Wednesday, August 31, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Nir Shaviv: The CLOUD is clearing

Guest blog by Prof Nir Shaviv (HUJI), a top expert in cosmoclimatology

Reprinted from with author's permission

The CLOUD collaboration from CERN finally had their results published in Nature (TRF, full PDF), showing that ionization increases the nucleation rate of condensation nuclei. The results are very beautiful and they demonstrate, yet again, how cosmic rays (which govern the amount of atmospheric ionization) can in principle have an effect on climate.

What do I mean? First, it is well known that solar variability has a large effect on climate. In fact, the effect can be quantified and shown to be 6 to 7 times larger than one could naively expect from just changes in the total solar irradiance. This was shown by using the oceans as a huge calorimeter (e.g., as described here). Namely, an amplification mechanism must be operating.

One mechanism which was suggested, and which now has ample evidence supporting it, is that of solar modulation of the cosmic ray flux (CRF), known to govern the amount of atmospheric ionization. This in turn modifies the formation of cloud condensation nuclei, thereby changing the cloud characteristics (e.g. their reflectivity and lifetime). For a few year old summary, take a look here.

Coldest summer in 20 years or so

I've noticed that many Americans - members of the nation that dominates TRF visits - tend to extrapolate the events in the U.S. to the whole globe. And because the U.S. has seen a pretty warm weather, many people think that the Northern Hemisphere has experienced a warm summer.

Well, it's not the case.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Hurricane Irene and hype

Hurricane Irene (2011) has killed something like 47 people. Sad. Is that a lot?

NASA's GISS picture of the Earth on August 27th. Can you find Irene? Click to zoom in. Via Andrew Revkin

Google News coughs up 117,000 articles in English with the phrase "hurricane Irene" in them. That's something like 2,500 article per casualty. Wow.

Patrick Michaels wrote a Forbes article called

Get Real: Hurricane Irene Should Be Renamed "Hurricane Hype"
It also included the sentence
It is doubtful that Irene will even cough up eight bodies.
which was an underestimate by a factor of six and WUWT found it insensitive enough so that Pat Michaels was placed right next to Al Gore who said that climate skeptics will be viewed on par with racists (such as Gore's father). ;-)

Egypt vs bikini and Sphinx

It's been more than half a year since the revolts in Egypt and the direction which the country is taking doesn't look pretty.

Hosni Mobarak, a guarantor of relative decency in the country, was sacrificed by the confused West and the forces that your humble correspondent and others expected to be getting stronger are getting stronger, indeed. Of course that some people who just want to have some fun via Facebook and who have no idea what they're doing and why they're doing it aren't going to be those who decide about the fate of a country.

Since the beginning of the turbulent 2011 events in the Arab world, I was offended by the comparisons of the "Arab Spring" to the Prague Spring and the fall of communism. What do these mindless brainwashed revolting savages have to do with the ideals of freedom and humanism that energized the anti-communist revolutions in Central and Eastern Europe?

I finally realized that all the compliments that generic people in the West had said about the Velvet Revolution were just irrelevant babbling I should have completely ignored those 20 years ago because they're ready to say the same things about events that go almost exactly in the opposite direction.

There will be presidential elections in Egypt in September and Parliamentary elections in October. International observers were banned by Egypt; that itself doesn't look too promising. It seems that roughly one half of the votes will go to the Muslim Brotherhood and another Islamic group, the Salafi group, that is even more radical. The Muslim Brotherhood presents itself under the ironic brand "Freedom and Justice Party". Funny. But not much.

Bátoriad: how political correctness threatened Czech government

Mr Ladislav Bátora is a conservative man. In the past, he was a candidate in some elections backed by a nationalist party. In February 2011, he was supposed to become the deputy minister of education. A couple of politically correct Czechs started to scream.

President Václav Klaus defended Mr Bátora against the politically correct witch hunts. In that article, you may also learn about Bátora's opinions about many things in life, politics, and culture. You won't have doubts that he's more conservative than your humble correspondent, especially when it comes to music, food, and other things. ;-) He may also have a diametrically opposite opinion about Israel, and so on.

I agree with many things he says and disagree with others. But make no doubts about it: when I arrived to the Prague Castle on president's 70th birthday two months ago (well, I was running for a few miles in the heat, you know the story), I found it appropriate to shake his hand.

Monday, August 29, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

String phenomenology 2011: Gordon Kane

Francis Emule News (Spanish) direct our attention to a very interesting conference that took place in Madison, Wisconsin last week:

String Phenomenology 2011 (talks)
There are many interesting talks in heterotic string theory model building, F-theory model building (which became dominant these days, partly because it was absent as recently as a decade ago: there are lots of entries about it on TRF), and some type IIA string theory quivers. You learn about SUSY in the early Universe, exophobia, leptophobia, other manias, mu-problem and the proton decay, robust stringy electroweak similar breaking, and so on.

The composition of the topics suggests that this sub-discipline of string theory is very healthy these days. The mathematically rich features of the theories rooted in actual detailed observed properties of particle physics are the central players once again. In particular, there seems to be no anthropic metaphysics and dogmatic egalitarianism or mediocrity on these conferences anymore.

Every proper American capital has a Capitol. I have only seen those in D.C. and Austin.

Together with Francis, however, I will choose the singular \(G_2\) holonomy manifolds compactifications of M-theory - the second newest player in stringy phenomenology that was added around 2000 in papers by Witten and others.

