## Wednesday, December 30, 2020 ... //

### Ripple vs SEC: has the elimination of the crypto Ponzi schemes begun?

PF 2021

The cryptocurrency world isn't just a part of the criminal underground. It is something worse, a top symbol of the absolute degeneration of the Millennial generation. A proper organized criminal knows that he is cheeky, he is doing something wrong, but it's fun. The Bitcoin Millennials are worse. They have convinced themselves that by redefining the reality, they are virtuous. Holy cow, I hate them.

The intrinsic price of one Bitcoin is self-evidently zero. It's true by definition. There are no material assets or rights hiding behind the record in the Bitcoin ledger. How do the Bitcoin Millennials react to this point? They tell you that the value of anything is relative, a result of social conventions, and when many of them believe that one Bitcoin is worth $28,000, it's just worth$28,000. The value is absolutely relative. What's worse: the truth is about everything is absolutely relative for them. The cryptocurrency trading is an example of the absolute victory of moral relativism and postmodernism within this fudged-up cohort. They are a hopelessly brainwashed stupid herd of sheep who are also staggeringly poor, too lame to study the matrix model, and too flabby to defend the nation according to the U.S. generals.

### Puss' and Pup's cake: not a promising way to do physics

Josef Čapek (1887-1945) was a visual artist and the older brother of Karel Čapek, an essential playwright in the interwar Czechoslovakia. In 1920, Karel also wrote the play R.U.R. which introduced the word "robot" to the world. Well, that word was actually invented by Josef, the brother-painter. Aside from some paintings, Josef is also known for the 1929 series "Adventures of Puss and Pup" stories for kids.

After the 1938 annexation of Sudetenland by Germany, Karel was driven by some nasty pro-German trolls to pneumonia and death on December 25th (what a date to die). Josef's life continued for some time. Scholars may add places like Stanford, Yale, Princeton, and Harvard to their CV. Our German friends have exploited Josef's skills, too, so between 1939 and 1945, he added the following places to his CV: Dachau, Buchenwald, Sachsenhausen, and Bergen-Belsen. Do you have a similarly impressive CV? ;-) He was working as a sign painter (creating nice pedigrees for the Nazi apparatchiks), a painter of walls in these concentration camps, and died in the last one when an epidemic of typhus exploded there. Mortality of untreated typhus is between 10-60 percent but the Germans worried less than now they worry about Covid-19 which has below 0.2 percent.

## Tuesday, December 29, 2020 ... //

### Midsize miracles of perturbative string theory

A big part of the reason why all competent high-energy BSM+QG theoretical physicists are basically certain that string theory is the correct unifying theory of this Universe is that

* it makes the right qualitative predictions (without assuming something equivalent) of the qualitative traits of the approximate laws of physics that were determined empirically
* it solves problems with consistency and finiteness in a way that looks "infinitely unlikely" or "miraculous" in a generic similar yet non-stringy framework (and the alternative theories are the greatest examples)
* it interpolates between various kinds of effective theories in ways that would also look miraculous to someone not familiar with the "stringy exception"

Concerning the first point, we must realize that the progress in physics has been incremental and for quite some time, physicists were switching from a working hypothesis to a "theory that is one step deeper" than the previous one. String theory really does nothing else than that, too. You may ask whether the step is greater or smaller than previous steps but this question is operationally meaningless because there exists no way to compare the steps between completely different pairs of situations.

Click the screenshot to 3D navigate the 6D Calabi-Yau with your mouse

Was the electroweak theory a bigger step than Maxwell's theory of electromagnetism? One cannot say, the conclusion is purely subjective or convention-dependent because the two advances are not commensurable.

## Sunday, December 27, 2020 ... //

### Poland likely to outlaw the Big Tech censorship

Two weeks ago, I praised Hungary for its protection of the European value and the traditional family and sexual identity rules in particular. Well, the other European country that actually cares about what the West used to symbolize is preparing something impressive, too:

Poland threatens hefty fines for social media companies that censor legal speech, users everywhere celebrate (RT)
Poland to Pass Law Protecting Online Free Speech Against Big Tech Censorship (Breitbart)
Zbigniew Ziobro, the minister of justice, is preparing the law. A new fully online appeal court should be created. If the likes of Facebook, Twitter... remove your content or account and you think that what you wrote was legal, you may appeal. The posting or account will be restored or... the company will face a €1.8 million fine.

## Tuesday, December 22, 2020 ... //

### The master of overfitting

Merry Christmas 2020!

