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Comment Re:Value of CERN (Score 1) 205

I would disagree on one point, that it was expected to find a Higgs boson, and nothing else new. This situation makes the hierarchy problem a real and serious thing. Most theories out there expect something new to appear near the weak scale, i.e. within reach of the LHC.
The beautiful thing about the diphoton excess which is now gone is that it was such a weakish-scale new physics signal nobody had been expecting. Alas.

Comment Re:Value of CERN (Score 4, Informative) 205

The CMS experiment which I am on - only one of the several LHC experiments - went to just this conference being mentioned with ~80 new analyses. These analyses are measurements of particle properties to a greater precision, or explorations of previously unknown territory. Many of these will later be turned into papers and add on the already >400 journal papers by our experiment. Even neglecting the Higgs boson discovery, the scientific output and acquired new knowledge from the LHC has already been immense.

Comment Anecdote from ICHEP 2014 (Score 1) 364

Last year I attended the ICHEP conference in Valencia, Spain, the largest and probably most important conference in the field of high-energy physics.

The keynote speaker, Francois Englert, noble prize physics 2013, couldn't come, and rather last minute Alan Guth from MIT was upgraded to that main talk. He's one of the fathers of ithe theory of inflation, and with the BICEP results around a fitting match for a keynote talk.

He gave an excellent first half of his talk. After that, he wandered into the multiverse, unfortunately. To me, and to many others, we had left physics, and entered philosophy. After the talk the question, which I have no doubt many had in mind, was readily asked: what about the experimental testability of it all. The answer was quite unsatisfactory, unfortunately.

Comment Re:Yes to Brexit (Score 0) 396

> The Eurozone nations have opted for a degree of financial integration that the UK doesn't want or need.
> Obviously that hasn't worked out very well recently, at least for the economically stronger EU nations.

You mean, it hasn't worked out well at all for the economically weaker, right? They are trapped in a system of expensive debt in hands of the richer out of which they can't devaluate themselves, since they share the same currency.

Comment "One cross each" (Score 1) 198

Coordinator: Crucifixion?
Mr. Cheeky: Er, no, freedom actually.
Coordinator: What?
Mr. Cheeky: Yeah, they said I hadn't done anything and I could go and live on an island somewhere.
Coordinator: Oh I say, that's very nice. Well, off you go then.
Mr. Cheeky: No, I'm just pulling your leg, it's crucifixion really.
Coordinator: [laughing] Oh yes, very good. Well...
Mr. Cheeky: Yes I know, out of the door, one cross each, line on the left.

Comment Re:I got a butt chewing for giving my daughter hon (Score 1) 243

This has nothing to do with allergies. You don't feed babies honey to avoid the very rare cases where it actually causes immediate problems. After a year it is perfectly fine.
It's like some of the things that are excluded while being pregnant (cats, game meat,...), just a precaution for the possible rare, but severe consequences of an unwanted contamination.

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