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World thinkers 2015: string theory showdown

Both sides of the battle over string theory have made it to our shortlist

By Philip Ball  

© Ojan

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When I met Edward Witten—one of two physicists on Prospect‘s world thinkers list—at CERN in Geneva some years ago he chatted genially enough in his rapid, precise and high-pitched sentences, and yet it was hard to shake off a sense that this was some omniscient demigod doing a reasonable impression of pretending to be an ordinary mortal. His high forehead even seems designed to hold more brain than…

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