Saturday, May 03, 2008

Why we're so damned excited about the LHC

If you want a sense of the wonder which, as a scientist, I feel for the experiment shortly to be switched on at CERN, in Geneva, I would highly recommend watching this TED talk by Brian Cox. Towards the end Brian gives a powerful sentiment of the incredible fact that all of what we see around us, all the objects, the ideas, the emotions, our history and our future came from the simple combination of hydrogen atoms and the laws of physics.

Encompassed in this passage is my own sense of amazement at the fact that from humble beginnings, the universe is now self-aware. The emergent complexity from basic structures and rules is what makes me passionate about trying to understand more.

In addition to the above talk is the following animation which gives a sense of the technological achievements which have already taken place at CERN. As the Bad Astronomer Phil Plait says

I stood right there, looked right into the heart of that beast, and even now watching that animation gives me chills.

Count me in on that! It also gives me satisfaction that I played a small part in the progress of ATLAS.


Thanks to BABlog and Asymptotia.

2 comments:

Lumo said...

Jonathan, if you followed TRF more closely, you would have been excited about the Star Wars videos - and many others - already about one year ago. ;-)

But it's cool even today, right? I love it.

Jonathan Shock said...

Hi Lubos,

That rings a bell, thanks for the reminder. Indeed, we live in exciting times.

J