Man, between the Syrian emails, Frank Ocean coming out, and amputee athlete Oscar Pistorius getting to compete in the Olympics, yesterday was a huge news day. The biggest news, however, was the announcement by CERN that they discovered the infamous Higgs Boson, aka “the god particle.”
“We observe in our data clear signs of a new particle, at the level of 5 sigma, in the mass region around 126 GeV. The outstanding performance of the LHC and ATLAS and the huge efforts of many people have brought us to this exciting stage,” said ATLAS experiment spokesperson Fabiola Gianotti, “but a little more time is needed to prepare these results for publication.”
“The results are preliminary but the 5 sigma signal at around 125 GeV we’re seeing is dramatic. This is indeed a new particle. We know it must be a boson and it’s the heaviest boson ever found,” said CMS experiment spokesperson Joe Incandela. “The implications are very significant and it is precisely for this reason that we must be extremely diligent in all of our studies and cross-checks.”
Sigma 5 means scientists are about 99.99999% positive they’ve discovered the Higgs Boson. So, why is this important? Essentially, if the Higgs boson is confirmed to exist, then scientists could be satisfied that the Standard Model of the physical world was fundamentally correct. The boson helps confirm the theory of how particles obtain a mass.
At the same time, CERN should be ashamed of themselves for using Comic Sans in its presentation of the announcement. Was Helvetica not available?