Back in 2014, I competed in the
Higgs Boson Machine Learning Challenge (leaderboards)
At the end of the contest, when everyone could see that I was "apparently a frontrunner", I teamed up with Christian Veelken (giving him some 20% of "my team") who was actually an active coder, unlike me, and (while he probably didn't change things too much) we ended up as #1 among #1784 teams in the public leaderboard. That nice ranking dropped to #8 in the private leaderboard which mattered so we ended up without any financial compensation (winners got tens of thousands of dollars).

"With four parameters you can fit an elephant to a curve, with five you can make him wiggle his trunk" - John von Neumann

Just to be clear, the #8 was still many categories ahead of all the people who are supposed to do such things professionally. Only machine learning experts i.e. "purely computer people" (plus me, perhaps) succeeded in the contest. The best CMS professional experimental physicist who also enjoyed this challenge (co-organized by ATLAS, the competitor of CMS) was Tommaso Dorigo at #640 (public leaderboard) and #743 (final, decisive, private leaderboard). With all my humility, CMS is a different league than your humble correspondent, isn't it? ;-)

## Monday, December 21, 2020 ... //

### Insane hysteria over a new strain of Covid-19 no longer surprises me

...but I am still infuriated by it and I will always be...

The SARS-CoV-2 virus normally has 29,903 base pairs which you are invited to memorize (30 kB uncompressed). Well, that's how the page presents it – as if it were a DNA double helix – but the virus really carries an RNA, not DNA, and it doesn't have base pairs but just the single bases, right? RNA is a single helix and instead of the A,C,G,T letters of DNA, it has the A,C,G,U letters.

At any rate, both RNA and DNA normally mutate all the time. Two humans' DNA differ in millions of base pairs (1/1,000 of the 2 times 3 bilion bases typically differ in two humans). The Covid-19-causing virus is also evolving and mutating and many mutations have been observed. The most carefully observed one was D614G. The old virus had D at some position 614 which was replaced by the newer G. The new one is the G614 virus. And it was seen to be more contagious. No one really cared much because the media and stupid politicians haven't told the millions of brainless sheep to be hysterical.

## Saturday, December 19, 2020 ... //

### Mobile data conspiracy theories and scientific illiteracy

Some fellow opponents of the Covid lockdowns are anti-mobile-communications conspiracy theorists. Vaccines are being served by some malicious powerful puppet masters along with a new generation of the mobile data and these things will cripple the world, they say.

You can imagine that I have mixed feelings about such allies (and the Nokia stocks in my portfolio, about 25% in the red numbers now, are among the smallest reasons for the mixed feelings LOL). On one hand, the Covid hysteria is the most urgent threat for the civilization in 2020 which is why one can't afford to dismiss too many allies. On the other hand, fear of the microwaves is quite an embarrassing symbol of scientific illiteracy. We live in a very imperfect world where we're forced to befriend people who are this ignorant of science in order to survive.

A friend of mine is into Eastern religions and she's also afraid of the waves that are used by the cell phones. They may cause cancer or other diseases, she tends to believe. Clearly, this fear is widespread. I am confident that it is correct to say that everyone who is really afraid of such things has zero understanding of physics, even at the undergraduate level, and if he or she has physics degrees, they couldn't have been legitimately earned degrees.

### EU encourages Bulgaria's fascist distortion of the Macedonian history

On Friday, Czechia and Slovakia teamed up again, and while ignoring the Velvet Divorce, we and our brothers acted as one nation and we vetoed an EU document (mostly a document pushed by Bulgaria) on the accession of North Macedonia (and Albania) despite the fact that (and maybe because, as I will explain) both Czechia and Slovakia are arguably greatest supporters of the enlargement of the EU.

Skopje, North Macedonia

We're often talking about the incorporation of the Western Balkans into the EU. "Western Balkans" is the Western part of the peninsula and in practice, the phrase "Western Balkans" refers to the combined territory of (former) Yugoslavia and Albania – usually minus Slovenia (even though it was a part of Yugoslavia) because it's already far enough from the peninsula proper and politically tightly aligned with Austria.

## Tuesday, December 15, 2020 ... //

### Hungary: an unexpected beacon of the European values?

In Hungary, the mother is a woman, the father is a man, and the sex is determined when you're born. What a shocking sequence of propositions ;-)

Two years ago, Székesfehérvár was trying to become the 2023 European Capital of Culture, something that my hometown of Pilsen could still easily become in 2015.

This was one of the videos in which these folks promoted themselves. They were abruptly eliminated because the video features too high a percentage of happy, white, straight, and even Christian people. And the European Union, the NGOs connected to its rectum, and other would-be humanist entities don't like such people! White people are bad, the EU says, almost like the orange people.

