Hi and welcome! I’m Matt Strassler, theoretical physicist and writer. My research over the past twenty years has mainly been related mainly to the Large Hadron Collider, though I’ve written many papers on a wide variety of topics in string theory, quantum field theory and particle physics. I have recently completed a new book, called “Waves in an Impossible Sea“, in which, without assuming readers know any science or math, I explain modern physics and its centrality in human experience.
I believe deeply that science is one of the world’s great spectator sports, and should be a source of joy and excitement for every human being, especially for kids and for kids at heart. This is particularly true of particle physics, which is at a watershed, with the Large Hadron Collider (or LHC) exploring all sorts of new territory and having discovered the long-sought Higgs particle! But particle physics can be especially hard for non-experts to follow… so I’m working to make it more accessible, even to those with no science background at all. My goal is to make the major challenges and discoveries and disappointments in the field understandable to everyone, and to reflect on the process of science and its roles in history and in modern society.
My website has many articles with background information about the particles and forces of nature, about the universe, and about experiments being done to understand them more deeply. Some of these articles are more technical than others; if you’re lost, start with some of the articles listed here. There’s also a blog where I post links to new articles as I complete them, discuss breaking news in particle physics and beyond, and announce public talks or other events at which I’ll be speaking. (I have some of my talks linked at my video clips page.) If you like, you can follow me on X-Twitter or Facebook.
More details about me: I went to college at Simon’s Rock (the first “early college.”) I got my undergraduate degree from Princeton and, after taking a year off to study music, went to Stanford to get my Ph. D. I worked as a postdoc at Rutgers University and a long-term member at the Institute for Advanced Study, and was a faculty member at the University of Pennsylvania (2000-2002) and the University of Washington (2002-2007), before becoming a full professor at Rutgers University. In 2007 I was elected as a member of the American Physical Society. In 2011 I went on leave from Rutgers to pursue other interests, including this website, and I decided to resign my position in 2013. After that I was a visiting scholar and visiting professor at Harvard until mid-2015, and since that time I have been an Associate of the Physics Department at Harvard, doing scientific research and science writing. I recently finished a book for non-experts about the nature of being in our very strange universe.