Monday, Jan. 5, 2015

Have a safe day!

Monday, Jan. 5

2 p.m.
Particle Astrophysics Seminar - Curia II
Speaker: Philip Bull, University of Oslo
Title: Measuring Ultralarge Cosmological scales with Radio Telescopes

3:30 p.m.
Director's Coffee Break - WH2XO

4 p.m.
All Experimenters' Meeting - Curia II

Tuesday, Jan. 6

3:30 p.m.
Director's Coffee Break - WH2XO


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Wilson Hall Cafe

Monday, Jan. 5

- Breakfast: eggs Benedict
- Breakfast: sausage, egg and cheese croissant
- Sloppy joe
- Teriyaki pork stir fry
- Chicken makhani
- Oven-roasted veggie wrap
- Chicken fajita
- Texas-style chili
- Vegetarian cream of spinach
- Assorted pizza by the slice

Wilson Hall Cafe menu

Chez Leon

Wednesday, Jan. 7
- Northern Italian lasagna
- Caesar salad
- Ice cream cake

Friday, Jan. 9

Chez Leon menu
Call x3524 to make your reservation.


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One minute with Tanja Waltrip, internship program administrator

Tanja Waltrip manages Fermilab's student and teacher science internship programs. Photo: Reidar Hahn

What is your position with Fermilab?
I am the internship program administrator for the Education Office. I've been in the position for one year. I oversee 11 programs. Most are typically about 10 summer weeks.

One program is the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy SIR Program. Those students are here every Wednesday from September through April and for six full weeks in the summer. The other programs are undergraduate, graduate and teacher programs supported by Fermilab or DOE.

Right now, we are in the application period, and I am working with the physicists who are in charge of the individual internship programs to prepare for next summer.

What in your background has helped you in this position?
I am an educator. I began as an elementary school teacher and received my teaching certificates in English as a second language and special education. I am always happy to help students reach their goals.

What are you looking forward to next summer?
Next summer I get to put on my teacher's hat. The interns are expected to write a research paper at the conclusion of their program. I will guide them during a six-week workshop, breaking down all the sections involved.

What has been most satisfying for you working at Fermilab?
Fermilab is a wonderful community of people — it is very supportive and diverse. Also, my colleagues in the Education Office are all great mentors to me.

Working with the interns is so rewarding. Some have written since leaving saying that working hand in hand with the physicists was an unbelievable opportunity and the best summer. I go the extra mile to help them meet any challenge here and have a successful Fermilab experience.

What do you most enjoy doing in your off time?
I am a beach lover, so there you will find me when I am not with my interns, here at my desk or roaming the halls of Fermilab.

Do you prefer salt or fresh water?
I love the Carolina beaches, but I'll take Lake Michigan on a beautiful day.

Rich Blaustein

Photo of the Day

Lost and found

A dollar bill takes a long break from looking for its owner. It likely still is. Photo: Jamie Santucci, AD
In the News

A first glimpse of the hidden cosmos

From National Geographic, January 2015

It used to be said that cosmologists, the scientists who study the universe as a whole, are "often in error but never in doubt." Nowadays they're less often in error, but their doubts have grown as big as all outdoors.

After decades of research involving new and better telescopes, light detectors, and computers, cosmologists can now state with some assurance that the universe was born 13 billion, 820 million years ago, most likely as a bubble of space smaller than an atom. For the first time they've mapped the cosmic background radiation — light released when the universe was only 378,000 years old — to an accuracy of better than a tenth of one percent.

Read more

Tip of the Week: Cybersecurity

Federated identity and Shibboleth

Through the Shibboleth architecture, a service provider can identify a user without having to maintain its own set of passwords.

I have written before about the cyberspace equivalent of needing to carry around a separate driver's license for every state that you drive through. Fortunately, the various states have established a trust federation where a driver's license issued by any state is valid throughout the country. But this is still not true when driving (or surfing) through cyberspace, where a user frequently needs to use different "licenses," usually usernames and passwords, for different applications and services.

A sensible strategy to tackle this issue is to separate the functions of providing a computing service and identifying individual users. A service provider (SP) delivers some service to properly identified users. An identity provider (IP) issues users some electronic token they can use as an identifier in cyberspace.

Returning to our driver's license analogy, the IPs are the Departments of Motor Vehicles in all 50 states, while an example of an SP is a rental car company that checks your license before renting you a car. In this case the functions of the SP and IP are fully separated.

The service provider still determines who is allowed to use its service, but it relies on separate identity providers to actually identify specific individuals (that is, maintain the usernames and passwords). This allows a user to use the same digital identity (the same cyberspace driver license) to access multiple services.

Fortunately, an open-source project named Shibboleth has been supporting and developing an architecture that supports this approach. (Bonus points to those who know the origin of the term Shibboleth: It comes from the first documented scheme to identify individuals, used over 3,000 years ago and described in chapter 12 of the book of Judges in the Bible.) When using the Shibboleth architecture, the SPs and IPs exchange secure identity information that allows the SP to know individuals requesting the service are authorized without needing to maintain its own separate set of passwords.

Just last month Fermilab turned on their first Shibboleth identity provider (using a commercial system relying on open-source software from a company called Gluu). This allows Fermilab users to use their Services password to log in to remote services that accept Shibboleth credentials. In particular, users who require long-lifetime digital certificates (to sign email or to run grid jobs) can now get such certificates from the CILogon facility run by NCSA at the University of Illinois using only their Fermilab Services password. You can read detailed instructions (login required) for this process.

As more Fermilab services are integrated with Shibboleth, Fermilab visitors will begin to be able to use the electronic identities from their home institutions to use various Fermilab services, while those with existing Fermilab identities will find their existing identity increasingly useful for remote services such as the network access provided by the EduRoam service. Eventually, we should all be able to discard the plethora of separate electronic identities we now require.

Irwin Gaines


Today's New Announcements

Goal setting in FermiWorks on Jan. 13

Charitable donations through payroll deduction

OS X 10.10 Yosemite certified for use

The Take Five challenge and poster winter 2014/2015

Fox Valley Fitness offers employee discount

Lifestyle Patterns Approach to Weight Management - register by Jan. 8

International folk dancing - Jan. 8

Fermilab Arts Series presents Chicago Harp Quartet - Jan. 11

Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) end of life Jan. 12

Health screenings for active employees - Jan. 13, 14

Writing for Results: Email and More - Feb. 27

2015 float holiday

Taiji and Qigong for health

For Women Only Qigong class

Scottish country dancing Tuesdays through December and into January

Indoor soccer