Wednesday, December 30, 2020 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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,

Quantum computational advantage using photons,
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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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 ... Deutsch/Español/Related posts from blogosphere

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.

(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,'script','//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js','ga'); ga('create', 'UA-1828728-1', 'auto'); ga('send', 'pageview');