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  1. David Atkinson (2005). A New Metaphysics: Finding a Niche for String Theory. Poznan Studies in the Philosophy of the Sciences and the Humanities 84 (1):95-102.
    Theo Kuipers describes four kinds of research programs and the question is raised here as to whether string theory could be accommodated by one of them, or whether it should be classified in a new, fifth kind of research program.
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  2. Fedde Benedictus (2014). String Theory & the Scientific Method. Foundations of Physics 44 (6):589-593.
    The PreambleIn the early seventies the newly discovered gauge symmetries had made it possible to give a unified description of three of the four basic forces in nature.Dawid [1]. However, it remained a mystery how the force of gravity was to be incorporated in the resulting standard model. In 1974 it was proposed by Joel Scherk and John Schwarz that string theory—which until then was regarded as a theory only of hadrons—was a theory that could unite the whole of microphysics. (...)
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  3. L. Boi (2011). The Quantum Vacuum: A Scientific and Philosophical Concept, From Electrodynamics to String Theory and the Geometry of the Microscopic World. Johns Hopkins University Press.
    Acclaimed mathematical physicist and natural philosopher Luciano Boi expounds the quantum vacuum, exploring the meaning of nothingness and its relationship with ...
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  4. Rob Bryanton (2006). Imagining the Tenth Dimension: A New Way of Thinking About Time, Space, and String Theory. Talking Dog Studios.
    INTRODUCTION Our universe is an amazing and humbling place. The planet we live on is filled with wondrous things, yet it is only an unimaginably tiny part ...
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  5. Andrea Cappelli, Elena Castellani, Filippo Colomo & Paolo Di Vecchia, The Birth of String Theory: Introduction and Synopsis.
    This is a draft of the introduction to the collective volume "The birth of string theory" (CUP, 2012), including the book's index and preface. The book explores the history of the theory’s early stages of development, as told by its main protagonists. It journeys from the first version of the theory (the so-called Dual Resonance Model) in the late 1960s, as an attempt to describe the physics of strong interactions outside the framework of quantum field theory, to its reinterpretation around (...)
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  6. Elena Castellani, Dualities and Intertheoretic Relations.
    This is the first of two papers concerned with the philosophical significance of dualities as applied in recent fundamental physics. The general idea is that, for its peculiarity, this ‘new’ ingredient in theory construction can open unexpected perspectives in the current philosophical reflection on contemporary physics. In particular, today’s physical dualities represent an unusual type of intertheory relation, the meaning of which deserves to be investigated. The aim is to show how discussing this point brings into play, at the same (...)
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  7. Carlos Castro (2000). The String Uncertainty Relations Follow From the New Relativity Principle. Foundations of Physics 30 (8):1301-1316.
    Stringy corrections to the ordinary Heisenberg uncertainty relations have been known for some time. However, a proper understanding of the underlying new physical principle modifying the ordinary Heisenberg uncertainty relations has not yet emerged. The author has recently proposed a new scale relativity theory as a physical foundation of string and M theories. In this work the stringy uncertainty relations, and corrections thereof, are rigorously derived from this new relativity principle without any ad-hoc assumptions. The precise connection between the Regge (...)
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  8. John Corcoran, William Frank & Michael Maloney (1974). String Theory. Journal of Symbolic Logic 39 (4):625-637.
    For each $n > 0$ , two alternative axiomatizations of the theory of strings over n alphabetic characters are presented. One class of axiomatizations derives from Tarski's system of the Wahrheitsbegriff and uses the n characters and concatenation as primitives. The other class involves using n character-prefixing operators as primitives and derives from Hermes' Semiotik. All underlying logics are second order. It is shown that, for each n, the two theories are synonymous in the sense of deBouvere. It is further (...)
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  9. Richard Dawid (2013). String Theory and the Scientific Method. Cambridge University Press.
    Richard Dawid. place. If the final theory claim associated with string theory is correct, the time until we reach a final description of nature is reduced to the time we need to complete string theory itself. This step, however, goes along with a vastly ...
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  10. Richard Dawid (2013). Theory Assessment and Final Theory Claim in String Theory. Foundations of Physics 43 (1):81-100.
    String theory has by now maintained a highly influential position in high energy physics for more than a quarter of a century. The present article analyses the reasons for the considerable trust exponents of string theory have in their theory even though it has neither found empirical confirmation nor a complete formulation up to this point. It is argued that this trust can be understood in terms of an emerging new conception of theory assessment that relies strongly on the identification (...)
