The Last Theory is an easytofollow 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.
What precisely is causal invariance?
Causal invariance is a crucial concept in Wolfram Physics.It’s how we get special relativity from the Wolfram model.It’s how we get quantum mechanics from the Wolfram model.So what precisely is causal invariance?This question will take us deep into the multiway graph, to an even deeper question: what is causality?—What is the multiway graph? video ⋅ podcast ⋅ article—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.The full article is here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

15:10  7/28/24  
Jonathan Gorard: the complete first interview
I’ve heard from many of you that you’d like the whole of my conversation with Jonathan Gorard in a single podcast.So here it is, the complete first interview.These three hours are a brilliant exposition of Wolfram Physics from a figure whose contributions to the project are second to none.—Jonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan’s seminal papersSome Relativistic and Gravitational Properties of the Wolfram Model; also published in Complex SystemsSome Quantum Mechanical Properties of the Wolfram ModelStephen Wolfram’s writingsAnnouncement of the Wolfram Physics ProjectA New Kind of ScienceA project to find the Fundamental Theory of PhysicsA complete list of links to the research, concepts and people mentioned by Jonathan is hereImagesCalabi–Yau manifold by Andrew J. Hanson, Indiana University, who allows use with attributionFeynman diagram by Joel Holdsworth, public domainJohn von Neumann – Los Alamos National LaboratoryStanisław Ulam – Los Alamos National LaboratoryWolfRayet nebula – Nebula surrounding the WolfRayet star WR124 in the constellation Sagittarius. (Produced with the WideField Planetary Camera 2, Hubble Space Telescope.) – NASA – NSSDCA Photo Gallery – Yves Grosdidier (University of Montreal and Observatoire de Strasbourg), Anthony Moffat (Universitie de Montreal), Gilles Joncas (Universite Laval), Agnes Acker (Observatoire de Strasbourg) – Public domainStele from Retortillo by Emilio Gómez Fernández licensed under CC BYSA 4.0Spinning and chargend black hole with accretion disk by Simon Tyran, Vienna (Симон Тыран) licensed under CC BYSA 4.0Альфред Грэй в Греции by AlionaKo licensed under CC BYSA 3.0Crab Nebula, as seen by Herschel and Hubble – courtesy: NASA/JPLCaltech – credit: ESA/Herschel/PACS/MESS Key Programme Supernova Remnant Team; NASA, ESA and Allison Loll/Jeff Hester (Arizona State University) – reproduced under JPL Image Use PolicyFor images from the Los Alamos National Laboratory: Unless otherwise indicated, this information has been authored by an employee or employees of the Triad National Security, LLC, operator of the Los Alamos National Laboratory with the U.S. Department of Energy. The U.S. Government has rights to use, reproduce, and distribute this information. The public may copy and use this information without charge, provided that this Notice and any statement of authorship are reproduced on all copies. Neither the Government nor Triad makes any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any liability or responsibility for the use of this information.—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

168:59  6/1/24  
In defence of Stephen Wolfram
You like Stephen Wolfram, right?I mean, if he’s to be believed, he has reinvented physics, not to mention philosophy.How could you not like such a thinker?Well... it turns out that there are plenty of people who don’t like Stephen Wolfram... or his physics... or his philosophy.Here are four criticisms of Stephen Wolfram I regularly hear......and here’s why these criticisms, though they hint at uncomfortable truths, nonetheless miss the mark.—Stephen Wolfram:Stephen WolframStephen Wolfram’s web siteTimelineTED talksList of podcast appearancesList of video appearancesStephen Wolfram’s claims:He has a path to the fundamental theory of physicsHe has an answer to the question: what is an observer?He has an answer to the question: what is consciousness?He has an answer to the question: why does the universe exist?He seems surprised at how little discussion there has been of his answer to the question: why does the universe exist?Some of the things Stephen Wolfram created:1987 Wolfram Research1988 Mathematica2009 Wolfram Alpha2014 Wolfram Language2020 Wolfram PhysicsOther people involved in the Wolfram Physics Project:Jonathan GorardMax PiskunovOther people mentioned in this episode:Freeman Dyson – quoteSean Carroll – quote – Mindscape podcast – episode #155 with Stephen WolframKatie Mack – quoteAdam Mastroianni – The rise and fall of peer reviewFather Strickland – quoteBrilliant people of the past:Leonardo da VinciGregor MendelNikola TeslaAristotleGalileo GalileiIsaac NewtonAlbert EinsteinMax BornPaul DiracWerner HeisenbergErwin SchrödingerWolfgang PauliOther episodes of The Last Theory mentioned:Why has there been no progress in physics since 1973? – article ⋅ podcast ⋅ videoPeer review is suffocating science – article ⋅ podcast ⋅ videoReference:Wolfram Research now has over 800 employeesImages:Freeman Dyson 2005 by ioerror licensed under CC BYSA 2.0—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.The full article is here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

