Arcadian Functor

occasional meanderings in physics' brave new world

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Marni D. Sheppeard

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The String Wars

Gil Kalai has written a book, entitled "Gina Says" - Adventures in the Blogosphere's String War, based on his experiences as a poster named Gina. It is full of gems, including many admirable quotes, such as:
"Gina's comments are blocked on my blog because she was posting a large number of comments there, while most of the time clearly not understanding what she was writing about", P. Woit, Backreaction 5:59, December 27, 2006
"Gina, you and quite a few others seem confused about the meaning of higher dimensions." Thomas Love, September 28th, 2006 at 2:16 pm
This could be a bestseller!


Blogger L. Riofrio said...

How fun! I wonder what publisher will buy it. Not being a string theorist, it is pleasing not to be part of this war.

June 25, 2009 2:30 AM  
Blogger nige said...

Hi Kea, seeing that nobody understands string theory well enough to use it to make a checkable prediction, I don't see how Gina's confusion will be a problem any more than the Bogdanov brothers research on the stringy Planck scale origin of the universe:

'In justifying the conferring of doctoral degrees to the Bogdanovs, Sternheimer told the [New York] Times, "These guys worked for 10 years without pay. They have the right to have their work recognized with a diploma, which is nothing much these days."[2]'


Hi Louise, as long as there is no physics in a physics book, lots of popular publishers should be interested which is why bookshops are full of speculative hype on branes, parallel worlds, and time machines, but not your book which makes predictions! Publishers are especially repelled if they send it to a string theroist for review, as occurred to Dr Woit when he sent a book to Cambridge University Pess, which had earlier published Weinberg's stringy three volume QFT set, Johnson's D-Branes, etc.

June 25, 2009 3:14 AM  
Blogger CarlBrannen said...

Favorite quote: "We do not pay scientists to be just honest, we pay them to be gullible, as well. They have to be gullible in their beliefs regarding the foundation of the current theory they are working on ..." (p 42)

And does he admit that he is Gina somewhere else? The book implies that he is only selecting and editing her comments.

June 25, 2009 7:41 PM  
Blogger Kea said...

Somewhere towards the end he admits that he is Gina.

June 25, 2009 9:30 PM  
Blogger Kea said...

By the way, as my Facebook buddies may know, my sister's name happens to be Gina.

June 26, 2009 9:36 PM  
Blogger CarlBrannen said...

I read it thoroughly and didn't see an admission. However, he apparently sent Peter Woit an email and he was outed on Woit's blog.

July 01, 2009 8:54 PM  
Anonymous Gil Kalai said...

Thanks for the post on my book. (Gina is certainly the hero of my book but I am not her.)

July 03, 2009 12:17 AM  
Blogger Kea said...

You're not Gina? Oh, so maybe it is a woman, after all. I really can't tell.

July 03, 2009 1:38 AM  

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