Tuesday, May 31, 2011 ... /////

CDF: Wjj 150 GeV bump grows to almost 5 sigma

Adam Jester (see also Sean Carroll, Phil Gibbs, and Tommaso Dorigo) has pointed out that the bizarre bump near 144 GeV has become much more statistically significant, according to a talk by Giovanni Punzi (pages 30-35 or so) at the 23rd Rencontres de Blois conference at a cute French chateau.

As you could read here in April 2011, there was a 3.2-sigma, or 99.9% confidence level, excess of the production of an apparent 144 GeV particle decaying to two jets that have to be accompanied by a W-boson. The data used about 4/fb of the CDF data.

The preprint about the bump has produced 46 citations in less than two months.

Could it have been a fluke? It could but it almost certainly wasn't. When 7/pb of the data were analyzed, the excess grew to 4.8 sigma or so which is something like 99.9997%. So the shape almost certainly didn't appear by chance.

Greece: can the infusion remain permanent?

Since the last year, the sick fat socialist pig called the Hellenic Republic has devoured EUR 110 billion - a package that was pumped into that country a year ago - and it's hungry again. It needs another package of EUR 100 billion or so, Fitch calculated.

So the EUR 110 billion gift has disappeared and we are where we were one year ago.

Some things have changed, however. First of all, today we are already pretty much certain that Greece hasn't succeeded in a single condition that was imposed a year ago. Populist politicians want to look nice in the eyes of their parasite voters - and they don't care about any creditors.

Also, in May 2010, people were shocked to see that the interest rate on the Greek government debt soared to nearly 9 percent. Last week, in May 2011, the interest rate soared to 17 percent - twice the value where it was a year ago. The two-year loans have a 26-percent annual interest rate. I don't know whether it's the rate (that should be exponentiated to get the yield) or the yield - and be sure that at numbers that are this high, it makes a significant difference. ;-)

Monday, May 30, 2011 ... /////

German nuclear suicide: 2022

While the annoyances in Fukushima have only led to one death - which was unrelated to the radiation, a heart attack of an old employee (compare with the 14 deaths so far caused by the Spanish "organic" cucumbers, with dozens of extra environmental consumers on their way out) - the Luddites across the world continue in their irrational and dishonest jihad against nuclear energy. Germany has become an epicenter of this struggle.

Just a year ago, Germany was planning to extend the lifetime of many nuclear power plants. The closure of the power plants built in the years denoted by the red numbers were extended from the white numbers to the yellow numbers.

However, after Fukushima, everything is different. Mass hysteria has affected major political parties as well as a majority of the brainwashed German public. It has been agreed today that all German nuclear power plants will be closed by 2022.

Climate Progress becomes a directory on a far left website

I want to applaud Joseph Romm. Kind of.

He has abolished the ClimateProgress.org domain and redirected all traffic to a directory hosted by the server called ThinkProgress.org owned by a radical far left political organization, The Center for American Progress.

Tsunami: swimming houses and cars live

If you want to have an idea about the amount of time you have when tsunami arrives, look at this 5-minute video of tsunami attacking in Minami-Sanriku.

Warning: the video gets tough.

Sunday, May 29, 2011 ... /////

Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics

I have considered myself a champion of the Consistent Histories interpretation of quantum mechanics for almost 20 years - Roland Omnes' 1992 article just erased all my doubts about the statement that the foundations of quantum mechanics have been fully understood.

However, I have always realized that the "improvements" that this interpretation brings relatively to the Copenhagen interpretation are very subtle and it has been annoying to see that pretty much everyone misunderstands the basic points of the Copenhagen interpretation.

Bohr, Heisenberg, and Pauli. Am I the only one who thinks that Pauli looks like good soldier Švejk here?

There's a lot of misunderstandings being spread about the Copenhagen interpretation - and I would say that some of them should better be classified as deliberately propagated lies and propaganda. In this text, I would like to clarify some of them.

How not only Spanish bureaucracy works

Spanish filmmakers have finally shot a documentary movie accurately showing how the bureaucrats operate:

Holy cow, I totally identify myself with the blonde entrepreneur. That's exactly how I approach bureaucratic offices most of the time and the bureaucrats' behavior is exactly what I usually get in return.

