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مصاحبه با ساسکایند

تاریخ شفاهی American Institute of Physics اخیرا با ساسکایند مصاحبه طولانی داشته که به نظرم خوندنش خالی از لطف نیست. من سعی می‌کنم بریده‌هایی از این گفت‌وگوی طولانی رو بدون ایجاد تغییر اینجا بذارم. متن کامل در اینجا در دسترس همگانه:

Interview of Leonard Susskind

By David Zierler on May 1 and 3, 2020

Niels Bohr Library & Archives

American Institute of Physics

منبع

ورود به فیزیک

توی این مصاحبه ساسکایند از ماجرای ورودش به فیزیک و مسیر فیزیکدان شدنش میگه. از وضعیت و عقبه خانواده‌ش و تاثیر پدرش بر زندگیش. از اینکه برای مدتی همراه پدرش به شغل لوله‌کشی مشغول بوده و در گفت‌وگو با همکارهای پدرش کم‌کم متوجه میشه که ناخواسته سراغ شبه علم می‌رن! ساسکایند تعریف می‌کنه که کجا مدرسه و دانشگاه رفته. چی خونده و چه طور متوجه شده که رشته‌ای که دوست داره فیزیکه و نه مهندسی!

Harold Rothbart came around, and he was watching me, and he said, “Susskind, this is not for you. This is the wrong subject for you.” He told me he would fail me in the class unless I dropped out of engineering. … By that time, I was married. I had a child. “What am I going to do? My father is waiting for me to go into business.” “I want you to drop out of engineering.” I thought, “Well, this guy really thinks I’m stupid.” And then he said something that really touched me. He said, “You’re very, very smart. You should be a scientist. You should go into one of the sciences.”

ساسکایند از این میگه که چه طوری به درس‌های پایه فیزیک علاقه‌مند شده. این که کتاب مکانیک کلاسیک گلدستین رو می‌خونه و خیلی کیف می‌کنه با وجود این‌که نویسنده این کتاب اصلا فیزیکدان نبوده! به نظر اون گلدستین هنوز هم کتاب خیلی استانداردی برای یادگرفتن مکانیک کلاسیکه چون خیلی خوب در مورد همیلتونی‌ها و لاگرانژین‌ها و کروشه‌های پواسون بحث کرده. یک بار هم سر کلاس مکانیک تحلیلی ساسکایند یکی ازش می‌پرسه که چه کتابیو پیشنهاد می‌کنی؟ میگه من نمی‌دونم چه کتابی خوبه، ترجیح می‌دم خودم بشینم یکی خودم بنویسم تا یکیو پیشنهاد کنم ولی یادمه وقتی اولین بار این چیزا رو خوندم از روی گلدستین خوندم و اون خیلی کتاب خوبی بود. در ادامه این مصاحبه می‌گه که بهترین کتابی که برای یادگرفتن کوانتوم خونده کتاب خود دیراکه. همین طور همیشه مقاله‌های نسبیت (خاص و عام) آینشتین روی میزشه و اونا رو می‌خونه ولذت می‌بره از سوال‌های خیلی ساده‌ای که آینشتین می‌پرسه و روشی که سعی می‌کنه به این سوال‌ها پاسخ بده.

He made this surprising conclusion that light, as well as everything else, gravitates, from something that a 12-year-old could understand. That to me was the way that I wanted to do physics. It wasn’t that I wanted to imitate Einstein. It just felt right. This is the way to think about physics. You start with very, very simple observations about the world, and from them, you draw far-reaching conclusions. Gedankenexperiments— I really, really fell in love with the idea of thinking about physics from a very simple starting point and building on that.

