan Gorard

Here’s a slightly technical question:
Does Wolfram Physics really need hypergraphs?
Or could it based on graphs instead?
Jonathan Gorard shares some interesting insights into the evolution of Stephen Wolfram’s model for a fundamental theory of physics.
Wolfram started with trivalent graphs, in which each edge joins two nodes, and each node has three edges.
But when he ran into issues implementing simulations using these simple graphs, he solved the problem by graduating to hypergraphs, in which each hyperedge can join any number of nodes, and each node can have any number of hyperedges.
Here’s how hypergraphs, rather than graphs, came to be the basis of Wolfram Physics.
—
Jonathan Gorard
* Jonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics Project
* Jonathan Gorard at Cardiff University
* Jonathan Gorard on Twitter
* The Centre for Applied Compositionality
* The Wolfram Physics Project
Concepts mentioned by Jonathan
* Trivalent networks (a.k.a. cubic graphs)
* Math…

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Dec 29, 2022

Where I’m going with Wolfram Physics in 2023

I’ve been blown away by your response to The Last Theory in 2022.
How am I going to thank you for reading, listening, watching and subscribing?
Well, by bringing you more Wolfram Physics in the New Year, that’s how.
Here are 7 directions I want to take The Last Theory in 2023.
—
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Dec 22, 2022

Why hypergraphs might be a good model of the universe with Jonathan Gorard

Wolfram Physics is based on hypergraphs.
Why?
What is it about hypergraphs that might make them a better model of the universe than, say, strings of characters, or cellular automata, or Turing machines?
When I asked Jonathan Gorard this question, he gave an answer that was deeply insightful.
It’s such a core question, so fundamental to why we should take the Wolfram model seriously, that I’ve listened to Jonathan’s answer over and over.
—
Jonathan Gorard
* Jonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics Project
* Jonathan Gorard at Cardiff University
* Jonathan Gorard on Twitter
* The Centre for Applied Compositionality
* The Wolfram Physics Project
People and Concepts mentioned by Jonathan
* Roger Penrose
* Rafael Sorkin
* Tommaso Bolognesi
* Causal Set Theory
* Hasse diagram
* Riemannian distance
* Strings (of characters)
* Cellular automata
* Turing machines
* Lorentz invariance
* General covariance
—
I release The Last Theory as a video t…

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Dec 15, 2022

Is Wolfram Physics the next scientific revolution?

For the last few hundred years, all our theories of physics have been mathematical.
If Stephen Wolfram is right, from now on, our most fundamental theories of physics may be computational.
This shift from mathematics to computation feels to me like a scientific revolution.
Recently, I asked Jonathan Gorard, who was instrumental in the founding of The Wolfram Physics Project, whether it feels to him, too, like a scientific revolution.
“I think so,” he said. “I mean, it’s a strong statement, but I don’t think it’ll end up being too inaccurate.”
(If you want to check out that part of our conversation, you can listen here or watch here.)
Here’s why, in my mind, Wolfram Physics is the next scientific revolution.
–
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Dec 8, 2022

Why I took a chance on Wolfram Physics with Jonathan Gorard

Jonathan Gorard admits that it was a risk, for his academic career, to work on the Wolfram Physics project.
In this third excerpt from my recent conversation with Jonathan, I asked him how he thought about that risk and why he decided to take it.
He told me that the opportunity to work with Stephen Wolfram on this new model is a bit like being given an opportunity to work with von Neumann and Ulam on cellular automata, or with Turing, Church and Gödel on computational models, back in the early twentieth century.
So I asked Jonathan whether he thought, as I do, that the reframing physics in terms of computation feels like we’re in a scientific revolution, as important as the reframing of physics in terms of mathematics several hundred years ago.
“It’s a strong statement,” he replied, “but I don’t think it’ll end up being too inaccurate.”
For me, the opportunity to talk to Jonathan about Wolfram Physics feels a bit like being given an opportunity to interview Dirac,…

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Dec 1, 2022

What is the multiway graph in Wolfram Physics?