16:44  4/9/24  
Beyond physics: applying the Wolfram model in biology, chemistry, mathematics with Jonathan Gorard
In this final excerpt from our conversation in October 2022, Jonathan Gorard explains how ideas from Wolfram Physics can be applied in fields beyond physics, including biology, chemistry and mathematics.He describes the concept of compositionality, and digs deeper into why the hypergraph is able to model so much of our universe.—Jonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectConcepts mentioned by Jonathan:General RelativityQuantum MechanicsCausal graphsSpacelike separationMultiway systemPhase spaceSchrödinger equationHilbert spaceKronecker productMulticomputationCompositionalityApplied category theorySymmetric monoidal categoryPartial differential equationsZermelo–Fraenkel set theoryUniversal Turing machineComputational universalityCellular automatonOntologyPeople mentioned by Jonathan:Rudolph CarnapVienna Circle—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

13:30  3/9/24  
Who is Stephen Wolfram?
You know who Stephen Wolfram is, right?Whether you love him or, you know, don’t love him, there’s no denying that Stephen Wolfram has founded a host of fascinating projects... most of them named Wolframsomethingorother.What are all these Wolframbranded projects?Who is Stephen Wolfram?—Some of the things Stephen Wolfram created:1987 Wolfram Research1988 Mathematica2009 Wolfram Alpha2014 Wolfram Language2020 Wolfram Physicsnot to mention:Wolfram CloudWolfram OneWolfram NotebooksWolfram PlayerWolfram ScriptWolfram EngineWolfram FoundationMore about Stephen Wolfram:Stephen Wolfram’s web siteTimelineStephen Wolfram’s education:University of OxfordCalifornia Institute of TechnologySome of Stephen Wolfram’s special subjects:particle physicscellular automataSome of Stephen Wolfram’s books:A New Kind Of ScienceA project to find the Fundamental Theory of PhysicsOther people involved in the Wolfram Physics Project:Jonathan GorardMax PiskunovReference:Wolfram Research now has over 800 employeesImage:Animation. 1200 iterations of the ‘Rule 110’ Automata by Mr. Heretic licenced under CC BYSA 3.0Some of my own projects:things made thinkable – visualization of nuclides – tap the binding energy button bottom right to show the binding energy per nucleonOpen Web Mind – subscribe to the newsletter or YouTube channel for more on shared human intelligence—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.The full article is here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

