Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Why Does the Higgs Particle Matter?

Physicist Frank Wilczek's essay is absolutely lovely to read, and inspiring, because it considers not only the science but also the human aspects involved in an inquiry of this magnitude:
The scientific work leading to the Higgs particle discovery involved thousands of engineers and physicists, not to mention billions of taxpayers, from all over the world co-operating to pursue a common goal. For most of the highly gifted participants, it involved long, often frustrating and sometimes tedious labor, with modest prospects for personal reward. They did it, anyway, because they wanted to understand the world better, and to be part of something great. They did, and they were. In this we have seen, I think, an example of humanity at its best.
Plus it helps that it's written in language that even a lay person like me could at least try to understand the concept.

The entire essay is here.

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