Dr. Leonard Susskind discusses his most recent book The Cosmic Landscape: String Theory and the Illusion of Intelligent Design
Does trying to understand modern string theory have you tied in knots? Have you ever wondered what a layman can learn from hadrons or the anthropic principle? Enjoy a lively program as Susskind explains the nuts and bolts of modern string theory and asks, "Can science explain the extraordinary fact that the universe appears to be uncannily, nay, spectacularly, well designed for our existence?"
Leonard Susskind is a theoretical physics professor at Stanford University in the field of string theory and quantum field theory. Susskind is widely regarded as one of the fathers of string theory for his early contributions to the String Theory model of particle physics.
Any of a number of theories in particle physics that treat elementary particles (seesubatomic particle) as infinitesimal one-dimensional stringlike objects rather than dimensionless points in space-time. Different vibrations of the strings correspond to different particles. Introduced in the early 1970s in attempts to describe the strong force, string theories became popular in the 1980s when it was shown that they might provide a fully self-consistent quantum field theory that could describe gravitation as well as the weak, strong, and electromagnetic forces. The development of a unified quantum field theory is a major goal in theoretical particle physics, but inclusion of gravity usually leads to difficult problems with infinite quantities in the calculations. The most self-consistent string theories propose 11 dimensions; 4 correspond to the 3 ordinary spatial dimensions and time, while the rest are curled up and not perceptible.
Euler's Equation and the Reality of Nature.
Mr. Dexter Sinister wrote:
' I understand Euler's Identity,
and I know what it means, and I know how to prove it,
there's nothing particularly mystical about it,
it just demonstrates that exponential, trigonometric,
and complex functions are related.
Given what we know of mathematics it shouldn't surprise
anyone that its various bits are connected.
It would be much more surprising if they weren't, that would
almost certainly mean something was badly wrong somewhere.'
Mr. Gary wrote:
Mathematics is NOT science.
Science is knowledge of the REAL world.
Mathematics is an invention of the mind.
Many aspects of mathematics have found application
in the real world, but there is no guarantee.
Any correlation must meet the ultimate test:
does it explain something about the real world?
As an electrical engineer I used the generalized
Euler's equation all the time in circuit analysis:
exp(j*theta) = cos(theta) + j*sin(theta).
So it works at that particular level in electricity.
Does it work at other levels, too?
Logic cannot prove it.
It must be determined by experiment, not by philosophizing.
Thinking about theirs posts I wrote brief article:
Euler's Equation and Reality.
Euler's Equation as a mathematical reality.
Euler's identity is "the gold standard for mathematical beauty'.
Euler's identity is "the most famous formula in all mathematics".
' . . . this equation is the mathematical analogue of Leonardo
da Vinci's Mona Lisa painting or Michelangelo's statue of David'
'It is God's equation.', ' It is a mathematical icon.'
. . . . etc.
Euler's Equation as a physical reality.
"it is absolutely paradoxical; we cannot understand it,
and we don't know what it means, . . . . .'
' Euler's Equation reaches down into the very depths of existence'
' Is Euler's Equation about fundamental matters?'
'It would be nice to understand Euler's Identity as a physical process
' Is it possible to unite Euler's Identity with physics, quantum physics ?'
My aim is to understand the reality of nature.
Can Euler's equation explain me something about reality?
To give the answer to this question I need to bind
Euler's equation with an object - particle.
Can it be math- point or string- particle or triangle-particle?
No, Euler's formula has quantity (pi) which says me that
the particle must be only a circle .
Now I want to understand the behavior of circle - particle and
therefore I need to use spatial relativity and quantum theories.
These two theories say me that the reason of circle - particle's
movement is its own inner impulse (h) or (h*=h/2pi).
Using its own inner impulse (h) circle - particle moves
( as a wheel) in a straight line with constant speed c = 1.
We call such particle - 'photon'.
From Earth - gravity point of view this speed is maximally.
From Vacuum point of view this speed is minimally.
In this movement quantum of light behave as a corpuscular (no charge).
Using its own inner impulse / intrinsic angular momentum
( h* = h / 2pi ) circle - particle rotates around its axis.
