A Marie Sklodowska-Curie ITN funded by the Horizon2020 program of the European Commission



Fashionable researcher

by Greg Kotkowski

Usually, fashion and science are like the opposite sides of a magnet – if one is important then the other is left behind. Let us add up the odds and take some thoughts about the aspects of a PhD student’s physical appearance. It is quite peculiar that I mention this subject, because I don’t care much about my look. Specifically, let me mention hairdressing. Not the last trends, as I know absolutely nothing about the subject, but rather the problem of getting a haircut abroad. Continue reading “Fashionable researcher”

The Caves of Frasassi

by Tommaso Dorigo

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.

The hole was barely wide enough for a person to squeeze in, and it led down vertically into the mountain. The group descended it with difficulty for Continue reading “The Caves of Frasassi”

Staying at CERN

by Giles Strong

Bonjour! As I write, I’m three weeks into my month long secondment at CERN, near Geneva. CERN, home to the Large Hadron Collider, is the world’s largest particle-physics research centre. It is also the location of the CMS experiment, which I work on. Continue reading “Staying at CERN”

Efficiency revisited

by Giles Strong

Cover photo unrelated – it’s just some rad fractal broccoli.

Just over one and a half years ago I wrote a post on some of the tips and tricks I’d found useful in trying to organise myself and improve my efficiency. Searching for a post topic, it was suggested that I revisit this to compare how my workload and approaches have changed, so here goes! Continue reading “Efficiency revisited”

Multidimensional Scaling of National Holidays

by Greg Kotkowski

Living abroad brings a lot of experience and surprises. One of them is to enjoy countries’ diversity and customs for particular holidays that are not celebrated in the homeland. The other thing is when you discover on your calendar a vacation day due to some national event about which you had no idea. Another time, national vacations could bring troubles when it comes to cooperation between nodes in different countries. Continue reading “Multidimensional Scaling of National Holidays”

What if you want to get your analysis published?

by Pietro Vischia

I have spent the last few hours editing a paper for an analysis I have been working on with some colleagues in the last year, and I am so bored that I stopped for a few minutes to tell you how preparing a paper in a large experimental collaboration works. Continue reading “What if you want to get your analysis published?”

The power of conciseness

by Pietro Vischia

On this blog, I have 10 blog posts in a draft state; some of them are at a somehow advanced stage, some of them have only the title and a general outline of the topic.

Almost all of them have been sitting there for months. Why?

Well, it turns out I want to pack a lot of content in a single post. My past posts are average long, and I put quite some work into them. The issue starts when I begin to be submerged by various tasks, but it is not a matter of lack of time: it is a matter of motivation friction. Continue reading “The power of conciseness”

Marie Skłodowska-Curie: The scientist, the legacy, the grants

by Anna Stakia

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”

On acquiring skills – shu, ha, ri

by Giles Strong

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”

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