Sheppeard’s latest paper is very ambitious. It is a paper of many firsts. It is the first paper anyone has written that mentions Alejandro Rivero’s “new Koide tuple”, discovered in November 2011. It is the first paper which addresses and tries to explain Louise Riofrio’s observation that the dark energy fraction of the energy density of the universe is about three times the dark matter fraction. It appears to be the first paper extending Sundance Bilson-Thompson’s braid scheme for the standard model to the dark sector.

The paper undoubtedly looks strange by ordinary standards. There is no hint of a dynamical framework. Mathematically, it only contains simple algebraic formulas. There are leaps of logic and many peculiar statements. Combined with the general unfamiliarity of Koide tuples, Riofrio cosmology, and even Bilson-Thompson braids (which, despite having been the subject of a *New Scientist* cover story, are a fringe topic within theoretical physics), I think that most physicists, even if they somehow found themselves reading the paper, would quickly give up and put it aside.

I’ve had a few weeks to think about it, and for me, the jury is still out. The basic empirical facts – the various Koide relations, now extending to all the standard model fermions; Riofrio’s observations – are certainly worth thinking about. There is a 3:1 ratio appearing in both domains (Koide relations, dark sector fractions), and it is not beyond imagining that in both cases it is a manifestation of the 3:1 ratio of colored quark states versus colorless lepton states. It is even conceivable that the specific algebraic relations that Sheppeard proposes (qutrit path counts, sums of 2π/27 phases) are part of the explanation. But it is also very conceivable that they are not.