In such movement particle has charge, produce electric waves
( waves property of particle) and its speed ( frequency) is : c>1.
We call such particle - ' electron' and its energy is: E=h*f.
In this way I (as a peasant ) can understand the reality of nature.
I reread my post.
My God, that is a naïve peasant's explanation.
It is absolutely not scientific, not professor's explanation.
Would a learned man adopt such simple and naive explanation?
Hmm, . . . problem.
In any way, even Mr. Dexter Sinister and Mr. Gary
wouldn't agree with me, I want to say them
' Thank you for emails and cooperation'
Israel Sadovnik Socratus.
' They would play a greater and greater role in mathematics -
and then, with the advent of quantum mechanics in the twentieth
century, in physics and engineering and any field that deals with
cyclical phenomena such as waves that can be represented by
complex numbers. For a complex number allows you to represent
two processes such as phase and wavelenght simultaneously -
and a complex exponential allows you to map a straight line
onto a circle in a complex plane.'
/ Book: The great equations. Chapter four.
The gold standard for mathematical beauty.
Euler's equation. Page 104. /
Euler's e-iPi+1=0 is an amazing equation, not in-and-of itself,
but because it sharply points to our utter ignorance of the
simplest mathematical and scientific fundamentals.
The equation means that in flat Euclidean space, e and Pi happen
to have their particular values to satisfy any equation that relates
their mathematical constructs. In curved space, e and Pi vary.
/ Rasulkhozha S. Sharafiddinov . /
Until science define what conciseness means they should not talk about religion.
Leibniz clearly told the scientific community to use rational thinking deductive reasoning to know the existence of the architect. But as Kurt Gödel said his publication was censured to keep humanity dumb.
Kurt Gödel was a friend of Einstein he proved one of the most important logical results of the century—indeed, of all time.In short he prove to them that the scientific methods in use is incomplete and will get us no-where, that is when they try to poison him.
Susskind know all this and he should have said that Einstein was dumb by being a friend to Kurt Gödel.
When you talk about God, you need some elementary information that I would like to explain it for you and others if you wish.
At first, let's go back in time to the past -for example year 1800- having all our information that we have it now, when you start to talk to people in that time -even the scientists of them- about the computers, the modern physics theories, ...etc they won't understand anything and consider you crazy until you choose clever ones and start to explain all the sciences dicovered between their time and ours, and there still a propability of not understanding you. What I want to tell that we always have lack of information whatever we do and whatever we dicovered it won't be enough...... the FIRST QUESTION --> Why is the science limitless??!
We return to our time and start to think again about the evolution-theory of Darwin, there is some question about it:
1- Why all these quantity of limitless-coincidences?
2- Where is the transitional stages between the living-objects??! did they just vanished?! why?! are all of them not able to live?! that's an impossible coincidence!!
3- The most important thing, WHY DOES THE PHYSICS HAVE THE KNOWN SHAPE, LAWS, PHYLOSOPHY..ETC???!!!! and not another one. The physics is the shaper of every thing we see around including DNA, chemical bonds -there are physical power-, weight of objects, properties of objects.... etc. Why is it that perfect-shaped and prefectly-connected way??!!
Here is the role of God, if the physics has another form, everything would have another form too according to the physics.
To prove that, we need to answer the above question. If the answer is available without need for God-existence , so, God doesn't exist. Otherwise it would be the prove for God-existence . For me, I can't imagine those questions have answer other than " It's the God will ".
So by your very definition, you have proven that your God is more limited than the systems he was supposed to have created. Seems like a pretty poorly conceived God to me.
The systems you're talking about are created that way, so, their properties are following their creation, so, the starting, ending, energy-conserving, mass-conserving...etc are properties of those systems. The God -to be truely God- should not have the properties of the systems he had created (to cancel each ideas of: "those systems are part of him" or "he is part of those systems"). So, the God is not limited as you said, but, he is limitless and doesn't follow any of the laws of physics, chemistery, biology.... etc. He is the divine-existence.
You won't be able to measure the size, weight, mass, place, power, enery.... etc of God, simply because, he isn't a material or anything we find in our systems. You won't see him, you won't hear him... etc but you can easily prove his existence by thinking deeply in religions -the right ones of them-, especially Islam -you shouldn't believe the fake speech and thought about it-, you can start safely by reasing Quran, http://www.jannah.org/quran/
Thank you every one for reading :-)
I have only two questions:
Didn’t my parrot fly to you?