Sunday, August 28, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

CLOUD: 1 nm aerosol particles increased 10-fold by cosmic rays

DOWNLOAD THE FULL PAPER (someone posted it on the Internet)

Let me add this CERN video - which is nice except that it doesn't mention the name of Henrik Svensmark or anything else that was actually critical for these experiments to be done - such as the actual theory that underlies them.

If you don't see any video above, go to this CERN press release or the page with the video.

Originally posted 3.5 days ago, on Wednesday night

On Thursday, I spent lots of time by watching soccer and the related social activities. On Thursday morning, it turned out that there are many issues about the CLOUD experiment and the related reports that are just too distasteful for my stomach that can't deal with everything. But I have already quick-read the CLOUD article and other sources. You may already discuss about the topic here.

See CERN press release, Physics World, BBC, Nature (popular review), Nature (technical paid paper), Google News, Blog Search, Nigel Calder, WUWT, Nude Socialist (a super-insane title), GWPF, and George Soros so far.

Saturday, August 27, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Supersymmetry and irrationality of the BBC

The BBC has placed supersymmetry next to the carbon dioxide and the AGW "deniers" as the ultimate enemies of Gaia. A would-be journalist, Mr Pallab Ghosh, chose this title:

LHC results put supersymmetry theory 'on the spot'
Oh my Ghosh. ;-) Kilotons of simpletons who have copied this stuff from the BBC have overwhelmed my Twitter Watch Google Chrome extension.

The reality is that after 2/fb or so (pronounce: "two inverse femtobarns") that have been analyzed by each major detector of the LHC, no sign of new physics has been detected. It's still a beginning of the experiment and the total number of collisions inside the LHC will grow by orders of magnitude and the energy will be doubled, too. Each year of operation will have a comparable to chance to find something new as the first year. Or just a little bit smaller.

It's because the total amount of energy deposited in the final products of the LHC inelastic collisions is growing more or less exponentially and new physics has a pretty much uniform chance to emerge at the logarithmic energy scale.

It's the beginning but the LHC has already falsified many particular models with new phenomena predicted below 1 TeV or so - or, more precisely, with new phenomena visible in the first two inverse femtobarns. There have been lots of papers talking about possible observations in this region because many people liked things "behind the corner" that could have been a recipe for a quick journey to fame. It didn't work. ;-)

The experiments have surely not "punished" supersymmetry more than any other bottom-up theory even though many ignorant and deluded laymen such as Mr Ghosh are self-evidently obsessed with this utter misconception.

Particle physicists must retake the vacuum selection problem

Vacuum selection is a short-distance problem and cosmologists' buttocks should be kicked out of this serious business

Alexander Vilenkin released a new paper,

The Principle of Mediocrity,
based on a lecture he gave in April. I don't want to spend too much time with this flawed mode of reasoning (see the landscape category of TRF) but because Vilenkin's paper was what has made me to write this not-quite-short text in the first place, I have to spend some time with it.
Off-topic: Edward Witten celebrates 60th birthday today (originally posted on Friday): congratulations! See 70 minutes of strings with Witten and other Witten articles for a recent coverage of this eminent theoretical physicist.
The dominant theme of the anthropic reasoning - or, more precisely, the anthropic absence of reasoning - is that its proponents are mediocre people and they suppose that almost the whole Universe has to be composed of mediocre observers, too. ;-) For example, 97% of corrupt climate scientists on the Earth are climate alarmists. So, the anthropic reasoning goes, most of the extraterrestrial aliens have to be climate alarmists as well for us to be average and mediocre.

It follows that the extraterrestrial aliens will attack our planet because of the rising CO2 concentrations they are observing. (Of course, the inconvenient truth that in reality, environmentalism represents a lethal tumor for every civilization that has ambitious goals in space has to be overlooked.)

Friday, August 26, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Al Gore: donate your online accounts to my spam network

Al Gore has invented the Internet - well, at least the part of the Internet that plans to spam the rest of the Internet by the information about an exploding Earth on September 14th, 2011 during his virtual reality day:

Gore asks supporters to donate Twitter & Facebook accounts to climate campaign (Big Think)
Nigeria's CO2 emissions are negligible but the country is already tremendously suffering from the millions of degrees of warming caused by the American incandescent light bulbs. So all the people who agree that the climate is in danger should think twice before they delete their next e-mail they will surely receive from Nigeria.

Chances are that the holy prophet, Al Gore, is behind them. He needs you! If you want to fight against the deniers of the climate change and the contrarians, you should send all your money to the banking accounts listed in these e-mails. After you empty your banking account, you should send your username and password to Al Gore, log out, and pray that the Earth shall be saved.

This ingenious version of a good virus, an Earthsaver (not to be confused with a screensaver) known as the "do it yourself virus", was programmed by Al Gore, too. The code uses the most modern Al Gore rhythms.

MINOS: neutrino-antineutrino mass difference evaporates

A week ago, I linked to a video about the CERN's ASACUSA experiment that showed that the proton and antiproton masses coincide at the precision of 1 part per billion.

The MINOS detector in Minnesota, to be discussed momentarily

The CPT-symmetry which is implied by quantum field theory - and which may be viewed as a consequence of the Lorentz symmetry because it is a kind of "rotating of spacetime by \(\pi\)" - ensures that the masses of particles and antiparticles have to be exactly equal.

House GOP may finally remove U.S. funding for AGW freeloaders

Solve Climate News informs the readers that Rep. Connie Mack (R-Fla) has introduced the motion to search and destroy the financial flows from the U.S. federal budget to the wallets of AGW parasites and fraudsters.

The idea is that they will look for the "climate change" keyword and ax any line items with this keyword.

