Posted: Apr 27, 2010 8:43 pm
by lpetrich
I'll try.

What are those astonishingly accurate predictions?

There are three possibilities about string theory.
  1. It's not possible to get the Standard Model of particle physics out of it.
  2. It is possible to uniquely get the Standard Model out of it, to get it and no other possibility.
  3. It is possible to get the Standard Model out of it, but also oodles of other possibilities.
I've yet to see anyone come close to either (1) or (2) with string theory. One can get much of the Standard Model by a suitable choice of space-time topology, but it is far from unique, thus placing string theory in (3).

I think that string theory being in state (3) is what makes it seem unfalsifiable.

The Large Hadron Collider may eventually be able to help, by either discovering or ruling out some speculated-about physics beyond the Standard Model. This could supply additional constraints, making it possible to get closer to (1) or (2).