|Steven Weinberg (1977), in a book depicting the universe originating from a point (above left), aka big bang, argued, ironically, to the chagrin of many, that, according to the second law, the universe is "pointless". |
In 1977, American physicist Steven Weinberg, in his The First Three Minutes, firstly, dismissed the infinite oscillating model of the universe with recourse to heat death theory, then discussed in upgraded particle physics language, at the end of which he famously or infamously, depending on one’s point of view, concluded that the universe seems pointless: 
“Some cosmologists are philosophically attracted to the oscillating model of the, especially because, like the steady-state model, it nicely avoids the problem of Genesis. It does, however, face one severe theoretical difficulty. In each cycle the ratio of photons to nuclear particles (or, more precisely, the entropy per nuclear particle) is slightly increased by a kind of friction (known as ‘bulk viscosity’) as the universe expands and contracts. As far as we know, the universe would then start each new cycle with a new, slightly larger ratio of photons to nuclear particles. Right now this ratio is large, but not infinite, so it is hard to see how the universe could have previously experienced an infinite number of cycles.
However all these problems may be resolved, and whichever cosmological model proves correct, there is not much of comfort in any of this. It is almost irresistible for humans to believe that we have some special relation to the universe, what human life is not just a more-or-less farcical outcome of a chain of accidents reaching back to the first three minutes, but that we were somehow built in from the beginning. As I write this I happen to be in an airplane at 30,000 feet, flying over Wyoming en route home from San Francisco to Boston. Below, the earth looks very soft and comfortable—fluffy clouds here and there, snow turning pink as the sun sets, roads stretching straight across the country from one town to another. It is very hard to realize that this all is just a tiny part of an overwhelming hostile universe. It is even harder to realize that this present universe has evolved from an unspeakably unfamiliar earlier condition, and faces a future extinction of endless cold or intolerable heat. The more the universe seems comprehensible, the more it also seems pointless.”
This last “the more the universe seems comprehensible, the more it also seems pointless” statement quickly became Weinberg’s trademark philosophical credo statement, particularly among atheism and or science and religion publications. This view, to note, is reminiscent of Aldous Huxley’s 1937 second law based “meaninglessness” atheism philosophy. 
In 1992, Weinberg, in his Dreams of a Final Theory, chapter: “What About God?”, continued to discuss the repercussions of this pointlessness quote as follows: 
“In my 1977 book, The First Three Minutes, I was rash enough to remark that ‘the more the universe seems comprehensible, the more it seems pointless’. I did not mean that science teaches us that the universe is pointless, but rather that the universe itself has no point. I hastened to add that there were ways that we ourselves could invent a point for our lives, including trying to understand the universe. But the damage was done: that phrase has dogged me ever since.Here again, Weinberg not only asserts that the universe that originates from a point (big bang) has no point, but also that in human existences there are no points, seems to assert that, according to modern science, “there is no point to life”, but that we can be secular scientists and “invent” points, e.g. trying to understand things.
Lightmann-Brawer | Poll
In circa 1990, Alan Lightman and Roberta Brawer polled twenty-seven cosmologists and physicists on Weinberg's pointlessness conjecture; Weinberg discusses this as follows:
“Recently Alan Lightman and Roberta Brawer published interviews with twenty-seven cosmologists and physicists, most of whom had been asked at the end of their interview what they thought of that remark. With various qualifications, ten of the interviewees agreed with men and thirteen did not, but of those thirteen three disagreed because they did not see why anyone would expect the universe to have a point.”
Some of the responses are as follows:
“Why should it have a point? What point? It’s just a physical system, what point is there? I’ve always been puzzled by that statement.”— Margaret Geller (c.1990), Harvard astronomer; cited by Weinberg (1992)
“I’m willing to believe that we are flotsam and jetsam.”— Jim Peebles (c.1990), Princeton astrophysicist; cited by Weinberg (1992)
“I don't believe the earth was created for people. It was a planet created by natural processes, and, as part of the further continuation of those natural processes, life and intelligent life appeared. In exactly the same way, I think the universe was created out of some natural process, and our appearance in it was a totally natural result of physical laws in our particular portion of it. Implicit in the question, I think, is that there's some motive power that has a purpose beyond human existence. I don't believe in that. So, I guess ultimately I agree with Weinberg that it's completely pointless from a human perspective.”— Sandra Faber (c.1990) of Lick Observatory; cited by Michio Kaku (2006) 
Weinberg (1992) went on to state that Princeton astrophysicist Edwin Turner agreed with him, that his University of Texas colleague, astronomer Gerard de Vaucouleurs thought the remark was “nostalgic”, and that he sees himself unique among physicists for carrying about these types of science replacing religions intersections. By 2000, Weinberg's pointless universe statement, according to The New York Times (“Physicist Ponders God, Truth and a Final Theory”, James Glanz), had become a "much-quoted aphorism". (Ѻ)
In 2001, Weinberg again re-stoked the fires of debate with the following statement about how he believes that “there is nothing in the universe that suggests any purpose for humanity” statement: 
“Though aware that there is nothing in the universe that suggests any purpose for humanity, one way that we can find a purpose is to study the universe by the methods of science, without consoling ourselves with fairy tales about its future, or about our own.”
This again prompted further debate and objection, which Weinberg discusses further in his 2010 book Lake Views. 
The following are related quotes:
“Academic degree after degree has not removed the haunting specter of the pointlessness of existence in a random universe.”— Ravi Zacharias (2008), The End of Reason 
“The science-religion controversy is rooted in talk of afterlife, soul, higher powers, muses, purpose, reason, objectivity, pointlessness, and randomness.”References— Robert Burton (2008), On Being Certain: Believing You are Right Even When You’re Wrong
1. Weinberg, Steven. (1977). The First Three Minutes: a Modern View of the Origin of the Universe (pointless, pg. 154). Basic Books.
2. Huxley, Aldous. (1937). Ends and Means: an Inquiry into the Nature of Ideals (meaninglessness, 4+ pgs; quote, pg. 270). Harper Collins.
3. Weinberg, Steven. (1992). Weinberg, Steven. (1992). Dreams of a Final Theory: the Scientist’s Search for the Ultimate Laws of Nature (Dostoyevsky, pgs. 52-53; pointless, pgs. 255-56). Random House.
4. Weinberg, Steven. (2010). Lake Views (pg. 45). Harvard University Press.
5. Zacharias, Ravi. (2008). The End of Reason (pg. 17). Zondervan.
6. Kaku, Michio. (2006). Parallel Worlds (pg. 355). Knopf Doubleday.