This past week was my last week at CERN during my two-week trip to the laboratory. It was a week filled with many activities: we has an awesome group dinner; I got a tour of the ATLAS Fast TracKer laboratory; I got involved in a short-fuse project to study CPU usage improvements in bottom-quark-initated jet triggers; and I began the long trek back to the United States.
I am on an approved leave from teaching and university service this semester so that I can focus on research. While I’ve had a number of things going since before the New Year, the last two weeks have been the start of the “traveling” phase of my semester. For me, it’s “Phase 1” – I’ll be in Dallas for much of March while Jodi is away at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). Now that this part of my semester has begun, I thought it would be useful to reflect on the last couple of weeks of “HEP Life.”
There is a question that hangs on the lips of scientists in America right now. If science is under threat, what is the best way to act? There is no simple answer to this. Indeed, this is a deeply personal question for each scientist, one that can only be answered from within. Nonetheless, there are some things to consider when answering the question. In this post, I want to express my thoughts about the considerations, my perspectives on them, and leave the American scientist with some parting guidance about how to conduct themselves in the coming hours, days, weeks, months, and years.