Why does everyone say that all movements are relative
if the speed of quantum of light isn’t relative but
it is an absolute constant in absolute Vacuum ?
You can easily find out my parrot. It studied only
two sentences: ‘ there is no absolute movement ’,
‘ there is no absolute reference system ‘
Israel Sadovnik Socratus
‘ All these fifty years of conscious brooding have brought me
no nearer to the answer to the question, 'What are light quanta?'
Nowadays every Tom, Dick and Harry thinks he knows it,
but he is mistaken. ‘
/ Einstein /
god is not an answer. How is that an answer? Time after time the god did it saying is pushed aside to a real scientific explanation. Just because you don't have an answer doesn't mean you can say god did it. You should say I dont know. I don't know is a better response than god did it. if you can imagine a eternal god couldn't you imagine and eternal universe creating force that is no way self aware or anything you define as god. "god did it" is such a strange pretend explanation. How does that explain anything. So strange
~replying to Onesimus~
"In speaking of irreducible complexity, why only refer to Dawkin's book? It is Dr. Mike Behe who is credited with coining the term "irreducible complexity". It should at least be suggested to read Darwin's Black Box as well as The Blind Watchmaker. "
Behe's Darwin's Black Box is filled with some of the most glaring misrepresentations of existing science. His short shrifted conclusions about irreducible complexity have been addressed and debunked by the mainstream science community so effectively that it's embarassing. The case of the 2005 Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial, Behe's DBB example of the bacterial flagellum of E. coli was effectively shown to be pseudoscience. Additionally, (I rather like this one) irreducible complexity is never an effective argument for a big-C Creator anyhow because as the body of accepted knowledge grows through scientific inquiry, these areas of unknown complexity shrink thus effectively reducing the domain of God's mysteries. God is in the cracks...and the cracks grow smaller all the time.
With reference to 'you can't study something with out a beginning' :
How about a circle? It has no beginning or end unless it's arbitrarily given and even its fundamental expression 'pi' is endless. This is because we are now in the fantastical realm of the concept of infinity---which science and math has reduced to an imaginary abstraction that also does not exist in reality.
~replying to antithesis~
"I completely agree with you. There seems to be many missing links in the evolution theory. There is no proof of beneficial mutations in any living biological genome. All mutations lead..."
Get in touch with your inner Occam's Razor.
Welcome every one to this evening's presentation of The Commonwealth Club. We aredelighted tonight to have as our special guest Leonard Susskind who is well known to allof us for his many writings in the area of Physics and particularly String Theory and ourfocus tonight would be around and about his latest book published this year, 'The CosmicLandscape'. Dr. Susskind will be presenting approximately 30 minutes of discussion andthen we are we will have an opportunity for you to bring questions up to me and I willtry to synthesize them and we can get as many of those questions as we can for forenlightening discussion on a very fascinating area about the the conceptual directionwhich physics is taking in its interaction with other philosophies and mathematicalcomponents of science. So I would like to turn it over to Dr. Susskind to start our program.First of all I want to say that Pluto is solar planet. For many people science meansmedicine, debates over global warming, endangered species, what I would call sciencewith a purpose, science to better the human experience. What I am going to tell you abouttoday is a very different kind of science, you could call it and I do call it selfish science.It's the kind that you do out of pure curiosity. This evening's subject is the universe andthe laws that govern it. Now I must tell you that the subject is extremely controversial.Every side is weighing in with heated angry opinions, sometimes I feel I am at the centerof a circular firing squad. To give you the flavor I would read some of the morecontentious public pronouncements. From the New York times, Cardinal ChristophSchoenborn Archbishop of Vienna, scientific theory such as the anthropic multiversehypothesis that try to explain away the appearance of intelligent design as the results ofchance now I think chance means probability and necessity, I think that means the lawsof mathematics and physics they are not scientific at all but as John Paul put it, they arean abdication of human intelligence an abdication of human intelligence. Then from afamous cosmologist on the edge website, decades from now I hope that physicists willonce again be pursuing their dreams of a truly scientific theory and would look back onthe current anthropic craze as millennium madness, where the cardinal sees atheism thefamous cosmologist sees religious hysteria.Again from the New York