My talk in Portsmouth was on Tuesday of last week, and with the exception of a bit of trouble with the train on the way down, it seemed to go well enough. I didn’t run wildly over time or commit any other glaring mistakes, but did get a bit of a grilling in the question session. I suppose I need some practice on how to deal with problem questions, in which an answer can’t or shouldn’t be attempted in a short space of time. Trying to answer these questions invariably means leaving out details, which just fuel another question and so on.
This week there is an international conference taking place in Imperial College. Called PASCOS, it focuses on particles, strings and cosmology, so a little bit of everything really. I headed over there yesterday to see a specific talk by Hiranya Peiris, who recently co-wrote a paper citing us, and doing a numerical simulation which validates the tensor mode bound in our recent paper. It was interesting to actually see someone citing my work, with my name up in lights on the screen!
And next week I might get to meet yet more people involved in the work I have been doing recently, when I go to the ICTP in Trieste for a “workshop” on Strings and Cosmology. I realise now that it is not so much of workshop as a large conference, with around 200 participants registered. But it’s a good reason to get away from the recent dreadful weather and incompetent suicide bombing doctors here in London.