How did the universe come into being? Was there much of a bang to the Big Bang? Is there a parallel universe out there where I like tiramisu? We answer at least two of the three questions listed above. I won't tell you which two, however. You're just going to have to watch. We're very fortunate this week to have as our guest Dr. Will Kinney from the University at Buffalo. We spend the majority of the episode discussing Dr. Kinney's new book: An Infinity of Worlds: Cosmic Inflation and the Beginning of the Universe. I highly recommend the book because it does not coddle the reader; it is challenging. I appreciate that. We talk about cosmic inflation; the soundtrack of the universe; multiverses; and the importance of alcohol at conferences when pitching difficult ideas to peers. It's a great episode. If you enjoy the conversation, hit that subscribe button, and leave a kind comment for me or Dr. Kinney. Most of all, thank you for taking the time to listen. I appreciate it.
// EPISODE LINKS //
Dr. Kinney's book (affiliate): https://amzn.to/39kXkue
Dr. Kinney's faculty page: https://arts-sciences.buffalo.edu/physics/faculty/william-h-kinney.html
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// EPISODE OUTLINE //
00:00 Teaser question
01:48 Beginning of conversation
02:40 What led you to the field of cosmology?
04:13 What is the cosmological principle and why is it profound?
07:43 Just how big of a leap was it to remove the sun as a privileged position?
11:10 The Big Bang common misconception
14:07 What is dark matter and how does it differ from dark energy?
17:03 I experience an absence of thought as I ask about the various meanings of nothing?
18:46 I get to read a quotation from Moby-Dick. Hey, it was in Kinney's book so it's fair game.
20:24 How do you overcome the limitations of language in respect to the laws of science?
25:24 Did you make a conscious choice to not coddle the reader and challenge them instead?
29:52 How do we know what we know about the origins of the universe?
33:34 Baryon acoustic oscillations--or the universe's mixed tape.
43:16 What do you mean it's outside of what can be called science? That's horrifying.
47:27 How do you approach breaking down new concepts with your peers? (I should have known the answer. It's the same in every field.)
50:34What keeps you excited and invigorated about the field?5
52:40 I give a heartfelt (no sarcasm) thank you for an enjoyable book.
53:25 Where can people learn more about you and your work?
54:33 Closing thoughts
#bigbang #cosmology #universe #neutralgroundpodcast #willkinney
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