In Episode 15: Where to apply Wolfram’s rules? (listen to the audio ⋅ watch the video ⋅ read the article) I introduced a radical idea.
When we’re applying a rule to a graph in Wolfram Physics, there are generally many possible places in the graph we could apply the rule, giving us many possible next states of the universe.
Here’s the radical idea: rather than choose one of these possible universes, we choose not to choose. Instead, we keep each of them in mind.
The trouble is, if we choose not to choose, the number of possible universes we have to keep in mind gets extremely large extremely quickly.
To help us visualize all these possible universes, we’re going to need the multiway graph
.
It’s a crucial idea in Wolfram Physics.
The multiway graph will allow us to derive aspects of quantum mechanics from Wolfram Physics.
It’ll lead us to a concept of the observer that promises to resolve issues related to the collapse of the wavefunction that have plagued quantum…

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Nov 17, 2022

From clockwork to computation in Wolfram Physics with Jonathan Gorard

This is the second of a series of excerpts from my recent conversation with Jonathan Gorard, who was instrumental in the founding of The Wolfram Physics Project.
I asked Jonathan why he found the computational approach to physics so compelling.
In his answer, he broached a wide range of fascinating topics in the philosophy of science:
* how we moved from a clockwork paradigm in the age of clockwork to a computational paradigm in the age of computation;
* how saying that the universe is computational is different from saying that the universe is a computer;
* how our adoption of mathematics as the basis for physics has biased us to think of space-time as continuous;
* how the history of science might have been different had Turing been born before Newton;
* how the Wolfram Model can be thought of as a way of building a constructivist foundation for physics.
This led us to discuss a couple of the deeper questions of Wolfram Physics:
* is it possible to know whether the u…

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Nov 10, 2022

Why I don’t like String Theory

In my conversation with Jonathan Gorard about the founding of the Wolfram Physics Project, I said that I don’t like String Theory.
Now, I’ll admit, I don’t really understand String Theory.
It’s highly mathematical. And I’m not much of a mathematician. Actually, that’s an understatement. I’m not a mathematician at all.
So if there’s a problem in the relationship between String Theory and me, it might not be String Theory, it might be me.
Sadly, admitting that I might be part of the problem doesn’t change anything between us. I still don’t like String Theory.
Here’s why.
–
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Nov 3, 2022

The founding of the Wolfram Physics Project with Jonathan Gorard

In 2019, Jonathan Gorard and Max Piskunov goaded Stephen Wolfram into pursuing his ideas for a new kind of science.
This led to the announcement of The Wolfram Physics Project in 2020.
Last week, I talked to Jonathan Gorard about the revolutionary ideas that have come out of the project.
In this first excerpt from our conversation, Jonathan talks about his instrumental role in the founding of The Wolfram Physics Project.
We cover why the time was right in 2020... and why it had been wrong in 2002 when Stephen Wolfram published his book A New Kind of Science.
We talk about how Wolfram Physics might take over from string theory, why Jonathan likes string theory... and why he doesn’t.
It was a true pleasure to talk to Jonathan about what might prove a pivotal moment in the history of science.
—
Jonathan Gorard
* Jonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics Project
* Jonathan Gorard at Cardiff University
People and Projects
* The Centre for Applied Compositionality
* The W…

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Oct 27, 2022

Hypergraphs are everywhere

Wolfram Physics models the universe as a hypergraph.
Maybe I’m just seeing things, but it seems to me that hypergraphs are everywhere: physics, chemistry, biology, neurology, ecology, sociology, technology.
What I want to know is:
Why?
Why are hypergraphs everywhere?
—
Molecular structure Styrene-butadiene chain2 by Guido Raos, professor of chemistry, Politecnico di Milano, Italy licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
Metabolic pathway BRENDA pyrimidine metabolism by BRENDA – The Comprehensive Enzyme Information System licensed under CC BY 4.0
Brain image Neurons & glia by The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) licensed under CC BY 2.0
Pelagic food web An in situ perspective of a deep pelagic food web by C. Anela Choy, Steven H. D. Haddock and Bruce H. Robison licensed under CC BY 4.0
Social graph Partitions in my social graph by Matt Biddulph licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
Internet map Internet map by Matt Britt licensed under CC…

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Oct 13, 2022

How big is the computer that runs the universe?

