ESP Biography

NICHOLAS DIBELLA, multiversal transhumanistic philosopher-physicist

Major: Physics, Philosophy

College/Employer: MIT

Year of Graduation: Not available.

Picture of Nicholas DiBella

Brief Biographical Sketch:

The following brief biography was written by DiBella over four years ago and was slightly edited by him over four minutes ago. It is therefore an entirely inaccurate representation of him.

Nicholas DiBella (1988 -- ), born almost seventeen years ago at the age of eleven, has for the past three decades been a source of inspiration to all aspiring axiomatic-theoretic-bassoonical physicists. Spending the first seven years of his life on Long Island, New York, he had, by the age of three, already developed an unhealthily strong affinity for numbers –- especially those with no prime factors. Indeed, as the popular legend goes, he proposed marriage to the number 2 when he was, ironically, 2 years old. Unfortunately for the courageous DiBella, 2 would not accept the offer. Even worse, she provided no reason as to why not but instead left him, to move onto bigger and better things. (As is well known, 2 would later turn out a hugely successful star in the Prime World, becoming the first -- and, still, to this day -- only even prime number.)

The next year, on his fifth birthday, DiBella received his very first portable personal electronic calculating device, or portable personal electronic calculator, for short. The device was capable of multiplying many-digit numbers together at an extraordinary speed. While this pleased DiBella, it also challenged him. "If only I could multiply that fast...," DiBella often thought. Alas, simply wishing would not lead him anywhere. As a sorry side-effect, DiBella came to the belief that he was “arithmetically inadequate.” Many were the nights, his mother would later recall, during which the young DiBella would cry over his inability to multiply five-digit numbers by five-digit numbers quickly. [Ed.: DiBella still cries quite often, although in modern times this is done mostly for recreational purposes.]

Now in the third grade, DiBella was as driven a mind as ever. During that fateful year, not only did he grow an extra 23 inches in height (averaging out to an impressive 24 millimeters per day), but he undertook several momentous endeavors -- endeavors which only giants would dare attempt. “Giant, Schmiant,” the fearless DiBella declared in Swedish, one of the 14 languages which he derived from Latin solely with pencil and paper. During winter vacation, for instance, while other children were out caroling about children who were much happier than they were, DiBella completed his collection of “Times Tables” -- a creation containing every paired multiplication of integers from 1 to 450. Reflecting on his prodigious masterpiece, the Mathematical Association of America has proclaimed it “perhaps the single greatest waste of paper in the history of mathematical constructions.” It was precisely this type of praise that led to DiBella’s entrance to the Guinness Book of Records under the title “Youngest Person to Achieve Cosmic-Scale Patheticity.”

Moving forward, one finds the Modern DiBella, which is to be distinguished from the Classical DiBella and the Neoclassical DiBella (DiBella 1846, Einstein 1905, & DiBella 2073). The Modern DiBella is unique in that it successfully applies relativistic quantum theory to gravitational theory, in purely song form –- similar to the Heads-Shoulders-Knees-and-Toes discovery that occurred in the early 20th century. Although the DiBellian breakthrough does not occur until April, 2026, it has not gone unnoticed among the scientific community, as has been evinced most recently by the MIT time travelers’ dance party last Saturday. The countdown begins now.

What can the world expect from DiBella in the years to come, aside from the revolution of 2027, the counter-revolution of 2028, and the counter-squared-revolution of 2029? Forgetting that the previous question was asked, it is impossible to insert a meaningful sentence into this space.

Past Classes

  (Clicking a class title will bring you to the course's section of the corresponding course catalog)

S1662: Everything in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
Reality may be far richer than you've ever imagined. Our "universe" could very well be one of infinitely many, where not only physical conditions differ from our own, but also where physical “constants” and spacetime dimensionalities differ. But why stop there? It might even be that there exist universes that obey entirely different laws of physics. In fact, it has been proposed that for every mathematical structure, there exists a physically real universe, forming an ensemble of universes known as the Level IV Multiverse --- thus, all logically possible worlds exist. This is Everything.

