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The multiverse: Just an excuse to sell books now?

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Recently, we noted Brian Greene’s honest report on the state of the evidence for his multiverse theory (there is no actual evidence). Which prompted an interesting discussion at Peter Woit’s Not Even Wrong blog, for example, Bernhard:

The only purpose of the multiverse seems again to sell books and make headlines. I never went to a conference where I saw a speaker talking seriously about it. It does not explain anything and is completely shielded from experiment. Brian Greene used to promote string theory, but with no advances, no chances of telling if the theory is write or wrong, and the cherry on top: no signs of SUSY, the multiverse is what is left. The only thing I am amazed is how long are these guys going to repeat the same story again and again and still find suckers that are “fascinated” with it.

Actually, it is not merely fascination; it is fear.

Fear? As Marcus Chown put it,

But the main reason for believing in an ensemble of universes is that it could explain why the laws governing our Universe appear to be so finely turned for our existence … This fine-tuning has two possible explanations. Either the Universe was designed specifically for us by a creator or there is a multitude of universes—a multiverse. – “Anything goes,” New Scientist (June 6, 1998)

There are many similar examples.

We had no idea it was that bad. We thought their hat had way more rabbits in it.

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