Charles Monnett returned to work, stripped of political power

The Associated Press and others inform that polar bear researcher Charles Monnett has been allowed to work but he won't be able to influence contracts anymore.

Thursday, August 25, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

McDonald's and the beauty of Swedish farms

When my compatriots watch this McDonald's commercial about the beauties of the Swedish farming, something doesn't look quite right. In fact, it looks too familiar.

McDonald's didn't experience a good enough weather so they had to move to the South a little bit. And they ended in a very typical piece of the Czech countryside. ;-)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

S&P upgrades Czechia by two notches

Pilsen-Copenhagen soccer tonight

Just to be sure that Standard & Poor's is not a grumpy agency that sees everything through pessimist's glasses, the agency has upgraded two key ratings for the Czech Republic by two notches today.

The long-term foreign currency debt went from A to AA- which is on par with Japan and China, the fourth best rating. Less importantly, the long-term domestic currency debt went from A+ to AA.

But of course, the capital of Czechia isn't Prague today. It's Pilsen. A big part of the nation talks about my hometown; the radio stations have special polls in which they ask the people when they visited Pilsen for the last time, and so on.

John Cook will receive lots of money for climate propaganda

John Cook, a prolific hardcore crackpot and one of the numerous tiny Internet-based stalking appendices of your humble correspondent will share AUD $240,000 for his climate propaganda:

Eureka moment for leading climate change communicator
This guy has no clue about the climate science or atmospheric physics but he has gained some notoriety for his mass production of talking points meant to spread the climate panic and produce doubts about well-established scientific insights that show that there is no reason to be worried about climate change.

His newest list of the talking points claims that 166 independent quantities describing the climate have the uniformly right sign that suggest that the catastrophe is coming and worse than previously thought. The probability that 166 independent signs agree is 1/2^165 but Cook still claims that this coincidence does hold in the real world. ;-)

Everyone who fails to see that Cook is full of **it must be a complete idiot.

Higgs search: neither fish nor fowl

My "live report" from Lepton-Photon 2011 in Bombay ended up being somewhat unreadable, missing the big picture: that's what often happens with texts in which you don't know in advance what the final product will look like.

So let me summarize: the LHC has still found no evidence for any new physics or any Higgs and the previous hints for a 140 GeV Higgs boson that we had in July have actually weakened. If you assume that the Higgs sector is governed by the Standard Model, this graph by Phil Gibbs shows our "neither fish nor fowl" situation pretty clearly.

Click to zoom in.

By the way, the proper saying should be "neither fish nor crayfish" ("ani ryba ani rak" in Czech) but the Englishmen probably failed to distinguish poultry and crayfish.

The red line "0" means "predictions of a theory without any Higgs" while the green line "1" means "predictions of a theory with a SM Higgs boson of the mass given on the \(x\)-axis". The key question is whether the observed black curve is closer to the red line (no Higgs) or the green line (one Higgs). The error margins, plus minus 1 and 2 standard deviations, are given by the dark blue and light blue strips, respectively.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

DSK via geology: don't mess up with IMF

Some lawyers tried to start a lawsuit against the ex-boss of the International Monetary Fund.

They have ignored the global influence of the IMF. The word "global" is related to "globe" and one of the things that the globe is able to do are earthquakes, such as the fresh magnitude 5.9 earthquake in Virginia. DSK is subtly trying to tell them: don't mess up with me. ;-)

Once more: gravity is not an entropic force

Archil Kobakhidze of the University of Melbourne (where my uncle has taught maths since the late 1960s) released his new paper on the arXiv,

Once more: gravity is not an entropic force
He repeats and refines his arguments from his September 2010 paper, Gravity is not an entropic force (Phys Rev D 83, 2011), and he kindly cites your humble correspondent's January 2010 blog entry, Why gravity can't be entropic, as the first source of the argument that an entropic force predicts the disappearance of interference patterns that are however beautifully seen in neutron interferometry (see e.g. Nesvizhevsky et al. in Nature 2002: PDF free for a recent paper in this research direction that began in the mid 1970s: PDF) - a point that Kobakhidze (as far as I know) realized independently of me.

La Nina conditions seem to be returning

Recall that we had an El Nino in 2009/10 - which helped to make 2010 a warm year. Then we had a La Nina in 2010/11 - which is helping to make 2011 a cooler year. But there's no law that would say that El Ninos and La Ninas have to alternate.

Click to zoom in.

So it actually looks more likely than not right now that there will be another La Nina episode. See the weekly ENSO report by NOAA.

Sunday, August 21, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Lepton-Photon 2011: Higgs results

New: The live webcast from the Bombay conference is on this page. The schedule is here. The Higgs talks were delivered now on Monday early morning, Prague Summer Time (they're over by now). Check the current time in Bombay: yes, it differs from your time by an odd multiple of 30 minutes. ;-)

The fresh new ATLAS Higgs plots: click to zoom in.

After the Higgs talks: In general, the previous Higgs signals have weakened. Some more details: A 35-minute introductory theoretical talk on the Higgs physics was followed by three 20-minute talks by ATLAS, CMS, and Tevatron. ATLAS - see their fresh new Higgs press release - excluded everything at the 95% level except for 114-146 GeV, 232-256 GeV, 282-296 GeV, and above 466 GeV. No new details about the preferred masses inside these intervals, despite 2/fb of data in some channels.