As you’ll know from Episode 8: Where’s the computer that runs the universe? ( read ⋅ listen ⋅ watch ), I have my doubts about the existence of a computer that’s whirring away, applying Wolfram’s rules to Wolfram’s graphs, performing the computations required to run our universe.
This computer, if it exists, is necessarily invisible to us, and as I warned in Episode 12: Beware invisible things ( read ⋅ listen ⋅ watch ) we should be wary of what we can’t see.
Still, I want to revisit this idea of a computer that runs the universe.
I want to come at it from a slightly different direction.
Rather than adopt the stance of the monkey with its hands over its eyes and insist that if I can’t see it, it’s not there, let’s suppose that there is a computer that runs the universe and ask a simple question:
How big would it have to be?
—
Other episodes I mention:
* Episode 8: Where’s the computer that runs the universe? – read ⋅ listen ⋅ watch
* Episod…

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Sep 29, 2022

Unary, binary, ternary, k-ary hyperedges in Wolfram Physics

Here are answers to some fundamental questions about hypergraphs:
A hyperedge can connect any number of nodes: one, two, three, four, seventeen or any other number.
And a hypergraph can include any of these different kinds of hyperedge, or all of them.
Let’s take a look at what this means for Wolfram Physics... and at some of the beautiful hypergraphs it allows us to generate!
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Sep 15, 2022

What is a hypergraph in Wolfram Physics?

In previous episodes, I’ve been simulating Wolfram Physics using graphs.
But you may have come across simulations of Wolfram Physics using hypergraphs.
What’s the difference?
What is a hypergraph?
—
This epsiode refers to previous episodes on dimensionality:
* How to measure the dimensionality of the universe audio ⋅ video ⋅ article
* Are Wolfram’s graphs three‑dimensional? audio ⋅ video ⋅ article
* What are dimensions in Wolfram’s universe? audio ⋅ video ⋅ article
and previous episodes on space:
* What is space? the where and the how far audio ⋅ video ⋅ article
* The expanse: dimension, separation & explosion audio ⋅ video ⋅ article
—
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Sep 2, 2022

Where to apply Wolfram's rules?

Confession time: I haven’t been entirely honest with you about applying a rule to a graph in Wolfram Physics.
I’ve explained precisely how to apply a rule, but I’ve been strangely silent when it comes to where to apply the rule.
I know, it’s unlike me to be silent, right?
Time to come clean.
It turns out that the question of where to apply Wolfram’s rules is not as easily answered as you might think.
This seemingly straightforward question will take us into the philosophy of time, causality, consciousness, contingency and determinism.
And it’ll lead us towards some of the most important concepts in Wolfram Physics: the multiway graph, branchial space and causal invariance.
Check your breathing apparatus: we’re going deep.
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Aug 4, 2022

Space-time is dead

In his General Theory of Relativity, Einstein combined the three dimensions of space with the one dimension of time in what we now know as Einstein’s equations.
Ever since, physicists have thought of space and time as effectively the same thing: components of four-dimensional space-time.
This might be the biggest blunder physicists have ever made.
Stephen Wolfram, on page 22 of his book A project to find the Fundamental Theory of Physics, calls it the “one ‘wrong turn’ in the history of physics in the past century”.
Space-time is dead.
Here’s why... and how physicists got it so wrong for so long.
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Jul 21, 2022

Is space continuous or discrete?

We’re used to thinking of space as continuous.
A stone can be anywhere in space. It can be here. Or it can be an inch to the left. Or it can be half an inch further to the left. Or it can be an infinitesimal fraction of an inch even further to the left. Space is infinitely divisible.
The graphs of Wolfram Physics, however, are discrete.
If, as Stephen Wolfram proposes, the universe is a graph, then you can’t be just anywhere in space. It makes sense to think about a node of the graph as a position in space. It makes no sense to think about anywhere in between the nodes as positions in space. This space is not infinitely divisible.
It’s as if a stone could be here in space, or here in space, but nowhere in between.
So which is it?
Has every physicist from Leucippus to Einstein been right to insist that space is continuous?
Or is Wolfram right to up-end millennia of settled science and insist that space is discrete?
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The…