در ادامه به این می‌پردازه که رسما استاد راهنمای خاصی نداشته ولی بعضی‌ها توی این مسیر راهنماش بودن؛ به طور خاص به هانس بیته اشاره می‌کنه. اما می‌گه که هانس هیچ موقع نمی‌تونسته استاد راهنمای مناسبی برای اون باشه چون خیلی ذهن عملگرا و تجربی داشته و از نسبیت عام خوشش نمی‌اومده! بعدها فاینمن رو می‌بینه و شاید اون به معنی واقعی کلمه استاد راهنماش بوده ولی خب زمان زیادی می‌گذشته از این که مستقیما تحت نظارت فاینمن بخواد کاری کنه. فاینمن بیشتر دوستش بوده و ساسکایند مدل پرداختنش به فیزیک رو خیلی می‌پسندیده. به نظر ساسکایند،‌ آینشتین توی لیگ غول‌هایی مثل نیوتون، ارشمیدس و گالیله بوده در حالی که فاینمن آدمی بوده که فوق‌العاده بوده توی فیزیک. همیشه فاینمن رو به چشم یک انسان بامزه می‌دیده و نه خدایگان فیزیک! بعدها مری گل‌-من رو دیده و با این که همیشه اونو تحسین می‌کرده ولی آبش با اون توی یه جوی نمی‌رفته! برای همین گل-من هم چندان نقش راهنما براش نداشته. نکته جالب ولی اینه که میگه این روزها من راهنما دارم و اتفاقا اونا خیلی از من جوون‌تر هستن!

What did I—I did see something in Feynman’s physics. He also had a certain simplicity of thinking. The two examples that stand out, and I’ve talked about these publicly on occasion—well, there were three. The first was his ability to cut through the great difficulties of quantum field theory and just draw diagrams. How the hell did he figure that out? And he didn’t figure it out; he just made it up! People who tried to figure out what Feynman was doing could not get him to explain what he was doing. He just said, “Here it is. This is what it is.” … It was always, “Close your eyes, and see if you can see what the thing looks like.” In that sense, I think Feynman was a mentor. But it came a bit late for it to have really affected my own style. That already existed. I also admired Murray Gell-Mann enormously, but very different. Murray and I did not get along. In fact, I think we really disliked each other. But I could see his incredible ability to see patterns.

ساسکایند می‌گه افراد مختلف به شیوه های متفاوتی به فیزیک می‌پردازن. مدل انجام دادن اون این جوریه که به جاهایی که اصول با هم در تضاد هستن عمیقا فکر می‌کنه:

My friend Steve Shenker, for example, is a master of using output of calculation as data to generate new ideas or brilliant ideas. I never did a lot of calculation like that, or at least not for a long time. I did at one time, but not for a lot of time now. … My approach to physics—this was not done by design. My natural inclination is to focus on clashes of principle, on paradoxes, on Gedankenexperiments through which we view clashes of principle, and then eventually debug and understand what resolves the clashes of principle. So that’s a way of thinking that—I think it’s fairly rare. I don’t think any of my colleagues tend to do that.

علم و دین

از ساسکایند پرسیده میشه که زمانی که دانشگاه یشیوا بوده آیا محیط اونجا تحت تاثیر اندیشه‌های یهودی بوده یا نه.

I was at the Belfer Graduate School of Science. Which was a part of Yeshiva University, but it was separate. It was a graduate school of science. It was a very funny, idiosyncratic place. It was a marvelous place. It had some extraordinary scientists. Yakir Aharonov, Dave Finkelstein, Joel Lebowitz, Elliott Lieb. Freeman Dyson was on the faculty for a while. I was there for ten years. Wonderful mathematicians—Leon Ehrenpreis. And they were not all Jewish. Al Cameron, the great astrophysicist. James Truran, another astrophysicist. They were definitely not all Jewish. There was no religiosity there. In fact, most of the graduate students were not religious. A good fraction of them—most of the graduate students I interacted with were South American, and only a few of them were Jewish, Most not Jewish. I think there was a certain idealistic view to physics—the Aharonov view, the David Finkelstein view, the Joel Lebowitz way of approaching physics—a certain idealism about physics. I don’t mean political idealism. I mean—what should we call it? Love of Einstein, for a better word, although it wasn’t restricted to Einstein. And that may well have had to do with the origins of the Belfer Graduate School— from Rabbi Belkin. Rabbi Belkin was the president of the university at that time. Marvelous man. And he was the one who had the vision to create a graduate school of science. And I think maybe that sort of rabbinical tendency, whatever the right word is, may very well have influenced who the early faculty were. It was not a religious faculty, but it was idealistic in a certain way—depth of understanding is what counted. Is that a Jewish thing? I don’t know. Maybe—I don’t know.

