Continuing lazy live blog of the LHC Shows the Way workshop, with random interludes of alternative considerations, including the more esoteric aspects of German finance…

Patio session (informal presentation of in-progress results on blackboard, outside) – didn’t catch speaker’s name, got here a couple of minutes late.

Being reminded that Higgs is not the only scalar that may exist out there – could the LHC 125 GeV bump be a dilaton?

Paper by Csaki and collaborators coming out in August on arXiv.

Aside: the proliferation of chargeless scalars in quantum field theories has always bothered me, why, if they carry no conserved quantum numbers, should we have multiple different mass eigenstates coupling to different sectors? Seems wasteful.

Suppose you could always have a pseudoscalar and a scalar, but really do we need more than that?

(yeah, yeah, I know… but it seems so inelegant.

So there.)

Lagrangians.

I’ve really come to be more attached to Hamiltonian formalisms…

Aside: inspired by last weeks fourier transform of the LHC data showing the Higgs bump as a pure tone on top of red noise, I went and dug out this Physics Today article on “listening to the data” – of course pulsar astronomers have been doing this for yonks!

Interesting discussion of listening to GRB power spectra and gravitational wave sims (cf Drasco’s stuff).

See also LHCsound.

Really must catch up on Physics Today…

Totally random aside:

450 years ago the town of Mittenwalde lent Berlin 400 guilder, at 6% interest. Berlin forgot to pay. Mittenwalde found the note.

How much does Berlin owe them now?

Simple interest, which seems implied, would have cumulated 10,800 guilders back interest, for a total of 11,200 guilders owed.

As you know, Bob, the Rhenish guilder is worth 60 Kreuzer, though there is discord whether this is 240 or 252 Pfennig.

Augsburg values the guilder at €0.88, whereas at the German union the guilder was valued at 4/7th of a Thaler (I think we can safely ignore the Austrian inflated valuation of the guilder).

The Thaler, rather confusingly, was 360 Pfenning, which must have provided some arbitrage opportunities in the 19th C, but was specified to contain 1/14th of a Köln mark of silver, or 16.704 grams (those Prussians had some good metrology!).

This, of course, is 0.54 (or 0.53705 if you are Prussian) troy ounces.

So, in real money, Berlin owes Mittenwald 11,200 times 4/7 times 0.54 ouncer of silver – or 3,437 troy ounces of silver.

Silver is at US$28 per ounce right now, so Berlin owed Mittenwald about US$ 96,240 or €80,200.

Of course were one to go back to the original *gold* guilder, and carry the calculation forward, the debt is about €4,640,150 – which seems more proportionate.

Now, if one were to generously interpret the debt instrument as specifying compound interest, then the debt now is about 100 trillion guilder, or roughly €750 trillion assuming conversion to silver Thalers.

Fortunately, Berlin took out a CDS option on this debt in the early 17th century, and is covered – rumour is that AIG is the counterparty, which explains why JP Morgan has been hedging silver…

Back to physics.

Dilatons are contentious, we can make random stabs at calculating decay modes and branching ratios, and I have a telecon to go to.