Needless to say, the conflicts between the common sense pro-European Hungary and the unhinged anti-European EU didn't start in 2018. The history of this increasingly tense relationship largely overlaps with the biography of Viktor Orbán, the current PM.

## Monday, December 14, 2020 ... //

### WSJ shows a trace of a spine while dealing with a fake doctor

Leftists are defined as the pests that are ruining and poisoning mankind by inserting and claiming "equality" everywhere – by denying the self-evident fact that almost no two things in the world are actually equal. For this reason, they are also responsible for the bulk of "grade inflation" and "inflation of degrees" and similar pathological trends in the Western education systems. They want to selectively help the people in certain groups (especially but not always groups that they belong to) and hurt others – so they constantly claim that the former are "equal" to the latter although (especially when we compare certain individuals) the former are self-evidently worse than the latter.

The wife of a left-wing politician who is believed by many to replace Donald Trump within five weeks (after what looks like a demonstrably fraudulent election) – let me call her Mrs Still Bidet because my point is far more general – is using the title "Dr" at many places. What is the justification for the degree? When she was 55 (that's much higher than the age when almost all talented people get their basic degrees), she received an EdD (doctor of education) degree in educational leadership from the University of Delaware.

## Sunday, December 13, 2020 ... //

### The 2020 Nobel talks and the fate of singularities

A few days ago, Roger Penrose and two less famous co-recipients gave the 2020 Nobel Prize lecture.

The Nobel Prize is a relatively famous award, arguably the most famous one in the world, and Penrose is one of the most famous living mathematical physicists. Still, the video above has 16,000 views now; this version of Despacito has over 7 billion views. The ratio is about half a million which places the public interest in science into a perspective.

## Friday, December 11, 2020 ... //

### EU apparatchiks want a 55% CO2 emissions cut by 2030

After the Covid hysterical demagogues have caused lockdowns that have subtracted ~10% from Europe's GDP in a quarter, and perhaps 5% of the GDP in a more permanent sense, I was shocked to find out that the Gr*tenist terrorists (which are pretty much the same people) are still around, too. We surely need to cripple the European economy more than it was crippled so far, they say.

EU leaders agree to cut emissions 55 percent by 2030
The price of carbon indulgences went up from €25 last month to €31 a ton of CO2 (now). It was below €3 in 2013.

Poland (which still naturally exploits King Coal) has been fighting against similar insanities. In the new deal, it's just being stated that "poorer EU members will get a financial help" (how much of a help is being promised and similar details are extremely hard to find out: transparency about the planned EU blow to the national economies isn't needed, is it?) and "nuclear and lower-emissions energy sources will be allowed". The OK to the nuclear power plants is fine but the 55% target is still economically murderous.

Just consider some activities that produce CO2. Personal transportation yields a fifth of that. Will personal transportation contribute a representative 55% cut in the CO2 emissions? This could mean that 55% of the car owners will either forced to stop using cars; or replace their cars by new electric cars by 2030. Are you serious? The average worker has to work for years to earn the money for an electric car that is comparable to his or her current petrol or diesel car; he needs to save for one year to earn just the "electric premium" (roughly €10,000). Don't expect the electric cars to get much cheaper. The electric batteries are likely to become more expensive if the demand builds up.

## Wednesday, December 09, 2020 ... //

### Celestial sphere and the anti-Wilsonian paradigm

In the mid 1990s, Andrew Strominger and Joe Polchinski would explain their $$p$$-branes and D-branes to each other during the lunches in Santa Barbara. Their brains didn't immediately notice that the ideas were equally insane in the membrane. It took some cycles of digestion to figure out that the branes were really the same thing – and a big explosion of the Second Superstring Revolution was one of the consequences.

The other celestial sphere...

Can this Ansatz for a discovery be repeated? I think that Andrew Strominger (Harvard) and Nima Arkani-Hamed (IAS) have never written a paper together before – if you needed to connect them through co-author relationships, you had to go through someone like Cumrun Vafa or your humble correspondent. Today, they teamed up with two former Strominger's students and here is the first paper:

Celestial Amplitudes from UV to IR
The co-authors are Monica Pate – who has been a Harvard Junior Fellow for a year – and Ana-Maria Raclariu who is a fresh postdoc at the Perimeter Institute. And yes, the paper sort of combines Strominger's and Arkani-Hamed's industries of the recent decade. Strominger was all about the soft particles and hair that may be seen on the celestial sphere etc. (de Boer and Solodukhin studied similar things in 2003, the 2017 revival was due to Strominger, Shao, and Sabrina Speedy Gonzalez Pasterski, the pilot and aircraft constructor); Arkani-Hamed was all about the analytic structure of amplitudes, especially if expressed in twistor-like variables. The industries have been largely isolated although the overlap of the mathematical tools and hypotheses have been self-evident.

