My America

 

The United States of America is a great country.

The United States of America is a great country.

I have lived there three times in my life for long periods and my stays, especially the first, twenty years ago, changed my perception not only of that nation but of this one, ours.

Sometimes getting away allows us to better contemplate the place from which we started because it is true that trees often do not allow us to see the forest. When we put sea or land in between is when we can truly calibrate what we have left. That is when nostalgia usually arises, which must always be stopped because when it embraces us, it tends to make it so strong and so strong that it can even take our breath away. We must never falter in his arms even when, instead of embracing us, he invites us to dance because he loves to make us dance waltzes of defeat.

I left with the lesson learned. I missed the essential, which was enough and I realized that the inferiority complex with which we usually carry the Spaniards, was just that, inferiority complex, because ours is a great country, modern, advanced and cosmopolitan. In that last, much more than the United States. As much as in New York or Chicago, my favorite city, you can cross the street with people from any part of the globe, Americans, in general, are not cosmopolitan, quite the opposite. They usually have no interest in seeing the world or knowing other cultures or other countries. Yours seems the best. If we leave aside the inhabitants of the big cities, much more open, the Americans who live in small isolated towns – and there are many, the deep America is equally very extensive – have enough to look at their navels and recite Trump’s mantras: ” first, America “,” America for the Americans “.

The lack of curiosity about what is foreign, the lack of interest in “knowing if the Turk goes down” or stays still, that wrote the classic in the sixteenth century, seems to me a national American characteristic that I do not admire at all. Quite the opposite. This is what brought us Trump’s misfortune, that kind of plague rained from an unhappy sky, similar to the one that Brexit brought to England.

There is, however, another America, which has so often come in support of Europe

the one that saved us in the last war, the one that defends democracy and watches over the separation of powers and accepts the mandates of its courts of justice. The America that, until very recently, has endowed its universities to be leading and research has prevailed. The America that allowed Obama, black and not exactly rich, to become president. This is my America, whom I love, whom I long for and where from time to time I’m dying to return. The America that made it possible for Carmen Martín Gaite, Ana Maria Matute, Montserrat Roig, Rosa Montero, Soledad Puértolas, Laura Freixas and many other authors to sign this, we could not only write some of our novels with the necessary tranquility, but also that our books had diffusion. The publications of various American professors – Geraldine Nichols, Mirella Servodidio, Roberta Johnson, Maryellen Bieder, Joan Brown, etc., the list is long and I fall short – were pioneers in studying us.

My America is a country in which one can practice criticism without fear of vetoes.

My America is a country in which one can practice criticism without fear of vetoes.

The big newspapers do it on a daily basis against Trump and he did it last September, although the news has come to us now, Nancy Spector, chief curator of the Guggenheim Museum in New York when she denied the White House loan of the painting Landscape with snow ( 1888) of Van Gogh because he had it committed to the homonymous museum, the magnificent Guggenheim of Bilbao, where he had to travel to be exposed. Instead, he offered the contemplation and enjoyment of a gold toilet, the work of the iconoclast Maurizio Cattelan, for the use of the presidential family, which would be accompanied by an instruction manual, quite unnecessary, on the other hand. Apparently the ease of performance and the proper functioning of the sanitary piece had been proven. Before Mister President and his beautiful wife, the First Lady deigned to settle their privileged backside on the toilet, it had already done a hundred thousand Americans on foot, since the work, baptized with the ironic name of America, was exposed in the museum with that practical intention.

I honestly can not imagine the director of the Prado or the Reina Sofía or the Guggenheim of Bilbao or the Museu Nacional d’Art Catalunya offering the President of the Government or the president of Basque or Catalan autonomy a similar work for more than a few I deserved it. No doubt here, in Madrid, Bilbao or Barcelona would have played it. It is possible that they were not immediately dismissed, but over time that disrespect to the powerful shift would have taken their toll. In the United States that is much less likely to happen. Something that speaks in favor of that country that I like so much, despite his current and ridiculous Mister President and the court that surrounds him.

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CERN seeks the particle that will revolutionize physics

Image result for cern

The new particle, if it exists, would be the gateway to a new territory of physics. An unexplored territory that scientists know has to exist, because the current theory is insufficient to explain the universe, but in which they do not know what they will find. The discovery would inevitably change our view of the universe.