09:36  2/11/24  
Where's the evidence for Wolfram Physics? with Jonathan Gorard
I asked Jonathan Gorard the question I’m asked the most: can the Wolfram model make testable predictions about reality, predictions that differ from those of general relativity and quantum mechanics, predictions that might prove that Wolfram Physics is right?Jonathan showed how the Wolfram model might shed light on some of the most mysterious phenomena of our universe, from black hole inspirals to quantum entanglement.He focused on four areas where the class of theories encompassed by the Wolfram model might predict observable phenomena:1. Cosmological consequences of global dimension change2. Astrophysical consequences of local dimension change3. Discretization effects during extreme astrophysical events4. Quantum mechanical effects such as maximum entanglement speedThese dozen minutes of my conversation with Jonathan were dense with insights into Wolfram Physics, a true pleasure to revisit!—Jonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectConcepts mentioned by JonathanCategory errorCausally connectedCosmological inflationLambdaCDM cosmologyHorizon problemFlatness problemMagnetic monopole problemCosmic microwave backgroundCosmic neutrino backgroundInflaton scalar fieldhttps://lasttheory.com/channel/055whereistheevidenceforwolframphysicsQuintessent scalar fieldDecoupling timeRecombination timeLensing effectsLIGO – Laser Interferometer GravitationalWave ObservatoryBlack hole inspiralCausal edge densityWeyl curvatureQuadrupole momentEntanglement structureBranchial graphQuantum information theoryMargolis Leviton boundPeople mentioned by Jonathan:Alan GuthAndrei LindeStephen WolframXerxes ArsiwallaAbdus Salam—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

14:32  1/19/24  
The knowledge hypergraph
The Open Web Mind is a protocol for shared human intelligence, based on the knowledge hypergraph.Take a look at this quick introduction for subscribers to The Last Theory, then jump to the 2minute trailer on the new channel.And if you haven’t done so already, make sure to subscribe to the new Open Web Mind channel, podcast and newsletter.If you’re interested in Wolfram Physics, I think you’ll find Open Web Mind fascinating!—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery founder of Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

01:03  1/11/24  
Are electrons too big to simulate? with Jonathan Gorard
How big are electrons compared to the hypergraph?Is one electron formed of 10 nodes, or 10100 nodes?And if it’s 10100 nodes, might it prove impossible to simulate an electron on any computer we can possibly imagine?When I asked Jonathan Gorard this question, he took us on a tour of the scales of the universe, from the Planck scale to the Hubble scale.He revealed how the Wolfram Physics Project’s early estimate of the scale of the hypergraph was based on a tower of rickety assumptions.And he explained how the Wolfram model might connect with particle physics regardless of the disparities of scale.—Jonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectConcepts mentioned by JonathanPlanck scaleHubble scaleGeneral relativityFluid mechanicsQuantum mechanicsQuantum Field TheoryScattering amplitudes—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

05:56  12/17/23  
How to measure the curvature of space
What if you’re inside a universe, and you want to measure the curvature of space?It’s important because getting a measure of the curvature of the hypergraph takes us one step further in Jonathan Gorard’s derivation of General Relativity from Wolfram Physics.Einstein’s equations relate the curvature of space to the presence of matter. So if we’re going to prove that Einstein’s equations follow from the Wolfram model, we’re going to need that measure of the curvature of the hypergraph.Once again, a twodimensional crab comes to the rescue, given us a way to measure the curvature of a universe from inside that universe.—See Stephen Wolfram’s announcement, under Curvature in Space & Einstein’s Equations, also included as the introduction to his book A project to find the Fundamental Theory of Physics, page 20, for more on measuring the curvature of spaceConcepts:Cosine power series expansionPolynomial regression analysisRicci scalar curvature—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.The full article is here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

15:56  12/7/23  
A toy model of particles with Jonathan Gorard
In this excerpt from my conversation with Jonathan Gorard, he proposes that particles in Wolfram Physics might be persistent topological obstructions in the hypergraph.He starts with a toy model in which elementary particles are nonplanar tangles moving and interacting in an otherwise planar hypergraph.But he doesn’t stop there.He explains that there’s an infinite variety of hypergraphs that give rise to such persistent topological obstructions.These localized tangles behave in ways that look a lot like particle physics.—Jonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectConcepts mentioned by JonathanUtility graphKuratowski’s theoremWagner’s theoremComplete graphs – including K_5Complete bipartite graphs – including K_3,3RobertsonSeymour TheoremGraph minorForbidden minor characterizationImage:Feynman diagram Feynmann Diagram Gluon Radiation by Joel Holdsworth, public domain—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

