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About this Blog
In this blog I comment on the physics world in subjects ranging from particle physics and cosmology to creativity. I look at the wonderful expansion in discoveries and new ideas in the physics world, and also look at problems such as the increasing difficulties of funding research, particularly research requiring large experimental equipment. This is not a rapid news blog, it is a reflective blog.
I will keep my pieces short, perhaps a thousand words but no more than several thousand. There will also be guest bloggers, experts in their areas of physics, and their pieces may be longer. I hope this blog reaches a broad range of physics lovers from students to professionals. I will do this, still keeping my pieces short, by giving general informational references. But in most cases the reader can simply go to the Internet.
Comments, reflective or not, are of course welcome.
Category Archives: Uncategorized
The question “What Me Worry” by Alfred E. Neuman of MAD magazine fame, applies these days to a substantial number of practitioners of high energy physics, probably more to theoreticians than to experimenters. There are several causes of these worries. We have no answers to questions such as: is supersymmetry a valid theory, why are there just three generations, or are there more generations, what sets the masses of the leptons, what is the correct unification of quantum mechanics with gravity. So many unanswered questions! Of course there has been magnificent progress, such as the discovery of the Higgs using the Large Hadron Collider. But this success has had a peculiar reverse effect on the morale of our community, what if the community cannot top this accomplishment? Compare this reverse morale effect in particle physics with the great boost given to morale in cosmology by the discovery of the dark energy phenomenon. At the practical level, there is the serious worry that our governments are not willing to fund major new particle physics, such as a very high energy linear electron-positron collider, or if feasible, a circular muon-muon collider. The next very high energy facility will not be built within the next decade, perhaps not within the next two decades. The remaining working lifetime of older physicists, such yours truly, is a few decades. References to, and discussions of, these worries are recounted in Peter Woit’s fine blog “Not Even Wrong”, posted on January 14, 2013. Incidentally, I first learned from Peter’s blog of the … Continue reading