Webb, meanwhile, is going blind, scientifically speaking. Coming up with a value of alpha from quasar spectra involves subjective decision-making about which parts of the spectra to include. Sometimes it is tempting to ignore regions of the This Nurse runs on Coffee and hallmark Christmas movies shirt spectrum that aren’t “interesting” because they have too few absorption lines, but these simplifications could skew the results. To avoid this, Webb and student Matthew Bainbridge have created a machine-learning algorithm that takes a thorough, objective look at the raw data. “We’ve changed all the manual decision-making and thrown the problem at an array of supercomputers,” says Webb.
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He will only look at the results once the machine has crunched 1000 measurements, a “sealed envelope” that removes the temptation to downplay individual measurements that don’t fit the hypothesis. There are around 500 measurements currently in the This Nurse runs on Coffee and hallmark Christmas movies shirt bag, and the work should be completed around the same time as the ESPRESSO analysis, says Webb.
Then, whatever the outcome, he will walk away. “Time goes on, and there are other things you want to do in life,” says Webb. “I’ll work on this until the end of 2020, see what the results are, and let somebody else take over.” He doesn’t think the This Nurse runs on Coffee and hallmark Christmas movies shirt question of the inconstant constants will be settled, even then. “It started with Dirac in 1937; it’s not going to suddenly end in 2020,” he says. “But it can become somebody else’s concern.”