Czech koruna as another Swiss franc

According to Record PLC, a London-based currency manager overseeing $31 billion, the Czech crown (CZK or Kč in Czech) may supplement (if not replace) the Swiss franc (CHF, Corporation Helvetia Franc) as the top safe haven currency:

Bloomberg, Business Insider, San Francisco Chronicle

CNBC: Czech Republic, Switzerland of Eastern Europe (new!)

Bloomberg: Czech Market Is New Haven on Low Debt, Stable Koruna, CNBC Says (echo)
Well, they eliminated other currencies whose financial systems suffer from large debt or other problems; and those that don't but the currencies are already overvalued "to the limit". (The much stronger CHF relatively to USD is an unpleasant detail for the Americans working at CERN.)

Of course, the strengthening of CZK since 2000 has already been huge. The USD/CZK exchange rate went from the record high above CZK 44 per USD in 2000 or 2001 to the low point around 14.5 in 2008 (factor of 3 change: very bad for people like your humble correspondent) but it stabilized near 17 in recent years.

A CZK 50 (now: USD 3) coin

During the recent recession, the Czech crown was mindlessly treated as a risky form of investment (it dropped whenever people were more nervous) - a point I found crazy because the Czech economy has been immune against the financial risks - collapsing banks or other companies - and it is also going to be safe for some decades against the sovereign defaults - the public debt is 40% of the GDP.

The traders have learned a lesson and during the recent hysteria, the EUR/CZK exchange rate no longer reacts to the hysteria, at least not dramatically. But I still agree with Record PLC that it should react oppositely because CZK is a safer haven than EUR.

Saturday, August 20, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Sharks join aliens in their bloody fight against AGW

Yesterday, we learned that Al Gore's extraterrestrial environmentalist pals are preparing a friendly but lethal attack against the Earth in which they will annihilate us.

Some heretics have expressed doubts about the aliens' capacity to resuscitate the Kyoto protocols and cap-and-trade bills. However, during the last 24 hours, aliens have built a broader coalition - The Axis of Blood and Gore - that has started the war on humans, the main culprits responsible for the global warming in the Milky Way.

As AFP and Discovery News tell us today,

Humans may be to blame for shark attacks

Air travel, overfishing and global warming are all seen as contributing to the uptick in shark attacks.
Much like the little green men, sharks are also carefully observing the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere. It goes up by nearly 2 ppm every year so the sharks determined that the rise of CO2 is due to humans, it could cause global warming, and they decided to increase their attacks against the humans. Sharks are smart enough not to be fooled by the constant or dropping temperatures of the seawater. They know that global warming is real despite the non-increasing temperatures. The consensus is stronger than any thermometers: 197% of the experts agree that the global warming doomsday is coming.

Every good environmentalist should support our friends sharks so that they kill as many CO2 emitters - especially the pilots, CEOs of Big Oil companies, and fishers - as possible.

Unity and uniqueness of string theory became a heresy

At the beginning of the year, I was kind of amazed by the quality of Physics Stack Exchange. There were actual experts over there and meritocracy mostly worked worked. So I have also answered 661 questions and became the highest-score user on that server.

But sometimes in Spring, I couldn't overlook that the percentage of extremely stupid questions and bad answers was dramatically increasing. This inevitably had to mean that the professional physicists would leave because the environment was becoming low-brow, marginally hostile, and visits became a waste of time. And they did leave. So did I.

Friday, August 19, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

CO2, AGW makes animals disoriented, move to North

And aliens came to exterminate the deniers

The media interest in global warming has dropped to about 1/3 of the peak traffic we saw around early 2007.

The people's desire to search for global warming has decreased to 1/6 of what it was at the beginning of 2007.

An off-topic boasting: John Cook has included your humble correspondent among the 18 best climatologists in the world. Thanks, John.
However, the graph I just linked to also shows that "climate change" - which has been a preferred term by the media but still remains a loser (relatively to "global warming") among the Internet users who make searches (that includes your humble correspondent) - has been pretty stable since 2004 and is catching up with "global warming" among the Internet users.

Despite this gradual demise of the global warming hysteria in the broader society, there are still way too many insane articles in the newspapers about the hypothetical effects of carbon dioxide and/or warming on everything in the world.

Thursday, August 18, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Eurozone government and financial transaction tax

Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy are going through another wave of their radical inventions and assorted ideas in order to show how creative and ingenious they are. To stabilize the fiscal discipline of the eurozone member countries, they have proposed a genuine eurozone government. Or an economic government.

The Guardian is working hard to deny the reports that Merkel and Sarkozy are building The Fourth Reich.

It would have a meeting twice a year or more often, as needed. The boss of this European government would be a Gentleman whom you have probably never heard of but he has been the President of Europe for more than a year: Van Rumpuy. His neutral and invisible image is meant to make the new institution look impartial and international.

The rank-and-file members would be Sarkozy, Merkel, and to make it look even more international and democratic, also the heads of state - whatever it means - from all member countries of the eurozone (which fortunately don't include Czechia). Their names are not important. :-)

Lindzen-Choi 2011 published

WUWT brings us some good news and the final version of the Lindzen-Choi 2011 article published in the Asia-Pacific Journal of Atmospheric Sciences:

On the Observational Determination of Climate Sensitivity and Its Implications (full text PDF)
This is an updated version of their 2009 article - so the basic strategy was kept.