S1663: Nothing in Splash! 2008 (Nov. 22 - 23, 2008)
What is nothing? Is it simply empty space? Is it the vacuum? Is it the empty set? Well, if it were something, it wouldn't be nothing! In this class, I'll discuss these various ``nothings," and I hope to convince you that nothing is interesting!

S1445: The Big Questions in HSSP Summer 2008 (Jun. 29, 2008)
Why is there something rather than nothing? Was there a beginning of time? Will there be an end? Is time travel possible? Are there extra dimensions of space and time? Is the Universe deterministic? Is the Universe infinite? Are there parallel universes? Do aliens exist? Is immortality possible? Is a "theory of everything," in principle, possible? Is the Universe as we know it merely a computer simulation? What is reality, anyway? Obviously, we won't be able to definitively answer all of the above questions in eight weeks (maybe not even in eight lifetimes...). But I want to show you that, with recent advances in physics (as well as philosophy), we've finally been able to make some headway in these questions that have stumped our ancestors for thousands of years. There are no formal prerequisites for this class. However, students should exist in actuality and be located inside a universe, preferably this one.

S1147: Selected Topics in Advanced Physics in Spark! Spring 2008 (Mar. 08, 2008)
This course covers a wide variety of topics in physics beyond elementary mechanics and electrodynamics with the common theme that all results are rigorously derived from first principles, and mathematical formalism is never omitted. Students are advised to take the prerequisites seriously. The precise content of the class is flexible, and can be influenced by students who take it. Planned topics include quantum mechanics, statistical physics, and astrophysics. For Spark, the first class will cover special relativity: starting from the the postulates of special relativity, we derive the Lorentz transformations, introduce four-vectors, and discuss the geometry of space-time. Many consequences are discussed: time dilation, length contraction, relativistic dynamics, etc. Space-time diagrams and paradoxes are also covered.

M1227: Pascal's Wager -- Betting on God in Spark! Spring 2008 (Mar. 08, 2008)
Does God exist? The question is certainly of immense metaphysical importance, but should it affect our daily lives? Well, let's find out. Suppose the probability of God's existence is nonzero. (Note: Even if you believe this probability is 0.000000001%, it's still nonzero.) Now, what is the reward for believing in God, if God exists? Many religions would say the reward is, in fact, infinite (through eternal life)! However, the reward for not believing in God, if God exists, is certainly less than infinite. (In fact, many would say that not believing would result in infinite *punishment*.) On the other hand, if God doesn't exist, and you believe in him, the rewards are certainly finite (supposing you die eventually). Similarly, if God doesn't exist, and you don't believe in him, the rewards are also finite. So, what should you do? Well, the *expected* reward for believing in God is apparently infinite, and the expected reward for not believing in God is apparently finite (or negatively infinite). Thus, clearly you should bet on God! If you found that argument airtight, you shouldn't attend this class. (However, if you found it airtight, but are now suspicious of its airtight-ness as a result of reading the previous sentence, then by all means attend!) In this class, I'll go over the argument -- known as Pascal's Wager -- in detail and discuss many criticisms and generalizations of it, as well as the wide range of applications its "decision-theoretic" reasoning has to daily life.

A Conceptual Introduction to Quantum Field Theory in SPARK (2009)
Quantum field theory (QFT) is one of the two most successful physical theories ever proposed (the other being general relativity). ...

Crazy Questions in SPLASHONWHEELS (2008)
Is time travel possible? Was there a beginning of time? Will there be an end? Are there extra dimensions of ...

Excitatory Topics in Physics in HSSP (2007)
What sorts of things get physicists (or wannabe physicists, like the teacher of this class) excited? Is it the dream ...

Everything in SPLASH (2007)
Reality may be far richer than you've ever imagined. Our universe could be one of infinitely many others, where not ...