## Tuesday, December 08, 2020 ... //

### On the departure of an AI ethics researcher from Google

Synchlavier has told us about the removal of Timnit Gebru (Wikipedia, Heavy.com, Twitter) from Google's AI ethics research team:

We read the paper that forced Timnit Gebru out of Google. Here’s what it says
...MIT Technology Review...
She was born in Addis Abeba, Ethiopia, and her mother is black African. Both parents moved from Eritrea (which is small and was independent from Ethiopia since 1991-1993). Her father died when she was a kid and he was an electrical engineer. My understanding is that he was white but I am not sure. Even with a half-white heritage, you won't find too many Eritrea-born Silicon Valley researchers, I think! She has done AI research in Apple, Microsoft, and Google. Most recently, she was de facto fired from Google.

## Sunday, December 06, 2020 ... //

### Optionally mandatory vaccines and conspiracy theories

Like most of my compatriots, I surely plan to avoid the Covid-19 vaccination as long as it is possible. All experts seem to agree that the available Covid-19 vaccines have much more violent and unpleasant side effects than any other vaccines that have been used en masse (mostly local pain, inflammation, sometimes fever, headache etc.). As a kid, I had reactions to regular vaccines (including fainting, a few times) and I have other reasons to think that the costs and damages would safely exceed the benefits for me.

The average size of a Covid-19 shot. A warning for Google's officials and people with a similar IQ: this comment is a joke and the picture above is a party costume.

More generally, if we ignore my idiosyncrasies, some people worry that the vaccine is unsafe. I believe that if a particular vaccine were made with the purpose of helping the people who get it, it is safer than the virus itself (because the vaccine should be something resembling the virus, without the full ability to grow in your body) and the virus isn't terribly harmful. However, I do share worries that the vaccines may be intentionally modified to cause some extra effects.

## Friday, December 04, 2020 ... //

### The best Czech epidemiologist vs Covid brown shirts

A few days ago, I translated the letter from the Czech ex-president Klaus to the current minister of health which protested against Klaus' being cited as a "source of misinformation" on a ministry web page (authored by a private propaganda company and a Russophobic group at the ministry of interior).

Klaus appears as a target of a nasty sentence along with Prof Jiří Beran whose analogous letter to the minister is an even better example of the Coronazis' disrespect for the freedom of speech and for the highest quality science.

I admire Beran not only for his great achievements in epidemiology and related fields (which are mentioned below) but also for his amazing rhetorical skills and refined Czech. So here is the translation of...

Jiří Beran's letter to the minister of health Jan Blatný

Dear minister,

we have never met so let me introduce myself and say several words about me.

My name is Jiří (George) Beran (Ram), I am a physician, candidatae of sciences in epidemiology, an associate professor of epidemiology, and a professor of epidemiology appointed by President Havel. Your minister of health granted a specialized licenses to me, in the field of epidemiology and also the medical microbiology. I have also worked in the terrain as an epidemiologist for three years and I had to solve about a hundred of epidemics in that role.

### Boson sampling vs silly quantum computer skeptics

You've heard about quantum computers, right? Last year, Google achieved the quantum supremacy for the first time – performing a calculation on their quantum computer that would take an insanely long time on any classical supercomputer. Meanwhile, the SJWs have demanded the phrase quantum supremacy to be abandoned and replaced with the "quantum black lives matter" or something like that. ;-)

Now, as Scott Aaronson pointed out, Science has published the second quantum supremacy result which was produced by a Chinese group,

which performed boson sampling with a transformation of "50 to 100" photons. Now, boson sampling is a computational task that was specifically designed by Aaronson and Arkhipov (note that Aaronson cleverly chose his name to start with Aa... to be ahead of everyone else in the alphabetical lists), building on the work by Tishby and Troyansky, to prove the quantum supremacy.

The leader of the Chinese team is Pan Jianwei (a brother of Pan Tau) who is also the leader of the Jiusan Society, a minor political party in China. It is as independent and cool a political party in China as you can get; like many Scott Aaronson's comrades, it works under the direct leadership of the Chinese Communist Party. :-) The Jiusan Society dares to say that the Chinese people should be prosperous and powerful, try to appreciate the courage.

## Thursday, December 03, 2020 ... //

### During the long eclipse

By Ilona Csáková, Roman Horký, and Kamelot

A somewhat less optimistic yet deeper Covid song that Mirai's Put On a Face Mask

00:00 Roman Horký: Hi, along with Ilona Csáková and Kamelot, we recorded a new videoclip. So watch it through the end.