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Jul 7, 2022

Beware invisible things

We humans have always been fond of invisible things.
Poltergeists, fairies, unicorns, the Yeti, the Lost City of Atlantis.
Just because you can’t see them, it doesn’t mean they aren’t there.
Scientists, no less than any other humans, suffer from this fondness for invisible things.
Phlogiston, miasma, ether, strings.
Just because you can’t see them, scientists have insisted, it doesn’t mean they aren’t there.
Beware these invisible things.
As I explore Wolfram Physics, I’m aware of certain invisible things that we believe in now, but we’re going to have to let go, if Stephen Wolfram is right.
And I’m also aware of the temptation to replace this old set of invisible things with a new set of invisible things.
Here’s why we’d do well to resist.
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Jun 9, 2022

What are dimensions in Wolfram’s universe?

We know what it means when we say that our universe is three-dimensional: it means that we can move in three orthogonal directions: left-right; up-down; forwards-backwards.
But what would it mean to say that a universe is 2½-dimensional?
Or 3.37-dimensional?
Or 9-dimensional?
When I measured the dimensionality one of Wolfram’s graphs, I found it to be at least 3.37-dimensional.
If Stephen Wolfram is right, then our universe might not be uniformly three-dimensional.
So maybe dimensionality isn’t quite what we think it is.
What, exactly, are dimensions?
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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May 26, 2022

Are Wolfram’s graphs three‑dimensional?

Are Wolfram’s graphs three-dimensional?
In Episode #009: How to measure the dimensionality of the universe – watch the video or read the article – I introduced a mathematically-minded crab, which was able to determine the dimensionality of its universe by measuring how much space it covered moving different distances in every possible direction.
Now I’m going to use the same crabby method to determine the dimensionality of graphs generated by Wolfram Physics.
I’m finally going to answer the question: how many dimensions are there in one of Wolfram’s universes?
And the answer’s going to be unexpected.
Here’s a hint: it’s not two and it’s not three.
Today’s episode includes a lot of visuals, so I recommend you watch the video or read the article rather than listen to the audio.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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May 12, 2022

How to measure the dimensionality of the universe

Today’s episode includes a lot of visuals, so I recommend you watch the video or read the article rather than listen to the audio.
In Episode #007: The expanse: dimension, separation & explosion – watch the video or read the article – I argued that the graphs of Wolfram Physics are going to have to be three-dimensional to be a true representation of our universe.
But how can we tell whether these graphs are three-dimensional? Many of them are so convoluted that it’s difficult to tell whether they’re two-dimensional, three-dimensional or somewhere in between.
I’m going to make the question even more difficult. We’ve been looking at graphs from the outside, from a God’s-eye view.
In reality, though, we’re not outside the graph. Remember, we’re hoping that the graphs of Wolfram Physics will prove to be a true representation of our universe, and we can’t be outside our own universe.
How could we tell whether a graph is two-dimensional, or three-dimensional, or ev…

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Apr 28, 2022

Where’s the computer that runs the universe?

I’ve been running simulations of our universe, according to Stephen Wolfram’s computational theory of physics.
Where’s the computer that runs these simulations?
Well, it’s right here. This a low-powered laptop in my hand is literally the computer that runs these universes.
It’s natural to ask a follow-up question.
If Wolfram’s right and the real universe evolves computationally in the same way as these simulated universes, where’s the computer that runs the universe?
I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Apr 14, 2022

The expanse: dimension, separation & explosion

In the last episode, I introduced two fundamental characteristics of space: position and distance.
Today, I’m going to introduce three more characteristics of space: dimension, separation & explosion.
If it’s to be a viable theory of physics, Wolfram Physics has to accurately model space as we know it, including all five of these characteristics.
Let’s see how it measures up.
—
Today’s episode includes a lot of visuals, so you might prefer to read the article, or watch the video, where they’re animated.
In the episode, I refer back to Episode #006: What is space? the where and the how far. Again, I recommend you watch the video or read the article rather than listen to the audio for that episode, since you’ll want to see the visuals!
Doppler siren by jobro reproduced under CC BY 3.0
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Mar 31, 2022