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  11. Richard Dawid (2009). On the Conflicting Assessments of the Current Status of String Theory. Philosophy of Science 76 (5):984-996.
    The current status of string theory is assessed quite differently by most of the theory’s exponents than by the majority of physicists in other fields. While the former tend to have a high degree of trust in string theory’s viability, the latter largely share a substantially more skeptical point of view. This article argues that the controversy can be best understood in terms of a paradigmatic rift between the two sides over their understandings of theory assessment. An attempt is made (...)
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  12. Richard Dawid (2007). Scientific Realism in the Age of String Theory. Physics and Philosophy.
    String theory currently is the only viable candidate for a unified description of all known natural forces. This article tries to demonstrate that the fundamental structural and methodological differences that set string theory apart from other physical theories have important philosophical consequences. Focussing on implications for the realism debate in philosophy of science, it is argued that both poles of that debate face new problems in the context of string theory. On the one hand, the claim of underdetermination of scientific (...)
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  13. Richard Dawid (2006). Underdetermination and Theory Succession From the Perspective of String Theory. Philosophy of Science 73 (3):298-322.
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  14. Richard Dawid, Realism in the Age of String Theory.
    String theory currently is the only viable candidate for a unified description of all known natural forces. This article tries to demonstrate that the fundamental structural and methodological differences that set string theory apart from other physical theories have important philosophical consequences. Focussing on implications for the realism debate in philosophy of science, it is argued that both poles of that debate become untenable in the context of string theory. On one side the claim of underdetermination of scientific theories, which (...)
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  15. Sebastian de Haro, Dennis Dieks, Gerard ’T. Hooft & Erik Verlinde (2013). Forty Years of String Theory Reflecting on the Foundations. Foundations of Physics 43 (1):1-7.
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  16. Philippe Droz-Vincent (1994). The Massive Bosonic String in the Center-of-Mass Gauge. Foundations of Physics 24 (4):525-541.
    The open Nambu string is revisited in the spirit of an early approach by Rohrlich. Strictly timelike motions only are considered. The proper-time of the center-of-mass is taken as preferred parameter. We propose a canonical formalism in terms of a countable infinity of variables, among them the modes. But the barycentric coordinates have noncommuting components, which makes possible a consistent quantization (in any dimension, four in particular) within the framework of a transverse space of states. If a maximal number of (...)
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  17. M. J. Duff (2013). String and M-Theory: Answering the Critics. [REVIEW] Foundations of Physics 43 (1):182-200.
    Using as a springboard a three-way debate between theoretical physicist Lee Smolin, philosopher of science Nancy Cartwright and myself, I address in layman’s terms the issues of why we need a unified theory of the fundamental interactions and why, in my opinion, string and M-theory currently offer the best hope. The focus will be on responding more generally to the various criticisms. I also describe the diverse application of string/M-theory techniques to other branches of physics and mathematics which render the (...)
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  18. M. J. Duff (2013). Erratum To: String and M-Theory: Answering the Critics. [REVIEW] Foundations of Physics 43 (2):284-284.
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  19. Zen Faulkes & Anita Davelos Baines (2007). Evolutionary String Theory. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 30 (4):369-370.
    Evolution in Four Dimensions claims that epigenetic, behavioral, and symbolic inheritance systems should be considered equal partners to genetics in evolutionary biology. The evidence for, and applicable scope of, these additional inheritance systems is limited, particularly with regard to areas involving learning. It is unclear how including these extra dimensions in mainstream evolutionary thinking translates into testable hypotheses for a productive research program.
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  20. Roman Frigg & N. Cartwright, String Theory Under Scrutiny.
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  21. Steven B. Giddings (2013). Is String Theory a Theory of Quantum Gravity? Foundations of Physics 43 (1):115-139.
    Some problems in finding a complete quantum theory incorporating gravity are discussed. One is that of giving a consistent unitary description of high-energy scattering. Another is that of giving a consistent quantum description of cosmology, with appropriate observables. While string theory addresses some problems of quantum gravity, its ability to resolve these remains unclear. Answers may require new mechanisms and constructs, whether within string theory, or in another framework.
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  22. Steven S. Gubser (2013). The Gauge-String Duality and Heavy Ion Collisions. Foundations of Physics 43 (1):140-155.
