CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) has observed a particle consistent with the Higgs boson, a proposed elementary particle that was in theory predicted in 1964.
If you are not familiar with CERN, their research had a pretty significant side effect that impacts our daily life. Tim Berners-Lee invented the Internet while working at CERN in 1991 – interestingly on a NeXT workstation produced by NeXT, the company Steve Jobs founded after leaving Apple.
John Ellis’ explanation is the best so far, offering a concise model as comparison, and even demonstrating it with a formula on his t-shirt.
Clearly, this is a better representation than CNN’s attempt to compare the Higgs boson with Justin Bieber’s teenage girl fans.
Part of the tools CERN has is the Large Hadron Collider, the world largest and highest-energy particle accelerator.
The LHC lies in a tunnel 27 kilometres (17 mi) in circumference, as deep as 175 metres (574 ft) beneath the Franco-Swiss border near Geneva, Switzerland. [..] It was built in collaboration with over 10,000 scientists and engineers from over 100 countries, as well as hundreds of universities and laboratories. [via Wikipedia]
It’s a truly magnificent piece of technology – something you clearly don’t want to interfere with.
If this inspired you, and you want to deep into the world of particles and the universe, Stephen Hawking’s book “The Grand Design” might be the right lecture. Stephen made a bet that the Higgs boson would never be found.
“I had a bet with Gordon Kane (of the University of Michigan) that the Higgs particle wouldn’t be found,” Hawking told BBC News on Wednesday. “It seems I have just lost $100.” [via Reuters]
Certainly a bet worth losing.