توی این گفت‌و گو در مورد دین و دیندار بودن هم بحث‌هایی میشه. این‌که آیا فیزیک می‌تونه به سوال‌هایی مثل وجود خالق و دخالت اون درعالم مادی حرفی بزنه یا نه. عموما جواب ساسکایند اینه که من نمی‌دونم! در پاسخ به این که آیا فیزیکدون‌ها جایگاه خاصی دارن در مورد حرف زدن در مورد وجود خدا، ساسکایند میگه:

[laugh] Oh, boy. Wow. Yeah, I don’t think he does have any privileged position. Yeah. He, she. I think I would subscribe to that view. That doesn’t mean I don’t have my own view about it. … I don’t think any scientist can answer the question of whether there was an intelligence that was at the root of the creation of the universe. That would also be getting ahead of ourselves. But still, scientists do understand the thing that we have to understand. They know what the questions are. I know when I think about the question of creation, I’m very influenced by my own scientific background. If somebody says to me, “Is there a god?” I say, “Well, I don’t really know, but you know, I’m very puzzled. If there was a god, and god did create the universe, is god susceptible to the same rules as ordinary matter? Does god satisfy the laws of quantum mechanics? Is he made out of particles?” And so forth. That’s the way my head works. I can’t help thinking that way.

 I’m not an observant Jew. I didn’t have that background at all. I do not dismiss the possibility that there was –let’s call it an intelligence—that was involved in the creation of the laws of physics and the universe and all that. I do not dismiss that. But then I get myself into a logical paradox. Who created it? I don’t think this is the right way to think about it, but it’s the only way that I have available to me to think about it. So my own mental makeup is to be curious. I am a very curious person. I would like to know how the uni…and I would especially like to know, was there an intelligence? But I don’t see a way of getting at the answer.

ساسکایند به این هم اشاره می‌کنه که وقتی در مورد وجود خدا حرف می‌زنیم منظورمون وجود یک خالقه که جهان رو ایجاد کرده و دیگه هم باهاش کاری نداشته. ما با این تعریف بسیار ابتدایی (در مقایسه با تعریف و ویژگی خدا در ادیان مختلف) هم چندان حرفی برای زدن نداریم به عنوان فیزیکدان. چه برسه به اینکه بخوایم خدا رو نه تنها خالق که «موثر» در دنیای کنونی هم بدونیم:

 I once had this conversation with a Vatican advisor, a Jesuit. We agreed about absolutely everything, and in particular I asked him, “When you speak of god, do you speak of god the creator, or of god the intervener?” And he said, “I only mean god the creator.” And I had to admit, then, that I had no particular reason to believe that there was no god the creator. But then we started talking about god the intervener. And once god can intervene with the world and affect the world, then if we believe in science, we have to give it a set of rules, and those rules have to conform to what—well, they both have to conform to what the reality is, and they have to conform to what we call science. So does god have to satisfy a set of physical rules? Not if he doesn’t intervene. If all he did was create—OK, he created. But if he’s also allowed to poke his finger into it and change things and stir them up, then we have to have rules for that. If there are no rules for it, it means the world has just an element of random, incomprehensible randomness. And even randomness is a rule. Even randomness is a rule. 

نظریه ریسمان

در ادامه سراغ کشف نظریه ریسمان و نقش ساسکایند در توسعه این نظریه رفته میشه.

It was an interesting feeling for me when I discovered it. It all happened all at once. I suddenly realized, very suddenly, that it was a string, a harmonic oscillating string, and I thought I was the only one in the world who knew this. It’s a very exhilarating feeling to think all of a sudden I am the only one in the world who knows this. Later, I found myself a little bit disappointed that Nambu also knew it at the same time. But the compensating good side was Nambu was a very great physicist, and here I was, doing something that was the same as what Nambu was doing. So that was the origin of it.

