Wolfram Physics

I have recently encountered the Wolfram Physics Project a few times, for example this podcast.

The basic idea, if I dare re-state it without any deep understanding, is that the universe is computation at the fundamental level and the laws of nature that we have figured out are emergent pockets of computational reducibility. In general though, the underlying rules are being executed a very large number of times in a computationallly irreducible way, without any shortcuts. Particles and such are patterns in the "grid", analogous to a glider in Conway's Game of Life.

I find this surprisingly non-crazy, especially if, as Wolfram and collaborators claim, much of physics naturally arises in that framework. But what do I know‽ Theoretical/fundamental physics is not exactly my strong suit, and as always it needs to be judged on whether or not it provides better explanations and predictions than competing theories.

If you enjoy getting your mind tickled by abstract questions like How fundamental are numbers?, there are worse places to go than the world of Stephen Wolfram.