08:01  11/16/23  
How to tell if space is curved
What if you’re inside a universe, and you want to know whether space is curved?The reason I’m asking is that according to Einstein’s general theory of relativity, our universe is curved, by the presence of matter.If Wolfram Physics is to be a true model of our universe, then the space represented by the hypergraph must also be curved by the presence of matter.Which means that determining whether space is curved is crucial to Jonathan Gorard’s derivation of Einstein’s equations from the Wolfram model.Fortunately, there’s a way to find out that’s so simple that even a crab or a space frog could do it.Here’s how to tell if your universe curved.—Dimensionality:How to measure the dimensionality of the universeAre Wolfram’s graphs three‑dimensional?What are dimensions in Wolfram’s universe?Spacetime:Space‑time is deadEuclidean geometry:Euclidparallel lines never meet—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.The full article is here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

11:38  11/2/23  
How special is general relativity? with Jonathan Gorard
I asked Jonathan Gorard what it felt like when he realized that general relativity can be derived from the hypergraph.His answer took us in an unexpected direction.If the Wolfram model is to be an accurate model of our universe, then it must give us the Einstein equations.But what if any old model with any old rules can give us the Einstein equations?What if general relativity isn’t so special?This is one of the shorter excerpts from my conversation with Jonathan, but it’s a fascinating one.It takes us to one of the most powerful aspects of the Wolfram model: its ability to answer questions about why our universe is the way it is, questions that were once in the realm of philosophy but may now be within the scope of physics.—Jonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectConcepts mentioned by JonathanEinstein field equationsRiemannian manifoldEinstein–Hilbert actionCausal invarianceErgodicity—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

06:16  10/19/23  
Why scientific theories need not make predictions
In my exploration of Wolfram Physics, I’ve come across one objection more than any other.Over and over again, people have told me that the Wolfram model must be rejected because it makes no predictions.I could respond by saying that Wolfram Physics does make predictions. It predicts Einstein’s equations. It predicts Schrödinger’s equation.But it’s true that it doesn’t make any predictions that differ from those of general relativity and quantum mechanics. At least, not yet.So here’s my more robust response to the objection: all scientific theories make no predictions when they’re first formulated.If we dismiss any new theory solely because it doesn’t make any predictions, then we’d dismiss all new theories.It’s time for academics to learn the lessons of the history of science, and open their minds to bold, new ideas, like Wolfram Physics.—Ideas:Tycho BraheThe paths of the planets are elliptical according to Johannes KeplerPhilosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica by Isaac NewtonAstronomers’ test of Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativityAgainst Method by Paul FeyerabendThe Newtonian Casino by Thomas BassAncient astronomies:Egyptian astronomyBabylonian astronomyInca astronomyImages:Paul Feyerabend Berkeley by Grazia BorriniFeyerabend reproduced with permission—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.The full article is here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