    I review at a non-technical level the use of the gauge-string duality to study aspects of heavy ion collisions, with special emphasis on the trailing string calculation of heavy quark energy loss. I include some brief speculations on how variants of the trailing string construction could provide a toy model of black hole formation and evaporation. This essay is an invited contribution to “Forty Years of String Theory” and is aimed at philosophers and historians of science as well as physicists.
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  23. Amit Hagar (2014). Squaring the Circle: Gleb Wataghin and the Prehistory of Quantum Gravity. Studies in the History and the Philosophy of Modern Physics 46:217-227.
    The early history of the attempts to unify quantum theory with the general theory of relativity is depicted through the work of the under--appreciated Italo-Brazilian physicist Gleb Wataghin, who is responsible for many of the ideas that the quantum gravity community is entertaining today.
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  24. Reiner Hedrich, String Theory – Nomological Unification and the Epicycles of the Quantum Field Theory Paradigm.
    String Theory is the result of the conjunction of three conceptually independent elements: (i) the metaphysical idea of a nomological unity of the forces, (ii) the model-theoretical paradigm of Quantum Field Theory, and (iii) the conflict resulting from classical gravity in a quantum world - the motivational starting point of the search for a theory of Quantum Gravity. String Theory is sometimes assumed to solve this conflict: by means of an application of the (only slightly extended) model-theoretical apparatus of (perturbative) (...)
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  25. Reiner Hedrich (2007). The Internal and External Problems of String Theory: A Philosophical View. [REVIEW] Journal for General Philosophy of Science 38 (2):261 - 278.
    String theory is at the moment the only advanced approach to a unification of all interactions, including gravity. But, in spite of the more than 30 years of its existence, it does not make any empirically testable predictions, and it is completely unknown which physically interpretable principles could form the basis of string theory. At the moment, “string theory” is no theory at all, but rather a labyrinthic structure of mathematical procedures and intuitions. The only motivations for string theory consist (...)
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  26. Reiner Hedrich (2007). The Internal and External Problems of String Theory: A Philosophical View. [REVIEW] Journal for General Philosophy of Science 38 (2):261 - 278.
    String theory is at the moment the only advanced approach to a unification of all interactions, including gravity. But, in spite of the more than 30 years of its existence, it does not make any empirically testable predictions, and it is completely unknown which physically interpretable principles could form the basis of string theory. At the moment, “string theory” is no theory at all, but rather a labyrinthic structure of mathematical procedures and intuitions. The only motivations for string theory consist (...)
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  27. Reiner Hedrich, String Theory - From Physics to Metaphysics.
    Currently, string theory represents the only advanced approach to a unification of all interactions, including gravity. In spite of the more than thirty years of its existence, the sequence of metamorphosis it ran through, and the ever more increasing number of involved physicists, until now, it did not make any empirically testable predictions. Because there are no empirical data incompatible with the quantum field theoretical standard model of elementary particle physics and with general relativity, the only motivations for string theory (...)
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  28. Reiner Hedrich, Superstring Theory and Empirical Testability.
    The quest for an all-encompassing theory, finally intended to give a solution to the problem of the unification of all natural forces, is seen today as one of the most important objectives of theoretical high-energy physics. This so-called 'Theory of Everything' is, actually, identified by some theoretical physicists with superstring theory. But superstring theory is in a crucial way incomplete. And, above all, it has fundamental problems with empirical testability – problems that make questionable its status as a physical theory (...)
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  29. Marc Henneaux (1987). Field Theory of Strings in Nonconformal Gauges. Foundations of Physics 17 (6):637-652.
    The field theory of free strings is analyzed in gauges in which the two-dimensional metric along the string worldsheet remains as a dynamical variable. Hamiltonian-based BRST methods are used. The cohomology of the complete BRST charge is computed. Equivalence with the usual approach is explicitly established.
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  30. Gerard ’T. Hooft (2014). Superstrings and the Foundations of Quantum Mechanics. Foundations of Physics 44 (5):463-471.
    It is put forward that modern elementary particle physics cannot be completely unified with the laws of gravity and general relativity without addressing the question of the ontological interpretation of quantum mechanics itself. The position of superstring theory in this general question is emphasized: superstrings may well form exactly the right mathematical system that can explain how quantum mechanics can be linked to a deterministic picture of our world. Deterministic interpretations of quantum mechanics are usually categorically rejected, because of Bell’s (...)
