Waves in an Impossible Sea

Chapter 19 — A Field Like No Other


Note 1: Fields, pointing and “spin”

  • Quote: Among known elementary fields, the Higgs field is the only one that doesn’t point.

  • Endnote: In physics dialect, it’s the only elementary field without spin, and so the Higgs boson is the only wavicle that doesn’t act as though it rotates. The other bosonic fields have spin 1, except the gravitational field, which has spin 2; the elementary fermionic fields have spin 1/2.

  • Discussion (coming soon)

Note 3: The more complete story about pointing

  • Quote: Only a nonpointing cosmic field with an amotional everywhere-medium, or no medium at all, could achieve this. Any other type of field with a nonzero average value would ruin Galileo’s principle from the very beginning.

  • Endnote: In my discussion of pointing and nonpointing fields, I’ve conflated some conceptual matters and swept a layer of complexity under the rug. This layer, which would have required a further exploration of Einstein’s view of relativity, would be needed for a proper comparison of the Higgs field with the electromagnetic field. I’ve attempted to capture the spirit of the issues in this chapter, even though I can’t convey them in their entirety.

  • Discussion (coming soon)


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