Many physicists are great at figuring out how the world works, but less adept at describing those workings to a nontechnical audience. Brian Greene, a theoretical physicist at Columbia University, is an exception to that stereotype. Greene is known for his popular books, which have exposed the complex ideas of string theory and quantum physics to a wide audience. With a new four-part NOVA miniseries, The Fabric of the Cosmos, which begins airing November 2 at 9:00 P.M. on PBS, Greene ought to be able to reach even more curious folk. A DVD of the series goes on sale November 22.
In the clip below from the episode "What Is Space?" Greene takes on one of the hottest topics in physics: the Higgs boson. Physicists have long thought that the Higgs particle should exist but have yet to find it. With the aid of the Large Hadron Collider in Europe, the elusive Higgs boson may finally come out of hiding. In the clip, Higgs, now an emeritus professor at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, tells of his nerve-racking 1964 presentation at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, N.J., when his ideas still ran counter to conventional wisdom. Also featured in the video are physicists Joseph Lykken of Fermilab, Raphael Bousso of the University of California, Berkeley, and Leonard Susskind of Stanford University.