My emotions for the bureaucrats and their apologists have often been so intense that I have played this scene of Mafia I about 50 times in my life, imagining that the people whom I "interact" with are state employees, the kind of creatures who support - for obvious reasons - the expansion of the government and pseudo-government bodies whose main purpose is to make living for similar folks who are "working" on similar things. The kind of people who constantly harass those who actually pay for their living.

Saturday, May 28, 2011 ... /////

The New York Times invites you to Pilsen

The New York Times just published an invitation to an unlikely tourist destination,

In Pilsen, Beer’s Not the Only Thing on Tap
my hometown of Pilsen, the 2015 European Capital of Culture.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011 ... /////

Electron dipole moment below 1e-27 e.cm at 90% C.L.

Nude Socialist discusses whether the electron is egg-shaped. I honestly couldn't figure out what they were really talking about before I looked at the paper in Nature,

Improved measurement of the shape of the electron
by Hudson, Kara, Smallman, Sauer, Tarbutt, and Hinds. The title still resembles some popular science (see a popular review in Nature) but the abstract already contains useful information.

Micronesia escalates sea level lawsuits against a faraway power plant

As I wrote in December 2009, January 2010, and March 2010, the chieftains of Micronesia decided to start lawsuits against the Czech coal power plant in Prunéřov because, according to the wildest predictions, this facility may contribute up to whopping 42 micrometers to the sea level rise in the next 50 years. Eco Tretas summarized some graphs indicating that the sea level in the region isn't measurably changing at all.

The executive board of the Micronesian Academy of Sciences, the image was removed

This insanity, predicted in "The State of Fear" by Michael Crichton, was started by my childhood friend Mr Jan Rovenský who suffered from a severe brain damage a few years later and who became a top Czech Greenpeace apparatchik. His organization has sent letters to all top politicians in island countries of the world, attempting to undermine the Czech industry. They expected to receive no answers. However, Micronesia did say Yes and things began to get out of control.

Well, it's also possible that Mr Jan Rovenský has simply read the "The State of Fear" and he said "Why not", so Crichton's contribution wasn't just a prophesy - it was an actual guide for the terrorists. ;-)

Monday, May 23, 2011 ... /////

MOND and HOND: theories without dark matter

Your humble correspondent's holographic modification of gravity for low accelerations passes a quantitative test

Sean Carroll mentions a preprint arguing that it's been experimentally demonstrated that Kepler's laws fail when the acceleration of orbiting objects is below a certain constant a0:

The Breakdown of Classical Gravity?
X. Hernandez, M. A. Jimenez, and C. Allen looked at wide-orbit binary stars and they claim that for these small accelerations, the Kepler's (i.e. Newton's) formulae for the velocity should be superseded by a constant velocity

LHC surpasses an inverse nanobarn per second

As you can see in the right sidebar of this blog, the maximum instantaneous luminosity that the ATLAS detector has experienced so is

1100/μb/s = 34.7/fb/year.
So each major detector has surpassed 1/nb during the night. Congratulations! Note that because the nanobarns are inverse, the usual prefixes "micro, nano, pico, femto" are separated by factors of one thousand but in the opposite ordering.

Sunday, May 22, 2011 ... /////

Hugh Everett's many worlds interpretation of QM

Among many other things, Brian Greene's new book, The Hidden Reality, shows very clearly that the author is kind of obsessed, to put it mildly, with Hugh Everett's interpretation of quantum mechanics.

Everett's adviser was John Wheeler. By 1957, Everett completed his PhD thesis. It was considered wrong and worthless by Bohr and pretty much everyone else - with John Wheeler playing the natural role of a loving boss - so he left research and became a key figure defining the U.S. nuclear weapons policies behind the scenes. Scientific American described his personal life as tragic - silence, disconnect from the family, alcohol etc. Fine, let's stop this irrelevant stuff.

I wanted to know what the thesis was actually saying so I began to read it:

To summarize my impressions in two short sentences: I noticed that Brian Greene was affected much more than I could have thought - even his description of a physical theory being a bound state of a formal part and a physical part is taken from this thesis; second, Everett's thesis is much more obvious gibberish than I thought.