Times, famous experimental physicist who incidentallyhappens to be a friend of mine, Susskind that's me and the Landscape School have givenup. For them the reductionist's voyage that has taken Physics so far has come to an end.Since that is what they believe I don't understand why they don't do something else,macrame for example. So what's it all about academic tempest on a teapot or scientific revolution?Let's begin with a bit a history. William Paley is often credited with being the originatorof intelligent design. Sometimes towards the end of 18th century he raised the followingvery interesting question, suppose you are out on the beach and you came across a pocketwatch lying on the sand, you might very well ask how such an intricate object came intoexistence. One possible answer is that a billion billion billion atoms randomly cametogether and accidentally formed the watch. Paley dismissed this explanation saying thatit was incredibly unlikely and indeed it is. Like any sensible person he said that a watchmaker must have designed and created the watch for some purpose. Then he went onthe eye is a far more intricate object than a pocket watch. Surely it didn't just accidentallyappear on the forehead of some ancient animal by analogy Paley concluded that theremust have been an intelligent designer.Well we all know how that episode turned out; Charles Darwin who originally embracedPaley's idea incidentally became curious and eventually arrived at a completely differentconclusion. Darwin saw a pattern of evolution, mutation, competition and trial and errorwhich led to a branching tree of life that filled every niche. The explanation was notintelligent design but rather the impersonal unintelligent laws of Physics, Chemistry andProbability. Incidentally, Darwin's interest had nothing to do with medicine, endangeredspecies or how to genetically engineer a square tomato. He did it because he was curiousabout the world, how the world came to be the way it is. At the time it was pure selfish science.Fast forward a 100 years now 150 years excuse me. Physics and Cosmology are nowwrestling with questions about the universe, questions which closely parallel Paley's andDarwin's. The universe seems to be very, very special but in the ways that really bafflePhysicists. The universe is big, it could have been not bigger than an atom or evensmaller, it's full of chemicals and heat, it could have been cold and empty, it lasted longenough for evolution to take place. It could have collapsed in a big brunch excuse mebig crunch after an NOC may be it was a big brunch I don't know.Gravity is a million million trillion trillion trillion times weaker than theelectromagnetic forces in nature. We don't fully understand why. But if it were just a bitstronger the increased pressure in the Sun would have caused it to burn out far too fast forus to be here. On the other hand, gravity is strong enough to hold us to the earth, to holdthe earth together and to hold on to its atmosphere. The universe appears to exist on theknife-edge of disaster. Disaster for us that is because its all just luck that things workedout so well, until recently most physicists would have said yes, none of it is so unlikelythat it couldn't all be accident. Most Physicists are reductionists, they believe that bigthings are made of smaller things, molecules are just collections of atoms, atoms areelectrons orbiting around nuclei, nuclei are globes of protons and neutrons and so forth.Part of the belief was that the smallest most basic objects are governed by impersonallaws of mathematics, laws that could not care less about our own existence. According tothat view life and the fine tunings that make it possible are mere co-incidences.But a number of things have happened during the last decade - things that are changing inthe minds of some of the best Physicists. Chief among them is the discovery of a singlenumber that is so absurdly unlikely that no one thinks it's accidental. The cosmologicalconstant or what the popular press calls the mysterious dark energy, not dark matter darkenergy, quite a different thing.In 1917, Einstein discovered that his own theory of gravity was ambiguous. Theequations left room for a kind of cosmic antigravity. A repulsive force that acts overbillions of light years which if it existed would relentlessly push every bit of matter awayfrom every other bit and Einstein called the strength of this antigravity force he called itthe cosmological constant. Eventually, Einstein soured on the idea, he called it his worstmistake and for the rest of his life he and everyone else assumed that the cosmologicalconstant was zero. Later astronomers concluded that Einstein was quite right. They saidthere is no cosmic antigravity. The Cosmological constant is zero or at least it's very,very small. How small? Astronomical observations require that at least the first 119decimal places of the cosmological constant all must be zero. 0.00000 I am getting tired a 119 zeroes.Almost all Physicists concluded that the antigravity term must be exactly zero eventhough they didn't know why. Later modern quantum Physicists added to the puzzle.They