## Wednesday, December 02, 2020 ... //

### Czech ex-president vs unelected Covid brown shirts

These Corona brown shirts really seem like a fifth column serving some truly pernicious foreign players

I am increasingly worried that the gradual disappearance of freedom and democracy that we were witnessing in the recent decade or so will switch to an abrupt end and a sharp start of a new totalitarian regime. The latest correspondence between the Second President of Czechia, Prof Václav Klaus, and the current minister of health, Assoc Prof Jan Blatný, may be another good example of the clash of the two different worlds.

Klaus has complained that a ministry web has explicitly mentioned him as a source of misinformation about Covid, along with the brilliant immunologist Jiří Beran. The ministry web discusses various types of alleged misinformation about Covid; the last paragraph is dedicated to the VIPs like Klaus and Beran (but if they had more space, they would have included singers and others, too). Well, I consider a significant fraction of the statements mentioned on the page to be misinformation, too. But some are correct and... our constitution still guarantees the freedom of speech (even for those whose statements are considered wrong by me); moreover, the percentage of misinformation is much higher in the articles and statements by those who are trying to fan the hysteria about the most fashionable disease of 2020 and they are not being censored or attacked. These double standards are typical symptoms of a non-democratic political system.

### Two interesting swampland papers

Cumrun Vafa's swampland paradigm is the assumption that the apparent consistency conditions of low-energy effective field theory are just a small portion of the conditions that are required for the spectrum and interactions of a theory to be compatible with quantum gravity. Matter coupled to quantum gravity (e.g. string theory which may be a synonym) is far more constrained and far more unique than the low-energy optics suggests.

In 1978, in order to earn a demijohn of slivovitz, Ivan Mládek composed this song, Joey the Swampthing, which was my #1 favorite song in the kindergarten years (and I have won many contests by singing it LOL). In recent years, every ambitious band has to perform this song (here is Metallica's attempt). As this English translation shows, the song has successfully predicted the rise and fall of Joe Biden.

The swampland program is the plan to maximally isolate these extra conditions that are invisible to the effective field theory and perhaps use this extra information to map the string landscape – and to help to find the right vacuum describing this particular Universe. The string landscape is large but the point is that the space of the effective field theories is much larger and its anti-string portion (the swampland) that is incompatible with the swampland conditions must be drained. The draining led by Vafa will continue at least up to January 20th, 2021 when the swampland creatures may take over the U.S. again. Incidentally, I think that Vafa still doesn't realize how important Trump has been for Vafa's program to drain the swamp. Nobody is perfect.

## Saturday, November 28, 2020 ... //

### A childish topological TOE of mine and what made it unwise

When I achieved some real, important enough realizations about physics, like matrix string theory, I was happy but I slept well. Things suddenly fit together and after a few minutes, one may get pretty much certain that the nontrivial new statements are right. They pass a lot of consistency checks. One may try to deduce many consequences and calculate some other things. But once you know that it works, you may leave it for tomorrow, the day after tomorrow, or someone else. Some fun should be left for the other people, shouldn't it?

It was the ultimately wrong ideas that have prepared several sleepless nights for me when I was a kid (or a teenager). And that may be how I learned that losing your sleep doesn't necessarily increase the depth of the theory. Let's discuss the theory. Sometime in 1987 when I was 14 or so, I decided that I had just found a theory of everything (of all elementary particles). Be ready, it was a theory of a nearly Leo Vyukesque "strawberry TOE" caliber.

## Friday, November 27, 2020 ... //

### Hana Lipovská: birth of a legend

Can a modest young female scholar tame the neo-Marxist octopus in a country?

For a decade, I have read the IVK Newsletters published by the Institute of Václav Klaus, the second president of Czechia. Well, in recent 6 years, I have really read every sentence. The pro-freedom texts are very intelligent and touch many political, societal, and philosophical themes. One of the brilliant authors who has repeatedly caught my attention was Dr Hana Lipovská, now a 30-year-old economist. If you use a search engine, you will find out that this young scholar has published something between half a dozen and a dozen of books, including a serious economics textbook.

None of the superficial left-wing activists has read those things. Well, they wouldn't understand any of it. Many of them (including actresses who are painted as cornerstones of the intellectual elites of Czechia) are high school dropouts. Almost all of them are innumerate and some of them are borderline illiterate, too. Lipovská's texts may be considered sequences of dry, hard facts and logical reasoning. They're not the explosives full of misleading slogans and emotions that are useful to manipulate masses. In this sense, Lipovská's field is very similar to theoretical physics. It's no coincidence that between 2001 and 2005, we considered economist Larry Summers, the president of Harvard University, to be a natural ally of the physicists.

