I’m sure we are all touched by your solicitude.TimeSeeker wrote: ↑Sat Sep 29, 2018 9:47 amOK, I've read your requirements below, but I want to tackle this anyway for benefit of you and sundry.

Right. In philosophy of science this is a problem associated with the theory dependence of observation. In Kuhn's 'normal science' everyone is working to find the evidence that their paradigm predicts. Everyone knows that there are different research groups, to use Lakatos' term, that are looking for different things in the same data, but no one knows of any objective criteria that will create an algorithm that will find 'the Truth', which we wouldn't even know if we saw it. Underdetermination again.TimeSeeker wrote: ↑Sat Sep 29, 2018 9:47 amYou need to have some conception of its properties so that you can recognise when you have found it and stop looking. That it what it means tohalt. To complete the task.

If you find a ToE, there will be no way of knowing that it will account for all future observations; at best it will be a theory of everything you have seen so far-which may well roll on and on, but could stop at any time. There is also no reason to assume that the puzzles that are troubling Loop Quantum Gravity, String Theory or any of the other hypotheses, won't be solved and that we end up with several empirically adequate ToEs.TimeSeeker wrote: ↑Sat Sep 29, 2018 9:47 amYou will either find a ToE or you will not. The only way to get an answer is for A to actually find a ToE or to continue looking for one until it finds it.

No. Someone who is convinced they have the answer pretty much defines a crank. What I have done in the book is to illustrate some of the basic ideas that make up contemporary physics by showing the philosophical models, rather than explain the mathematical models that underpin them. I had to choose which particular models to illustrate, because there are all sorts of theories for every single phenomenon. So I went for the big bang, special and general relativity and an amalgamation of various quantum field theories. All fairly mainstream and all much easier to understand in pictures than equations. Part of the inspiration was the really tricky mathematics of fluid dynamics, the results of which can be observed by the simple expedient of turning on a tap. Likewise the sums in Quantum Mechanics are fiddly, but seeing what they describe is actually simple.TimeSeeker wrote: ↑Sat Sep 29, 2018 9:47 amDo you have any ideosyncratic-but-subjectively-meaningful criteria (even if you can't put them in words) that will tell you to halt?

That's one way of looking at it. I’m just not so mad as to think I know better than everyone else.TimeSeeker wrote: ↑Sat Sep 29, 2018 9:47 amBecause if you ARE stuck in an infinite loop then you are busy solving the wrong problem.

The first problem to solve is to answer: What are you really looking for? And introspect!

Or you can recognise both - that you don't know what you are looking for, but you don't really want to figure it out just yet. In which case - you are here for the journey. Cool!

You might not like it, but you really should try it out. http://willijbouwman.blogspot.com