I learned yesterday from Markus Risse for example that the Auger Collaboration has a paper in the making to fit the penetration depth data which has earlier been claimed could not be explained neither with protons nor heavier ions or compositions thereof. Turns out the data can be fitted with a composition of protons and ions after all, though we'll have to wait for the paper to learn how well this works.
Today I just want to pick up an amusing remark by Holger Müller from Berkeley, who gave the first talk on Monday, about his experiments in atom interferometry. He jokingly introduced the "Craziness Factor" of a model, arguing that the a preferred frame, and the thereby induced violations of Lorentz-invariance, have a small craziness factor.
Naturally, this lead me to wonder what terms contribute to the craziness factor. Here's what came to my mind:
+ additional assumptions not present in the Standard Model and General Relativity. Bonus: if these assumptions are unnecessary
+ principles and assumptions of the Standard Model and General Relativity dropped. Bonus: without noticing
+ problems ignored. Bonus: problems given a name
+ approach has previously been tried. Bonus: and abandoned, multiple times
+ additional parameters. Bonus: parameters with unnatural values, much larger or smaller than one, without any motivation
+ model does not describe the real world (Euclidean, 2 dimensions, without fermions, etc). Bonus: Failure to mention this.
+ each time the model is being referred to as "speculative," "radical" or "provocative". Bonus: By the person who proposed it.
+ model has been amended to agree with new data. Bonus: multiple times.
- problems addressed. Bonus: Not only the author worries about these problems.
- relations learned, insights gained. Bonus: If these are new relations or insights, rather than reproductions of findings from other approaches.
- Simplifications over standard approach. Bonus: If it's an operational, not a formal simplification.
- Data matched. Bonus: Additional predictions made.