13:08  10/7/23  
How to derive general relativity from Wolfram Physics with Jonathan Gorard
Here’s a masterclass from Jonathan Gorard.One of the most compelling results to come out of the Wolfram Physics is Jonathan’s derivation of the Einstein equations from the hypergraph.Whenever I hear anyone criticize the Wolfram model for bearing no relation to reality, I tell them this: Jonathan Gorard has proved that general relativity can be derived from the hypergraph.In this excerpt from our conversation, Jonathan describes how making just three reasonable assumptions – causal invariance, asymptotic dimension preservation and weak ergodicity – allowed him to derive the vacuum Einstein equations from the Wolfram model.In other words, the structure of spacetime in the absence of matter more or less falls out of the hypergraph.And making one further assumption – that particles can be treated as localized topological obstructions – allowed Jonathan to derive the nonvacuum Einstein equations from the Wolfram model.In other words, the structure of spacetime in the presence of matter, too, falls out of the hypergraph.It’s difficult to overstate the importance of this result.At the very least, we can say that the Wolfram model is consistent with general relativity.To state it more strongly: we no longer need to take general relativity as a given; instead, we can derive it from Wolfram Physics.—Jonathan’s seminal paper on how to derive general relativitySome Relativistic and Gravitational Properties of the Wolfram Model; also published in Complex SystemsJonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectPeople mentioned by JonathanAlfred GrayResearch mentioned by JonathanThe volume of a small geodesic ball of a Riemannian manifold by Alfred GrayTubes by Alfred GrayConcepts mentioned by JonathanHausdorff dimensionGeodesic balls, tubes & conesRicci scalar curvatureRicci curvature tensorEinstein equationsEinstein–Hilbert actionRelativistic Lagrangian densityCausal graphTensor rankTraceFrom A Project to find the Fundamental Theory of Physics by Stephen Wolfram:DimensionCurvatureImagesSpinning and chargend black hole with accretion disk by Simon Tyran, Vienna (Симон Тыран) licensed under CC BYSA 4.0Альфред Грэй в Греции by AlionaKo licensed under CC BYSA 3.0—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

13:38  9/21/23  
How to derive quantum mechanics from Wolfram Physics with Jonathan Gorard
Here’s the first of two crucial excerpts from my conversation with Jonathan Gorard.The core idea of Wolfram Physics is that we can model the universe as a hypergraph. If we want this idea to be taken seriously, we’re going to have to derive physics from the hypergraph.The twin pillars of physics, as we know it, are quantum mechanics and general relativity.In this episode, Jonathan explains how quantum mechanics can be derived from the Wolfram model, indeed, how quantum mechanics unexpectedly fell out of the model.It’s a fascinating story.We start with the role of the observer. According to Jonathan, it turns out not to be necessary to narrow our focus to only causally invariant rules.Why not? Because macroscopic observers like ourselves impose causal invariance through our coarsegraining of the hypergraph. In other words, by squinting at the universe, seeing only its largescale features and glossing over the finer details, we reduce multiple paths through the multiway graph to a single timeline, and, in the process, impose causal invariance.Jonathan goes on to explain that this coarsegraining can be modelled with completion rules. These are fake rules, similar to the true rules of Wolfram Physics, but posited solely to model the coarsegraining of the hypergraph by the observer.And here’s the thing. According to Jonathan, these completion rules are formally equivalent to the collapse of the wavefunction in quantum mechanics. In other words, we finally have an explanation for how the observer causes the collapse of the wavefunction, reducing Schrödinger’s half live, half dead cat to one that’s either dead or alive.If Jonathan’s right, then this is a true breakthrough, not just in quantum mechanics, but in the philosophy of physics.In the next episode, we’ll move on to the other pillar of physics: Jonathan will explain how to derive general relativity from the hypergraph.There’s much more to explain about each of these derivations, but we’re finally getting to the crux of Wolfram Physics, the question of whether it can, after all, model our universe.—Jonathan’s seminal paper on how to derive quantum mechanicsSome Quantum Mechanical Properties of the Wolfram ModelJonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectConcepts mentioned by JonathanCausal invarianceComputational irreducibilityCelestial mechanicsMolecular dynamicsSpacelike separationHeisenberg’s uncertainty principleHeisenberg’s microscope experimentQuantum entanglementBell’s inequalitiesMultiway systemCoarsegrainingSchrödinger equationUnitary operatorHermitian operatorConjugate transpose operationTime reversalWavefunction collapseQuantum interferenceQuantum tunnellingStephen Wolfram’s booksA New Kind of ScienceA project to find the Fundamental Theory of Physics—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch hereKootenay Village Ventures Inc.