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  31. Gerard ’T. Hooft (2013). On the Foundations of Superstring Theory. Foundations of Physics 43 (1):46-53.
    Superstring theory is an extension of conventional quantum field theory that allows for stringlike and branelike material objects besides pointlike particles. The basic foundations on which the theory is built are amazingly shaky, and, equally amazingly, it seems to be this lack of solid foundations to which the theory owes its strength. We emphasize that such a situation is legitimate only in the development phases of a new doctrine. Eventually, a more solidly founded structure must be sought.Although it is advertised (...)
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  32. Lars-Göran Johansson & Keizo Matsubara (2011). String Theory and General Methodology: A Mutual Evaluation. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 42 (3):199-210.
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  33. Michio Kaku (2003). Highlights of Supersymmetry, Superstrings, and M-Theory. Foundations of Physics 33 (5):689-706.
    The present lecture is a beginer's guide to supersymmetry, superstrings, and M-theory. It addresses students and scientists whose basic research topic in theoretical physics is a different one but who, nonetheless, wish to gain a glimpse into this exciting new field of theoretical physics.
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  34. Jerzy Król (2006). A Model for Spacetime II. The Emergence of Higher Dimensions and Field Theory/Strings Dualities. Foundations of Physics 36 (12):1778-1800.
    We show that in 4-spacetime modified at very short distances due to the weakening of classical logic, the higher dimensions emerge. We analyse the case of some smooth topoi, and the case of some class of pointless topoi. The pointless topoi raise the dimensionality due to the forcing adding “string” objects and thus replacing classical points in spacetime. Turning to strings would be something fundamental and connected with set theoretical forcing. The field theory/strings dualities originate at the set theoretical level (...)
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  35. Theo A. F. Kuipers (2005). Kepler, Newton, Einstein and the String Theory: Reply to David Atkinson. Poznan Studies in the Philosophy of the Sciences and the Humanities 84 (1):103-105.
  36. Emil J. Martinec (2013). Evolving Notions of Geometry in String Theory. Foundations of Physics 43 (1):156-173.
    The unfolding of string theory has led to a successive refinement and generalization of our understanding of geometry and topology. A brief overview of these developments is given.
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  37. Keizo Matsubara (2013). Realism, Underdetermination and String Theory Dualities. Synthese 190 (3):471-489.
    String theory promises to be able to provide us with a working theory of quantum gravity and a unified description of all fundamental forces. In string theory there are so called ‘dualities’; i.e. different theoretical formulations that are physically equivalent. In this article these dualities are investigated from a philosophical point of view. Semantic and epistemic questions relating to the problem of underdetermination of theories by data and the debate on realism concerning scientific theories are discussed. Depending on ones views (...)
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  38. Nick E. Mavromatos (2010). Decoherence and CPT Violation in a Stringy Model of Space-Time Foam. Foundations of Physics 40 (7):917-960.
    I discuss a model inspired from the string/brane framework, in which our Universe is represented (after perhaps appropriate compactification) as a three brane, propagating in a bulk space time punctured by D0-brane (D-particle) defects. As the D3-brane world moves in the bulk, the D-particles cross it, and from an effective observer on D3 the situation looks like a “space-time foam” with the defects “flashing” on and off (“D-particle foam”). The open strings, with their ends attached on the brane, which represent (...)
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  39. Luca Moretti (2014). String Theory and the Scientific Method: Interview with Richard Dawid. The Reasoner 8 (8):87-89.
  40. Yuval Ne'eman (1988). The Spectrum-Generating Groups Program and the String. Foundations of Physics 18 (3):245-275.
    Schrödinger's approach was analytical, but it is equivalent to an algebraic treatment. We review the evolution of group theory as a physical tool and its application to the Hilbert space of Schrödinger's eigenstates. Special emphasis is put on recent results relating to the relativistic quantized string.
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  41. Hrvoje Nikolić (2009). Boson-Fermion Unification, Superstrings, and Bohmian Mechanics. Foundations of Physics 39 (10):1109-1138.
    Bosonic and fermionic particle currents can be introduced in a more unified way, with the cost of introducing a preferred spacetime foliation. Such a unified treatment of bosons and fermions naturally emerges from an analogous superstring current, showing that the preferred spacetime foliation appears only at the level of effective field theory, not at the fundamental superstring level. The existence of the preferred spacetime foliation allows an objective definition of particles associated with quantum field theory in curved spacetime. Such an (...)