Tge ERBE satellite

However, the 2009 article was criticized not only via bogus pseudo-arguments emitted by the folks who didn't like the results but also by numerous legitimate observations.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

SciAm, Gavin Schmidt despise climate facts

Scientific American, one of the most ideological and most persistent defenders of the dying climate alarm, has decided that John Cook's memes-vs-slogans format of presenting the climate orthodoxy is the most efficient format that alarmists have ever invented - despite the fact that John Cook is just a former candidate to become a student of physics. Cook has been more successful - at least in his attempts to indicate that some climate alarmists are interested in science - than An Inconvenient Truth and 10:10 No Pressure combined.

So they borrowed their closest "expert" hired gun denier of the fact that the climate nonsense is sinking and approaching the bottom of the sea - glob glob glob - and decided to "fight" against important facts presented by the Australia-based Galileo Movement in a booklet:

Why Carbon Dioxide Is a Greenhouse Gas (Gavin)

See also: 'Galileo Movement' Fuels Climate Change Divide in Australia (SciAm)
Nicely enough, at the beginning, Gavin Schmidt admits that every single fact presented by the Galileo Movement is true (at the end he tries to contradict himself a little bit but he fails). However, while he tries to explain that these inconvenient facts are "irrelevant", he says a lots of things that are unfortunately untrue and many other things where his bias is flagrantly obvious.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

FC Copenhagen 1-3 FC Victoria Pilsen

Tonight, FC Victoria Pilsen was the only team that won on a hostile stadium.

Australia: convoy of no confidence

The people of Australia had been annoyed by the pissing contests between Melbourne and Sydney - both of which had the potential to become the capital of the continent - so they built Canberra as a compromise.

Meanwhile, a completely new political species has evolved in Canberra - and many other nations know a similar species. This new species is always convinced that it may extract another percent and another percent of the people's wealth from their wallets and no one will be hurt - because the new species won't be hurt due to its detachment from the reality and the real economy.

In fact, the more money is stolen from the people's wallets, the better off the new species - e.g. Miss Potato - is.

Monday, August 15, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

PBS: The Fabric of the Cosmos

Brian Greene's first popular book, The Elegant Universe, has been a bestseller and PBS/NOVA shot a $3.5 million TV program with the same name.

His second popular book, The Fabric of the Cosmos, was also successful. So a natural next step is to shoot a PBS/NOVA program with the same name!

It will first be aired on November 2nd; three other episodes will be aired on 9th, 16th, and 23rd.

Sunday, August 14, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Ex-alarmist Pawlenty ends presidential campaign

In the morning, I suffered from one of my bad habits - visiting the blog of Capitalist Imperialist Pig, something that I have done many times since the first moments when the anonymous far left alarmist anti-string New Mexico professor began to attack your humble correspondent on a regular basis.

Saturday, August 13, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Thorium nuclear power plant in your car

Update: Anthony is telling me that a story about the Tucker cars at the end of his blog entry shows that he reposted the report about the thorium cars as a kind of satire, and I kind of believe him after some e-mail exchanges, even though I am sure that he understands that it was very likely for me (and others) to miss this "detail". ;-)
Anthony Watts' blog has become the world's most progressive website that promotes alternative, carbon-free energy sources of the future. And when I say "alternative", I mean really, really alternative! :-)

Ford Nucleon, a 1958 prototype, an inspiration for the project discussed below

After Andrea Rossi's cold fusion, we learn about a new breakthrough:
Hey – how much Thorium you got under the hood? (WUWT)

U.S. Researcher Preparing Prototype Cars Powered by Heavy-Metal Thorium (Wards Auto)

Google News (about eight articles)

First Prague "gay pride"

The second largest city of Czechia, Brno, has already survived its first "gay pride" (even though it did lead to some battles). However, today's happening was the first time when the march came to the Czech capital.

Friday, August 12, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Rationalism vs empiricism

Sean Carroll reasonably discusses the tension between "rationalism" and "empiricism".

These are two competing philosophical paradigms when it comes to the question what we need to acquire new knowledge. "Rationalism" (not to be confused with "rationality") says that we may find out the truth about the world "by pure thought"; "empiricism" says that we may only do so by constant "observations".

Before the Scientific Revolution, "rationalism" would be popular among the educated elites - various Greek philosophers and those who worshiped them later (including thinkers associated with the Church). "Empiricism" is mainly associated with the scientific revolutionaries themselves.

Bill Clinton announces: LHC just found a TOE!

Prof Willian Jefferson Clinton, one of the greatest scientists alive (see his 15,000 papers) and the U.N. special envoy to Haiti, gave an important talk in Davos earlier this year. It contains some spectacular news about science. Among other things, it explains that Bill Clinton's administration didn't stop the SSC.

Things might be different than you thought.

To say the least, Prof Bill Clinton proves that he has become a top expert in particle physics - much like his vice-president became a top expert in geology and climatology.

Press PLAY, omit the bulk of the talk about the world economy (and the carbon tax at the end), and switch to 52:50 or so, near the end of the talk. The gems of the talk are hiding in his answer to the last question "how the next 10 years of Prof Clinton will look like": they will be all about science (except for his wish to be alive and to be a grandfather).

RSS AMSU, Jan-Jul: 2011 second coldest in this century

According to RSS AMSU, the first 7 months were the 2nd coldest January-July period in this century so far (second among 11 candidate years).

Thursday, August 11, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Monnett may have sent $1m to Derocher for a review

As long-term TRF readers know, Andrew Derocher - a Canadian polar bear researcher - is an immoral jerk and one of the most aggressive members of the eco-Gestapo.

In October 2009, he wrote a letter to Mitchell Taylor in which he disinvited Taylor from a polar bear conference, openly saying that it was because Taylor's knowledge about the climate wasn't convenient for the organized global warming propaganda.

