Since 2002 Perimeter Institute has been recording seminars, conference talks, and public outreach events using video cameras installed in our lecture theatres. Perimeter now has 7 formal presentation spaces for its many scientific conferences, seminars, workshops and educational outreach activities, all with advanced audio-visual technical capabilities. Recordings of events in these areas are all available On-Demand from this Video Library and on Perimeter Institute Recorded Seminar Archive (PIRSA). PIRSA is a permanent, free, searchable, and citable archive of recorded seminars from relevant bodies in physics. This resource has been partially modelled after Cornell University's arXiv.org.
We use the example of inflationary physics to discuss the possibility that short distance physics might be imprinted on long-distance observables. In particular, we focus on issues involving decoupling in field theory.
What if the second law of thermodynamics, in the hierarchy of physical laws, were at the same level as the fundamental laws of mechanics, such as the great conservation principles? What if entropy were an intrinsic property of matter at the same level as energy is universally understood to be? What if irreversibility were an intrinsic feature of the microscopic dynamical law of all physical objects, including an individual qubit or qudit?
If string theory is the correct theory which unifies gravity with the other forces of nature at a quantum level, it should determine the evolution of the earliest stages of the universe. I will discuss how stringy signatures of this early phase may be visible in current cosmological observations.
I will discuss possible tests of the grainularity of space including modified dispersion relations in the formation of white dwarfs and neutron stars and constraints on a stochastic direction field from atomic system tests.