A positive mention by Carl Brannen might have inspired a change in attitude from one of our esteemed colleagues. Mottle’s latest post includes the statement

Wegener’s wisdom about continents was very analogous to Darwin’s wisdom about evolving species that was formulated half a century earlier. Nevertheless, it was still hard for most people to swallow. Are we doing a similar error in another discipline today?

Well, it is probably obvious where I am going. The convoluted properties of the particle spectrum we observe may also be a result of some historical evolution, as eternal inflation combined with the landscape may suggest. But it doesn’t have to be so.

7 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Doug said,

    Hi Kea,

    If this Nature Letter is confirmed, then David Hestenes may have great insight into the value of the helix.

    I first mentioned the helix possibility to Lubos 2-3 years ago. He provided a couple of ArXiv papers with a similar idea.

    Letter, Nature 450, 71-73 (1 November 2007) | doi:10.1038/nature06220; Received 8 June 2007; Accepted 4 September 2007

    Antonio Chrysostomou, Philip W Lucas and James H Hough, ‘Circular polarimetry reveals helical magnetic fields in the young stellar object HH 135–136’, 1st paragraph:

    “Magnetic fields are believed to have a vital role in regulating and shaping the flow of material onto and away from protostars during their initial mass accretion phase. It is becoming increasingly accepted1 that bipolar outflows are generated and collimated as material is driven along magnetic field lines and centrifugally accelerated off a rotating accretion disk. However, the precise role of the magnetic field is poorly understood and evidence for its shape and structure has not been forthcoming. Here we report imaging circular polarimetry in the near-infrared and Monte Carlo modelling showing that the magnetic field along the bipolar outflow of the HH 135–136 young stellar object is helical. The field retains this shape for large distances along the outflow, so the field structure can also provide the necessary magnetic pressure for collimation of the outflow. This result lends further weight to the hypothesis—central to any theory of star formation—that the outflow is an important instrument for the removal of high-angular-momentum material from the accretion disk, thereby allowing the central protostar to increase its mass.”

    Summary report at:
    USA Today, ‘New spin on how stars are born’ By Ker Than,
    Copyright 2007, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  2. 2

    CarlBrannen said,

    His name isn’t “Mottle”, it’s “Motl”. And I doubt that anything I write has any influence on him whatsoever.

    I don’t have the slightest idea how “eternal inflation combined with the landscape” could give convoluted particle properties. Any ideas?

  3. 3

    Anonymous said,

    The consistency of misspelling of said person’s name on this blog might suggest an alternative reason for the word Mottle…

  4. 4

    CarlBrannen said,

    But “mottle” isn’t much of a term of derision. Some modification that ends with “hole” comes to mind. And I’ve seen a variety of mispellings.

    For those not in on the joke, it’s confusing. And besides, isn’t physics a subject that trumps all other considerations? Aren’t physicists supposed to be above all that?

    Or are the deconstructionists right and physics is really just another branch of sociology, a chimp-fight with calculators. Since those of us who are on the fringes of the subject state that we would prefer that group think not be used to shut us out, is it correct for us to shun others?

    And whatever happened to the principle of teaching correct behavior by example?

  5. 5

    Matti Pitkanen said,

    The origin of magnetic fields appearing in all astro scales is a mystery in standard cosmology and suggests that some big piece is lacking. Some time ago there was a proposal in New Scientist that long cosmic strings predicted by GUTs and excluded by cosmology might have something to do with them.

    I do not bother to repeat TGD based vision were magnetic flux quanta – including long string like objects, which I call cosmic strings – are in fundamental role in cosmic evolution. The thicknening of cosmic strings would have led later to the formation of weaker astrophysical magnetic fields. Antimatter would be inside these cosmic strings after annihilation.

    Hubble has observed so called elephant trunks believed to involve helical magnetic fields, even multiple helices. Self-organization and metabolism like activity suggests itself in astrophysical scales (makes sense in dark matter scenario) since these trunks are oriented towards the source of radiation.

    A possible role of magnetic flux quanta, the “magnetic body” of the star could be as tubes along which dark matter flows from or to stars. The new element would be flux quanta as space-time sheets.

  6. 6

    Matti Pitkanen said,

    Well, it is probably obvious where I am going. The convoluted properties of the particle spectrum we observe may also be a result of some historical evolution, as eternal inflation combined with the landscape may suggest. But it doesn’t have to be so.

    Outsider (assuming that outsiders interested on meanderings of non-name like me would exist!) thinking structurally might be wondering why landscape makes me so sick. After all, there are many qualitative similarities.

    I am talking about particle spectrum as an outcome of evolutionary pressures selecting p-adic length scales corresponding to primes near powers of two. I am even saying that entire Universe is a gigantic topologically computing living organism (dark matter hierarchy).

    I am predicting an infinite hierarchy of dark matters with different values of Planck constant and assume imbedding space to have infinite number of branches intersection along M^2xS^2 and any gauge group can appear as a dynamically engineered gauge group (Hermitian operators in included algebra define gauge symmetry algebra) and characterize measurement resolution via inclusions of HFFs.

    The only defense against landscape accusations is that standard model symmetries are in a completely different role than those induced by a finite measurement resolution and are symmetries of the 8-D imbedding space selected uniquely by the mathematical existence of the geometry of world of classical worlds. These symmetries are engineered.

    I am saying cosmic evotion is locally a sequence of non-expanding periods with quantum phase transitions increasing the value of the gravitational Planck constant between them and giving rise to accelerated periods of expansion. These period correspond to critical cosmologies with flat three-spaces so that inflation is
    replaced with quantum criticality with very similar predictions. Eternal inflation + landscape is replaced with quantum criticality + dark matter hierarchy.

    Perhaps general structures of theories tend to reveal themselves correctly although theoreticians might manage to be totally misinterpret them.

  7. 7

    Kea said,

    Carl, it is only a little joke, and given the mindboggling range of our disagreements on many topics, I am sure that Dr. Motl will forgive a little parrot.

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