## Wednesday, November 25, 2020 ... //

### Robbert Dijkgraaf and the end of pure science

OK, Albert Einstein found most of his deep ideas in Ulm, Bern, Zurich, Prague, and Berlin, but most people associate him with Princeton, New Jersey, where he was employed as an older man who was already famous but no longer too explosively original (imagine: Princeton gets almost all the credit while Prague where Einstein realized that he needed a theory with the equivalence principle gets almost no credit). The NJ employer was the Institute for Advanced Studies (IAS) and for a few years, Robbert Dijkgraaf was the director of the IAS. Dijkgraaf is my fellow co-father of screwing/matrix string theory (Dijkgraaf is the biologically non-identical twin in the Verlinde triplet, as Susskind has pointed out) and a co-author of a small paper of ours.

Fine, he just wrote an essay for the Quanta Magazine,

Contemplating the End of Physics.
He says that physics isn't ending but some of his detailed argumentation sounds very similar to the – intellectually incompetent and impotent – pseudointellectuals who have talked about ludicrous concepts such as "the end of physics" for decades. Before we get to some content, I must say to Robbert that if he is "contemplating" the end of physics, he should also be "contemplating" his moral duty to return all the salaries and grants he has received in Amsterdam and Princeton because he was hired to manage physics and drive it to progress, not to end it! Quite generally, I find it stunning for people to "contemplate the end of physics" and similar things when they are paid huge salaries for "doing physics" instead. These two should be totally incompatible, shouldn't they?

### Swiss ICUs and end-of-life wishes

Among the Western countries, the otherwise hyper-PC Sweden is unique because its medical elite was capable of keeping the nation in a good psychological shape, extinguishing unnecessary Covid fear, rejecting the "global duty" to wear face masks, and avoiding the closure of schools and shops at all times (although mass events are still restricted; and the border was closed for some time). The pictures of Swedish cities have looked like a different world since March. "Everyone else" thought it was common sense to be hiding in the basement like a rat (and tens of millions ludicrously think that the world will never get to the "old normal" again); meanwhile, millions of Swedes continued their normal lives.

Some Swedes were still hiding like rats but they did so on the private basis which is exactly how things should be (I think that a much higher percentage of Swedes is willing to hide in this way, relatively to more "individually courageous" Czechs, and that's why we saw a much faster Covid dynamics here in Czechia). In November, the Swedish statistics page makes it clear that Sweden's approach was a great success. 6500 Swedes died with Covid but the actual "excess death tally" is just about 1000-2000 i.e. 1-2% of the annual deaths (which is pretty much undetectable by eyeballing if you look at the annual charts). Czechia already has 7499 deaths with Covid so our more stringent spring lockdown almost certainly wasn't a good investment for the final tally. The second wave came to Sweden because $$R_0$$ is higher in these months than what it was in late spring and the summer, so the required fraction for herd immunity is higher (which is why these diseases are seasonal). The peak "deaths per day" were 34 in this wave so far, well below 115 in the spring, so Sweden is pretty much the least affected Western European country now. The total number of casualties of this "next wave" will be some 1/6 of the first wave. With a third wave, expect something like a geometric series: you may just ignore other waves.

## Sunday, November 22, 2020 ... //

### Why do many professors suffer from TDS

It's the defense of a group think and collective interests

Vít Bláha sent me an interesting essay by Philip Patrick, a lecturer in Tokyo,

Why academics hold Thatcher and Trump in such contempt.
Note that only guys who are safe enough, like being employed in Japan (or Hermites in Pilsen, for that matter LOL), have the freedom to discuss these important matters these days. First, I tried to give my answer to this vital question and I thought that Patrick was too kind to the instructors who suffer or suffered from the Trump (or Thatcher) Derangement Syndrome. But after some more reading, I decided that my view is pretty much exactly the same as Patrick's.

## Saturday, November 21, 2020 ... //

### Climate Hustle 2: excellent

I discussed Climate Hustle 1 in 2016.

This is just a short advertisement. I watched Climate Hustle 2 last night, a cool movie by Marc Morano from
ClimateDepot.com and a few others around him. See John Stossel's review for some comments. There's another host in the movie – and MiniAOC joins the men and makes it somewhat cuter and more relaxed than it would be otherwise. Petr Mach and Václav Klaus make sure that my nation is punching above its weight.

## Thursday, November 19, 2020 ... //

### Rogue Harvard students demand a campus-wide ban for Trump officials

John Harvard would be a Trump official if he avoided the self-destructive career move in 1638, namely his death. Now, the plan is to muzzle him, too.