Before 2011, I didn't know much about Charles Monnett (see the text about the recent investigation). However, the Science Magazine finally links these two men in a meaningful way and brings us something that looks like a "tangible" accusation:

Senator Inhofe Has Questions About Polar Bear Researcher Charles Monnett
One of the hypotheses they're investigating is that Charles Monnett has directed $1 million to Andrew Derocher as a payment for a positive review of Monnett's paper that Derocher wrote.

BaBar: evidence for a charged Higgs boson

During the recent EPS-HEP 2011 conference in Grenoble, almost all particle physics viewers focused on the energy frontier i.e. the "Higgs and New Physics" category of the talks.

But it could have been a mistake for us to completely ignore other groups. For example "Flavor and Symmetries". A few hours ago, the Symmetry Magazine published an intriguing article by Lori Ann White:

Will the real Higgs boson please stand up?
This text about slim shady has led me to find the following talk by Manuel Franco Sevilla of SLAC's BaBar:

CO₂ and ice-free Arctic Summer 2100

In recent 3 days, Andrew Revkin has pleased many climate skeptics by his opinions about the Arctic climate and ecosystems:

On Arctic Ice and Warmth, Past and Future

A Debate on Death Spirals and Arctic Resilience
Building on many recent papers that showed significant variations in the Arctic climate in the past (safely exceeding the recent changes), Revkin decided that there's no reason to be afraid of the Arctic ecosystems because they have survived similar or more dramatic changes in the past. I agree.

Swimming and getting some suntan in the warming Arctic

Nevertheless, I am probably going to repay debt to Revkin, shock some skeptics, and please by alarmists by this following opinion of mine:

Wednesday, August 10, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Limbaugh, Colbert, and feels like heat index

Steve Colbert did his best to defend the heat index. It was pretty funny. The video clip below contains an assault against thermodynamics - Steve Colbert does the very same thing as Sean Carroll except that the latter one isn't joking. ;-)

We learn that Rush Limbaugh, a part-time weather balloon, has complained about the heat index and the decision by some media to present it as a real temperature. The Big Government tries to make itself even bigger by announcing bigger temperatures.

QTS7 conference

I just returned from an afternoon, evening, and late evening at Quantum Theories and Symmetries 7, a massive theoretical physics conference in Prague.

Martin Schnabl et al. have invited about 400 participants and 350 of them or so are giving a talk in this week. I attended about five of them - and then a dinner (which grew from a planned session of 2-3 people to a collective physicists' event) in a needlessly expensive classical Czech-style restaurant in a basement. The prices of food went up to $400 (even though this one was some animal for 10 people) and they were so expensive exactly because the place attempts to mimic the cheapest Czech pubs where the prices are more than an order of magnitude lower, in some cases. ;-) I prefer the original ones.

The participants understood that Andy Strominger's talk on the map between Einstein and Navier-Stokes equations was a luxurious event at the conference so the large hall (at the Nuclear and Physical Engineering Faculty of the Czech Technical University) was overcrowded when he spoke.

Monday, August 08, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

A lecture on the acceptability of Al G*re

Here is a nice lecture about the most advanced questions of contemporary climatology that a famous speaker gave in Colorado last Thursday.

If you want to hear 24 minutes of similar stuff, check the 2nd audio on this page. He discusses the best and most economical ways to spread propaganda - "shared consciousness" and "shared reality" - from the era of Gutenberg to Al-Jazeerah and online services. One of his plans is to import the Arab Spring to America and ignite the American Spring, and he may start this revolution on Facebook and Google Maps. ;-) Particle physicists will be interested in his discussion of the Standard Model (some economics) near 7:00. ;-) As an expert neuroscientist, he then discusses which parts of the brain is most susceptible to the commercials. Then he analyzes whether Saddam Hussein piloted the airplanes hitting WTC on 9/11. He compares the degree of "shared reality" and "tribalism" in different types of the media and decides that the truth is bought for the money - he surely lived according to this recipe. In the last 130 seconds, he talks about the tobacco misinformation campaigns, praises Naomi Oreskes, and the obscene segment about the climate skeptics above follows at the end.

The most hardcore listeners may found 90 minutes of the Al Gore talk here.

Al G*re analyzes whether he is still acceptable in polite company and the outcome is not excessively encouraging. As you can hear, he offers his thoughts to his allied audience in a very calm, rational way, and he literally floods the listeners with new data, crisp and coherent theories, and his brilliant and impartial reasoning in general.

The Pagan Queen (2009)

Very recently, I realized - because of some URLs of pages that people visit - that in 2007, I promoted a U.S. movie about the prophet Libuše, one of the legendary founders of the Czech nation. But I have never seen the movie! (Wikipedia...)

In 2009, the movie received catastrophic ratings in Czechia - between 0% (from the movie critic named Fucksoft) and 20%.

You know, it presents a fraction of the ancient Czech legends - stories about the roots of the Czech nation on this territory from the 8th century or so - and for more than a century, the Czechs have been taught the rather sterile but the "only right" version of these legends as interpreted by Alois Jirásek, a nationalist novelist, so many people were simply offended that some of the celebrated characters were savages, environmentalists, lesbians, or even feminists. And the conservative atheist Czech viewers (and especially critics) didn't even like the Pagan religions that penetrate the movie.

Klaus: America clearly showed it doesn't want to tighten the belt

Published in "Hospodářské noviny" (an economics-oriented daily), August 8th, 2011. Via, Czech president's personal website.

May a bill save a country from bankruptcy?