15:34  9/7/23  
Peer review is suffocating science
You know peer review, right?It’s the way academics check each other’s research papers.It ensures that only the good ones are published and prevents the bad ones from getting through.Right?Wrong.Peer review does precisely the opposite of what you think it does.It prevents the good papers from being published, and ensures that only the bad ones get through.Peer review is suffocating science.If we want to reverse the stagnation of science over the last 50 years, then we’ve got to get rid of peer review.—I highly recommend you read Adam Mastroianni’s splendid article The rise and fall of peer reviewI first heard Adam’s ideas about peer review in his conversation Adam Mastroianni on Peer Review and the Academic Kitchen with Russ Roberts on EconTalkWhy has there been no progress in physics since 1973?articleaudiovideoScientific papers:The journal Nature began to require peer review in 1973Millions of academic articles are published every yearSome scientists simply make stuff upFraudulent studies make it into respectable journals like Science, Nature and The LancetPhysicists:Isaac NewtonAlbert Einstein’s four papers published in 1905Max Planck’s principle that science progresses one funeral at a timeThe Wolfram Physics Project:Stephen WolframJonathan GorardMy projects:The Last TheoryOpen Web MindImage of Adam Mastroianni by permission from Adam Mastroianni—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch hereThe full article is hereKootenay Village Ventures Inc.

14:37  8/24/23  
Is the universe a tautology? with Jonathan Gorard
“Sorry, this is now getting very metaphysical,” says Jonathan Gorard part way through this excerpt from our conversation.We start by talking about applying more than one rule to the hypergraph to create rulial multiway systems.This takes us part way towards applying every possible rule, in other words, towards the ruliad.We move on to the idea of measuring the complexity of a structure in terms of the minimum amount of information needed to express it.Jonathan applies this idea to the ruliad, pointing out that it takes almost no information to express, since it encompasses all possible rules.Since he believes, however, that there is some content to the universe – that it is not a tautalogy – this leads Jonathan to reject the idea of the ruliad.We dig into why he has this intuition is that the universe is not a tautalogy.Jonathan invokes theologians like John Duns Scotus, who promulgated the idea the the world is neither completely reducible nor completely irreducible.He follows the scholastics in steering a middle path, suggesting that there’s enough content in the universe that it’s interesting, but not so much content that we can’t write down welldefined laws of nature.This brings us, for the first time, to the role of the observer in the Wolfram model.Again, Jonathan steers a middle path between placing the computational burden entirely on the universe and placing the computational burden entirely on the observer.I find this 9minute exposition fascinating. It gets to the heart of some of the philosophical differences between Jonathan Gorard and Stephen Wolfram, and to the nature of the universe and our role as observers.—Jonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectPeople mentioned by JonathanJohn Duns ScotusXerxes D. ArsiwallaHatem ElshatlawyResearch mentioned by JonathanHomotopies in Multiway (NonDeterministic) Rewriting Systems as nFold Categories by Xerxes D. Arsiwalla, Jonathan Gorard, Hatem ElshatlawyPregeometric Spaces from Wolfram Model Rewriting Systems as Homotopy Types by Xerxes D. Arsiwalla, Jonathan GorardConcepts mentioned by JonathanRulial Multiway System∞category∞groupoid(∞,1)toposGrothendieck’s homotopy hypothesisAlgorithmic complexity theoryAlgorithmic information theoryKolmogorov complexityEinstein field equationsCurvature invariantQualia—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

10:30  8/10/23  
What is a particle in Wolfram’s universe?
It’s pretty easy to see how threedimensional space might arise from Wolfram Physics.The hypergraph kinda looks like space, and, for some rules, it kinda looks like it’s threedimensional.But our universe isn’t just empty threedimensional space.It’s mostly empty space, but there are also particles moving through that space: photons, neutrinos, electrons, quarks.Sometimes, these particles interact, annihilating each other and producing new particles.If Wolfram Physics is to be a successful model of our universe, it must, of course, model these elementary particles and their interactions.So where are the particles in the hypergraph?What is a particle in Wolfram’s universe?—Animations:Thanks to Alan Dewar for permission to use his excellent implementation of Conway’s Game of Life for many of the animations in the videoThanks also to Chris Rowett for permission to use his Life Viewer, a beautiful implementation of Conway’s Game of Life, which I used for the greyship animation in the video and image in the thumbnailAnother implementation of Conway’s Game of Life, which reproduces the Life Lexicon from ConwayLife.com, is at playgameoflife.comSources:Talking of ConwayLife.com, that’s another incredible resource for information on Conway’s Game of LifeTools:I created an RLE to text converter to convert Run Length Encoded patterns to plain text formatImages: John H Conway 2005 by Thane Plambeck licensed under CC BY 2.0Sounds:Crickets choir by Serg Childed licensed under CC BYSA 4.0—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.The full article is here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

