Fermilab Today Wednesday, August 30, 2006  

Wednesday, August 30
11:00 a.m. Fermilab ILC R&D Meeting - 1 West
Speaker: H. Padamsee, Cornell University
Title: An Update on S0, S1, S2 Task Force Activities, and Related Topics for ILC R&D
3:30 p.m. Director's Coffee Break - 2nd floor crossover

Thursday, August 31
2:30 p.m. Theoretical Physics Seminar - Curia II
Speaker: G. Barenboim, Universidad de Valencia
Title: The Dark Side of Inflation
3:30 p.m. DIRECTOR'S COFFEE BREAK - 2nd Flr X-Over
4:00 p.m. Accelerator Physics and Technology Seminar - 1 West
Speaker: J. Peters, DESY
Title: The History of H-Source Development

Click here for a full calendar with links to additional information.

WeatherMostly Cloudy 55º/75º

Extended Forecast

Weather at Fermilab


Secon Level 3

Wednesday, August 30
-Italian Wedding w/Meatballs
-Diner Style Patty Melt
-Chicken A La Mer
-Stuffed Cabbage
-Greek Chicken Panini w/Feta Cheese
-Assorted Slice Pizza
-Chicken w/Pesto Cream

Wilson Hall Cafe Menu

Wednesday, August 30
-Wild Rice and Grilled Duck Salad
-Steamed Snow Peas
-Amaretto Cheesecake

Thursday, August 31
-Melon and Prosciutto
-Grilled Duck w/Zinfandel Fig Sauce
-Wild Rice and Orzo
-Oven Roasted Tomatoes and Goat Cheese
-Lemon Napoleons

Chez Leon Menu
Call x4598 to make your reservation.

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What's in a name? Zoo event
"What the heck was that?" Physicists ask when they see a so-called zoo event in their data.
When physicists at Fermilab smash particles together in the Tevatron, most of what comes out of the collisions is well-understood. But every once in awhile strange things appear in the data--incidents popularly known as zoo events.

Dave Toback, a Texas A&M University professor who works on the CDF experiment, says zoo events are rare by definition, but occur frequently enough to catalogue--like animals in a zoo. "The idea is that you try and collect these animals so you can study them," he said. Toback uses a program called "ZooFinder" (originally named "PhysMon") that monitors collision data and e-mails him and other physicists when zoo events occur. "Every so often," he said, "we'll get other physicists together to try and look at the zoo."

Although the exact origin of the "zoo event" term is cloudy, Henry Frisch of the University of Chicago says the concept has evolved into a systematic strategy for finding new physics. "Keeping a sharp eye out for anomalies is a big part of trying to bust the standard model of physics," Frisch said, "because we really don't know what we're looking for."

Because anomalies like cosmic rays and improper detector readouts can cause zoo events, some physicists are cautious about using them as a basis for discovery. But Frisch says using the correct approach can be fruitful. "One has to be very careful not to attribute new physics in cases where it's not and not to ignore new physics when it is," Frisch said. Toback argues that unexplainable events are especially hard to ignore. "Many great discoveries weren't made with a 'eureka,'" Toback said, "They were made with a 'hmm, that's funny.'"
--Dave Mosher

Fish in the mouth: AD's Greg Vogel took this picture Friday afternoon. "I got this picture of a blue heron doing a little fishing in the booster pond," he writes. "Obviously, he/she couldn't read the 'no fishing' signs." (Click on image for larger version.)

