Mysterious numbers: unlocking the secrets of the Universe – with Tony Padilla

Join leading theoretical physicist and YouTube star Tony Padilla as he explores the most extraordinary numbers in physics, and how they explain fundamental truths of the universe.
Watch the Q&A here:

Tony’s book “Fantastic Numbers and Where to Find Them: A Cosmic Question from Zero to Infinity” is available to purchase now:
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Can numbers explain black holes, the holographic truth and the problem of the cosmological constant?

In this talk, you’ll discover how unusually big, small and worryingly infinite numbers are the key to unlocking these mind-bending phenomena.

This talk was filmed at the Ri on 13 July 2022.

0:00 Introduction
4:21 A googol
10:46 Visualising a googolplex
13:07 How big is Graham’s number?
23:26 Understanding entropy
29:33 How do you measure entropy?
37:15 How much information is there in a number?
41:00 We are all trapped in a hologram
43:39 The holographic truth
52:13 Unexpected physics from little numbers
57:04 The cosmological constant problem

Tony Padilla is a Professor of Physics at the University of Nottingham and has previously held positions at the University of Oxford and the University of Barcelona. He has published over 60 academic papers in leading academic journals and in 2016, he shared the Buchalter Cosmology Prize for his work on the cosmological constant problem. He has held a University Research Fellowship from the Royal Society and his research is currently supported by the Leverhulme Trust and the Science and Technology Facilities Council.

Outside of academia, Tony is best known as a regular presenter on two successful YouTube channels: Sixty Symbols and Numberphile, where his most popular videos include a discussion of Ramanujan’s sum of all positive integers which has been viewed more than 8 million times. He is an avid football fan and can often be found watching Liverpool Football Club from his regular seat on the Kop. […]

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