Nicolai, Hermann – In Process: Tuesday, 16 September 2020

Hermann Nicolai

Max-Planck-Institut für Gravitationsphysik
(Albert-Einstein-Institut), Am Mühlenberg 1, D-14476 Potsdam GERMANY

American Physical Society (APS)
Article: The physics of infinity , George F. R. Ellis, Krzysztof A. Meissner & Hermann Nicolai, Nature Physics 14 , 770–772, 23 July 2018
E10 for beginners (PDF), Reinhold W. Gebert & Hermann Nicolai, Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of Hamburg, Germany, 1994
ArXiv (91-121): Softly broken conformal symmetry
Editor, executive editor of the journal General Relativity and Gravitation
Wikipedia (active translation from German)

First email:  Thursday, 17 September 2020

Dear Prof. Dr. Hermann Nicolai:

Your article with Ellis and Meissner, The physics of infinity, is so very important. Infinity is too little understood and it is overly abused by many (and perhaps I am foremost among them). Late in 2011 I began my initial studies of the Planck base units and general cosmology. I was not a fan of cosmology (long story) and even less of the concept of a big bang and Guth’s inflationary model. Then, I found a crowd of scholars, including the likes of Neil Turok, who were also uneasy with it all.

In 2011 we did a deep dive into basic geometries, particularly the tetrahedron and octahedron ( It was a high school geometry class! We came up from that dive with a model of the universe defined by 202 base-2 notations from the Planck base units to the current time. It’s a simple model, totally naive, yet it seemed to contain everything, everywhere for all time. And, it seemed that our emerging model was a natural inflation from the very first moment up to and including today and the current time.

Yet, this is a note about you and your work. To engage your work, I have surveyed your ArXiv articles, I am currently researching your infinite-dimensional hyperbolic Kac-Moody algebra, supergravity, and how it emerges as E10 symmetry. I am trying to understand in what ways E10 is a fundamental symmetry of nature, a penultimate or ultimate definition of reality.

I am also investigating Meissner’s work, “The symmetries that govern the world of elementary particles.” Your “Warsaw and Potsdam” group does impressive work. If you can unify all the forces of nature consistent with existing observations, you’ve got the attention of the world. If you correctly anticipate the existence of new particles and key properties, the world will beat a path to your two doors!

As the executive editor of the journal General Relativity and Gravitation, you have seen most every crackpot idea in the world. From the little you have seen, I am confident this email will fall quickly into such a category, yet can you tell us why? Is it that space and time are not absolute? Is it that a finite-infinite relation is considered really real? Is it that we anticipate that Aristotle’s 1800-year mistake is actually the gap that is the measurable quantum fluctuations? I might note that I asking if fluctuations could go much deeper toward the Planck base units, but not all the way. That would infer there is a domain of perfection from the Planck units to those systems that allow that gap to come alive and dominate that domain.

Please excuse me for going on so long.

Because this work will probably be thrown into the crackpottery basket, I have started a page about you and your work here: That page also reminds me of any correspondence that I have sent. I will respect your email box!

If there is anything you would have me change, add or delete, I would gladly accommodate any request. Thank you.



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