This week I was traveling in Belgium so my blogging activities have been scarce. Back home, I will resume with serious articles soon (with the XVI Neutrino Telescopes conference next week, there will be a lot to report on!). In the meantime, here's a list of short news you might care about as an observer of progress in particle physics research and related topics.
- Last week (on Wednesday, to be exact) was the 20th anniversary of the joint announcement of discovery of the top quark, by the CDF and DZERO collaborations at the Fermilab Tevatron collider. That was not the first joint announcement of a major particle physics discovery in fact -one of course recalls the J/psi announcement during the "November revolution" of 1974- but it was the first time that the "five sigma" criterion for discovery claims in particle physics found consistent application (CDF had found the top quark one year before, but cautiously called it "evidence" in an epic 120-pages-long paper which had the mass measured at 174 GeV, less than one GeV away from the current best estimate).

- Only by chance connected to the above is the fact that on Wednesday I gave a seminar at Louvain-la-Neuve, precisely on the topic of the five sigma criterion (the title was "Extraordinary evidence: the 0.000029% solution"). It was a quite nice event, well-attended by the physicists of the CP3 group there. Thanks to Fabio Maltoni for inviting me there... For those interested, the writeup of the seminar (to appear in a proceedings of ICNFP2014) is here.

- A 2.4-sigma excess of Higgs decays to mu-tau pairs is declared in a new paper by the CMS collaboration, in the arxiv since yesterday. I have written about this slight fluctuation elsewhere, pointing out that it is likely, well, a fluctuation; but if you want to dream of new physics, this is a good lead.

- And of course, bear in mind that the XVI neutrino telescope conference will take place in Venice next week. I will be blogging there about the most interesting new results, plus all posters presented at the conference (competing for the "best poster award" and three nice prizes offered by the sponsors) will be described in blog entries. I plan to publish some of my pieces here as well, but you might want to follow as well the conference blog next week.