It hasn't been determined yet who will be the U.S. president between 2020 and 2024 and a group of "Harvard students" is distributing this petition that demands that all the officials within the Trump administration are banned on campus.

Petition circulating at Harvard to stop former Trump administration officials from attending, teaching or speaking at the university (Fox Business)
They couldn't attend, teach, or speak there; the intent is to prevent them from walking through Harvard Yard, too. Kayleigh McEnany, a smart, courageous, and blonde Trump spokeswoman (and a Harvard alumnus) already has plans to violate at least the latter restriction.

## Tuesday, November 17, 2020 ... //

### Velvet Revolution at 31: much of the freedom was just temporary

Back in 1989, I was intensely interested in politics, listening to Radio Free Europe every day, writing petitions etc. On Friday, November 17th, I was a high school student and the university students in Prague organized an anti-totalitarian rally. Note that exactly 50 years earlier, on November 17th, 1939, the Nazis shut down the Czech universities after some skirmishes at the funeral of Jan Opletal, an anti-Nazi student activist who died after some conflicts during the October 28th (birth of Czechoslovakia 1918) events.

Because of the 1939 events, November 17th has been celebrated as the International Students' Day. Needless to say, the events that came exactly 50 years later strengthened the reasons to celebrate it as the International Students' Day. Today, it's a national holiday in Czechia, a "Day of Fight For Freedom". Note that just like the Nazis, the Coronazis are shutting universities across the world and the press doesn't dare to criticize the Coronazis just like it didn't dare to criticize the Nazis in 1939.

## Saturday, November 14, 2020 ... //

### Klaus: On flimsiness (and therefore untrustworthiness) of the American presidential elections

By the second Czech president Václav Klaus, in the LN daily

Even though the U.S. electoral system and its weights of various states of the Union is rather strange for a person – an ordinarily attentive (i.e. not so attentive) to details of politics – from a unitary state such as Czechia, we respect that it reflects a historically evolved American federalism. It wasn't drawn by an election expert who was sitting behind his desk. The U.S. were born through an evolution and they were undergoing a transformation in time.

### The New York Times inkspillers attack Isaac Newton

Isaac Newton has founded not only classical mechanics but also true quantitative science – physics rooted in advanced mathematics – in his seminal three-volume 1687 Principia (Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica). The world-changing importance of this text is self-evident to everyone who isn't brain-dead.

## Wednesday, October 14, 2020 ... //

### A fun calculation of the maximum speed of sound

Let us spend some time by temporarily abandoning fears that Trump won't decisively beat the loons and domestic terrorists on November 3rd, and from our peaking Covid-19 infection in Czechia (which is almost reaching the level of epidemics in the first district, so for the first time, I have at least a "moderate" understanding for the online schools and some other changes, hopefully a very short-lived policy; I think it's great that Czechia avoided excessive preventive policies and only regulates the virus when it's arguably defensible). I could write lots of stuff about various news reported on my Twitter account but at the end, I think that most of these topics aren't deep enough to deserve a full-blown, extensive, penetrating TRF blog post. Or I am rather exhausted by the news about insanity from so many directions that is overwhelming us.

Willie sent me a fun article that just appeared Science Advances,

Speed of sound from fundamental physical constants
by Trachenko et al. The preprint is from April 2020 but I obviously don't systematically follow all cond-mat preprints.

## Tuesday, October 13, 2020 ... //

### We're not at war, we don't need draconian restrictions

Statement by the Václav Klaus Institute, October 13th

1. The evolution of the coronavirus epidemic mustn't be underestimated and we are not underestimating it, either. We are seeing the numbers supplied by the government but we see them a bit differently than Mr Hamáček [Czech minister of interior and leader of social democrats], Prymula [minister of health], and similar men. The interpretation of these numbers mustn't be left to the physicians; statisticians (experts in time series) must speak about them. And the conclusions must be made by politicians. We are – in harmony with a spectrum of leading Czech immunologists – convinced that Covid-19 is only threatening those who are already seriously ill. On top of that, we emphasize once again that the people with a positive test are infected, not necessarily ill.

## Saturday, October 10, 2020 ... //

### Remdesivir, a target for loons, pseudoscientists, and conspiracy theorists

At this moment, Czechia is by far the most Covid-active country in the world, a fact that is caused by Czechs' not being afraid of this disease now, despite the efforts of the prime minister, minister of health, and a few others who would like to reignite the fear. We still had concerts, ice-hockey matches with thousands of fans etc. last night, the life is continuing normally. Culture, sports, and fun will be banned for two weeks from next Monday; after the totally free July and August, we basically added another month of almost complete freedom in which it was already clear that the disease was quickly growing.