یه نکته جالب هم اینه که از ساسکایند پرسیده میشه در حال حاضر نظرت در مورد نظریه ریسمان چیه؟ و اون میگه چیزی که فعلا هست واقعا دنیای بیرونی رو توصیف نمی‌کنه:

So if I were to make a very precise statement, I would say the real world is not governed by string theory. Could the real world be covered by something a little bit broader, an expansion of it, a pushing of its boundaries in directions that it hasn’t been fully defined? I think that’s very, very possible. In fact, I think it’s probably more than possible. My guess is the answer is yes. That would be my guess. But we do not have that version or that expansion of string theory at this point. So I would say at the present time, the answer is strictly speaking, no, but with some expansion, some generalization of the ideas, maybe, and in my view, probably yes.

حرف‌هایی که در روند توسعه نظریه‌های بنیادی فیزیک می‌زنه ساسکایند جالبه. مثلا وقتی به گرانش می‌رسه میگه که اون موقع‌ها:

At that time, the subject of gravity was not considered a reasonable subject for grown-up physicists. … John Wheeler was excited about gravity from the get-go. But—OK, so Feynman said that he thought that an understanding of gravity, any new understanding of gravity, is 500 years in the future. So it was too esoteric. It was too far in the future. It was too outside the framework of what could be ever experimentally measured—the quantum mechanics of gravity. I wouldn’t call LIGO having—LIGO’s great; don’t get me wrong, but I don’t think it has directly impacted the quantum mechanics of gravity. Feynman thought it was just too far away and there was plenty of other stuff to do. There was particles to figure out. And so grown-ups who were distinguished by their practicality, by their recognition of what real-world physics could possibly do—they kept away from gravity. Not everybody. Steve Weinberg was interested in gravity. I think what really made a difference—[laugh] it may be that the bogging down of particle physics—particle physics is bogged down. It hasn’t changed significantly since, I don’t know, 1980. Yeah, no, it’s really bogged down. Restless minds had to go somewhere. And I can tell you—the best of the theoretical physics community are very restless. They’re not called high-energy physicists for nothing. They are a very high-energy group of people. And they are restless. So where do they go? String theory gave an opening. It gave an opening to think about. They were restless. Particle physics bogged down and there only was one thing left. How did it all fit together with gravity?

ترویج علم

در ادامه سراغ ترویج علم و کلاس‌های ساسکایند برای آموزش فیزیک می‌رن. این که چی شد که ساسکایند تصمیم گرفت که سعی کنه به مردم فیزیک یاد بده. این حس معلمی از کجا میاد!؟ انگیزه پشتش چیه و این که آیا به نظرش صحبت کردن در مورد مسائل علمی برای مردم اصلا نیازه یا نه.

My father and his friends were all plumbers. They were all intellectuals, although most of them had not gone past the fifth grade. They were all intellectuals, and I think a large part of my formative intellectual years was sitting at the kitchen table with him and his friends. I ultimately started to call it the University of the Kitchen Table, talking about all sorts of stuff. Science, among other things. Politics. History. And they were a little bit crackpotty. These were all people who were entirely self-educated. And the reason they were a little—particularly about science, they were a little bit crackpotty— I think the reason was because they had no way, no access to be able to find out what was real mainstream ideas and what was sort of off the wall.

When I got a little older, and already I knew some science, I would try to educate them. And they would listen to me. I think that was a part of it. I spent time trying to explain things to them. At some point, I got interested in doing that for a broader public at Stanford. Of course the public there was educated, but they had the same problem. They would come to me and ask me about something they read the newspaper, this or that particular new thing about physics. “Is it real or is it fake?” And I tried to figure out ways of—an algorithm for them to be able to tell whether something was mainstream or whether it was kooky. No algorithm I could think of ever worked. I thought of a number of algorithms. They all failed. And so I decided the only way to do this is to simply give people the tools to be able to decide for themselves. I’m not sure that works either. I don’t think it does.