Register for final golf outing of the season before Sept. 1
Attention golfers: Friday, September 8, will be the final Fermilab golf outing of the season. Tee-off is at 8:00 a.m. at the Tamarak golf club on route 59, just south of I-88. The $50 dollar cost includes cart, contest holes and prizes. The deadline to register is September 1; contact Carl Lundberg x8636, swede@fnal.gov; or Mark Kujawa x8504, kujawa@fnal.gov.
In the News
Scientific American,
August 28, 2006:

What are dark matter and dark energy, and how are they affecting the universe?
Dark energy and dark matter describe proposed solutions to as yet unresolved gravitational phenomena. So far as we know, the two are distinct. Dark matter originates from our efforts to explain the observed mismatch between the gravitational mass and the luminous mass of galaxies and clusters of galaxies. The gravitational mass of an object is determined by measuring the velocity and radius of the orbits of its satellites, just as we can measure the mass of the sun using the velocity and radial distance of its planets. The luminous mass is determined by adding up all the light and converting that number to a mass based on our understanding of how stars shine. This mass-to-light comparison indicates that luminous matter comprises less than 1 percent of the total mass in the universe.
Read More
Two tales--one dog
In today's column, Accelerator Division Head Roger Dixon finds role models among mathematicians and baseball players.

The Russian mathematician, Dr. Grigory Perelman, recently refused to accept the Fields Medal,
Roger Dixon
Roger Dixon
for outstanding work in Mathematics. According to The New York Times, one of the reasons cited by Dr. Perelman is that he does not feel that he is part of the mathematics community, even though he acknowledges that his work is built on a foundation laid by many others.

Most of our accomplishments at Fermilab require us to work together in teams. An important component of teamwork is backing up one another to make certain that costly mistakes are not made. This is a form of oversight. It works much the same way in baseball when the shortstop backs up the second baseman on a throw down to second base. Even though the second baseman may be an All-Star, there is a small probability that the ball will end up in the outfield. This concept is particularly important when it comes to safety. A good team never expects a mission to go as planned, even though similar undertakings may have succeeded many times before. Oversight, reviews, and backing-up one another are all components of our team strategy. Occasionally, an award is refused because an individual feels it should go to the team.

In the case of Dr. Perelman, his very significant accomplishment was probably the result of many quiet hours spent in deep thought. Coupled with the fact that he is apparently not playing the game of self-promotion, his story becomes particularly fascinating. Perhaps we could all learn from his example. It might even make our team stronger. Now, if we could only find a mathematician who can play second base. . . .

Next week's column will feature Computing Division Head Vicky White.


Unix Users Meeting
There will be a Unix users meeting in Curia II today, August 30, at 1 p.m. The meeting will include a discussion of the security topic of the day, Linux World report, Linux Symposium report, Linux release updates, and lots of freebies.

Benefits survey
Would you like to give feedback about your benefits? The Benefits Office invites you to participate in a survey, and will use your feedback to enhance customer service and review benefit offerings. You may complete the survey electronically or come to the Benefits Office to pick up a paper copy. The survey ends September 8.

Email outage tomorrow
A 30-minute network outage scheduled for Thursday, August 31 at 6:00 am in FCC will disrupt email service. Both incoming and outgoing email, as well as access to webmail and listserv will be temporarily interrupted by this outage. Please plan accordingly.

Tuesday night bowling league
Fermilab's Tuesday night mixed bowling league will begin on September 5 at 6:00 p.m. The 30-week, ABC/WBA-sanctioned league will meet at AMF Bowling Center in North Aurora (formerly Valley Bowl). We are looking for complete 4-person teams or any number of bowlers of any skill level. For information, contact Dan Johnson (840-2074) or Jackie Coleman (840-3027).

Wednesday night bowling league
Fermilab's Wednesday night bowling league is looking for bowlers for a 30-week, 4-person league. All bowling abilities are welcome. Bowling starts on Wednesday, September 6, at 5:30 p.m. Interested individuals or teams should contact Al Legan x4074, or Robert Hively x4467.

Pool hours
The pool hours have changed as the availability of lifeguards is limited. You can view open hours on the recreation website. Any additional schedule changes will be posted on the website, at the pool and sent by email to all members signed up on the email list.

International Folk Dancing
International Folk Dancing will meet Thursday, August 31, in Ramsey Auditorium in Wilson Hall. Dancing begins at 7:30 p.m. with teaching earlier in the evening and request dancing later on. Newcomers are welcome and you do not need to come with a partner. The group will return to Kuhn Barn beginning September 14. Info at 630-584-0825 or 630-840-8194 or folkdance@fnal.gov.

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