calculated that unless some fantastic cancellations took place the cosmologicalconstant should not be small at all. In fact according to the equations it should be so largethat it would easily blow up the earth, the atoms and molecules that make up the earthand even the elementary particles that make up atoms. Understanding why thecosmological constant is so close to zero became the biggest unsolved problem ofmodern physics. But no one ever found an explanation. The puzzle of dark energy is notwhy it exists, the puzzle is why is there so little of it.But then in 1987, one of the world's truly great physicists suggested an answer. It wasn'treally an answer, it was rather an observation. Steven Weinberg realized that if thecosmological constant were too large, galaxies, stars and planets could not have formedout of the primordial soup that was leftover from the Big Bang. And even more importantthere would be no us to look at the universe and ask questions about it. His point wasvery simple, the attraction of gravity is what caused lumps in the cosmic soup thatcondensed the galaxies and stars. If the cosmological constant were too strong theantigravity would interfere and prevent the stars from forming, no stars, no planets - no planets, no us.Weinberg was appealing to an idea that's called 'The Anthropic Principle', an idea thatoriginated with a number of British cosmologists. What the Anthropic Principle said isthis: "The laws of physics in cosmology must be such as to permit the existence ofintelligent observers." What an odd idea that the laws of nature must somehow care aboutus? The reductionists, physicists it seemed like putting the cart before the horse. Laws ofphysics determine determined by the existence of life that's upside down, they said.Life is a consequence of laws of physics, not the other way around. They looked on theAnthropic Principle with deep distrust, it sounded much too close to intelligent design.Weinberg himself disliked it. But he kept his mind open and asked how strong would theantigravity force have to be in order to prevent our own existence? What he discoveredwas quite amazing. If the cosmological constant just had one or two few zeros, a 118instead of a 119 there would be no us to ask about it. Amazingly, it seemed that theremight actually be a connection between the crazy fine tuning of the cosmologicalconstant and our own presence in the universe.Weinberg went further. He said that if the only reason that the cosmological constant isso small is to ensure the possibility of life, then there is no need for it to be any smallerthan a 119 zeros. He predicted that when the next digit would be measured the 120th, it would not be zero.Now Weinberg was and is considered one of the great scientists of the 20th century.Nevertheless physicists paid very little attention. The idea that the universe somehowcared about us was unacceptable. They wanted to believe that the laws of physics aredetermined by abstract impersonal equations. They wanted to believe that some deepmathematical principle made the cosmological constant exactly zero.So it was a tremendous shock. The scientific tsunami, when the next digit was measuredin the 120th decimal place, just as Weinberg predicted, the cosmological constant is not zero, its two.This is one of the most stunning reversals of fortune that I know of in science, think of it.10, 20, 30 zeros - only to be reversed in the 120th place. No one has an explanation exceptto say that if the cosmological constant were much different no one would be here to know it.The universe like the eye seems to be very non-accidental. If William Pailey were alivehe would surely say that it must have been designed, fine-tuned for life by a cosmic tuner.Now the majority of physicists - scientists in general, reject intelligent designexplanations. Most would say something about it violating the scientific method. Nowpersonally, I don't believe in a rigid scientific method. Big paradigm shift always break the rules.Let me tell you why personally and this is a personal view of it, why I don't buy it? WhyI don't buy the intelligent design explanation of the universe? It has nothing to do withany antireligious bias. Frankly, I am too confused about the origin of the universe to haveany strong view. I am not a believer and I am not an atheist. I just don't know. Andbesides, I am prepared to accept the craziest explanation if it really explains. It's aquestion of curiosity. ID, Intelligent Design just doesn't do it for me. It doesn't satisfy myitch for an answer. When someone says there was a creator, I immediately think tomyself, what is the creator made of? Is it made of atoms and molecules? How manydimensions does the creator live in? Does the creator satisfy the rules of quantummechanics including the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle? What are the laws by whichthe creator interacts with the rest of the universe? And finally what created the creator?That a billion, billion, billion, billion heavenly atoms just come together?Now theologians speak of first causes and prime movers and they say you are notsupposed to ask these questions. But I am afraid