Statistics is no more an option – by Luca Stanco
Here you are a contribution by L. Stanco, making some really interesting considerations on these two first days of NeuTel Conference.
After one day and half of very exausting (also in the italian meaning) talks I got a quite fresh impression which I may like to share with you. No, no, I am not joking or kidding you, the talks have been quite interesting and rather self consistent so far, but the physics issues they addressed to are many and impressive and … not conclusive! That is the word I would finally use. If I am not wrong none of the talks were able to end with the sentence: “and now that is clarified once for all”.
Allows me try to draw a quick representation of our present world in neutrino physics (quite limited and partial and “light”, of course).
In the past decades (not years, elas) the neutrino physicists were facing to two fully complementary options: either they did not see anything (null result) and limits were usually placed, or they obtained relevant measurements fully funded, no problems with statistical issues, the measured results were well settled, no need to undergo sophisticated statistical analysis, the result was clear and robust, do not care of those people loving to waste their time to add minor, very minor, error analysis.
At present the situation seems changed to me. The reason come from the fact that neutrino experiments became more and more complex (id est expensive) and that also neutrinos physics issues came close to what we may call the Standard Model Boundary. Moreover, one has to outline the equation “increase costs”=”less measurments”.
This morning I was surprised to hear about the influence of statistical analysis in the MEG experiment, and even Elena Aprili with her Xenon10 result underwent a statistical analysis which brought to different upper limits in the no-spin dependent Dark Matter region.
And yesterday evening, one of the last talks by JJ (Gomez-Cadenas) was almost fully addressed to the statistical way the measurements have to deal with. I could do many other examples from just these two days of talks but the session is going to be resumed in few
Then… Wow! unbelieveable, I welcome Neutrino physicists to the field of precise measurments. Be aware that collider guys discovered it in the nienties with the era of precise EW measurements. We are not so late… and if you accept my suggestion this fact may be seen as a new positive strength to our field.