“I think we have it,” Rolf Heuer, the director general of CERN, said in an interview from his office outside Geneva, calling the discovery “a historic milestone.”..... Here at the Aspen Center for Physics, a retreat for scientists that will celebrate its 50th birthday on Saturday, the sounds of cheers and popping corks reverberated early Wednesday against the Sawatch Range through the Roaring Fork Valley of the Rockies, as bleary-eyed physicists watched their colleagues read off the results in a webcast from CERN. It was a scene duplicated in Melbourne, Australia, where physicists had gathered for a major conference, as well as in Los Angeles, Chicago, Princeton, New York, London and beyond — everywhere that members of a curious species have dedicated their lives and fortunes to the search for their origins in a dark universe.
(Article found via Progressive Eruptions.)
The existence and characteristics of the Higgs boson were predicted decades ago by physicists, and its actual discovery now constitutes powerful confirmation of the validity of the Standard Model. This is a perfect example of how science works -- it makes testable predictions, predictions which can later be confirmed or refuted by data obtained by experiment or observation. Other, fake "ways of knowing" such as religion, mysticism, or fake imitations of science such as creationism, do not do this.
These days we hear too much about Europe's problems and not enough about its achievements. This is a great triumph for European science.
Now if we can just get the morons in the media to stop calling the Higgs boson "the God particle".....