Sometimes, when the concerns of daily life threaten to preoccupy me, I find escape in contemplating the universe and pondering my own insignificance in the scale of it all. It is sobering and yet awe-inspiring,wonderful and exciting.
Now, I know I'm not alone in admiring Prof Brian Cox, for the way in which he can articulate very complex scientific fact and theory in fairly simple language. Frustratingly I cannot now find a recording of an interivew he gave on Radio 4 recently where he was challenged to justify the cost of exploring the Big Bang at CERN. In particular he was asked about the Higgs Boson particle and what useful purpose it might serve economically, other than as a merely academic advance in our understanding of physics. He replied that all scientific discovery advances our civilisation both economically and in many other ways and no discovery ever goes to waste, using the electron as an example of how its discovery and subsequent development of electricity revolutionised our world.
Here he is in action, back in June 2008 explaining over 15 minutes or so, life the universe and theory of everything. Enjoy!