A random thought

Let's say someone gave a computer scientist a copy of Microsoft Word and asked them to figure out how the grammar correction feature was implemented.

Then two years later he comes back and says that while he hasn't exactly figured out how the feature is implemented, he did figure out something much better. He created with a new programming language, complete with a mathematical proof of Turing-completeness, and it can be used to compute anything that's computable. The grammar feature in Word is simply the result of computation, therefore his new language is capable of implementing the same feature. The rest is just details.

When I hear about string theory research, it sounds like instead of a model of the universe, they've come up with a meta-model that encompasses all possible universes. Which is cool except it doesn't help you in this universe. It's like the researchers have created a new programming language, but have told us nothing interesting about the big program we are already living in.

Posted September 29, 2006 4:42 PM