The hypothetical massive Higgs boson particle is often referred to as ‘The God Particle’, after Leon Lederman’s book ‘The God Particle; If the Universe is the Answer, What is the Question?’ popularised the term. 
The Higgs boson, thought to give other particles mass, is predicted to exist by the current Standard Model of Particle Physics, as a means to fix certain in-consistencies in particle theory. It is the last undiscovered particle in the Standard Model, which if found would give scientists a much deeper understanding to how particles and forces interact and, even more fundamentally, how the Universe began. Currently there is a lot of speculation regarding the Higgs Boson. At the time of writing, it was rumoured that the Large Hadron Collider has discovered something with the same (postulated) signature of the mysterious Higgs, which has got researchers quite excited.
Several newspapers and scientific publications, including the Telegraph, the Daily Mail and New Scientist among others, have reported on abstract data from the LHC leaked by a commenter on Peter Woit’s blog,  suggests a sighting of the Higgs from collision data. Although at a very early stage and not yet reviewed or verified, it has re-ignited the debate on the internet, science blogs and e-zine sites.
The leaked report claims that in a collision experiment, the resonance of 115 gigaelectronVolts, which is expected for Higgs, occurred in 30 times more proton pairs than the expected model. Many believe that this data will prove to be either a hoax or a statistical anomaly, or even suggestive of an entirely new particle. Either way, it is probably too early to speculate further. This announcement comes hot on the trail of another discovery by researchers at Fermilab’s Tevatron collider.
New Scientist published an article  in their 16/04 issue speculating that the Higgs particle may not be necessary after all, after a team at Harvard University found an unusual signal that could fall outside the Standard Model of Particle Physics.This observation is being touted as possibly a new force of nature, known as ‘Technicolour’, which can give particles mass, making Higgs unnecessary, and the Standard Model obselete if verified. Analysis of Fermilab’s Tevatron collider experiments showed that collisions produced higher masses of jet pairs of subatomic particles (quarks) than were expected for the predicted model of Higgs – approximately 145 gigaelectronvolts (geV), rather than 115 geV as expected.
Either set of data standing up to scrutiny would be the biggest shake up in particle physics since the 1970s and could possibly be a step closer to a unified ‘Theory of everything’ linking all physical phenomena. The discovery of the Higgs would fill a gray area in physics, it would mean a big step forward in our understanding of interactions of matter, in how particles and forces relate to each other, and our understanding of the early formation of the Universe. If the discovery at LHC is indeed the Higgs it is still different from expected, as pairings at the 115geV range were observed 30 times more than predicted. This would require at least some tweaking of the Standard Model of Particle Physics.
Technicolour would render Higgs unimportant, and would open up a whole new frontier of particle physics, by necessitating the rewrite of the Standard Model, or the need to scrap it entirely. It would hopefully further increase our understanding of the subatomic world, as physicists would desert the Higgs boson in favour of looking for other new particles.
Either way we are facing a watershed in our understanding.
1. Lederman L, The God Particle: If the Universe is the Answer, what is the Question, Houghton Mifflin (Trade) Harcourt, USA, 1993.
2. Woit P, This Week’s Rumour, http://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/wordpress/, Not Even Wrong, 2011, retrieved 23/04/2011, http://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/wordpress/?p=3643
3. Gefter A, Mystery Signal at Fermilab hints at ‘technicolour’ force, http://www.newscientist.com, 2808, 16/04/2011, retrieved 20/04/2011, http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg21028083.000-mystery-signal-at-fermilab-hints-at-technicolour-force.html
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