Saturday, 30 June 2012

The Higgs is Prometheus

I would write something about the Higgs, but I feel entirely apathetic about it. It feels like a letdown after the buildup. Just like Prometheus. Too many spoilers released over too much time, and the final result is rather boring.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012


Check out some of the shit on today's arXiv (sorry, am in a bad mood and can't be bothered to pretend today that there aren't a great many things I utterly detest)
  1.  Let's redefine SI units!
    Why? Well... you know... science.

  2. Brian Josephson posts a fairly level-headed description of how other physicists have treated him like crap:
    Sadly, the paper ends up like a fish in a barrel:

    "My original assumption that scientists, being intelligent people, would have the ability to view experimental evidence and theoretical arguments objectively has been severely challenged"

    Well, if you had provided any experimental evidence at all, or a single scientific argument then people might have listened, but, well, you haven't, so, you know, blame where blame is due.

    "in the end, truth will prevail"
    Yeah, see above. It kind of has prevailed.  It turned out to be science. You noticed, right?

    *sound of gunshot*
    *floating fish*

  3. This is a beauty.
    Here's the abstract

    "If our universe has appeared in a result of Big Bang or something like this, whether we have reasons to deny an existence of other universes appearing by the same or similar way? An objection that there is no anything like it, is doubtful, because nobody knows: what could we observe in this case? A model of a multi-space universe with mutual coupling of spaces is being proposed and investigated"

    Here's a translation.

    Dude, if, like, the universe cam from like, nothing, shouldn't there be, like, other universes? That come from nothing like, all the time, even right now? I mean, we don't know that there isn't another universe. Just 'cos like, you know, the universe is like ... so far out, dude, it's like... everygthing, you know? But that doesn't mean there can't be, like, another everything, you know? Woah. Yeah. I mean, it could be like we're floating in this universe and the universe is like floating in another universe, you dig? Like we're all big cosmic floaters.... you know?

All of these were taken from today's

So what do we need viXra ( for, exactly ?

Friday, 1 June 2012

Poor Mansuripur.

I'm starting to feel a tiny bit sorry for Mansuripur. This could well turn into a "career ruined" story, or worse. I can imagine how I'd feel if there had now appeared four different comments on my work on the arxiv....

.... along with McDonald's rather more discrete refutal, see earlier posts.

So, Mansuripur, if you're reading this, keep your chin up.  Forget this little incident, stop trying to prove that Einstein was wrong, and focus on your optics, no pun intended. It will all be fine. People make mistakes, people will forget.

I don't think, by the way, that the reason there are so many comments coming out on this paper is that it's essentially wrong, or that it rediscovers a problem that was solved long ago, or that scientists feel a selfless, community serving need to correct mistakes in published papers so that they are not propagated into future research, no.

There are so many comments because everyone is trying to get a free PRL out of Mansuripur's cock up. That's how PRL works. You get a paper published, someone will write a comment on it. If you had sent the same paper to another journal, even to another high-impact letters journal like Phys Lett B (which, by the way, seems to have a much more human set of reviewers and editors than phys rev), no-one would care about writing a comment.

It's something very specific to PRL, it seems.

So, physicists, give it a rest. We know Mansuripur messed up, and we know Physical Review is never going to touch one of his papers ever again and that he's going to have to keep his future job applications restricted to those groups who don't know how to use four-vectors, but it's time to get on with something else. If the chap kills himself, it's on our heads.