But for now it’s just a ghost. It has been left to glimpse, but nobody knows if it has been seen really. Or, as physicists say, “we have evidence, but not evidence,” according to Mario Martinez , a member of the Council of the European Organization for Nuclear Research ( CERN ).

Two detectors of the LHC have observed similar indications of a new particle; the final proof is missing

Finding evidence of its existence, or of non-existence, is the immediate goal of the LHC particle accelerator at CERN. The LHC (full name: Large Hadron Collider) was put back on March 25 after having been stopped, as every year, during the three winter months to carry out maintenance operations. The physicists calculate that in the middle of summer they will have enough data to know if they have captured the precious particle or if it was a mirage.

The indications that invite to think that there may be particle were observed in 2015, when the LHC detectors began to register particle collisions with an energy level never reached before. After more than two years of work in which the accelerator had been stopped, the energy of the collisions of 8 TeV (tera-electron volts) had been raised to 13 TeV. With more energy in the collisions more massive particles could be created and detected, since the energy can be transformed into matter obeying Einstein’s most famous equation: E = mc 2 .

During the six months in which the LHC was in operation before stopping in December, two different detectors – the Atlas and the CMS – registered a similar anomaly. At an energy of about 750 GeV (giga-electron volts) they observed more photons than expected.

This could mean that there is a particle with a mass of 750 GeV that decays emitting two photons. Or it could be a mere statistical effect.

Statistics is essential to understand what happens in the bowels of the LHC. With a billion collisions per second, a myriad of particles are formed and disintegrated at all times. The detectors record uninterrupted the results of these collisions. And the scientists then check if the results fit the expectations.

That the Atlas and CMS detectors independently detected an excess of photons in the same energy level has aroused great expectation among physicists around the world. Since the anomaly was announced in December at 750 GeV, some 300 scientific articles have been submitted on arXiv.org offering possible interpretations.

Statistics aren’t enough

Image result for not enoughBut, even combining the data of both detectors, the statistic is still not enough to announce a discovery. According to the latest analysis of the data presented this month, the probability that the excess of photons is the result of chance is around 5%, reports Mario Martínez, who is also a researcher at the Institut de Física d’Altes Energies (IFAE) and working on the Atlas detector.

This probability is still far from that which physicists demand of themselves to announce a discovery, called five sigmas in the slang of statistics. This probability is approximately one in two million that an observation is a whim of chance: that is, you have to be sure 99.99994% to be able to say that, where there seems to be a particle, there really is a particle. “All we can say at the moment is that we have to wait for more data,” says Martínez.

If the finding is confirmed, it would be the most important breakthrough in particle physics of the last 40 years

If the discovery is confirmed in the coming months, the new particle would be a mastodon. At 750 GeV, its mass would quadruple that of the top quark, the most massive particle known to date. The fact that it emits two photons provides information about a fundamental property of the particles called spin , which should be zero or even.

If it is zero, like the Higgs boson discovered in 2012, the new particle could be a second, more massive Higgs boson. It would be the first proof in favor of the theory of supersymmetry, which postulates that each of the elementary particles has a more massive sister and that it would solve a large part of the current problems of particle physics.

If it is even, it could be a graviton, a hypothetical particle that transmits gravity. Or maybe some more exotic particle that nobody has thought of yet.

Whatever the answer, if the new particle exists, “it would be a revolution”, says Mario Martínez. It would be the first particle that goes beyond the Standard Model, a theory that satisfactorily explains all known elementary particles but is insufficient to explain aspects of the universe such as dark matter, dark energy, gravity or cosmic inflation.

The data to leave doubts will come in the coming months. If 2015 was a year of learning to work with the LHC with the new energy level of 13 TeV, “2016 is a year of production,” said Fabiola Gianotti, CEO of CERN, at a press conference on February 16. . In the coming months, more data is expected to be recorded than in all of 2015 and the results presented at the International Conference on High Energy Physics to be held in Chicago in early August.

“If the signal we detected was a statistical device, we will know it there,” reports Mario Martínez. “If it’s a new particle, possibly also.”

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Answer the call of the future with VoIP

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If you and your staff need to be online and available, anywhere, anytime but integrating your IT with your telecoms isn’t working in the way you envisaged, advanced VoIP could be the solution. Harnessing the power of the Internet, VoIP is powerful, scalable and most importantly, affordable.
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