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Some see string theory as the one great hope for a theory of everything – that it will unite quantum mechanics and gravity and so unify all of physics into one glorious theory.
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Are Virtual Particles A New Layer of Reality?
Hosted by Matt O'Dowd
Written by Graeme Gossell and Matt O'Dowd
Graphics by Luke Maroldi
Assistant Editing and Sound Design by Mike Petrow
Made by Kornhaber Brown (www.kornhaberbrown.com)
Why has string theory been the obsession of a generation of theoretical physicists? What exactly is so compelling about tiny, vibrating strings? In our last string theory episode I talked about what these things really are, and covered some history. In short: the strings of string theory are literal strands and loops that vibrate with standing waves. Simply by changing the vibrational mode you get different particles – analogous to how different vibrational modes on guitar strings gives different notes. And, by the way, strings exist in 6 compact spatial dimensions on top of the familiar 3.
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