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Supersymmetry vs. Multiverse (a Particle Fever question)

Posted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 4:39 am
by russellb206
I watched the Seattle premiere of Particle Fever at the Harvard Exit two days ago, but Mr. Kaplan's time after his film was monopolized by people taking pictures of him for their Facebook pages, dumb questions about Garrett Lisi, and even dumber questions about which flavors of coffee theoretical physicists prefer, so I never did get to ask the questions I had, and as a result I'm asking them here :)

The impression this film conveyed was that the mainstream theorist community is divided between supporters of supersymmetry and supporters of the multiverse hypothesis, where supersymmetry's likelihood would be bolstered by a low value for the mass of the Higgs Boson, and proved by the discovery of fundamental particles heavier than the Higgs Boson, while multiverse's likelihood would be bolstered by a high value for the mass of the Higgs Boson, and disproved by the discovery of fundamental particles heavier than the Higgs Bosom. So, this described state of affairs led me to the following questions:

1. Is there any reasonable explanation for dark matter other than the existence of fundamental particles beyond the Standard Model, and if not then why don't the same observations which led to the conclusion that dark matter must exist also disprove the multiverse hypothesis?

2. Is there any reason to believe in the actual reality of the multiple universes described by the multiverse hypothesis, other than the fact that if supersymmetry is false our existence is unlikely?

3. Even if #2 above is true, wouldn't Occam's Razor suggest we should assume the spawned universes have identical values for their fundamental physical constants, instead of random ones? If not, then why not?

4. Given the masses of all the fundamental particles measured to date, are there any logically consistent values they could have assumed which would have increased the length of time intelligent life could have continued to exist in our universe? In other words, can the secular position on our universe's origin and ultimate fate be bolstered, even within the multiverse hypothesis, by supportable claims that "It could have been better"?

5. If the multiverse hypothesis is correct, and as a consequence some fundamental particles in our current universe have lifespans shorter than what we would have otherwise believed under supersymmetry, then does this impose a deadline for intelligent life earlier than what we would have predicted under either a supersymmetric entropy death or universal big crunch, and if so what is the new deadline?

6. To date, no signals from extraterrestrial intelligences have been detected, and as a result we have no evidence that self-awareness exists in our universe other than our own. In light of this, why don't theoretical physicists find the multiverse hypothesis more comforting than they currently do? Personally, I would take great comfort in any theory which implied that, no matter how badly we may personally screw up, an infinity of other self-aware intelligences is emerging every instant.

7. In support of #6 above, assuming the multiverse hypothesis is correct, do we have any reason to believe the number of new universes spawned every instant is finite rather than infinite, and if so what is the relevant limit?


Re: Supersymmetry vs. Multiverse (a Particle Fever question)

Posted: Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:59 am
by Apparent_Horizen

I would have had some of the same questions, I don't think anyone would have had time to answer any of your questions thoroughly in that setting.. I honestly envy your position in that setting.

I love these questions. I had some of them myself.

I put my money on multiverse a long time ago, but I really had my love in super symmetry. My imagination was caught on super symmatry thing for some reason.

Now we get to restart.

Good luck!