Initially I didn't want to express my opinions about the U.S. debt because I don't want to use the language of an independent analyst to judge the most powerful, and moreover our allied, country in the world. However, I heard a host in the morning radio news who said that Obama, when he signed the bill about the increase of the debt ceiling, saved the U.S. from default. Such a statement deserves a few comments.

Sunday, August 07, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Moon may be an amalgam of two moons

Just a link.

The near side and the far side of the Moon look very different - something people have known from the beginning of the space age.

Why the left-wing Obama bashers are jerks

In recent months and especially weeks, the radical leftists in the U.S. became fond of bashing Barack Obama. And I surely don't mean just Al Gore who is "disappointed" that Obama doesn't actively spread Gore's lies about the Climate Armageddon anymore.

I mean all kinds of leftists who complain that Barack Obama hasn't said what they wanted him to say, and so on. For example, here is an outrageous Marxist diatribe that a communist and socialist swine, pretending to be a capitalist and imperialist pig, wrote for Obama as a speech of his dreams.

Svante Arrhenius on perfect children

In 1896, chemist Svante Arrhenius of Sweden became the father of global warming, the grandfather of climate change, and great grandfather of the climate disruption when he proposed a quantitative relationship between the concentration of carbon dioxide and temperatures.

By the way, using a modern language, his value of the climate sensitivity was around 5 °C, close to the insane upper end of the alarmist spectrum.

The advocates of global warming panic want to protect the world for children so that they may still grow in the future. As this Thursday June 13th, 1912 article in "Kilmore Free Press" shows, Svante Arrhenius had the same goal as his followers. And he has actually done something to achieve this goal. Or at least he thought that he had.

His strategy involved electricity, the "force of life", and if you decide that Arrhenius was presenting himself as anything else than a crank, the article I retyped below may also explain why the the Swedes are so tall and rather smart these days. ;-)

Growth of Children Perfected by Electricity (1912)

A remarkable experiment has been carried out in one of the public schools of Stockholm, whereby the mental and physical growth of children has been greatly stimulated by electricity.

Saturday, August 06, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Man who cut his throat: I will go nuts because of the heat wave

Via Centennial Courier
August 2nd and 3rd, 1911: While the contemporaries are "driven up the wall" because of the rainy Summer, one hundred years ago people were dying because of genuine seizures caused by the neverending heat waves.

Steam battleship Thunderer where a stoker went nuts on August 3rd, 1911.

RIP: Standard & Poor's AAA rating of U.S. bonds (1917-2011)

In November 1917, the Bolsheviks ignited their October Revolution and overtook Russia. They were ultimately successful despite the attempts of some forces that tried to stop them.

Czechoslovak Legions grabbed about one-half of Siberia. Here they proudly pose above some hunted down Bolsheviks in Vladivostok: picture roughly from 1917, too. But maybe it's 1920 - departure from Vladivostok.

Well, the Soviet Union and communism didn't last forever. They began to quickly disintegrate about 20 years ago.

Friday, August 05, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Andrea Rossi and cold fusion

There are lots of interesting articles on Anthony Watts' blog but when I saw the text by Ric Werme

Andrea Rossi’s E-cat fusion device on target
and noticed that it has a perfect, 5-star rating, I had to tell myself: holy cow! Do the skeptics really abandon 100% of their skepticism in order to believe this self-evident garbage? Is it just because there's not a lot of publicity about this "technology" (so far)? Well, it may change.

It's being claimed that you may buy a cold fusion power plant sometime next year. You will receive a simple low-energy gadget. It has some hydrogen and nickel in it, and some electricity. So it doesn't differ from an NiMH battery so much.

Here a miracle occurs. You surely don't want to be annoyed by some technical details, do you? It's enough to trust the ingenious experts who invented - despite the disbelief of the physicists - a free energy source for you. Just for most technically inclined readers, here is the detailed engineering scheme of the new device:

A schematic diagram of the 2011 commercial perpetual motion cold fusion thermonuclear reactor.

And now, while emitting some - surely harmless - beta rays, neutrinos, and gamma rays, you have turned your nickel into copper (unfortunately not gold) while getting 1 megawatt of energy along the way. There's apparently nothing problematic about it and WUWT readers just vote that it is a 5 stars project. Well, it's plausible that the results wouldn't be much more sensible here but I still think that they would be at least slightly more sensible.

Thursday, August 04, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Can one sharply separate forcings and feedbacks?

Andrew Dessler is employed as a climate alarmist in Texas (at Texas A&M).

He recently expressed his opinion about the new paper by Spencer and Braswell (reactions in the media via Google News). According to Dessler, the "paper is not really intended for other scientists, since they do not take him seriously anymore (he’s been wrong too many times)."

Dessler himself who is never wrong (except when he speaks or writes) addresses his results to other scientists which is why he sent his reaction concerning Spencer's and Braswell's paper to Think Progress, a community server of militant Marxist guerillas.

I wonder whether he can see the irony. My guess is that he can't. Yesterday, alarmist Alexander Ač didn't manage to identify that a report about Bernanke in the pub came from the Onion and he presented it on his blog as real news. ;-)

HadCRUT3: 31% of stations saw cooling since 1979

A few days ago, I analyzed the warming trends at all stations included in the HadCRUT3 zipped data that were recently released.

Click to zoom in. I chose high contrast colors to make the picture nice. Note that the very red Arctic is actually a very small area on the Earth - which gets artificially expanded in the map whose coordinates are longitude and latitude.

