Fermilab Today Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Tue., Aug. 28
11:30 a.m.
Summer Lecture Series - Curia II
Speaker: S. Dodelson, Fermilab
Title: Fundamental Physics from Space
3:30 p.m.

Wed., Aug. 29
3:30 p.m.
4:00 p.m.
Fermilab Colloquium - One West
Speaker: R. Harris, Fermilab
Title: Probing New Physics with Jets at the LHC

Click here for NALCAL,
a weekly calendar with links to additional information.


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Wilson Hall Cafe
Tuesday, Aug. 28
- Creamy Turkey Vegetable
- Chicken Gyros
- Salisbury Steaks w/Mushroom Au Jus
- Chicken Cacciatore
- Italian Panini w/Provolone
- Assorted Slice Pizza
- Super Burrito

*Carb Restricted Alternative

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, August 29
- Grilled Tuna w/White Beans & Charred Onion Salad
- Fruit Tarts

Thursday, August 30
- Smoked Salmon Napoleon
- Tournedos of Beef w/Madeira Sauce
- Cauliflower Gratin
- Vegetable of the Season
- Bourbon Walnut Pie

Chez Leon Menu
Call x4598 to make your reservation.


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Fermilab celebrates 20th anniversary of first URL

Pictured is Fermilab's 2001 home page, which was designed in 1996. Twenty years ago, Fermilab helped to pioneer the URL. It launched one of the first Web sites in the country in 1992.

Two decades ago, Fermilab eased the world for those who cringe at the sight of numbers by helping create an Internet phone book of sorts.

Fermilab adopted the domain name "fnal.gov", helping start a switch over to easy to remember domain addresses in lieu of Internet Protocol addresses. Prior to that, the IP string of numbers served as the only online address.

In doing so, the lab became one of about 4,000 education and research institutions to forge a backbone for what has become the current system of identifying and quickly locating information sites through the use of abbreviations including ".com." and ".org" instead of numerical codes, according to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

The universal monikers served as a type of yellow pages, making it easy for users to find government and business computer servers. It also opened the door to using easily remembered organization names or abbreviates, such as "fnal", in computer server addresses. The easy to use computer address system spurred the growth of the Internet and later the World Wide Web.

Today, about 19 million domain names are registered, with 40,000 more registered daily, according to DomainAvenue.com, a domain registration company.

The lab has kept its name the same from the beginning, recently renewing its registration for the 20th consecutive year.

Domain name innovation wasn't the last time Fermilab would lead the way in the advancement of computer technology. Scientists again were at the cusp of computer innovation with the creation of the Web at CERN in 1989 to ease retrieval of research documents. The Web was launched to the public in 1991.

While the Web made the Internet more useful by allowing computers to share programs and not just packets of information, it still could present a confusing array of information for users to navigate. The first homepage was created at CERN in 1991. The first U.S. Web page was created at SLAC in December 1991, followed by the country's second homepage in June 1992 created at Fermilab. At that time, there were only about 26 home pages in the entire world. Today, upwards of 80 million Web sites exist, according to CERN.

Fermilab's Web site was opened to the public in February 1994. On April 27, a day after the announcement of first evidence for the top quark, the site received 12,000 hits. Today, the lab's public homepage and its internal version, Fermi at Work, receive more than 150,000 visits a month. In July, the two sites received 172,381 visits resulting in 704,205 pages viewed and nearly 8 million hits.

The early Fermilab home page was created in basic html computer language, by the Computing Division. You can view the original page here. In late 1994, technology evolved to allow the gradual addition of the sound and visual aspects common on Web sites today, opening their use to the non-computer savvy public.

That led to a growth in home pages for individual experiments and programs related to the lab. Today, Fermilab's Computing Division supports about 175 servers that produce Fermilab-related home pages. In many cases, multiple home pages are supplied by one server. Dozens more servers are run by individual experiment departments. About 400 million hits occur annually to centrally-supported Web servers.

--Tona Kunz


Fond words of farewell

Dear Pier, Young-Kee, Ken and all my Friends and Colleagues at Fermilab,

John O'Fallon

I want to let you know that I will retire from DOE and the federal government at the end of this month, August 31, 2007. I have been your humble civil servant for over 20 years and find it is time to give my children and grandchildren the attention they so richly deserve and of which they have been so often deprived during that period. In thinking of some summary remarks that I might make covering those 20 years I conclude that either I would need many pages, or many days to compose a concise version; either way it would probably be inadequate and incomplete. Therefore, let me just say that while we certainly did not see eye-to-eye on all matters, I believe that we did agree that the primary objective of the program was to do the best high-energy physics possible and we worked together to that end. I only wish I could've done more to help you all achieve that objective.

Best wishes to you all, to Fermilab, and to the U.S. National High Energy Physics Program.

-- John O'Fallon

In the News

From TG Daily,
August 27, 2007

Fermilab: Excursions into matter, space and time

Batavia (IL) - TG Daily recently had an opportunity to visit the facilities of Fermilab, home of the Tevatron, currently the world's highest energy particle accelerator. Join us on a tour through a stunning world of machinery that accelerates protons to the speed of light to help scientists research topics of matter, space and time.

