- The LHC is back in business, with the experiments collecting data at 4 TeV/beam, marginally higher than last year’s 3.5 TeV/beam. They are ramping up the number of bunches in each beam, already this afternoon achieving a higher initial luminosity than the best of late last year. This should be a record luminosity for a [as pointed out by a commenter, hadron] collider. One place to follow the amount of data being accumulated is this CMS page.
- Also in Switzerland, another hard to comprehend publicly funded experiment is going on, see details here.
The Swiss boson is a hypothetical condition which is supposed to account for why the Swiss franc has ‘mass’ when all other neighbouring currencies don’t.
A multi billion-euro experiment, operated by BERN (but funded outright by tax payers), is currently under way on the borders of Switzerland and the Eurozone to try and stamp out the asymmetries, ideally by creating something known as the ‘anti-franc’.
As part of the experiment, highly skilled practitioners smash billions of Swiss francs against the euro currency daily, with the explicit aim of blowing apart the franc.
Experiments to date suggest the boson is probably hiding somewhere in the 1.20-1.22 field. Though some say there’s a chance of finding it at the 1.25 mark.
Yet as the experiment continues, fears grow that a black hole could unwittingly be created in the current account of the nation — a singularity known as the “ever depreciating euro asset” phenomenon.
- Jean-Pierre Serre has a web-page at the Collège de France where one can download copies of many of his recent manuscripts. There’s also a wonderful interview with him here.
- Michio Kaku, the “co-founder of the superstring version of string theory”, gave a talk about the future recently in Yakima, Washington. Clifford Johnson reports on a recent phone conversation he had:
Michio Kaku says that the universe is full of many things and all you have to do is ask for something and you’ll get it. How do you go about doing that?
Well… I am not sure what he had in mind. It might be…. might be best to ask him…. But maybe what he meant is that the universe is a very big place, with lots of things going on, and maybe he meant that there are all sorts of things you could find out there because it is so big and diverse… But perhaps he did not have in mind that a particular person could go out and get any of those things… but you might want to ask him. I can’t say for sure.
Perhaps Clifford should have clarified things for his caller by explaining that it’s only string theorists for whom “the universe is full of many things and all you have to do is ask for something and you’ll get it”.
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