The average station spanned 77 years and showed a warming trend of \(0.75\pm 2.35\) °C per century. This wide distribution meant that 30 percent of the stations recorded a cooling. Now I expect that the reader is familiar with the rough methods of my previous article.

Viktoria Pilsen beats Rosenborg Trondheim

My hometown soccer team, Viktoria Pilsen, the winner of the Top Czech Gambrinus Soccer League (Gambrinus, the sponsor, is the most widely drunk beer in Czechia, one produced in Pilsen as well, of course, and a Scandinavian God of beer), has made it to the playoff of the European (UEFA) Champions League.

Cuba enters serious string theory research

As you may have noticed, the wealthy island of Cuba lost its glamorous adjectives in 1959 when a group of criminals and murderers around Fidel Castro and Che Guevara overtook the country and changed an oasis of prosperity to a land of friends of the communist Czechoslovakia, among others. ;-)

Today, the GDP of what used to be an equivalent of Florida is below $10,000 per capita (PPP) while the nominal GDP per capita is just $5,000; the population is 11 million. Compare it with Mexico which is not exactly an example of a rich, safe, and stable country. Its GDP is $14,000 per capita (PPP) and the nominal one is $10,000; and the population is 110 million. One may accumulate a factor-of-two difference in GDP in 50 years if the growth differential is 1.4% every year.

Nevertheless, there are signs that recently slightly liberalized Cuba is overtaking countries such as Mexico in some disciplines, maybe even in theoretical physics. Well, one swallow doesn't make a Spring. But it is an impressive swallow, anyway.

Top Czech romance novel writer stabbed

Mrs Simona Monyová (44) was the most successful Czech author of romance novels.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Darwin and Galileo fail: they were CWMs

If you're wondering what's happening in the "mainstream" alarmist climate science, aside from "real climate" scientists' attempts to invent increasingly contradictory talking points to downplay Spencer's and Braswell's new paper (that has demonstrated totally invalid predictions of the IPCC climate models when it comes to various energy flows), then notice that the most important development is that CO2 is no longer the primary culprit of all the evil in the world. Instead, the genuine primary culprits are the CWMs. :-)

It's been proved in the peer-reviewed literature and reported in the popular media:

Article in Science Direct (if you're a really cool dude, it's yours for $31.50)

The Guardian, Tree Hugger, Big Think, Chris Mooney (The Intersection), Chris Mooney (DeSmogBlog), Susan Wilson (Tech/Green Blorge), Paul Douglas (Minneapolis Star Tribune blogs), David Roberts (Grist), Bonnie (Who Has a Tough Time to Survive)
The source of all the evil in the world used to be called "global warming". Because there was no warming for a decade, it was renamed as "climate change". Some czars have unsuccessfully tried to coin a new term, "climate disruption". Finally, the consensus has found the new, so far most accurate description of the source: it's called the "CWMs".

Tuesday, August 02, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Global mean temperature since 1706

Why 1850? What happens with altitude and variations in the grid?

In the previous postings, I discussed the local data extracted from the "raw" HadCRUT3 dataset that was just released. Annual mean temperatures range from -55 to +33 °C, July-January differences go from -40 to +60 °C or so, and the warming trend at various places is measured to be 0.75 plus minus 2.35 °C per century, showing that the shift of the global average is just a very small contribution to the local centennial variations.

You shouldn't take this graph seriously. We will discuss it later.

But people are interested in the global mean temperature, anyway. It has become an obsession of the postmodern era. I don't think that the global mean temperature is too useful or well-defined but people want to know whether the graphs are valid.

The satellite measurements only go back to 1979. There are some subtleties but we essentially trust them. They show the warming trend to be 0.14 °C per decade or so - even though in the last 10 years only, this becomes zero or slightly negative. But what about the temperatures before 1979?

HadCRUT3: annual mean temperatures and seasons

Once you convert the HadCRUT3 raw data into a format you can deal with - using a programming language that is able to compute things - it is straightforward to draw various graphs.

A few days ago, I calculated the warming trends as seen at various stations among the 5,000 stations - and during individual months (Januaries only, Februaries only, and so on). It turned out that the warming trend hugely depends on the station: it is 0.75 plus minus 2.35 °C per century or so. The warming hasn't been "global".

Let's draw some more elementary maps. Click at any map to zoom it in.

Note that the blue-yellow boundary is close to -10 °C or so.

Monday, August 01, 2011 ... Français/Deutsch/Español/Česky/Japanese/Related posts from blogosphere

Reason why men dominate in science: Holly Goodhead

BBC and the world's best feminist scientists have spent decades by the search for a social explanation why the percentage of women in natural sciences is well below 50 percent.

Finally, they have found the culprit:

The subtle messages that put women off science
As you could have expected, the culprit is female herself. Her name is Dr Holly Goodhead.

Old theories as limits of the new ones

Scientific progress leads to the discovery of new theories that go beyond the old ones.

But the new theories rarely denounce their successful predecessors as pure trash. Instead, they incorporate them as limits. There are many points about the relationship between the old theories and new theories. For example:

  • One needs to use the language of the new theories if he wants to be more accurate; the newer theory is often qualitatively different
  • New theories lead to new effects whose implications may also be described in the old theories' language but such a description can't be accurate
  • New theories that transcend the limitations of the old ones are determined by new constraints: they're rarely random assorted additions to the old theories 
  • New theories usually set some parameters from the older theory to a constant, or "one" in natural units; those parameters were undetermined and often considered zero or infinite in the older theories
I will discuss some examples, including examples that are usually not presented as examples of this "old theory as a limit" paradigm.