It's nothing pleasant. This infection beating rates of positive tests that were seen anywhere in the world, ever, brings us first tangible negative stories. We know the first people around us who suffer from Covid and/or whose relatives and friends are not only positive but may be at risk; whose girlfriends lost their smell, and so on. We're afraid of the outcomes of their struggles.

Being the #8 power in the world (in absolute numbers; relatively, it's some 800 new cases per million inhabitants and per day) gives the Czech doctors some extra right to claim that they're experts. With those 8600 cases a day, we're still getting just some ~25-30 deaths a day in average in recent days.

## Wednesday, October 07, 2020 ... //

### President's illness and the sick America

By Alexander Tomský, a Czech publicist who has been a political scientist in the UK for many years

It is probably the first time since the Civil War when democracy in America finds itself at existential risk. The progressives have been controlling the Democratic Party for quite some time, much like the humanities at the universities, almost all media, and the large corporations. Building on their utopian demand for social justice, they are attacking the capitalist economic inequality, the "institutionalized" racial discrimination, the traditional family, as well as the churches and they are undermining the legitimacy of the foundational 1789 American Constitution.

## Tuesday, October 06, 2020 ... //

### Penrose, Genzel+Ghez share the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physics

It's all about the black hole existence now, stupid

Roger Penrose has done a lot in mathematical and theoretical physics – and in the popularization of these fields (popular books etc.). Twistors and Penrose tilings (2D quasicrystals) are two very serious examples, I wrote a lot about both (including a proof of the completeness of the tiling, plus some code drawing them; the 5D definition was included in my and Zahradník's textbok on linear algebra, I am pretty sure that it's the only such an undergraduate linear algebra textbook in the world LOL). Quasicrystals could have deserved a Nobel Prize by themselves because they are far more "empirical" than most people think. Don't forget the Cosmic Censorship Conjecture, wildly inspiring, partly wrong (in the strong sense), but probably right in a weak sense and equivalent to the Weak Gravity Conjecture. Then the Penrose stairs and the Penrose triangle and the annoying beatle notation for tensors etc. ;-)

Of course, while many of his great ideas (like those in the previous sentence) are closer to recreational mathematics and/or non-empirical mathematical physics, many of these contributions have greatly influenced the adult physics world.

One-half of the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physics went to Roger Penrose for the proof that black holes are really predicted to emerge almost everywhere, e.g. after the collapse of the heavy enough stars.

## Monday, October 05, 2020 ... //

### Specialization is sometimes wildly underestimated, often wildly overestimated

In the media, real experts are sometimes diluted by tons of non-experts; in other cases, most of the relevant experts are being censored and replaced by a tiny, politically convenient subgroup

I have wanted to make this simple yet important point for a long time. The media and the public err in both ways and hugely so. In some cases, especially in fields like theoretical physics, the media (and the part of the public that is brainwashed by the media) seem to think that the expertise doesn't matter and the opinions of a much broader spectrum of "pundits" are equally credible, to say the least.

When it comes to the research into quantum gravity and the unification of forces, some O(1000) people in the world are currently professionally involved with the research and competent at the same moment; about O(10,000) may be expected to have informed opinions about many questions. It's just a hard field that requires a very high intelligence as well as decades (time) to build a pyramid of knowledge that depends on the lower stories of the pyramid. However, this is also a field that is presented as something that is "collectively built" by millions of talking heads and the opinions of tons of talking heads – who clearly don't belong to the group of actual experts (e.g. just some media-savvy pseudoscientists or scientists who did their good research 50 years ago) – are being constantly sold by the media as if they were the "real science".

## Sunday, October 04, 2020 ... //

### Trump's approach to his Covid condition is exactly right

OK, Donald Trump and his wife got their positive test some two days ago. At some level, it was almost unavoidable that a man who is exposed to so many other people would get infected, soon or later, and his history of "protection against the virus" may be said to be futile by now! ;-) Fine, he contracted it (unless it is a giant theater). He could have locked himself at the top of the White House but he decided to go on the offensive – by picking an army hospital he considers great.

You can see he is doing very well, speaking carefully, as a loving leader of the whole world, not just the U.S., and praising the drugs he is receiving: Regeneron's REGN-COV2 (8 grams, already on Saturday) and Gilead Sciences' Remdesivir (see recommended doses). I first promoted the latter on March 3rd; it is still not quite approved in the U.S. which is rather incredible after those 7-8 months of hysteria, given the clear evidence that it helps.