Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The School so far!

The ICTP summer school so far is going fine. Although the first week was a bit boring for me, this week seems pretty exciting. The first week was mainly about structure formations, galaxy clusters, weak lensing, gravitational waves, dark energy etc. This week we are having topics more close to particle physics phenomenology like neutrinos in astrophysics and cosmology, Dark matter, Inflation etc.The lecturers are excellent without any doubt. The crowd here is also amazing with lots of diversity. People from almost every part of the world I can see here. There are lots of participants from India as well, most of whom I had met before in various schools and conferences. And I have found four lecturers of SERC schools also here. It's been a nice time here so far, not feeling like being away from home except for the food may be!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Leaving for ICTP

I am leaving for ICTP on Sunday, the 18th July. Although I am not much enthusiastic about traveling such a long distance just 12 days after coming from London, I am really looking forward to the Summer school in Cosmology ( ) . My current interests among the topics to be covered are neutrinos in astrophysics and dark matter. Although so far I have been working mainly in particle physics phenomenology, I am hopeful that this school will give me some ideas as well as enthusiasm to work in cosmology (at least cosmoparticle physics). I am also looking forward to meeting one senior professor there who came to teach us in the SERC main school 2010 held at Panjab University. Will keep updated about the school later!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Congos Espana!

Finally Spain became the world champion at the end of the dirty final match against the Netherlands. So many fouls , fee kicks, yellow cards in that match, oh my God, it was a real pain to watch the match. Although the match was between Red (Spanish) and Oranje (Holland), the match was dominated by yellow (cards). It's more painful now after everything ends. I am yet to come out of the FIFA hangover, being awake till late night for the last one month have changed all my daily schedule, still I don't feel sleepy till 3 or 4 am in the morning and can't get up before 11 or 12 noon. The new semester gonna start in a few days, have to get back to the regular schedule very soon!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Flying Dutchman vs Spanish Galleon!

The much awaited day has come finally. The unstoppable Dutchmen and Spanish Raging Bulls will be fighting to become the world champions for the first time in Johannesburg. Both the teams look equally strong, the Dutch are continuing their winning streak whereas the Spanish lost one match to the Swiss at the group league stage. The Spanish have been playing a bit defensive except the last match probably. They played an excellent match against the Germans, proving themselves equally good in both defense and attack. I hope they will continue that same spirit tonight. The Dutch are no worse in both attack and defense. Players like Sneijder, Robben, Van Persi are in their best forms ever. Although I had similar expectations from Spain vs Germany match, Germany disappointed me very much. They played like retards, they were not even at 10% of their form against Argentina. I felt as if they were morally down with the predictions of the Octopus. I hope such superstitions won't overcome the top two teams. No matter you lose or you win, you should show your fighting spirit till the last second. Last night Uruguay showed that spirit, I really loved watching the match specially Forlan. Although the Germans managed to win, Uruguay team looked much better. Of course we should not ignore the fact that Germany dared to play the match with three of their best players Klose, Lahm and Podolsky sitting at the bench. Anyway hope tonight will be a memorable day in the history of football, my heart is with both the teams.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

No work and all roaming!

I did some work related to unification of couplings as well as fermion masses in a specific supersymmetric model. After the work is done and a 14 page draft is written, I came to know that the assumption I have taken in the calculation is not always correct. I have mentioned that in one of my previous post that I assumed the validity of survival hypothesis which says that the physical mass of the scalars are same as the mass parameters that arise in the lagrangian or superpotential. But this is not always true as shown by some authors few years back. The second problem which I have recently caught my notice is that one group had already done similar studies related to the same model I am working. But they did not although considered the fermion mass running and all. I have no clue if whatever I have done so far is good enough for making the work complete. My supervisor seems to be optimistic about it but I am not. I have two more pending works which I will start only after coming back from ICTP on 31st July. This one and half months starting from mid June to July end don't look much fruitful as I have not done any work but just roaming here and there. Looking forward to the end of my academic trips!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Arbit Experiences/Surprises in UK

The first surprise to me in UK was too many Indian faces. Just after coming out of the aircraft, while standing in a long que for immigration I was surprised to see most of the airport staff there Indians. Only after coming out of the airport, I felt like coming to a foreign nation. The city of London was very much similar to south Bombay, same double decker, same architecture of buildings, similar work culture and all. I felt as if the city is very close to me.
Me and my friend had no idea how to go to University of Southampton (Winchester Campus) from the hotel. We called a taxi and surprisingly the driver was an Indian. Although we were talking in English only, the driver suddenly turned on the FM radio where everything was in Hindi. I asked him what's going on, he said Southampton has a Hindi FM radio station also. We just said :"Wow, cool". The driver also gave us discount of 3.5 pounds..many many thanks to him for saving almost 300 rupees.
On the last day of our workshop at Winchester, I was waiting at the bus stop to catch the national express coach to Bournemouth. As there was enough time before the bus reaches there, I went to Subway there to have some food. Once again I found Indians there, not very surprised this time as I got used to it by then. But I really got surprised when the guy there told me that he is from Manipur. Once again I got discount of 1.5 pound may be for being an Indian or may be for being a person from his neighboring state Assam.
On the last day of my stay at UK, I was coming by a taxi from my friend's home in Bournemouth to the coach station. The driver, a British this time asked me where I am from. When I told him I am from Bombay, then he asked me if this is the same place where there was a terrorist attack two years back which killed around 200 people. I said yes, it's the same city. He was asking me if these things are all happening because of Kashmir and all, why India don't give freedom to Kashmir. I did not say anything, as these problems don't have any such straightforward solutions as people in Britain might think of.
These are some of my arbit experiences during my six day stay in UK which surprised me to some extent.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Trip to Bournemouth...unforgettable experience!

After my workshop was over at University of Southampton (Winchester Campus) on 2nd July, I went to Bournemouth to meet my friend from BSc days, Prashant. He is currently a PhD student at University of Bournemouth. It was a great pleasure to meet him after four years and that too in UK. And the city of Bournemouth is so amazing with beautiful beaches and all, I fell in love with it immediately. The next day we did a lot of cycling and went to see the beautiful Old Harry Rocks near Swanage village. The white shining rocks in the blue Atlantic were looking really superb. We spent lots of time over there as well as on the beaches. It was very tiring of course, but place was so scenic that we hardly felt it. I returned from Bournemouth at night to London to catch my flight back to India. My trip was really short to see all such beautiful places, I am now really looking forward to my second trip, hope it comes soon!

Friday, July 2, 2010


Today is my last day at Winchester, UK. I came here on Monday, 28th June to attend a workshop called TOOLS at Winchester campus of University of Southampton. This is a small and beautiful city, two hour journey from London. My hotel was around 3-4 km away from the city, and walking everyday in the morning and the afternoon was very enjoyable with beautiful valleys on both sides of the road. The weather is fluctuating a lot, sometimes it gets hot, sometimes it rains but overall it was comfortable for an Indian at least. The workshop went fine, many experts from across the world who develop various numerical codes for high energy physics computations came and gave updates about their respective packages and future projects. Although four days are not enough to learn lots of things, yet I got to know of many useful tools which I never heard before. The food here was typical English food with just bread, meat, fruits, drinks in the meal. I am dying to eat rice and roti, have to wait another two days anyway. I am leaving for Bournemouth after two hours, will meet a friend there and will leave for London tomorrow evening. Will update again after I reach India.