I was just born with a very strongcuriosity gene and I simply can't stop myself. I would call the theologians resistance tothese questions - an abdication of human curiosity. Darwin didn't buy it and neither do I.There is an answer that's gaining traction among cosmologists and theoretical physicists.And it does have Darwinian overtones.Let me go back to life for a moment. What does it take to explain the amazing existenceof a piece of machinery as subtle, fine-tuned and complex as a human being? The firstcondition is that there must be a huge number of biological possibilities. If there wereonly a handful of ways to rearrange the DNA molecule, it would be very unlikely thatany of them would be a blueprint for intelligent life.What makes biology interesting is the sheer diversity of possibilities. DNA is a ladderwith about a billion rungs. Each rung can be anyone of four base pairs. That means that amolecule of DNA can be arranged in four to the billion ways, four to the billion that is aninconceivably large number. Of course, only a tiny fraction of these designs lead to viablelife forms and an even smaller fraction the creatures which are complex enough to askquestions. But even a tiny fraction a four to a billion is still a very large number.Biologists call the collection of all possible life forms, not the life forms that do exists,but the life forms that could exists, they call it "The Landscape of Biological Designs".The landscape is such a big haystack that you can find almost any kind of needle in it,including intelligent needles. But it's not enough to have a lot of possibilities. Somethingmust turn those possibilities into realities. That's what Darwin figured it out. Startingwith a lot of carbon, oxygen and other elements, sunlight, random mutation and naturalselection created a diverse tree of life with every available niche eventually becomingfilled. A few remote branches of that tree just happened to have big enough brains to askquestions, that's all there is to it. There is no more.Now what of all - what is all of these have to do with the universe and especially withString Theory? Well, it's the properties of space. To our ordinary perception space isthree dimensional width, height and depth. But according to String Theory if you couldzoom in to the tiniest distances, a billion, billion times smaller than a proton, you woulddiscover that space had as many as seven extra dimensions or even more, dimensions thatare twisted up and curled into knots like immensely complicated tiny pretzels. Apparentlywhat I call "The Basement of The World". The distance scales vastly smaller thananything we have ever explored. String Theory says that the laws of physics are notunique. The microscopic geometry of space contains structures. Analogous to thebase pairs DNA molecules. These structures determine the properties of elementaryparticles, the forces of nature, and yes - the cosmological constant.The names for these fake base pairs are not adenine and cytosine and so forth. They areCalabi-Yau compactification manifolds, moduli fluxes, Euler numbers and Betti numbers- mathematical objects and there a lot of them. But just think of them as the hiddenmicroscopic DNA of a potential universe. That's the real message of String Theory. Notthe particles or little stands of energy. But that the properties of the universe aredetermined by a kind of super-microscopic DNA and like the biological landscape, thelandscape of possible universe designs is huge and very likely contains the blueprints fora world like ours. I should say very hopefully contains those blueprints.Again, it's not enough to have a lot of possibilities. What is the mechanism that broughtall of this diversity into existence? Surprisingly, physicists have a candidate it's called"Eternal Inflation" and it's based on something that most cosmologists and physicistsbelieve that universes can reproduce. There is surprisingly little controversy about thisvery provocative statement, universes can reproduce.The reproduction mechanism which incidentally is not sex has been understood since themid 1970s. A rapidly expanding universe is like an uncorked bottle of champagne.Bubbles appear as it expands and inside these bubbles the String Theory DNA isrearranged making it a little bit different than the parent universe. It's nothing less than acosmic mutation mechanism. These bubbles expand and eventually it grow to becomenew universes which in turn bubble and produce new offspring. Although themechanism is not the same as Darwinian evolution, the effect is nevertheless to fill everyniche. A vast multi-verse a multi-verse or bubble universes that's what many physicistand cosmologist see ahead of us.Where do we live in this enormous multi-verse? The one thing that we can be sure of isthat we live in one of the rare spots where life is possible. According to this view, theuniverse is not designed; it's simply very - very big and very - very varied. And we livein a very atypical branch of it, where life just happens to be possible. That's it. There isno more explanation, nor is there need for any. It's ironic that the dream of it - a uniquemathematical