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Title: Computational complexity of the landscape: Part I

Abstract

We study the computational complexity of the physical problem of finding vacua of string theory which agree with data, such as the cosmological constant, and show that such problems are typically NP hard. In particular, we prove that in the Bousso-Polchinski model, the problem is NP complete. We discuss the issues this raises and the possibility that, even if we were to find compelling evidence that some vacuum of string theory describes our universe, we might never be able to find that vacuum explicitly. In a companion paper, we apply this point of view to the question of how early cosmology might select a vacuum.

Authors:
 [1];  [2]
  1. NHETC and Department of Physics and Astronomy, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08855-0849 (United States). E-mail: frederik.denef@fys.kuleuven.be
  2. NHETC and Department of Physics and Astronomy, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08855-0849 (United States) and I.H.E.S., Le Bois-Marie, Bures-sur-Yvette, 91440 (France). E-mail: mrd@physics.rutgers.edu
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
20976757
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Annals of Physics (New York); Journal Volume: 322; Journal Issue: 5; Other Information: DOI: 10.1016/j.aop.2006.07.013; PII: S0003-4916(06)00138-2; Copyright (c) 2006 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam, The Netherlands, All rights reserved; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; COSMOLOGICAL CONSTANT; COSMOLOGICAL MODELS; COSMOLOGY; STRING THEORY; UNIVERSE

Citation Formats

Denef, Frederik, and Douglas, Michael R. Computational complexity of the landscape: Part I. United States: N. p., 2007. Web. doi:10.1016/j.aop.2006.07.013.
Denef, Frederik, & Douglas, Michael R. Computational complexity of the landscape: Part I. United States. doi:10.1016/j.aop.2006.07.013.
Denef, Frederik, and Douglas, Michael R. Tue . "Computational complexity of the landscape: Part I". United States. doi:10.1016/j.aop.2006.07.013.
@article{osti_20976757,
title = {Computational complexity of the landscape: Part I},
author = {Denef, Frederik and Douglas, Michael R.},
abstractNote = {We study the computational complexity of the physical problem of finding vacua of string theory which agree with data, such as the cosmological constant, and show that such problems are typically NP hard. In particular, we prove that in the Bousso-Polchinski model, the problem is NP complete. We discuss the issues this raises and the possibility that, even if we were to find compelling evidence that some vacuum of string theory describes our universe, we might never be able to find that vacuum explicitly. In a companion paper, we apply this point of view to the question of how early cosmology might select a vacuum.},
doi = {10.1016/j.aop.2006.07.013},
journal = {Annals of Physics (New York)},
number = 5,
volume = 322,
place = {United States},
year = {Tue May 15 00:00:00 EDT 2007},
month = {Tue May 15 00:00:00 EDT 2007}
}