Physics

Working as an experimental particle physicist in a large scientific collaboration, such as the 3000-strong CMS experiment at the CERN LHC, is a (not too uncommon) privilege, for several reasons. 
One of those reasons is of purely numerical kind: the number of publications that bear your name grows by the day, and may reach four-figure values in the course of a couple of decades (I am about to cross that point with my publication list, in fact). But what value do those thousand articles have for the sake of assessing your value as a scientist ? Very little, indeed, and in fact all the selection to which I have participated in my career required one to specify one's specific contribution to all the papers one wished to boast about.

Quarks and antiquarks are the teeny, tiny building blocks with which all matter is built, binding together to form protons and neutrons in a process explained by quantum chromodynamics (QCD).

According to QCD, quarks possess one of three charges that allow them to pair in various combinations, such as mesons--elementary particles composed of one quark and its corresponding antiquark. Force carrier particles, known as gluons, hold the quarks together by exchanging and mediating the strong forc e, one of the four fundamental forces.

This structure is the foundation of all matter in the universe, but much is still unknown about why QCD works the way it does.


When you create an energetic collision between two protons, as the Large Hadron Collider does at large rates and very high energy, the question is what is the chance that a rare process is generated. In the quantum world, everything that is possible is also mandatory - but it happens with a probability that is sometimes very hard to calculate. 
Apologizing for a hiatus due to vacations, I am posting today a tentative logo of the Marie-Curie network I am coordinating, AMVA4NewPhysics. A brief explanation of the symbols at the basis of the logo is given below, in order for you to propose changes or even help by offering different ideas (and if you're a graphic designer, then maybe you consider producing a better one for us ?).

The most popular form of radiation detector used is probably the Geiger-Mueller (GM) detector.  A GM detector is typically the device seen being used on TV shows and movies when measuring radiation.  The GM detector is the device which is making clicking noises which clicks faster and faster when it is exposed to increasingly greater amount of radiation.

Quantum computing is well into its second decade of hype with little progress being made. Computer chip companies have continued to optimize available physics and have left the quantum kind to the academic sandbox. It's not stable long enough to make calculations.

Perhaps what is needed is an intermediary to transmit information, say researchers at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST).

A simple and provocative title – The Missing Memristor has Not been Found! This harsh admission of reality without sugar coating is the very title, and not of some opinion piece, but of a scientific paper published by the very same Nature Publishing Group that is criticized right away in that very paper:

 

I was saddened today to hear of the death of David Cline. I do not have much to say here - I am not good with obituaries - but I do remember meeting him at a conference in Albuquerque in 2008, where we chatted on several topics, among them the history of the CDF experiment, a topic on which I had just started to write a book. 

Perhaps the best I can do here as a way to remember Cline, whose contributions to particle physics can and will certainly be better described by many others (for example,
The Marie-Curie network I am coordinating, AMVA4NewPhysics, is going to start very soon, and with its start several things are going to happen. One you should not be concerned with is the arrival of the first tranche of the 2.4Meuros that the European Research Council has granted us. Something more interesting to you, if you have a degree in Physics or Statistics, is the fact that the network will soon start hiring ten skilled post-lauream researchers across Europe, with the aim of providing them with an exceptional plan of advanced training in particle physics, data analysis, statistics, machine learning, and more.

This poem is too good to just quote the final stanza.

The Road Not Taken
By Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.