As she awaits the Higgs Boson announcement at CERN on July 4, 2012, Sara's thoughts turn to data and the ways in which we represent it.
On the journeys of the mind that we now undertake, abstract data is often the only souvenir we can bring back. So we turn it into plots and graphs, looking for ways to illustrate relationships and present information visually. Anything to make the alien familiar.
Visual expressions are by far the most prevalent, but increasing efforts are being made to find alternate representations as well. Sonification is the process whereby each numerical value in the data is associated to a musical note; a string of data can thus be 'heard' as a melody'.
The music you hear in this book trailer is the 'sound of the Higgs boson', as interpreted by Domenico Vicenanza.
I have always been sensitive to the vastly different 'personalities' embodied by various cities, so a sense of place is very important to me. The images that appear on the pages of the book belong to a series of illustrations that attempt to capture the surroundings and the atmosphere in which each chapter unfolds. The entire set of eight illustrations (only four of which are shown here) was made by Stanislav Plonish.