17:32  7/27/23  
One rule to rule them all? with Jonathan Gorard
In the early days of the Wolfram Physics Project, Stephen Wolfram seemed to be seeking a single rule that, when applied to the hypergraph, could generate our universe.More recently, however, Wolfram has promoted the idea of the ruliad, the application of every possible rule to the hypergraph.So I asked Jonathan Gorard, who was instrumental in the founding of the Wolfram Physics Project, whether all rules might be applied to generate our universe, or whether he was searching for one rule to rule them all.—Stephen Wolfram’s 2010 TED talk in which he said he was committed “to see if within this decade we can finally hold in our hands the rule for our universe”.Jonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectConcepts mentioned by JonathanEquivalence classCongruence classLagrangian mechanicsHamiltonian mechanicsTeleologyOntologyAxiomatic view of mathematics – topdownConstructivist view of mathematics – bottomupDomain of discourseIntuitionismAlgorithmic information theory—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

07:24  7/13/23  
John von Neumann and the art of being there
John von Neumann might be the most important figure in Wolfram Physics prehistory.Whenever any of the most important prerequisites to Wolfram Physics were happening – quantum mechanics, Gödel’s theorem, Turing machines, electronic computers, cellular automata – John von Neumann always seemed to be there.How did John von Neumann always come to be in the right place at the right time to contribute to some of the most significant developments in physics, mathematics and computation history?For this, another highbudget, bighair episode of The Last Theory, I flew all the way to Budapest, where John von Neumann was born, to point to a plaque and get some answers.—I took inspiration and information for this episode from Ananyo Bhattacharya’s biography of John von Neumann: The Man from the FutureBuy it in the USBuy it in the UKBuy it in CanadaBuy it in AustraliaPeopleJohn von NeumannAlbert EinsteinErwin SchrödingerWerner HeisenbergKurt GödelAlan TuringSeth NeddermeyerJ. Presper EckertJohn MauchlyStephen WolframJonathan GorardMax PiskunovStanisław UlamFather StricklandConceptsHilbert spaceGödel’s incompleteness theoremsUniversal Turing machineTuring’s proofVon Neumann architectureThe Manhattan ProjectCellular automataComputersIAS machineENIACEDVACIBM 701ImagesImage of John von Neumann from the Los Alamos National Laboratory, which rather pointlessly requires that this rather ponderous statement be reproduced here: “Unless otherwise indicated, this information has been authored by an employee or employees of the Los Alamos National Security, LLC (LANS), operator of the Los Alamos National Laboratory under Contract No. DEAC5206NA25396 with the U.S. Department of Energy. The U.S. Government has rights to use, reproduce, and distribute this information. The public may copy and use this information without charge, provided that this Notice and any statement of authorship are reproduced on all copies. Neither the Government nor LANS makes any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any liability or responsibility for the use of this information.”Turing Machine Model Davey 2012 by Rocky Acosta licensed under CC BY 3.0Animation. 1200 iterations of the ‘Rule 110’ Automata by Mr. Heretic licenced under CC BYSA 3.0Bundesarchiv Bild183R57262, Werner Heisenberg by an unknown author (Bundesarchiv, Bild 183R57262) licensed under CC BYSA 3.0 DETuring in 1935 by Tomipelegrin licensed under CC BYSA 4.0Gospers glider gun by Lucas Vieira licensed under CC BYSA 3.0—The Last Theory is hosted by Mark Jeffery, founder of the Open Web MindI release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.The full article is here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