What is space? the where and the how far

What is space in Wolfram Physics?
I’ve talked about the basic concepts of Wolfram Physics: nodes, edges, graphs & rules.
I just threw these concepts out there. No explanation. No rhyme, no reason. Nodes, edges, graphs & rules. Take them or leave them.
Naturally, this raised a few questions in some people’s minds.
These questions can be summed up as follows:
Wait... What? Nodes, edges, graphs & rules? Why?
This a deep question.
Let’s get into it.
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This episode includes a few visuals, so you might prefer to read the article or watch the video.
In this episode, I refer back to Episode #004: Different rules, different universes. This one, too, includes a lot of visuals, so again, I recommend you watch the video or read the article rather than listen to the audio for that episode.
I also refer to a Polynesian stick chart. You can find it here: Micronesian navigational chart.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Mar 17, 2022

What is physics? the how and the why

I like being asked questions about Wolfram Physics.
When I try to answer them, though, I often find myself trapped in an infinite regress.
To address a question about Wolfram Physics, I might first need to address another, more fundamental question, about physics.
And to address that question, I might first need to address another, more fundamental question, than might be more philosophy than physics.
Today, I’m going to go to one of those deep questions that need to be asked, if not answered, before I can begin to address many of the questions I’ve been asked about Wolfram Physics.
What is physics?
Prefer to watch the video? Watch here.
The full article is here.
Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

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Mar 3, 2022

Different rules, different universes

It’s all about the animations.
I’ve been coding coding coding the few weeks to develop my simulations of Wolfram Physics.
So now I’m able to explore a number of simple rules and ask a number of simple questions.
What different rules could be applied to our universe?
What different universes would arise from these rules?
Today, I explore different rules, different universes.
Today’s episode includes a lot of visuals, so you might prefer to read the article, or watch the video, where they’re fully animated.
If you missed Episode #002, Nodes, edges, graphs & rules: the basic concepts of Wolfram Physics, you can find the article here and the video here.

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Feb 17, 2022

Why you’ve never heard of Wolfram Physics

Wolfram Physics might be the most fundamental scientific breakthrough in your lifetime.
And yet you’ve probably never heard of it.
Here’s why.
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Albert Einstein’s 1905 papers
Stephen Wolfram’s project to find the fundamental theory of physics
Stephen Wolfram’s 2020 announcement
There are maybe half a million physicists in the world
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Prefer to watch the video? Watch here
The full article is here

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Feb 3, 2022

Nodes, edges, graphs & rules: the basic concepts of Wolfram Physics

Are you ready?
Today, I’m going to dive right into Wolfram Physics.
If you’ve never heard of Stephen Wolfram or his team’s project to find the fundamental theory of physics, don’t worry.
Think of it like this: I’m going to dive right into the fundamental structure of the universe.
And, well, you might not believe that the words “simple” and “physics” can go together, but I’m going to keep it simple.
Today’s episode includes a lot of visuals.
You can find them in the article, or you might want to switch to watching the video, where they’re fully animated.

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Jan 20, 2022

Why I’m writing about Wolfram Physics

I always envy those people who, through a fantastic stroke of luck, find themselves to be exactly the right person in exactly the right place at exactly the right time to seize a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
I always ask myself, why can’t that happen to me?
Well, it just did.
Let me explain.
In this week’s episode, I discuss why I’m writing about Wolfram Physics.
I’ll be digging into the details, as well as taking a step back to see some of the philosophical implications, in future episodes.
Prefer to watch the video? Watch at lasttheory.com/channel/001-why-i-am-writing-about-wolfram-physics
The full article is at lasttheory.com/article/why-i-am-writing-about-wolfram-physics

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Dec 26, 2021

The most fundamental scientific breakthrough of our time

Welcome to The Last Theory, an easy-to-follow exploration of what might be the last theory of physics.
In 2020, Stephen Wolfram launched the Wolfram Physics Project to find the elusive fundamental theory that explains everything.
On The Last Theory, I investigate the implications of Wolfram’s ideas and dig into the details of how his universe works.
Join me for fresh insights into Wolfram Physics every other week: subscribe to the free newsletter, podcast or YouTube channel at lasttheory.com
After all, this might be the most fundamental scientific breakthrough of our time.

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