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We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

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New "Beauty Bayron" Particle Discovered by Large Hadron Collider

May 2, 2012, 9:30 AM

What's the Latest Development?

Late last week, scientists working at the Large Hadron Collider, the world's most powerful atom smasher, confirmed they had discovered an entirely new particle. After some 530 million rounds of colliding subatomic particles at extremely high energies, scientists saw umistakable evidence of a new 'beauty baryon'. Baryons, which are made of three quarks, form the building blocks of neutrons and protons that populate the nuclei of atoms. "It's just the second new particle to be discovered at the atom smasher, which opened at the CERN physics laboratory in Geneva in 2008."

What's the Big Idea?

The LHC operates at such high energy levels that physicists can peer further and further back into the physical past. By approximating the amount of energy present in the Universe just after the big bang, scientists seek to understand how the basic elements of our Universe formed. The new 'beauty baryon', like other primitive subatomic particles, only sustains itself for fractions of a second before decaying into other kinds of particles more present in today's Universe. This year, physicists hope to confirm or debunk theories of supersymmetry and the existence of the Higgs particle. 

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com



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