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  42. Hrvoje Nikolić (2008). Probability in Relativistic Bohmian Mechanics of Particles and Strings. Foundations of Physics 38 (9):869-881.
    Even though the Bohmian trajectories given by integral curves of the conserved Klein-Gordon current may involve motions backwards in time, the natural relativistic probability density of particle positions is well-defined. The Bohmian theory predicts subtle deviations from the statistical predictions of more conventional formulations of quantum theory, but it seems that no present experiment rules this theory out. The generalization to the case of many particles or strings is straightforward, provided that a preferred foliation of spacetime is given.
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  43. Dean Rickles (2013). Mirror Symmetry and Other Miracles in Superstring Theory. Foundations of Physics 43 (1):54-80.
    The dominance of string theory in the research landscape of quantum gravity physics (despite any direct experimental evidence) can, I think, be justified in a variety of ways. Here I focus on an argument from mathematical fertility, broadly similar to Hilary Putnam’s ‘no miracles argument’ that, I argue, many string theorists in fact espouse in some form or other. String theory has generated many surprising, useful, and well-confirmed mathematical ‘predictions’—here I focus on mirror symmetry and the mirror theorem. These predictions (...)
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  44. Dean Rickles (2010). Review of M. Gasperini, & J. Maharana (Eds.) (2008). String Theory and Fundamental Interactions. Gabriele Veneziano and Theoretical Physics: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives (Pp. Xviii + 974, Hardback, €99.95). Springer, ISBN 978-3-540-74232-. [REVIEW] Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B 41 (2):160-162.
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  45. Dean Rickles, The Interpretation of String Dualities.
    Many of the advances in string theory have been generated by the discovery of new duality symmetries connecting what were once thought to be distinct theories, solu- tions, processes, backgrounds, and more. Indeed, duality has played an enormously important role in the creation and development of numerous theories in physics and numerous fields of mathematics. Dualities often lie at those fruitful intersections at which mathematics and physics are especially strongly intertwined. In this paper I describe some of these dualities and (...)
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  46. Steven M. Rosen (2008). Quantum Gravity and Phenomenological Philosophy. Foundations of Physics 38 (6):556-582.
    The central thesis of this paper is that contemporary theoretical physics is grounded in philosophical presuppositions that make it difficult to effectively address the problems of subject-object interaction and discontinuity inherent to quantum gravity. The core objectivist assumption implicit in relativity theory and quantum mechanics is uncovered and we see that, in string theory, this assumption leads into contradiction. To address this challenge, a new philosophical foundation is proposed based on the phenomenology of Maurice Merleau-Ponty and Martin Heidegger. Then, through (...)
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  47. Carlo Rovelli (2013). A Critical Look at Strings. Foundations of Physics 43 (1):8-20.
    Following the invitation of the editors of Foundations of Physics, I give here a personal assessment of string theory, from the point of view of an outsider, and I compare it with the theory, methods, and expectations of my own field.
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  48. Ruggero Maria Santilli (2002). New Problematic Aspects of Current String Theories and Their Invariant Resolution. Foundations of Physics 32 (7):1111-1140.
    We identify new, rather serious, physical and mathematical inconsistencies of the current formulation of noncanonical or nonunitary string theories due to the lack of invariant units necessary for consistent measurements, lack of preservation in time of Hermiticity-observability, and other shortcomings. We propose three novel reformulations of string theories for matter of progressively increasing complexity via the novel iso-, geno-, and hyper-mathematics of hadronic mechanics, which resolve the current inconsistencies, while offering new intriguing possibilities, such as: an axiomatically consistent and invariant (...)
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  49. Lee Smolin (2013). A Perspective on the Landscape Problem. Foundations of Physics 43 (1):21-45.
    I discuss the historical roots of the landscape problem and propose criteria for its successful resolution. This provides a perspective to evaluate the possibility to solve it in several of the speculative cosmological scenarios under study including eternal inflation, cosmological natural selection and cyclic cosmologies.Invited contribution for a special issue of Foundations of Physics titled Forty Years Of String Theory: Reflecting On the Foundations.
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  50. Leonard Susskind (2013). String Theory. Foundations of Physics 43 (1):174-181.
    After reviewing the original motivation for the formulation of string theory and what we learned from it, I discuss some of the implications of the holographic principle and of string dualities for the question of the building blocks of nature.
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