Tegmark, Max

Max_TegmarkMax Tegmark
Professor of Physics
MIT  Kavli Institute
Cambridge, Massachusetts

Article: What scientific idea is ready for retirement?  “Infinity!”
Book: Our Mathematical Universe
Reddit  Twitter  Website  Wiki   YouTube

Links above go to Tegmark’s pages on the web. 
Links below go to references with this website:
•  Homepages: With Hawking on the infinite, October 16, 2016
_______________  Time Is Always Right Now, This Moment… October 2,  2016
•  ArticlesJuly 2015  The very first reference to Max Tegmark was in December 2012 (that reference is just below). That reference is found in many posts throughout the site. Here it is again under the title, “A Simple View of the Universe: Is a simple mathematical and geometrical view of the Universe meaningful or useful?”
•  December 2012: In 2001 Frank Wilczek (MIT) wrote, Scaling Mt. Planck (Physics Today). In 2006 Wilczek with Max Tegmark (MIT), Anthony Aguirre (UC Santa Clara), Martin J. Rees (Cambridge) focus on 31 key dimensionless constants (ArXiv).
•  All emails posted below from January 2012 to June  2017  Tegmark is a very busy person and has never responded to the emails.  His system did send an automated response to a LinkedIn request in 2014 (and because of it’s automated nature, it’s inserted below).

Most recent email: Thu, Jun 1, 2017 at 5:39 PM

SubjectFwd: Do our simple mathematics at all jive? I hope so.

Hi Max –

Whenever I quote somebody’s work, I send a copy of that reference.

We all should know your work and your thinking. To that end, we have
a Max Tegmark page within our website (Editor’s note: This page!).

We live in such crazy times and I believe a lot of it has to do
with Stephen Hawking’s dystopian, nihilisitic bang. Also, to address
your desire to throw out infinity, I have offered a redefinition
(only highlighted here within this document).

Our naive model has a simple logic, a most-simple start, and
simple mathematics. It is all-inclusive yet particularized. And,
it also has a simple logical start for infinity, indeterminacy,
fluctuations, incompleteness, and imperfections.

So I ask myself, “Why not try to integrate it with the Standard Model
of Physics, with quantum gravity, and with the ΛCDM model?”
Could you advise us? Thank you.

Most sincerely,

Email: Sunday, 2 October 2016   (My fifth email to Tegmark)

Max –

Is this a fair summary? ( Today, on the homepage of http://81018.com )



PS. We are the simple people: simple model-simple logic-simple math, filling in the continuum from the Planck scale to the CERN-Atlas scale, then beyond.

4 August 2016   (fourth email)

Hi Max,

Your endearing smile and wonderful openness should have the world on your doorstep.  Congratulations on all that you do.

Of course, the big bang is one of those answers that only a fool would dare question. So, here I stand among the fools. We’re just high school folks; we claim no special status, so maybe we can be excused for being nicely idiosyncratic and naive!

I think you might enjoy seeing the numbers all filled in from the Planck base units to the Age of the Universe using base-2 notation.  Boeke’s Cosmic View looks a little timid by comparison. Even ‘t Hooft’s Time in the Powers of Ten misses too much. If you have a moment — — is looking for a special critique.

Is it solipsistic poppycock?  That chart is big; it is horizontally-scrolled, starts with the five Planck base units (and some simple geometries), and it is  carried out the 200+ notations to the Age of the Universe.  You can follow the changes of each base unit in contrast to the others. There are over 1000 simple-simple-simple calculations. But, simple is good.  It tells a bold and dramatic story that may have more to do with fantasy than reality, but I don’t think so. I respect you too much to waste your time that way.

Is it possible that the universe started with those infinitesimally small numbers and grew quietly and rather prodigiously and all rather quickly?  Of the 200+ notations, the first second is between 143 and 144.  The first light year is between 168 and 169.  And the first million years between 188 and 189.

That small scale universe, 1-67, could be a new science and math.  Maybe Langlands is on the right path after all.  Below I’ll post some of the other work-in-progress asking for critical review!   Thank you.

Most sincerely,

* * * * *

22 September 2015 (My third email to Tegmark)

I am now a groupie of sorts.  Too old and too naive to be deeply informed.

You encourage me with your great spirit, but then I’ve begun working with
your “Dimensionless constants, cosmology and other dark matters.”

From the perplexing place we were within my first note, to the questioning within the third, would you tell us why our basic concept is wrong headed and “to take a break.”
A Simple View of the Universe:

On Developing A Rationale For A Working Model Of The Universe Based On A Quiet Expansion:

Your website is sensational!  Thank you for all that you do to stimulate scholarship and creative thinking!