Saturday, May 21, 2011 ... /////

The Bousso-Susskind hypermultiverse

Leonard Susskind and Raphael Bousso are creative guys and famous physicists. Both of them are well-known for some papers about holography, too. Of course, the first scientist is still a bit more famous. They have just released a preprint to show that they're on crack and they are greatly enjoying it:

The Multiverse Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics
The ordinary multiverse with its infinitely many bubbles whose possible vacuum states are located in 10^{500} different stationary points of the stringy configuration space was way too small for them. So they invented a better and bigger multiverse, one that unifies the "inflationary multiverse", the "quantum multiverse", and the "holographic multiverse" from Brian Greene's newest popular book, The Hidden Reality.

Yes, their very first bold statement is that parallel universes in an inflating universe are the same thing as Everett's many worlds in quantum mechanics! ;-)

Sorry to say but the paper looks like the authors want to stand next to Lee Smolin whose recent paper - as much crackpottish as any paper he has written in his life so far - is about "a real ensemble interpretation" of quantum mechanics. Bousso and Susskind don't cite Smolin - but maybe they should! And in their next paper, they should acknowledge me for pointing out an equally sensible and similar paper by Smolin to them. ;-)

Hospoda: food arrives to starving New York

It's hard to believe that literally millions of inhabitants of the New York City could have survived decades without a decent restaurant. Food has been nearly unavailable - unless you count the third-world cuisines and freedom fries.

The most recent decent addition to the market occurred exactly fifty years ago, in 1961, when Ray Kroc - whose father was born in Břasy near Pilsen, 15 miles away from my home - bought some restaurants from the McDonald brothers for USD 2.7 million and made the company just a little bit bigger. ;-)

Rapture will take place today

The global warming orthodoxy is predicting a judgement day. But some competitors of the IPCC propose that the end of the world will come earlier than that.

In particular, Harold Camping (89), an engineer who studies the Bible quantitatively :-), has calculated that on May 21st, 2011, which happens to be today, the rapture will arrive and swallow 3 percent of the world population. Or maybe only 3 percent will survive: I hope that you don't think that this detail of the prediction is too important. The end of the planet Earth will follow exactly 5 months later.

Friday, May 20, 2011 ... /////

Obama's betrayal of Israel

While Barack Obama looks like a moderate guy in many respects, and his successful execution of Osama bin Laden is a recent example, there are also situations in which he turns out to be a largely uncontrollable threat for the democratic civilization.

Between June 5 and June 10th, 1967 (the Six-Day War which was both pre-emptive and helpful for Israel), the yellow Israel on the map manage to win the Golan Heights (still controlled by Israel but the population is just 40,000; international deniers of reality consider it a part of Syria), Judea (South) and Samaria (North; in combination Judea and Samaria are known as the West Bank, currently under military control of Israel but administered by the moderate Fatah's Palestinian Authority), Gaza Strip (currently controlled by the Hamas terror group, but still somewhat unofficially supervised by Israel), and the Sinai Peninsula (peacefully returned to Egypt shortly after the 1967 war).

Thursday, May 19, 2011 ... /////

Czech PM: tests of power plants are guides for terrorists

It's somewhat paradoxical that the nuclear forum is taking place in Prague because the Czech Republic effectively rejects the idea of new tests of the nuclear power plants.

Dukovany, the older of the two Czech nuclear power plants

Our top politicians - including the president and the prime minister - have rejected Merkel's and others' recent attacks against nuclear energy as irrational and cheap populism. Everyone seems to agree that there's no reason to perform new tests. And even if there were reasons, the tests must be done by nuclear experts and not politicians. It's preposterous for politicians to pretend that it's them who is the safety assurance for those power plants.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011 ... /////

David Mermin's talk: Why Einstein was wrong

In 2008, David Mermin gave an Oppenheimer lecture at UC Berkeley which was called "Spooky Action at a Distance?" (PDF form here).

It's a nice presentation why there is no "reality" as imagined by Einstein and others. Mermin explains why Bohr was right when he said that we have to be cautious and only talk about things that can actually be measured - avoid assumptions that something else exists.

Physics is not a tool to describe how the reality is. Physics is a tool to say right things about what we can see. A big difference.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011 ... /////

Brian Greene and anti-quantum zeal

First of all, I received my copy of The Hidden Reality a few weeks ago - which I was asked to translate to my mother tongue - and it is mostly excellent. Recommended.

