Living in Padova has its merits. I moved here since January 1st and am enjoying every bit of it. I used to live in Venice, my home town, and commute with Padova during weekdays, but a number of factors led me to decide on this move (not last the fact that I could afford to buy a spacious place close to my office in Padova, while in Venice I was confined to a rented apartment).
A paper by B. Fornal and B. Grinstein
published last week in Physical Review Letters is drawing a lot of interest to one of the most well-known pieces of subnuclear physics since the days of Enrico Fermi: beta decay.
Like sex, Stephen Hawking was and is mainly a cheap way to obtain publicity. They still publish posthumously now to keep it going. The media feast on the occasion of his parting was not enough, sadly also here at Science2.0 by the usual suspects. I refused participation, because there is just nothing good to say, but the “he just dead, you can’t say that”-period has passed now, too. Let’s be scientific: Hawking’s main contribution was sitting in a wheelchair!
Frank D. Smith (Tony Smith for his friends) has been following this blog since the beginning. He is an independent researcher who is very interested in phenomena connected with the top quark and the Higgs boson. He has a theory of his own and he has been trying to check whether LHC data is compatible or not with it. His ideas are reported here as a guest post, as a tribute to his faithfulness to this site. Of course the views expressed below are his own, as I retain a healthy dose of scepticism to any bit of new physics apparent in today's data... Also, I will comment in the thread below to inform the reader of what my ideas are on his interpretation of public LHC results.
These days the use of machine learning is exploding, as problems which can be solved more effectively with it are ubiquitous, and the construction of deep neural networks or similar advanced tools is at reach of sixth graders. So it is not surprising to see theoretical physicists joining the fun. If you think that the work of a particle theorist is too abstract to benefit from ML applications, you better think again.
Relativity is a form of symmetry and for that reason already of fundamental importance for science. Symmetry means: You can change something in some quite fundamental way, for example rotate the whole circle, and yet, the result is in some other important way the same, the circle is in all ways we can notice as it was before the rotation. The law of the conservation of energy is such symmetry: We transform local chemical energy into non-local kinetic energy and back, yet its mass stays the exact same throughout. We usually call ‘Relativity’ a symmetry that involves transforming the observer/describer and his perspective. They are mainly:
Yesterday's seminar at CERN by Giuseppe Ruggiero unveiled the preliminary results of a search for the rare decay of charged kaon into a pion and a neutrino-antineutrino pair, performed by the CERN NA62 experiment. The result in truth had been already shown a couple of weeks before at the Moriond conference, so it's no news - or if you prefer, it's two nu's - as indeed (spoiler alert) one such event was observed, with two neutrinos inferred from it.
Energy is not a substance, not something in the sense of “some thing”. Energy often appears to be a substance that flows, for example if charging a battery or an electrical capacitor. When charging, also electrons flow into these devices, but as many electrons flow out of the device. Nevertheless, there is something flowing into the device, namely energy. Moreover, the charged electrical capacitor is a tiny little bit more massive, more heavy than before, because an amount of energy E has always the mass m given by the famous equation E = m c2.
I am very glad to observe that Adam Falkowsky has resumed his blogging activities
(for how long, that's early to say). He published the other day a blog entry titled "Where were we", in which he offers his view of the present status of things in HEP and the directions he foresees for the field.
I was about to leave a comment there, but since I am a very discontinuous blog reader (you either write or read, in this business -no time for both things together) I feared I would then miss any reply or ensuing discussion. Not that I mean to say anything controversial or flippant; on the contrary, I mostly agree with Adam's assessment of the situation. With some distinguos.
I do not keep crocodiles[*] in my drawer, so this short piece will have to do today.... Stephen Hawking, the world-renowned British cosmologist, passed away yesterday, and with him we lost not only a bright thinker and all-round scientist, but also a person who inspired two or three generations of students and researchers, thanks of his will to live and take part in active research in spite of the difficulties he had to face, which he always managed to take with irony. Confined on a wheelchair by ALS, and incapable of even speaking without electronic assistance, he always displayed uncommon sharpness and wit.