این قسمت از حرف‌هایی هم که می‌زنه قابل تامله! این که آقا من خودم حال می‌کنم وقتی به مردم یه چیزیو یاد می‌دم! فاینمنم همین جوری بود، خوشش می‌اومد به بقیه نشون بده چقدر باهوشه و می‌فهمه:

And I began to enjoy it. Look, I’ve always enjoyed explaining things. I have a little bit of a Feynman in me. And what I’m talking about now is a love of being able to show people how smart you are. One way of showing people how smart you are is to show people how simple things are. What you’re telling them is, “These things are really simple. At least if you’re as smart as me, they’re simple.” And so I do get a kick out of explaining hard, complicated, sophisticated, supposedly sophisticated things in very simple terms. A little bit of it is this ego thing that Feynman had a lot of, also. He got a great deal of joy out of showing how simple things were, if you thought about them the right way. And the right way meant to think of them as Feynman would have thought about them. I didn’t get that from Feynman. I’ve always been like that. But even when I was a kid, I loved to be able to explain something in some way that showed how smart you were. So I think there’s a bit of that, too.

حرفای خیلی جالبی در ادامه ساسکایند می‌زنه! این که علم و اعتماد مردم به علم و دانشگاهی‌ها چه جوری ممکنه از بین بره و چه عواقبی می‌تونه داشته باشه. این که چه‌طور بعضی‌ها در مسیر ترویج علم کار رو خراب می‌کنن! این‌که چه طور شخصیت‌های حقوقی یا حقیقی معروف می‌تونن خیلی باورهای مردم رو آلوده کنن و مرتکب به تجاوز معرفتی بشن.

Look, my science is—I don’t think it’s at risk here, and I don’t think—it’s too small and it’s too special and it’s too esoteric for anybody to care very much. Well, there’s a public out there that enjoys it and wants to hear about it. One of the things I worry about a lot is what has happened—I think it’s because of the internet, because of the blogosphere—what has happened to communication to the public of science, in particular my kind of science. It has gotten sensationalized. It has gotten really silly, sometimes.

به طور خاص به مجله ساینتیفیک امریکن اشاره می‌کنه. میگه یه زمانی خب مردم اینو می‌خوندن و خب خوب بود ولی الان دیگه ساینتیفیک امریکن علمی نیست و این خیلی بده! چون مردم بهش اعتماد دارن:

Every day in my news input that comes to me, there’s another revolution in science, another revolution in physics, another screwball revolution in physics. So I kind of worry that there has been a degrading, a very bad degrading of—in the old days, Scientific American was pretty good. You got pretty much the real stuff that came from the people who were doing the real stuff. Now, it’s not Scientific American which is so bad. It’s not what it was. But there’s just too much out there which in order for it to survive in the world, it has to produce a scientific revolution once a week. Well, there isn’t a scientific revolution once a week.

خلاصه ساسکایند به این نتیجه میرسه شاید بهترین راه اینه که به مردم درست فیزیک رو یاد بدی. شاید خودشون عقلشون رسید و سره رو از ناسره تشخیص دادن. اما گویا این هم جواب نداده:

And so I’m a little bit unhappy about the degradation of the communication of science to the public. And that happened a while ago. That happened a long time ago. It was part of my reason for trying to get into the public physics education. But my main approach to it was just to teach physics. It was not to give people any kind of ideology about it. It was just to teach physics in order to give people the tools to be able to come to their own conclusions. It never worked, incidentally. It never worked. I’ll give you some examples. People would come to me with news articles. I’m talking about my students in my continuing studies classes. They would come to me with news articles. What did I think of this? What did I think of that? Sometimes they were good. Sometimes they weren’t good.

از همه بدتر اینکه، هر چه بگندد نمکش می‌زنند، وای به روزی که بگندد نمک! ساسکایند می‌گه یه زمانی بعضی از منابع و افراد واقعا قابل اعتماد بودن ولی چی میشه گفت که از اسم و رسم این‌ها هم سواستفاده زیاد میشه:

