Higgs Hunters Talk

Beginners question

  • AowlanCrystal by AowlanCrystal

    I note that on the outer blue/grey section sometimes there are red rectangles, some have coloured lines running to them, other times no lines, also there are sometimes blue rectangles and yellow ones too, what are these, please? and do we ignore them, or mark them, in certain circumstances? thanks for any help.


  • Whoandwhatitis by Whoandwhatitis moderator

    That's a great question, @AowlanCrystal!

    The short answer is that it is helpful to mark the colored rectangles occasionally.

    Here's the color chart:

    • Bottom quark = Blue

    • Electron = Green

    • Muon = Red

    • Photon = Yellow

    Typically, I will mark the rectangles with "Something Weird" when I see any of the following:

    1. The rectangles are of especially long length (very high-energy particles).

    2. Two or more rectangles directly opposite one another.

    3. Two or more rectangles very close together.

    4. Lots of rectangles. Typically if I see the two muon rectangles and two other rectangles, I might mark them. This depends on the overall appearance of the image.

    5. If there are two or more yellow rectangles (mark each one if you'd like).

    This is a guide that I personally use, but the way that you mark them is subject to interpretation. There isn't one answer for the "proper" way to mark them, and this benefits the scientists.

    Photons (yellow rectangles) likely will not have a clear particle path leading toward it, because photons have no electric charge. The others will probably have a line leading toward them unless they're plucked out by the computer for a variety of reasons.

    There is a description of the rectangles and the outer detectors in the advanced section of the FAQ:

    The calorimeters can detect energy both from charged and neutral
    particles. This shows up as yellow blocks in the red and green rings.
    White trapezoid fields mark areas where especially much energy has
    been detected ("jets"). Red dots on the muon detector also mean energy
    detected there.

    There are sometimes also red, blue, yellow and green rectangular
    markings on the outside of the ring, starting at the muon detector.
    The red ones are always at the end of muon lines, so they are
    obviously the energy measured from our muons. Blue ones often appear
    opposite a muon and indicate a jet that has likely come from the decay
    of a bottom quark. Yellow and green ones mean photons and electrons,
    respectively (?).


  • AowlanCrystal by AowlanCrystal

    Thanks for the really detailed response, to my question.

    I'm usually found in the Serengeti (Snapshot Serengeti)!, (plus recently Gorongosa) and have viewed many images in the Seti signal hunt and also many in hunting planets! (plus a few others dabbled in, Penguins, Mars, Cancer cells.....,), but have had an interest in many fields, Higgs is something very different.

    Obviously, I will have made and will make a few errors as I begin. but hopefully the more I do, the better, I'll get! I always think, that having people at all stages from beginner to expert, as its different minds and eyes looking and often surprising, its the beginners and especially children that point out something (or ask 'the' question) those with some or plenty of expertise in the field might overlook, regardless of subject field. the case of 'under your nose and still can't see it!'

    Thanks again


  • Whoandwhatitis by Whoandwhatitis moderator

    Gorongosa is one that I've also been hooked on recently, but Snapshot Serengeti was the original "nature"-type of project that I enjoyed classifying. In fact, Snapshot Serengeti just sent me the following e-mail on 12/7:

    Over the last few years, you’ve helped us identify almost 2 million
    images on Snapshot Serengeti. Recently the first 1.2 million of those
    were made available to researchers worldwide. But along the way, a few
    thousand photos fell through the cracks for one reason or another. We
    have recovered them, and now we present to you a new brand new season
    of Snapshot Serengeti – The Lost Season!

    I love the variety of projects on Zooniverse. Am I allowed to say that most of those are my favorites? 😄
    What's especially nice is that many of the projects have fresh updates come through every once in a while, and the e-mails often bring me back to those projects.

    Also, I totally agree with the utility of the various levels of expertise. Based on the many conversations in the discussion boards here on Higgs Hunters, the wide range of classifications is very useful for generating statistically-significant results. In fact, the Zooniverse Twitter account posted something this fall where they highly-praised citizen scientists all across the Zooniverse. I think the statistics showed that citizen scientists classified galaxies with a similar accuracy to the scientists themselves! This is one of my favorite things about Zooniverse.

    This article may have been in the Zooniverse Blog or possibly even the following article:

    http://www.symmetrymagazine.org/article/citizen-scientists-published "Citizen scientists published"

    Thank you for sharing!