String theory is an active research framework in particle physics that attempts to reconcile quantum mechanics and general relativity. It is a contender for a theory of everything (TOE), a self-contained mathematical model that describes all fundamental forces and forms of matter. String theory posits that the elementary particles (i.e., electrons and quarks) within an atom are not 0-dimensional objects, but rather 1-dimensional oscillating lines ('strings'). The earliest string model, the bosonic string, incorporated only bosons, although this view developed to the superstring theory, which posits that a connection (a 'supersymmetry') exists between bosons and fermions. String theories also require the existence of several extra dimensions to the universe that have been compactified into extremely small scales, in addition to the four known spacetime dimensions. The theory has its origins in an effort to understand the strong force, the dual resonance model (1969).
Contributions by Kurochka, Anville, and Steuard.