It covers physics from the viewpoint of parallel worlds. This term may have many different meanings that are related to each other in some cases and that are mostly unrelated (and shouldn't be confused) in other cases. But they still make a nice unifying theme for a book that allows the author to cover many topics.

In the initial chapters, Greene explains the modern cosmology beautifully. Is the Universe finite or infinite? Is the expansion accelerating? In a very large Universe, regions may be causally separated and they form a "quilted multiverse" if the total volume is infinite. He adds inflation with its "inflationary multiverse" and explains how the bubbles expand and how they look infinite from inside and finite from outside.

I have a message from the boss to all the world financiers and politicians who read TRF. The International Monetary Fund has relocated its headquarters to a neat island in New York:

See more videos about the facility.

Out of the 14,000 inmates (maximum capacity is 17,000), 92% are black or Hispanic and 90% have not graduated high school. A nice place.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn has graduated high school but he decided to relocate after an unpleasant experience in a hotel near the Times Square. It turned out that a 32-year-old 6-feet-tall :-) black maid called Ms Nafissatou Diallo wasn't included in the USD 3,000 fee for one night.

Fermi reproduces PAMELA excess

Jester brings us some news from Rome that became the Mecca of the Fermi collaboration. Once again, Fermi didn't disappoint and its new findings could have implications for the "Is Dark Matter Seen" war.

In 2008, PAMELA (TRF) announced its excess of high-energy positrons with energies 1.5-100 GeV in cosmic rays which could be viewed as evidence of annihilation of dark matter. But was that signal real? Many people have harbored doubts. After all, PAMELA could also be a blonde and you don't want to believe everything that a blonde says. ;-)

Click the picture above to zoom in

However, Fermi - who is male, experienced, and renowned (not to mention that he's been dead for decades and he was formerly known as GLAST) - has just mostly eliminated all those doubts.

Monday, May 16, 2011 ... /////

New Danish experiment confirms cosmoclimatology

While the results of the CLOUD experiment will be published in 2 or 3 months, another competing experiment has just revealed its results in Geophysical Research Letters:

Aerosol nucleation induced by a high energy particle beam (abstract)

Danish celebration of the paper (autom. transl. to EN)

Physics World (popular overview)
The five Danish authors have used a 580 MeV electron beam to ionizine the atmosphere-like content of their chamber. The graphs show pretty clearly that the formation rate increases with the radiation. At O(10,000) ions per cubic centimeter, the nucleation rate approximately doubles while the existing data are compatible with a linear dependence.

Sunday, May 15, 2011 ... /////

CLOUD: cosmic rays producing lots of them

Nigel Calder has pointed out the following interview in Physics World about CERN's CLOUD experiment:

Saturday, May 14, 2011 ... /////

Dark Ages as a fabrication: this year is 1713

or 1714, depending on how Mr Illig counts integers

A major Czech internet news server, idnes.cz, just promoted a cute, mysterious, thrilling conspiracy theory known as

Phantom time hypothesis (Wikipedia)

Did the Early Middle Ages Really Exist? (defense of the theory by Hans-Ulrich Niemitz)
In 1991, Heribert Illig conjectured an explanation behind the lack of progress and interesting events in the early Middle Ages, also known as the Dark Ages: there haven't been any! ;-)

Precalculus and chemistry solved: WolframAlpha iOS apps

In January, I wrote about WolframAlpha iPhone apps for algebra, calculus, and music. There also exist astronomy and multivariable calculus apps.

Your humble correspondent could finally test two new "course assistant" apps described at the WolframAlpha blog. They help users to master and solve:

Both course assistants are cute. The user interface is clean and comprehensible and the results are relevant.

There are also lots of details that make the experience more pleasant and the usage more effective. One of them is good for testers such as myself: whenever you're using a tool in the app and you have to enter something, there are always pre-filled input parameters that produce an interesting enough output. You may modify them or discard them but you're never lost by having a tool with no idea how to get an interesting answer from it.

For another example, when you're supposed to enter an element, more general chemical formula, or a mathematical expression for a function, you always get a new relevant keyboard. This is just an example of the screen when you're trying to get the electron configuration of silicon.

