(caution: these links will likely be changing throughout the day, so Higgs-only-knows where you may be re-directed)
BBC: BBC: Higgs discovery announcement/press conference at Geneva (with video)
Telegraph/AP: Telegraph: Higgs Boson announcement from Cern
New Scientist: Gotcha! Higgs find will kick off new era of knowledge
Although the physicists and administrators involved are extremely reluctant to state it as a ‘fact’ or as a ‘mission accomplished’, many signs indicate that the elusive and (very) massive Higgs boson (or something very like it) has indeed been observed.
I’m writing as I watch/listen to the press conference (it’s just noon in Geneva). I sort of sympathise with the mainstream press on these sorts of things… Most ‘science reporters’ are completely out of their depth here and tend to ask embarrassingly dumb questions for such a venue:
“What’s a boson?”
“Does this prove the existence of god?” (excuse me while I jettison my breakfast)
At any rate, a new boson has been observed with a mass of 125.3 +/- 0.6 GeV. That’s VERY ‘hefty’ in terms of fundamental particles. So far, nothing has been seen that is ‘inconsistent’ with what the Higgs ‘should’ look like, but as all new discoveries should, it poses at least as many questions as it answers. We know that the ‘Standard Model’ demands a very massive particle to ‘impart mass’ to matter. It sort of ‘has’ to be there.
Today’s announcement is an important validation for CERN’s LHC project. They bet ~$3B that it could produce the Higgs, and it now apparently HAS! Well done!