But I tried to find an algorithm for them. How do you decide if something is mainstream? How do you decide if something is reliable? I had various suggestion—I told them, “Look, there are some institutions which are better than other institutions. If it comes out of the Institute for Advanced Study, it’s probably pretty good. If it comes from a Nobel Prize winner, it’s probably pretty good.” All of this backfired. All of this backfired. Somebody came to me with—I won’t name the crackpot Nobel Prize winner. He’s British. And said, “Oh, is this thing about ESP reliable? It comes from a Nobel Prize winner.” That failed. As far as the IAS went, the Institute for Advanced Study, another student came to me and he said, “Look at this.” And it was about how you can tap the vacuum energy. Well, you can’t tap the vacuum energy. It’s silly. And I looked at it, and I saw it—it was from some guy whose name is Hal Puthoff. Hal Puthoff was a nutcase. He, together with Russell Targ, did ESP research, remote viewing, which was really, really silly. He’s a crackpot and a charlatan. But I see that it says that he is the director for the Institute for Advanced Study. Well, I knew he wasn’t at the Institute. I knew the director of the Institute for Advanced Study. He was a friend of mine. And then I looked more carefully—oh, the Institute for Advanced Study in Austin, Texas. Which turns out to be a one-room operation in some. … So everything I tried, every rule of thumb I gave them to try to give them some rules for how to tell, didn’t work. There was no rule of thumb. My conclusion in the end is all you can do is try to teach them physics.

همین طور ساسکایند اشاره می‌کنه گاهی وقتا بعضی از دانشمندها به دلیل اینکه خودشون یا حرفشون رو تبلیغ کنند سراغ ترویج علم و نوشتن کتاب برای مردم میان و این خوب نیست!

That Lee Smolin was using the public mistrust of science to promote himself. It again had to do with this public mistrust of science. Which I had been starting to feel worried about, and it was partly the origins of my continuing studies efforts. So I saw him just undermining all of the trust that should have been placed in the mainstream scientists. It’s not always the case that the mainstream is right, but in this case—and I don’t even know if the mainstream was right in this case, but I do know that what he was selling was snake oil.

همین طور در جواب اینکه چرا اکثر دانشمندها نمیان با مردم حرف بزنن، وقتشو ندارن یا چی، ساسکایند میگه:

I think it would be good if more scientists would take up the challenge of communicating with the public. My colleagues in my own field don’t do it. They’re too busy doing physics. … I think they probably don’t feel as comfortable about communicating as I do. But when they do it, they do it well.

سیاست‌های امریکا و علم

در ادامه، گفت‌وگوها سمت و سوی سیاسی پیدا می‌کنه، چون به طور بی‌سابقه‌ای یک‌بار ساسکایند ویدیویی توی سایتش گذاشته و گفته که این ترامپ منو نگران می‌کنه:

I was beginning to think that I have to say something for my own self-respect, and I wanted to say something publicly to—I was thinking about my children. What do you say to your children afterwards? After this happened. Did I say anything? So I think that was part of it. Somebody has to say something! Somebody has to say something! Somebody has to not walk on eggs, and say something! I felt everybody was walking on eggs. Everybody was—and somebody had to get up and say something! And I feel that way right now! I feel that way right now.

 And this is me speaking through—I don’t know whether it’s through my heart or through my gut or some other part of my body. But I’m not going to walk on eggs. I’m going to tell you what I really think.

 The country has been infected by a terrible virus, and I don’t mean the coronavirus. I mean the virus of hate, resentment, anger, bigotry, and ignorance. It’s the same virus that infected Germany in the 1930s. Right now, the United States is being tested. Tested in the same way Germany was tested in the 1930s. Germany failed the test. Will we? I don’t know. It took World War II, 40 million dead, six millions Jews, maybe 20 million Russians, five million Germans, British, Japanese Americans, before the Nazi virus was purged. Will the purge of Trumpism, formerly known as the GOP, be purged, and who will be there to pick up the pieces? In my 2017 lecture “What Worries Me Most” I expressed the fear that American institutions, in particular the security apparatus, was being taken over by Trumpian loyalists. I focused on Bannon, who as it turned out was dumped, but the lesson was broader. Today, we see the cabinet, the secretary of state, the secretary of defense, the national security advisor, the secretary of the treasury, especially the attorney general, and the entire Republican caucus of the Senate and House being crackpots and Trump loyalists. Not American loyalists but Trump loyalists. Maybe I overrated the Bannon danger, but the real thing I was worried about was Trumpification, and that has happened. And what about the Republican electorate? What has happened to it, that allows it to cheer on a man who has had a monstrous history of racial bigotry, discriminating against Black renters in his real estate days, wanting to execute five young Black men after they had been fully exonerated, and citing the vicious racist birther conspiracy. A man with a history of most outrageous misogyny. A record of promoting violence. You know, lock ‘er up. Second Amendment people. Admiration for a Republican congressman who had body-slammed a journalist. Associating with this deformed troll, Mr. Gorka, who has called for the execution of Hillary Clinton. A man who lies with every breath. In other words, a psychopath of extraordinary virulence.

