Reviews of popular science #1

This is an unusual book. It is a book in response to another book. Review and analysis are an important part of scientific research. This is an in-depth technical review of “The God equation: the quest for a theory of everything” by the theoretical physicist, futurist, and science popularizer Michio Kaku. The bottom line is that Kaku rewrites the history of physics, exposes his misconceptions about the foundations of established physical theories —including general relativity, thermodynamics, and quantum field theory—, presents a distorted and unfair view of string theory, and reveals a lack of familiarity with hot topics in physics research. Kaku also makes invalid claims on topics in chemistry and biology.

The search for a theory of everything is a futile exercise. Furthermore, it is dishonest to keep promoting string theory as a perennial candidate for a theory of everything, when it cannot explain anything we already know or predict anything new. Kaku and other string theorists have made countless failed predictions, most recently that the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) would have observed ‘higher vibrations or octaves of the superstring’ verifying string theory. String theory was born as a genuine but invalid attempt to explain hadrons and the strong interaction, but it has become hyperspace-level absurdity that is no longer about the original strings, although the term “string theory” is still used for marketing purposes.

No prior reading of Kaku’s book is necessary, but the chapters and sections in this book correspond to chapters and sections in Kaku’s book for ease of comparison. The author of this review has conducted multidisciplinary research ranging from the biogeochemistry and hydrodynamics of estuaries to the development of a new formulation of quantum mechanics without wavefunctions, and has also closely followed the development of string theory during the last three decades. This book is the first in a series of popular science book reviews.

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Genre: Non Fiction > Science

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