My friend James alerted me to this news on the science frontier. According to the Guardian, the Large Hadron Collider or L.H.C. as it is known by some (simply as Cern by others) is warming up as of late February to begin looking for the mysterious Higgs Boson particle (its been elusive and they haven't found it in earlier searches). It has been dubbed the “God Particle” and a lot of articles about it seem to be complicated (unnecessarily so) maybe because they are written by scientists and not by writers (who are used to explaining things so that people can actually understand them).
So, the question of “Science Wednesday” (Yes, this is totally a play on N.P.R.'s Science Friday) is simply, what is the Higgs Boson?
Well first, its name comes from a Physicist as unassuming as you or I. His name is Peter Higgs. Secondly, the Higgs Boson is an idea formulated many years ago to explain why matter has mass.See, physicists noticed when looking at extremely tiny particles of matter, that all things weren’t equal. They dubbed this phenomenon the “particle zoo” as simply put…some pieces of matter were inexplicably of different shape and size than others. For example: Did you know that there's so much empty space inside matter that the entire human race could be squeezed into the volume of a sugar cube?
Enter...the Particle Zoo! I bet you were expecting
"Enter the Dragon" and some variation of Bruce Lee web-fu!
However, Charlie can vouch that my web-fu is indeed mighty.
Much now seems to rest on the detection of the Higgs particle and the “mysterious” field to which it is associated. One of the great enigmas of particle physics is why charge and other quantum attributes occur in integer quantities while mass, the most fundamental property of all matter and energy (and, not coincidentally, the basis of gravitation), does not.
|It's still frickin' ugly even if it |
is a classic car. My brother may
disagree as he's a car nut but...whatever.
|I IZ IN UR COLLIDER LOOKIN' FOR BLK HOLZ|