15:36  6/30/23  
How to find interesting and plausible rules with Jonathan Gorard
The Wolfram model allows an infinite number of rules.Some of these rules generate interesting universes that are complex and connected, some of these rules generate plausible universes that look a little like our own, and others... go nowhere.In this excerpt from my conversation with Jonathan Gorard, I ask him how to find rules of Wolfram Physics that are both interesting and plausible.—Jonathan GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectThe paper referred to by JonathanAlgorithmic Causal Sets and the Wolfram Model by Jonathan GorardConcepts mentioned by JonathanCausal invarianceManifoldCausal graphSpacelike separationCausal coneDimensionalityCurvatureDiscrete differential operatorsDiscrete Laplacian—I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

08:24  6/15/23  
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 highbudget, bighair 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 twentyfirst 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:BigThinkThe Joe Rogan ExperienceLord Kelvin— I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.The full article is here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

12:13  6/1/23  
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 GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectPeople and concepts mentioned by JonathanStephen WolframMax PiskunovCausal invarianceWolfram Function RepositoryWolfram EngineWolfram MathematicaWolfram Programming LabCausalInvariantQTotalCausalInvariantQAssociativeCommutativeAutomated theorem provingUndecidable problem—I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

05:13  5/18/23  
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 selfloops – 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 farfetched 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.

10:50  5/4/23  
Animating the hypergraph with Dugan Hammock
Dugan Hammock creates beautiful animations of threedimensional crosssections through fourdimensional 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 springelectrical embedding into an additional time dimension......and we show some of the beautifully smooth animations that come out of it.—Dugan HammockDugan Hammock’s videos on YouTubeDugan Hammock on TwitterDugan Hammock at The Wolfram Physics ProjectPlotting the evolution of a Wolfram Model in 3dimensionsTemporally coherent animations of the evolution of Wolfram Models People and concepts mentioned by DuganCoulomb’s lawHooke’s lawSpringelectrical embeddingCharles Pooh—I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

08:30  4/22/23  
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 comingtogether 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 ProjectConcepts mentioned by Jonathan • Causal invariance • Multiway system • Causal structure • Causal Set Theory • Directed acyclic graph • Isomorphic • Spacelike separation • Simultaneity and simultaneity surfaces in relativity • Lorentz invariance • Poincaré invariance • Conformal invariance • Diffeomorphism invariance • General covariance • Confluence • ChurchRosser Property—I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

13:29  4/8/23  
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 selfloops.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 selfloops 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.

10:53  3/26/23  
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 threedimensional crosssections through fourdimensional hypershapes!—Dugan HammockDugan Hammock’s videos on YouTubeDugan Hammock on TwitterDugan Hammock at The Wolfram Physics ProjectPlotting the evolution of a Wolfram Model in 3dimensionsTemporally coherent animations of the evolution of Wolfram Models People mentioned by DuganMax CooperGeorge K. FrancisWilliam Thurston—I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

06:51  3/16/23  
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 higherlevel 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 GorardJonathan Gorard at The Wolfram Physics ProjectJonathan Gorard at Cardiff UniversityJonathan Gorard on TwitterThe Centre for Applied CompositionalityThe Wolfram Physics ProjectConcepts mentioned by JonathanComputational reducibilityComputational irreducibilityGeneral relativityQuantum mechanicsFluid mechanicsContinuum mechanicsSolid mechanicsPartition functionBoltzmann equationMolecular chaos assumptionErgodicityDistribution functionChapmanEnskog expansionStress tensorNavierStokes equationsEuler equations—I release The Last Theory as a video too! Watch here.Kootenay Village Ventures Inc.

10:06  2/23/23  
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 ageold 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.

14:38  2/9/23 