universe, a universe which could be no other way, is suddenly under attackfrom our own favorite mathematical theory. But it's the lack of uniqueness. Theenormous diversity of possibilities, that's the real strength of String Theory. Without it,we could never explain the special condition - the special co-incidences that allow our own existence.Let me come back now to the Anthropic Principle. As I said, Physicists have been veryreluctant to consider it. Partly they misunderstood it making up at something more that itreally is. I find it very helpful to tell a story that explains just how ordinary the AnthropicPrinciple is. Ordinary but not trivial. I will read it to you. It's the story of the parable ofthe big brained fish. Once up on a time on a planet completely covered by water,there lived a race of big brained fish. Their big brains made them very smart and alsovery curious. In time, their questions about the nature of water, and other things becamevery sophisticated. The most brilliant of them - among them were called fishysicists. Thefishysicists were wonderfully clever and in a few generations they came to understand agreat deal about the nature of water. One thing stumped them. Why was the temperatureof their fluid environment in the narrow range in which water is liquid and it is a narrowrange? Nothing they knew could explain it.Now closely allied with the fishysicists were another group the codmologists who wereinterested in what if anything might lie above the surface. Among the codmologists, therewas a school that held a very radical idea. If the temperature were too high, they wouldbe boiled, boiled fish that is. If too low, they would be frozen fish. The temperature hadto lie in the liquid range or else there would be no fish to even ask questions. They calledit the Anthropic Principle. Garbage said the fishysicists, its putting the cart before thehorse. It's not science, its religion, it's giving up and besides, if we agree with you,everyone will laugh at us and take away our funding.Now a small number of codmologist held to a very particular version of the AnthropicPrinciple. They believed that a stupendously big space existed beyond the upper waterboundary. In this very big space, there might be many other bodies similar in some waysto their own water world, but different in other ways. Some worlds would beunimaginably hot. So hot that hydrogen nuclei might even fuse to form helium and thenperhaps grow even hotter. Other worlds would be cold the frozen nitrogen would exist.Only a tiny fraction of the bodies would be a temperature conducive to the formation offish. Then there would be no mystery why the temperature was fine-tuned, as every angleknows most places are fishless. But here and there conditions are just right and that'swhere the fish are. The end.Of course the codmologist got it right. The reason the temperature was between freezingand boiling, is because if it's weren't, there would be no fish. But the ordinaryastronomical universe is big enough and varied enough that there are many places wherethe conditions for fish are right.The parallel is obvious. A multi-verse vastly bigger than we ever imagined and vastlymore diverse and life exists in the rare places where it can. And that means in the tinyfraction, where the cosmological constant is small enough to allow stars and planets toform. But there is one very disturbing difference. The fish can build a pressurized waterfilled submarine and travel to the surface where they could look out and check if thecodmologist were right. They have to bring a telescope with them. But we will never lookout at the multi-verse and directly see how the universe is. It's not just the technological problem.According to our best understanding, those other worlds are receding away from us sofast that their light can never reach us. They are forever hidden behind an eternal cosmichorizon. For some people, this makes the notion of a multi-verse metaphysicalspeculation and not science. They may be right. But others including me see itdifferently. Curiosity makes us ask, "What's out there beyond the horizon? Is theuniverse enormously big? But everywhere the same, or is it of a highly varied multiverse?" At the moment, the highly varied multi-verse has the advantage. It's the onlyanswer on the table. The only known explanation for the 119 zeros. Still, no one knowsfor certain what this what the future will bring, other explanations may turn-up,surprises and reversal of fortune or what make science so exciting? But to me, not askingwhat's beyond the horizon seems like another abdication of human curiosity. But twothings seem certain to me. First is that we won't find out unless we try. And the second isthat having opened up these questions somewhat against our own will, we will not goback to business as usual. Pandoras box is been opened and the questions that leaped out will not quietly climb back in.Finally, I want to express my continued amazement and delight, and finding that I live ina cultural universe that understands the importance and value of selfish science. Eventhough I am sometimes, I had a lot's to explain it to myself. Thank you.