Pizza Lunch, Fall 2010


Pizza lunch is a proud and venerable tradition of the Columbia Astronomy department, whose only constants seem to be the eating of pizza and the giving of announcements. In Fall 2010, the format for topics of discussions has changed a bit, under the iron fist and velvet glove of Josh Peek and Ryan Joung, respectively. Three or four presenters will be scheduled each week to guide discussions or presentations on topics of their choosing, though we will attempt to add in any spontaneous contributions as well. Each presenter is expected to speak / guide discussion for between 10 and 15 minutes.

Pizza is $1 per slice for members of the department to defray costs. Visitors eat free of charge.

Read below for the intended format of the presentations.


Date Who Subject Who Subject Who Subject Who Subject
September 14 Josh & Ryan Introduction to Pizza Lunch Lia Internet Resources Jess metal transport to the gaseous outskirts of galaxies David Schiminovich Something interesting
September 21 Allyson Identifying substructure in the MW Jules stellar tidal disruption flares
September 28 Josh S. Millisecond Pulsars Hugh Color-changing galaxies in the Virgo Cluster Lia Origins of Intergalactic Dust
October 5 Jenna XUV-disks Gray Hunt for MW WR stars Jeno Type Ia SNe Conference Summary
October 12 Erika UV Detector Development Maryam Stellar Forensics with SN and GRBs
October 19 Matt Gravitationally-lensed broad absorption line quasars Greg Astro-Stats Clusters David Schiminovich Something interesting Josh Crayon cosmology
October 26 Dan Milky Way Black Hole Spin Frits Measuring the absolute metal abundances of the hot IGM
November 2
November 9 Jia Supermassive Black Hole Binaries Ben B. S5: Spitzer SDSS Statistical Spectroscopic Survey Jana Finding dwarfs via HI
November 16 Taka identifying binary black holes resolved with pulsar timing arrays Colin DivB is a Figment of Your Interpolation
November 23 Yuan Cooling in cool-core clusters Ximena Gas in a merger remnant
November 30 Joo Gas in a Galaxy Cluster Wlad The Baroclinic Instability in protoplanetary disks Christian Cataclysmic variables
December 7 Jeff Evolution of magnetars Kathryn J. Connecting the local to the global: from the Solar Vicinity to the Outer Galactic Halo
December 14 Zoltan Forming supermassive black holes at high redshift with the help of a primordial magnetic field Cameron Galaxy simulations

The presentations should fit one or more of the following descriptions:

— Casual, but well researched, discussions and questions about topics relevant to astronomy today. The speaker need not get up from her seat, and discussions do not need to have visual aides.

— Presentations of recent work by the author or others, with a focus on interesting, provocative results. Presenters are encouraged to pose genuine questions to the group. We strongly encourage presenters to limit themselves to presenting 2 relevant figures from the work, either through the projector or through handouts. A whiteboard is provided; we strongly encourage speakers to take advantage of it.

— "Advertisements" of ongoing or recent work, especially by visitors or new department members. These should not be cohesive, slide-heavy "talks", but should rather be the presentation of a few interesting results or ideas that the speaker is interested in discussing with members of the department during her stay.

Pizza lunch is not a space for formal "talks", and especially not talks based heavily on slideware. Wednesday colloquium and Thursday seminar is the appropriate department venue for such talks. There are two reasons for this. Firstly, we want to make this space available for a more informal mode of group communication. Secondly, all graduate students are required (see the graduate student handbook) to speak at pizza lunch once each year, and we do not want to put the onus upon them to make overwrought slide presentations.

Hosts are responsible for communicating the (admittedly somewhat strange) format of pizza lunch to their visitors. If either you or your visitors do not follow the format of pizza lunch you will be treated to either the quiet but stern disapproval of Ryan or being hung out the 13th floor by your ears by Josh.