Strings. Image credit: Johnny Settle (used under Creative Commons licence)

The Pointless Universe: the fascination of string theory

Michael Green, celebrated for his pioneering work in string theory, is Lucasian Professor of Mathematics in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at Cambridge University. Together with Professor John Schwarz of the California Institute of Technology, he was awarded the US $3 million 2014 Fundamental Physics Prize for "opening new perspectives on quantum gravity and the unification of forces". In the video interview below (originally published on the University of Cambridge web site), Michael Green talks about the history and major developments of string theory, his collaboration with John Schwarz, the boundaries between mathematics and physics, and the value of fundamental research, as well as reflecting on his own continuing fascination with the subject:

"The subject of string theory is a constant source of amazement", comments Green in the video. "Ever since it first emerged in the late 60s it has led us in strange directions that we couldn't conceive of; it's revealed depths of mathematical structure that we couldn't have anticipated. Certainly recent developments suggest that it's still leading us to places that we can't predict, and it's this excitement, really, which motivates me and my colleagues."





On Thursday 13 March 2014, 5pm - 6pm, Professor Michael Green will give the annual Andrew Chamblin Memorial Lecture on 'The Pointless Universe' as part of the Cambridge Science Festival. The talk will take place in Lady Mitchell Hall, Cambridge. The event is free, but admission is by ticket only - pre-book tickets via the Cambridge Science Festival website.

Read more about string theory on Plus in our articles String theory: From Newton to Einstein and beyond, Tying it all up and The ten dimensions of string theory.