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Toward A Solution Of The DAMA-Libra Dark Matter Puzzle

What is dark matter (DM)? This is one of the most pressing questions in fundamental science nowadays...

Read Arkani-Hamed's Interview: Learn From The Clear Thinkers

Nima Arkani-Hamed needs no introduction - he's a superstar theoretical physicist, and whenever...

CERN Deliberates Against Strumia

Today's news is that five months after Alessandro Strumia's controversial talk at a conference...

New Office

As the regulars here already know, I am an employee of the INFN. This is the "Istituto Nazionale...

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Tommaso DorigoRSS Feed of this column.

Tommaso Dorigo is an experimental particle physicist, who works for the INFN at the University of Padova, and collaborates with the CMS experiment at the CERN LHC. He coordinates the European network... Read More »

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. 

While spending a few vacation days on a trip around central Italy I made a stop in a place in the Appennini mountains, to visit some incredible caves. The caves of Frasassi were discovered in September 1971 by a few young speleologists, who had been tipped off by locals about the existence, atop a mountain near their village, of a hole in the ground, which emitted a strong draft wind - the unmistakable sign of underground hollows.

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.
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.
Large amounts of ink (well, electrons) have been spilt over the web in the past few months to discuss the #MeToo movement. It seems this blog will eventually join the crowd, although a bit belatedly, and with a slightly different viewing angle. 
After keeping silent on the matter, I am stimulated to discuss it after a BuzzFeed article exposed several cases of alleged sexual harassment and related inappropriate behavior by world-class cosmologist-cum-science-pop-guy-cum-skeptic Lawrence Krauss. Plus, yesterday was international women's day, and I never miss a chance to miss a deadline.