You can imagine how many hours one could have save at school - and not only at school - if he had (and was allowed to use) these apps. I am convinced that if you are a student who hasn't memorized all of precalculus and general chemistry or if you use these things in your job or if you know a kid or someone else who needs to solve similar tasks, you should buy the $4.99 apps. Friday, May 13, 2011 ... ///// Movie: Antonio Banderas looks for the Higgs boson "The Big Bang", a 2011 movie, is coming to the U.S. movie theaters today. See Wikipedia, review in The New York Times, IMDB, and Google News. Thursday, May 12, 2011 ... ///// Type IIB large extra dimensions Calabi-Yau manifolds are so hot that they may make your LCD monitor or your eyes vibrate. M. Cicoli, C.P. Burgess, and F. Quevedo have presented their interesting new scenario for string phenomenology: Anisotropic Modulus Stabilisation: Strings at LHC Scales with Micron-sized Extra Dimensions Their picture has • extra dimensions accessible at the LHC • no MSSM superpartners - a non-linear realization of SUSY in the SM sector • two extra dimensions may be multimicron-sized, much larger than the remaining four • the remaining four have a K3 shape • the large 6-volume, and/or the hierarchy between the 2 and 4 extra dimensions, is achieved by some new poly-instanton corrections to the superpotential Their picture strikingly differs from most scenarios we're used to - where at least some of the superpartners are surely more accessible than extra dimensions. Wednesday, May 11, 2011 ... ///// Czech Republic 4 - 0 U.S. On Friday 13th, Czechia lost in the semifinals to Sweden - the first loss - so much of the optimistic and self-confident tone below has been rendered obsolete. ;-) But let's get back. Much like most Czechs, I am watching all matches of our team on the 2011 World Ice-hockey Championship in Slovakia. The final score may indicate otherwise but this quarter final match was extremely dramatic. Obscene climate scientists' rap Your humble correspondent was brought up to like the classical music and to play the piano but I actually like pretty much all genres and my tastes are arguably close to the mainstream. Bill Gates on global warming Related: Yesterday, Czech President Václav Klaus gave a talk in Cambridge, U.K.: The Global Warming Doctrine is Not a Science: Notes for Cambridge Now let's get to the topic mentioned in the title. Microsoft has just bought Skype just like if it were buying an ice cream - for USD 8.5 billion - but Bill Gates finds it important to talk about climate change (that's how the hosts want to frame it) and alternative energy sources (that's how he wants to frame it) in this Grist video of a dialogue during a Climate Solutions fundraiser breakfast in Seattle two days ago: Watch live streaming video from grist at livestream.com The dialogue begins at 6:30 (unless they have already removed the beginning from the video), after the green folks are encouraged to invest dollars to the green lobbyists so that the donations are inflated by 50% and they return to them so that they have even more green dirty money in the future, and so on. The host wanted to improve the efficiency of his Prius by inserting his skull to the motor. He broke his skull and got some stitches. So Bill Gates also took a hat in an attempt to pretend that he is an idiot, too. Both of them have "caps" but only one of them is also good in "trade". ;-) Well, it's kind of a bummer. :-) But what Bill Gates is saying is not really offensive to me in any substantial way. He likes the challenge to find new energy sources and because the condition that CO2 shouldn't be produced makes it even more challenging, he says why not. Unlike the green folks, Gates wants to help the poor nations so his new energy source should be cheap. He sensibly thinks that only technological innovation may substantially change the CO2- and energy-related numbers (and that this activity should ultimately be controlled by the invisible hand of the free markets!) which some green people may already find heretical. When Gates is asked what he has done to learn about climate change, he mentions that there are good sources and the best one is by Mr Václav Smil. The green audience gets scared because Czech names and global warming hysteria don't get along too well. Tuesday, May 10, 2011 ... ///// CoGeNT sees seasons (and maybe dark matter) Should we be getting used to light supersymmetric 7 GeV photinos? A fascinating, full-fledged war has erupted between the teams trying to detect the dark matter particles here on Earth. The two opposing armies of experimenters are called "Dark Matter Is Seen" (DMIS) and "Dark Matter Is Not Seen" (DMINS). XENON100's mid-April negative results (fresh preprint) instantly came under fire (fresh preprint). Via Physics World Each of the camps may be right. Of course, the first team has a more interesting message. ;-) One year ago, I discussed observations by CoGeNT (of the DMIS coalition) that may have detected hundreds of bino-like 10 GeV dark matter particles. Such claims are directly contradicted by the DMINS axis - CDMS, XENON10, XENON100, and maybe others - that claims that there is nothing to be seen and the DMIS coalition - including CoGeNT, DAMA, PAMELA, and others who have suggested the existence of a signal - are conspiracy theorists. After all, DMINS may measure things much more accurately and there's nothing to be seen! ;-) The CoGeNT-CDMS (sado-maso) war is particularly violent because both opposing teams use germanium and they're located in the same mine. Who is right? As Cosmic Variance and Resonaances (also: Phys Org, Discovery News, WIRED, Science News, IO9, Nude Socialist) freshly reported, CoGeNT has added an amazing weapon to their claims. They have measured their signal more accurately. La Nina conditions ending The latest pictures show that the cold, blue strip along the equatorial Pacific Ocean - which is associated with La Nina - has largely disappeared: On the contrary, a warm, orange cloud is spreading from the South American Western beaches towards the West. The latest weekly summary of the ENSO dynamics shows that the Nino 3.4 anomaly has converged closer to zero - now it is at -0.5 °C which is just the boundary that defines the La Nina conditions. Chances are that by the next week, the reading will be between -0.5 and +0.5 which will indicate ENSO-neutral conditions. Monday, May 09, 2011 ... ///// Robert Brout: 1928-2011 Sadly, Robert Brout, an American Belgian physicist who was born in the New York City on June 14th, 1928, passed away on May 3rd, 2011. Together with Francois Englert, they were the first pair that published a 1964 paper discovering and explaining the Higgs mechanism, or Englert-Brout-Higgs-Guralnik-Hagen-Kibble mechanism for short. They managed to include some arguments that the theory with massive gauge bosons produced in this way would be renormalizable, something that would be later proved by Gerardus 't Hooft who shared the 1999 Nobel prize for this discovery with his advisor Martinus Veltman who was bold enough to ask his student to solve the problem. With all the five other authors, Brout still received the 2010 Sakurai Prize. Sunday, May 08, 2011 ... ///// ATLAS at 94/pb: diphoton hysteria goes away This is just a single link: in a list of ATLAS' notes, the last one is Update of Background Studies in the Search for the Higgs Boson in the Diphoton Channel with the ATLAS Detector at sqrt(s) = 7 TeV and it was released yesterday. Click at the images to see that after 94 inverse picobarns, there is absolutely no excess of diphoton events at 115 GeV. Saturday, May 07, 2011 ... ///// Klaus' aide Hájek: Osama was just a fairy-tale for adults Two years ago, I wrote an essay for Czech magazine Reflex called Is Darwin's Theory Gibberish? (full) that politely but unambiguously disagreed with the creationist opinions about the origin of species held by Czech President Václav Klaus' top aide, Mr Petr Hájek. Mr Hájek has actually summarized some arguments in favor of creation - which I found interesting enough to deserve a serious reply. Of course, Reflex had included some funny pictures I didn't authorize but whose amusement value I can confirm (see the link above) such as this one, including the caption below: Václav Klaus as the ultimate culmination of the evolution of the human species. (Caption by Reflex) However, Mr Hájek is a neverending source of inspiration and amusement. On Monday, he has clarified everything you need to know about Osama bin Laden. Mr Hájek wrote: "Bin Laden is a media fiction. He has died in the same way he emerged, under strange, almost mystical circumstances. It is a modern fairy-tale for adults - good and evil. Let´s believe, if we want," Hajek told the server. It is like in the U.S. film Wag the Dog: the given information must be true as they reported it on TV, Hajek said. Needless to say, President Klaus himself disagreed with his aide and criticized him - and he praised the successful operation as an event that will bring some peace and increased prosperity. Also, a top Czech social democrat Mr Lubomír Zaorálek wiped Mr Hájek when he pointed out that Mr Bin Laden couldn't have been a fairy-tale hero because Mr Zaorálek has personally attended wild parties with Osama's family, some of the socialist politician's best friends. ;-) However, you may still see that the Czech Republic doesn't operate in the same way as most PC Western countries would. U.S. Air Force consecrated a witchcraft altar The U.S. Air Force is a very tolerant organization. In January 2010, the Air Force Academy decided to add a worship area for followers of Earth-centered religions. It's all about respect. Almost no one has noticed it until this week. Thursday, May 05, 2011 ... ///// Intel: tri-gate 3D transistors within a year Intel Sandy Bridge microprocessors are already being sold. However, Intel just announced something much more shocking, namely Ivy Bridge microprocessors that will use 3-dimensional tri-gate transistors (Google News). The 2-dimensional transistor is illustrated on the left picture, the 3-dimensional one is on the right. Gravity Probe B final results: frame dragging within 20 percent Stanford's$0.76 billion satellite mission to test Einstein's theory of gravity, Gravity Probe B (Wiki), has announced the final results during the press conference aired by NASA TV a few hours ago. The results will be published in Physical Review Letters:

