29 August, 2010

About the light-green color

If (for some reason) you want people to remember your talk but don't remember any of results you've presented - just perform naked.

There is another, more conservative, option - use the light-green color on your slides.

26 August, 2010

How to plot spin-up and spin-down?

Nice figure with an energy levels diagram from one of the papers:

V.H. Kurreck, B. Kirste, W. Lubitz, Angew. Chem. 96, 171 (1984)

Thanks to Stasia Gonchar for passing it on to me.


25 August, 2010

Misconduct or not?

Imagine such a hypothetical situation. Someone is working in a research institution as a PhD student or a postdoc. She/he is very lazy and hires university students to analyze her/his experimental data, paying them as low-class workers. No one knows about that including the group leader, and names of these students never appear in articles neither among the authors nor in acknowledgements.

As for me, I think that this situation would make a case of misconduct, since it goes against such basic principles of research as openness and confidence.

What do you think?


18 August, 2010

Fritz London about BEC

A funny quote about Bose-Einstein Condensation (BEC) from Fritz London's article (Nature, 1938):

About the same time, Erwin Schrödinger explicitly said that BEC will never be realized experimentally, since required temperatures are way too low (I cannot find an exact quote, please tell me if you came across it somewhere!)

However, in 1995 BEC in dilute atomic gases was observed in a number of labs [1, 2, 3]. In 2001 Eric Cornell, Wolfgang Ketterle and Carl Wieman shared a Nobel prize for that.

Take care,


10 August, 2010

Schizophrenic Neutrinos

I had a fellow artist who was completely ignorant in sciences, but tried to make an impression that he "knows something" every now and then. Once he asked me:

- Do you know who is the greatest schizophrenic in the Universe?
- No, who?
- An electron. Know why?
- Why?
- Because he thinks that he is a wave and a particle at the same time!

Back then I found that funny, and I still would, if Igor Ivanov didn't share a link to the following preprint today:

R. Allahverdi, B. Dutta, R. N. Mohapatra "Schizophrenic Neutrinos and $\nu$-less Double Beta Decay"

The abstract starts as "We point out a novel possibility for neutrinos where all neutrino flavors can be part Dirac and part Majorana." :-)

Take care,


05 August, 2010