Subhra Priyadarshini at Nature India:
Watching the live webcast from CERN and the press conference thereafter, I could only sigh: Wish I were there today to witness history being made in particle physics. The rest of the day went in reading my colleague Geoff Brumfiel’s live blog from CERN and his witty analysis of the discovery of Higgs boson and, of course, the umpteen serious and funny takes on Twitter.
A little later I heard from Archana Sharma, the Indian staff physicist at CERN, who shared her excitement and the star-struck disbelief of a bunch of interns from India presently on a summer programme at CERN. The anticipation surrounding CERN’s scientific seminar on the “Latest update in the search for the Higgs boson” was so palpable at the Route de Meyrin that you could cut it with a kitchen knife, she said, prompting this beautiful piece for Nature India. Archana’s earlier pieces in the run up to today’s announcement have always made for wonderful reading and have celebrated the Indian presence at CERN.
In India, there also has been much speculation[1, 2, 3, 4] on why Satyendra Nath Bose, the Indian physicist who lends his name to Higgs boson following his celebrated work with Albert Einstein, has gone unsung through the ages. In fact, there is much criticism of the fact that only the ‘H’ in Higgs boson is written in capital letter. This debate is not going to die soon, at least in the land of Bose, whose Bose-Einstein statistics has become the basis of most quantum mechanics as we know it today. More:
CERN staff physicist Archana Sharma at Nature India:
The excitement and anticipation surrounding CERN’s scientific seminar on the “Latest update in the search for the Higgs boson” was so palpable at the Route de Meyrin in the CERN campus that one of my friends jokingly remarked that you could cut it with a kitchen knife! Understandably so.
Who can say that is not CERN’s magnum opus? In the words of Stephen Hawking, “We are just an advanced breed of monkeys on a minor planet of a very average star. But we can understand the Universe. That makes us something special.” And this special revelation may be the answer to the ultimate question of life, the Universe and everything, the space and the space between spaces.
This is just the inception. If black holes and their revelations indeed pave the way for intergalactic time travel, “Beam me up, Scotty” will no longer be confined to the niches of a science fiction fantasy. More:
Western science is overlooking India’s contribution to the discovery
Amit Chaudhuri in The Guardian:
In fact, “boson” is derived from Satyendra Nath Bose, an Indian physicist from Kolkata who, in 1924, realised that the statistical method used to analyse most 19th-century work on the thermal behaviour of gases was inadequate. He first sent off a paper on the quantum statistics that he perfected in Dhaka to a British journal, which turned it down. He then sent it to Albert Einstein, who immediately grasped its immense importance, translated the paper, and published it in a German journal. (And so our invented German provenance turns out to be not wholly inappropriate.) Bose’s innovation came to be known as the Bose-Einstein statistics, and became a basis of quantum mechanics. Einstein saw that it had profound implications for physics; that it had opened the way for this subatomic particle, which he named, after his Indian collaborator, “boson”. Few physicists would disagree with the suggestion that the Bose-Einstein statistics have had much wider consequences for physics than the Higgs boson has had.
Still, science and the west are largely synonymous and coeval: they are two words that have the same far-reaching meaning. Just as Van Gogh and Toulouse-Lautrec’s paintings consume and digest the Japanese prints they were responding to so that we don’t need to be aware of Japanese prints when viewing the post-impressionists, western science is pristine, and bears no mark of what’s outside itself. More:
Higgs boson explained
In The Guardian:
For a child in the back seat of a car: “It’s a particle that some scientists have been looking for. Because they knew that without it the universe would be impossible. Because without it, the other particles in the universe wouldn’t have mass. Because they would all continue to travel at the speed of light, just like photons do. Because I just said they would, and if you ask ‘Why?’ one more time we’re not stopping at Burger King.”
For religious fundamentalists: ”There is no Higgs boson.” More