And now we see another side of Trump—the incompetence of a very ignorant man who thinks he’s a genius. He knows more than all his generals. He is such a medical genius that all the doctors cannot believe how much he knows. A veritable prodigy with great suggestions like experimenting with Clorox injections. His own Dr. Mengele. From his own mouth—this is from his own mouth—I know more about ISIS than the generals do. I know more about courts than any human being on earth. I know more about renewables than any human being on earth. Nobody in the history of this country has ever known so much about infrastructure as Donald Trump. I think I know about it better than the Federal Reserve. About drone technology. I think nobody knows more about technology, this kind of technology, certainly, than I do. And along with Hitler, I alone can fix it. What has happened to half the voters? It happened in Germany and now in America. A cult of personality, which, like Hitler’s and Jim Jones’ cults, may very well follow their psychopathic leader to destruction. Am I exaggerating? God, I hope so. Red America, or at least enough of it, may come to its senses. Democratic president and congressmen may be narrowly elected. Congress, but in particular the Senate. COVID-19 will end. Some degree of normalcy may be restored in the United States, but I fear it will be a diminished America which will no longer be seen as a trustworthy leader of the free world. The diminishment of the United States will mean a diminishment of democracy. Europe is not strong enough and united enough to pick up the pieces and replace American leadership. That is what I worry about the most, and it’s worse than I thought in 2017.

جوانان و آینده فیزیک نظری

در آخر گفت‌وگو ساسکایند اسم تعداد زیادی جوون رو می‌بره و می‌گه که خیلی امیدواره به این افراد و آینده فیزیک:

And one of the things that has happened incidentally—maybe 15 years ago, I was very worried by the fact that the people who were dominating physics, including myself, were the same people who had dominated it 30 years ago and 40 years ago. Ed Witten. Juan Maldacena was already getting to be pretty mature. And it did not look like there was a new—I couldn’t see a new generation of young physicists coming and replacing them. Over the last few years, five years, something like that, there has been a whole new generation who have come and largely left the older people in the dust. And that’s exciting. That’s really exciting.

مثلا به أحمد المهیری اشاره می‌کنه. احمد سال گذشته جزو برنده‌های جایزه پیشگامان علم در فیزیک بنیادی بود.

Ahmed Almheiri at the Institute for Advanced Study. All these people are very young. And we’re beginning to see the old pattern of very young people generating the cleverest, most brilliant ideas. And that I find very reassuring. I was very worried about it. I like being in the middle of things, but I don’t want the subject to die when the current generation of senior leaders dies out. So it’s dependent on young blood, and for a long time, I was concerned. That has turned over. That was something that did happen.

ساسکایند در مورد پیشرفت‌های قابل توجه و اسم و رسم پیدا کردن توی علم میگه: موجی از فرصت‌ها وقتی به ادم‌های درست برسه، کارهای خوبی انجام میشه.

OK, opportunity comes in waves. People flourish when there’s opportunities. There were incidentally during this period lots and lots of very, very bright young people. Very smart people. But you need two things. You need very, very smart people and you need opportunity. Opportunity comes in waves. It seems very much to me like at a certain period, enough was known to create a new opportunity for a new way of thinking, and those young people who were there simply took advantage of it. So I think it was a combination of lots of smart people who have always been there, and all of a sudden, an opportunity arising, or at least things reached a certain degree of maturity where there was a big opportunity to make some big advances. And they did.

Image of a woman being carried through the air by swans.

أحمد المهیری یکی از جوان‌های صاحب نام در فیزیک نظری است، او عربی مسلمان و اهل امارات است.

احمد به خاطر محاسبه اطلاعات کوانتومی سیاه‌چاله‌ها به همراه دو نفر دیگر برنده جایزه پیشگامان شده.

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