Gravity Probe B: Final results of a space experiment to test general relativity
If you read the abstract of the paper above, you will see that their measured geodetic effect is -6,602 mas/yr (milli-arcseconds per year), while the prediction of GR is -6,606 mas/yr (an excellent agreement within 0.06 percent or so; however, their official error margin, 18.3 mas/yr, is larger - 0.3% of the figure).

The more difficult measurement of the frame-dragging drift rate gave them -37.2 mas/yr, to be compared with -39.2 mas/yr according to GR. The discrepancy is just 7 percent or so. However, their actual announced error is closer to 19 percent (7.2 mas/yr), so they can barely prove that the frame-dragging effect is nonzero at the 5-sigma confidence level.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011 ... /////

NeoPlanet

Apologies, this is just a toy for people who like to play.

iMatter: Your house is uninhabitable for most species

iMatter March, a children's astroturf climate activist organization that will organize a march of broken glass between 7th and 14th of this month, has released their research about the end of the world in 2050:

Scientists that dedicate their entire lives to studying this, have made it clear: to avert the worst effects of climate change, the levels of CO2 in the atmosphere need to be at 350 parts per million (ppm). Right now we are at 391ppm. If we keep burning at the rate we are now, we will be at 500ppm by 2050. This would make earth a completely different planet, uninhabitable for most species. We can't let that happen.
Oh, really? In that case, we must be careful about our puppies, kittens, and other pets not to get into our house, to protect their life. ;-) The reality is that 500 ppm is totally harmless for all known species on the planet - and actually well below the average concentrations we experience in our everyday life.

Why Frank Wilczek likes SUSY

Matthew Tamsett of the U.S. LHC writes about Frank Wilczek's recent talk in Texas that focused on supersymmetry.

If you have 80 spare minutes, here is a similar talk he gave a year ago - his J. Robert Oppenheimer lecture at UC Berkeley:

Tuesday, May 03, 2011 ... /////

CBS: Katie Couric replaced by AGW crusader Scott Pelley

Most of us wouldn't count CBS as one of those, well, fair and balanced TV stations. But CBS isn't far from the standardized average and Katie Couric has surely brought a human face to CBS, hasn't she? Look e.g. at this 44-minute interview with Glenn Beck:

However, Katie Couric decided to leave and, possibly, look for a higher-dimensional format of storytelling because she is not one of the crackpots who doubt string/M-theory in 10 or 11 dimensions and 3 (2+1) is really too much smaller than 10 or 11.

What will happen to CBS?

Monday, May 02, 2011 ... /////

Constraints from Einstein's equations as Navier-Stokes equations

In January, Andy Strominger and friends posted a very interesting paper

Geometry for every solution of Navier-Stokes (TRF)
Today, Andy Strominger and Vyacheslav Lysov offer their extraordinary concise related preprint
From Petrov-Einstein to Navier-Stokes (hep-th)
In the paper, they start with a flat p+1-dimensional hypersurface that has 1 temporal direction and p spatial directions. However, it may be embedded into a p+2-dimensional curved spacetime.

Obama kills Osama

I learned about the news because 1/3 of the TRF traffic this morning was directed to articles about Osama bin Laden.

Although many Obama's voters would prefer if this were how Osama should be treated, it wasn't the case. The clear order was to kill him, and once they killed him, they threw him to the sea - to agree with an Islamic counterpart of cremation - no country wanted to host the grave. It wasn't specified whether 72 American virgins were swimming in that sea.

Almost ten years ago, on 9/11/2001 at 9:30 am, I was defending my PhD in New Jersey.

Sunday, May 01, 2011 ... /////

NeoCube

This is just another toy by NeoWorx.