So TIME magazine has named Barack Obama 2012 Person of the Year, but a look at the shortlist throws up some satisfying CERN nuggets: ATLAS spokesperson Fabiola Gianotti was named runner-up for her leading role in the endeavor to discover the Higgs-like boson, and the boson itself made Particle of the Year.
In an in-depth piece on her career and background, TIME senior science editor Jeffrey Kluger praises Gianotti for her leadership in managing the 3000 people that make up the ATLAS collaboration. “It’s not only a great scientific endeavor but a unique human adventure,” Gianotti told TIME. “Working with so many people from all over the world is extremely enriching and stimulating.”
And though it raised a few eyebrows when the Higgs-like particle made the list of nominees for Person of the Year, in the video above Kluger deftly argues that the boson should at least be Particle of the Year. "Unless the Higgs could be found," he says, "[The Standard Model], one of the great edifices of physics, could come tumbling down."