An automated response: September 22, 2014:

Thanks for your LinkedIn invitation, which I’m going to accept shortly! Although there’s essentially no information on my LinkedIn page, I have an active public Facebook page where you can connect and discuss with me and others intrigued by science and life’s big questions. I very much hope you’ll join me there! Just surf over to the link below and click “like”:
You’ll also find movies, articles and an FAQ for my book at http://mathematicaluniverse.org
May 9, 2013  (My second email to Tegmark)

Reference:  http://space.mit.edu/home/tegmark/goofs.html

Max –

I was 20 when you came into this world, I suspect you came in feet first.  So much standing comedy in all that you are and do.  It is entirely refreshing. I am enjoying your pages-and-writing immensely and only started today!

I am on a search for simple wisdom.  I’m a simple person.

But, I do have a seriously silly question for you.  It started when I was asked to substitute for my nephew a couple of years ago.  He was to have a second child and I got his five geometry classes for a few days.  I wanted to stand them on their head a little, so they actually made models of the “Big Five.”   They took a tetrahedron, divided the edges in half, connected the new vertices, and bingo, there is a tetrahedron in each corner and an octahedron in the middle,  Then, the same with the octahedron, with six baby octahedrons in the corners and eight tetrahedrons in the faces, all sharing a centerpoint.” That’s a goldmine and you kids have got to go in there and start digging!”

That was the beginning of my regression.  The next time Stevie wanted to take his bride on a fifth-anniversary cruise and left me with those buggers on the last day of class before the Christmas recess.

Enter “The Big Board – little universe.”

“Come one, come all, see the universe and everything in it from the smallest to the largest measurement in about 202-to-206 steps, give or take a few!”

We used the Planck Length and started multiplying by 2.  Within a relatively short time, we had the entire universe looking like a Planck Factory.  Everything had a place.  Geometry was pervasive.  Here was the homunculus of all homunculi.  One part Plato add a little relativistic aether, and mix well into the first sixty steps — nobody seems to have explored 2-to-60, possibly 64 (just before getting hit with any sensibility and a neutrino and quark).

Absolutely crazy?!?  Worth exploring further???  Or, shall I tell the kids to come out of that cave?




Bruce  Camber  (part of my life as a television producer)
Small Business School

January 12, 2012 (My first email to Tegmark)

Ref:  http://space.mit.edu/home/tegmark/crazy.html

Dear Max,

Please, help to debunk this crazy Alice-in-Wonderland hole that I’ve dropped into….

I am a television producer.  But recently,  I was asked to substitute for a high school geometry teacher, a nephew. He asked me to introduce the kids to Plato’s five. It would be my second time with them, so I had to expand my own horizon a bit for my visit on December 19, 2011.

The first time I had them, back in March 2011, they made icosahedrons out of 20 tetrahedrons. I called it squishy geometry and said that it probably fits into quantum geometries or imperfect geometry somewhere and somehow,  but I couldn’t find any references or published work.  That link goes to pictures of those icosahedrons.

Then Shechtman comes along with his quasicrystals and five-fold symmetries… I got to thinking about the nesting of tetrahedrons and octahedrons within the icosahedron and wrote up that little note to him (link above).

I thought, “…speculative, fanciful thinking, probably just nonsense.”

Yet, just after that first encounter, I became impatient with my little paper model of a dodecahedron.  I took the same pentagonal groups of five tetrahedrons, and attached twelve of them together.  I filled it with PlayDoh, then tried to discern what was inside.

A smaller icoshedron was in the center of the thing.  Fascinating for me. No record of it in the literature yet.  I found a name – hexacontagon — but none in the shape of this particular pseudo-dodecahedron.

I’ve been looking inside those five structures for awhile. A week before that class, I asked, “How far within, how many steps by dividing by 2, would I have to go to get to the range of Planck’s length?” I assumed thousands.  Nope. Just 118 steps! There I was, dividing one meter by 2 and then by 2 again u.s.w until 1.6×10−35
or Planck’s length. Then I thought about the large scale universe and in 91 steps I was out in the range of 1027 meters and the edge of the observable universe.

I hadn’t seen such scientific notation so I made it up and produced a couple of charts for the class:
The introduction:  http://smallbusinessschool.org/page883.html
The chart:  http://smallbusinessschool.org/page1118.html

Where did I go wrong?  Is there anything here?





Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.