Christmas is coming, and with it a temporary stop of working activities for most of us- but not all, as the world does not stop spinning, nor do electrons in the computers that crunch LHC datasets in search for new physics. As for academics, they leave their offices with piles of articles to review and grant proposals to write, knowing that their mailboxes will not stop filling up during the winter break. But it’s a jolly time nonetheless 😉 Continue reading “One Year in Review”
by Kostas Vellidis
IASA stands for Institute of Accelerating Systems and Applications – a mouthful indeed. IASA is a relative rarity in Greece: it is a private non-profit research institute. A number of those University Research Institutes (URI), or, in the original (to help you refresh your math characters) Ερευνητικά Πανεπιστημιακά Ινστιτούτα (ΕΠΙ), were established in the 90s, in an effort to promote research and postgraduate studies in the Greek University system by providing specialized infrastructure and/or expertise. Continue reading “IASA – Accelerating science in Athens”
Maria Skłodowska was born on November 7th, 1867 in Warsaw, Poland (in the part then dominated by the Russian Empire). Being brought up in a family of teachers, Maria quickly grew interest in acquiring higher education; this was initially and partly achieved through attending Warsaw’s local schools, but also within her own family environment, receiving some scientific training from her father. Continue reading “Marie Skłodowska-Curie: The scientist, the legacy, the grants”
For the past six or so years, I’ve practised a martial art called Shorinji Kempo. Like many other arts, it incorporates several philosophies and concepts. One of these, The Three Teachings of Ken, concerns one’s progression in learning the various techniques. Simply put, it describes three stages of mastery: shu – learn & copy, ha – adjust & adapt, ri – master & break free. Continue reading “On acquiring skills – shu, ha, ri”
This is the time of the year when I start to reach out to as many undergraduates in physics (and similar subjects) as possible. My yearly mantra for them: “Apply to summer internships!” I cannot emphasize how much my two internships shaped my life and career, from fortuitously having breakfast with a Nobel laureate, the living legend Jack Steinberger (and maybe a story to tell in another post) to hands-on work in physics analyses for the LHC and making friends from all across the globe. Continue reading “Plans for next Summer? Start a career in particle physics!”
Writing a serious review of research in particle physics is a refreshing job – all the things that you already knew on that specific topic once sat on a fuzzy cloud somewhere in your brain, and now find their place in a tidily organized space, with clear interdependence among them. That’s what I am experiencing as I progress with a 60-pageish thing on hadron collider searches for diboson resonances, which will appear sometime next year in a very high impact factor journal.
One of the things that the review must cover is a theoretical overview of the models that the searches for these physics processes address. So I thought I would say a few words on this topic here – but bear in Continue reading “Things that Decay into Boson Pairs”
by Christophe Delaere
Aiming at the broadening and transmission of human knowledge, university is one of the best inventions of the Middle Ages. The Université catholique de Louvain has played a part in this process with pride since 1425. Just to cite a few: Erasmus, Vésale, Mercator and many others came to Louvain to profit from its location at the heart of Europe. Continue reading “UCL – where tradition meets the future”
My activity as a chessplayer has seen a steady decline in the past three years, due to overwhelming work obligations. To play in chess tournaments at a decent level, you not only need to be physically fit and well trained for the occasion, but also have your mind free from other thoughts. Alas, I have been failing miserably in the second and third of the above requirements. So I have essentially retired from competitive chess, and my only connection to the chess world is through the occasional 5-minute blitz game over the internet.
Recently a friend pointed me to a site, chess24.com, which has a rather nice interface. I soon started to play a few games per week there, realizing that my strength in quick games has not decreased that much. So I occasionally Continue reading “A Trivial Two-Mover”