Caught between deadlines, press conferences and travel schedules, we easily oversee interesting technology topics that are right in front of our door. The NCSA was such a case, which we covered a few weeks ago in detail; even closer to our modest headquarters in the Western suburbs of Chicago, there is another high-profile science institution, which I usually drive by several times a week, but never really thought of including in one of our stories.

Read more

Director's Corner

Welcome visitors

Pier Oddone

Last week we were fortunate to have three staff members of the Science Committee of the House of Representatives (see yesterday's Fermilab Today article) visit Fermilab. I was reminded once more of how important such visits to our laboratory are and how much easier it is to explain what we do in our own turf than it is in the detached and always hurried atmosphere I encounter in Washington, DC. Probably the most important part of these visits is the enthusiasm and passion for the research we do that our visitors sense from the staff they meet at all levels of our organization.

While having Congressional staff visit is of obvious importance to the laboratory, so are the visits of innumerable members of the public who take time to visit Fermilab. These are the people who ultimately pay the bills and make our work possible. Many of you participate as volunteers in showing our visitors around and explaining what we do. Your doing so, and doing it well, is a great service to the laboratory. Visitors are enthusiastic about what they see and intrigued by the mysteries of the physical world that we try to decipher. I have always received very positive feedback about these visits.

One of the great advantages of a single-program laboratory like ours is that everyone in the organization knows what we are about. Not unlike the great increase in intensity we encounter in coherent physics phenomena, the coherence at Fermilab enhances enormously our ability to accomplish our goals, even those that would otherwise seem impossible. This will be especially valuable to us in the next few years as we undertake a Herculean task: delivering on the promise of the existing programs while simultaneously developing the future of the laboratory (see Steering Group Web site).

Photo of the Day

Metamorphosis for education

This Monarch caterpillar, snacking on a milkweed leaf, is the newest addition to the Lederman Science Center. The center received a milkweed plant stem with two Monarch butterfly eggs attached. An area will be set up for the caterpillar to build its chrysalis. It will eventually be released into the wild as an adult butterfly. If not yet released into the wild by Sept. 11, the Monarch will become part of the first Particles and Prairie program for school groups, who normally watch a video about the butterfly during the program.

In the News

From Wired,
August 27, 2007

Fermilab Proposes New "Project X" Particle Smasher

It's both an exciting and angst-producing time to be a high-energy particle physicist. Exciting, because Europe's nearly finished Large Hadron Collider promises to unlock realms of physics previously open only to speculation.

But that's a mixed blessing for those whose lives and careers are bound up with today's premier U.S. high-energy physics facility, Fermilab, which will lose its leading role in the field as the LHC starts up.

Last week, Fermilab directors quietly outlined plans for a new accelerator in the Batavia, Ill. facility, temporarily dubbed "Project X," that would help keep the lab active and in the forefront of research while it bids to host a larger international project designed to complement the European experiments.

Pegged by the Chicago Tribune at $500 million, Project X would provide a technological stepping stone to the proposed International Linear Collider, argued a Fermilab Steering Group report completed earlier this month. Many of the practical research and engineering questions for that future collider could be answered by the proposed interim project, the report said.

Nor would the science itself be negligible.

Read more


Have a safe day!

Video of draft report discussion
Friday's presentation and discussion of the Fermilab Steering Group draft report by Fermilab Deputy Director Young-Kee Kim is available via streaming video or as a Power Point or pdf file on the Steering Group Web site. Fermilab Today also will report on the meeting.

School back in session, drive carefully
School is back in session in most communities, including Warrenville and Batavia. A school zone, with reduced speed limits during school hours, is located outside the eastgate on Batavia Road. Please pay attention to school crossings and posted speed limits.

Blood Drive August 28-29
A blood drive will be held today, August 28, and tomorrow, August 29, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Wilson Hall Ground Floor NE Training Room. Although sign up is recommended to keep wait times to a minimum, walk-ins will be accepted. Reservations are available online or by contacting Diana at x3771 or Margie at x3411. Donors will receive a very nice travel mug set (see posters for details).

EAP Office hours Thursday and Friday
This week, the Employee Assistance Program Office will be open on Thursday, August 30, and Friday, August 31.

Recreation facility 2008 memberships on sale starting September 3
Recreation facility 2008 memberships go on sale September 3. Prices have stayed the same. A regular membership is $85.00 per year and graduate student rate is $55.00. New members that purchase a membership in September will get that month free. 2007 memberships expire October 1, 2007 and 2008 memberships expire October 1, 2008. More information can be found online.

Scottish country dancing
Scottish country dancing will meet in Ramsey Auditorium this Tuesday, August 28, and will continue at Kuhn Barn beginning in September. Instruction begins at 7:30 p.m. and newcomers are always welcome. Most dances are fully taught and walked through. You do not need to come with a partner. More information available at 630-840-8194 or 630-584-0825 or folkdance@fnal.gov.

Additional Activities

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