NPR

Scientific Theory And The Multiverse Madness

An increasing number of theoretical physicist think that our universe is only one among infinitely many — but this speculation is not based on sound logic, says guest commentator Sabine Hossenfelder.
The plane of the Milky Way Galaxy, which we see edge-on from our perspective on Earth. The projection used in ESO's GigaGalaxy Zoom project gives the impression of looking at the Milky Way from the outside. Source: Serge Brunier

Sabine Hossenfelder is a research fellow at the Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies in Germany. Her research focuses on general relativity and quantum gravity. She is author of the blog Backreaction and her first book, Lost in Math, is set to appear in June. You can find her on Twitter at @skdh.


Newton's law of gravity — remember that? The force between two massive bodies decreases with the inverse square of the distance and so on?

To use it, you need a constant, "Newton's constant," also called the "gravitational constant," usually denoted G. You can determine G to reasonable accuracy with a few simple measurements.

Once you have fixed the gravitational constant, you can apply Newton's law to all kinds of

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