My paper on T-duality, Target Space ≠ Space was finally published in Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics (though the preprint has been on their website for the last two years). If you are interested, you can get a free copy here for the next few weeks: https://authors.elsevier.com/a/1VmQs4q92pgchV. – Nick
Our YouTube channel now has some interesting 5 minute interviews that George Musser conducted with people at our summer conference: so far with Karen Crowther, Daniele Oriti, and Daniel Sudarsky. You can find them in the BST-POP playlist. Enjoy!
On Wednesday 18 October 2017 please join us at UIC (or at Geneva via livestream, or on our YouTube channel) to hear David Wallace (USC) speaking on “The Case for Black Hole Thermodynamics”
Abstract: I give a fairly systematic and thorough presentation of the case for regarding black holes as thermodynamic systems in the fullest sense (contra recent work by Dougherty and Callender), with particular attention to (i) the availability in classical black hole thermodynamics of a well-defined notion of adiabatic intervention; (ii) the power of the membrane paradigm to make black hole thermodynamics precise and to extend it to local-equilibrium contexts; (iii) the central role of Hawking radiation in permitting black holes to be in thermal contact with one another; (iv) the wide range of routes by which Hawking radiation can be derived and its back-reaction on the black hole calculated; (v) the interpretation of Hawking radiation close to the black hole as a gravitationally bound thermal atmosphere.
More information on all talks above.
• Wednesday 27 September 2017 at Geneva – Alexei Grinbaum (CEA-Saclay/LARSIM): How device-independent approaches change the meaning of physical theory
Abstract: Dirac sought an interpretation of mathematical formalism in terms of physical entities and Einstein insisted that physics should describe “the real states of the real systems”. While Bell inequalities put into question the reality of states, modern device-independent approaches do away with the idea of entities: physical theory may contain no physical systems. Focusing on the correlations between operationally defined inputs and outputs, device-independent methods promote a view more distant from the conventional one than Einstein’s `principle theories’ were from `constructive theories’. On the examples of indefinite causal orders and almost quantum correlations, we ask a puzzling question: if physical theory is not about systems, then what is it about? Device-independent models suggest that physical theory can be `about’ languages. This answer indicates a direction for moving beyond quantum theory. In terms of technical difficulty, this talk rates 4/5
Last call for entries to the 2017 essay contest – the deadline is September 15th.
Apologies that things have been quiet over the summer – we will soon have news of the 2017-18 program. Watch this spot!
The videos of our conference, which was held near Geneva 27-30 June 2017, are now available on our YouTube channel on their separate playlist:
Please consider entering our essay contest – winners receive $1000 and an invitation to speak. We will consider original work on the philosophical foundations of quantum gravity (including metaphysical issues arising in connection with such theories). Deadline: 9/15/17
Full details are above, or here: https://beyondspacetime.net/2017-essay-prize-contest/
We invite interested scholars for short visits to the Spacetime After Quantum Gravity research group, located in the philosophy departments at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the University of Geneva. To facilitate visits we can offer financial assistance for travel and lodging, office facilities, and of course excellent intellectual company. Visits can be from a few days to a few weeks (or possibly longer).
Details are here: https://beyondspacetime.net/space-and-time-after-quantum-gravity/visit-us/