I am dismayed by the plethora of null results coming out of my experiment, as well as from our friendly rivals, at the Large Hadron Collider.
Detail of image by Chris Wormell from “A Map of the Invisible”
Don’t get me wrong, null results are important and it is a strength of particle physics that we acknowledge this. Reporting only positive results is the most effective way to introduce bias and undermine science.
Although many theorists are dismayed because we have not so far turned up evidence for their ideas about extending the Standard Model – new particles, new forces and so on – that is not the source of my dismay either. I would be happy to see some of that, but nature will do its thing whatever my wishes might be. I get a kick from finding out what nature’s thing is, even if it is more Standard Model in places we have never measured before. If the Standard Model turns out to be isolated, that is important new information.
What does dismay me is the number of “search” papers we produce where the conclusion is “no evidence for XYZ-beyond-the-Standard-Model-thing, boo”, without quantifying the implied agreement with the Standard Model.
I’d say 2018 has been “mixed”, at best.
Read more at the Cosmic Shambles Network
Note added… maybe I was a bit too negative. At the air quality seems to actually be better now than recently, as can be seen in this post, to which Michael de Podesta drew my attention on twitter.
This gallery contains 15 photos.
Originally posted on AMVA4NewPhysics:
by Anna Stakia ? The AMVA4NewPhysics Network is already within its last part of operation, and soon its ESRs will be using the valuable knowledge and experience acquired throughout their participation in it at their…
Discussing Lucretius’ ideas and their relevance to life and physics today, with Naomi Alderman, for “Science Stories” on Radio 4. I learned a lot making and listening to this. Nice work.
Lucretius, Sheep and Atoms