You down with LHC? Yeah, you know me

by Paul Jay, CBCNews.ca

With the date set for the start-up of the Large Hadron Collider, science writers in Switzerland can finally get down to the business of covering the event. What have journalists been doing during the months of delays? This one, who goes by the handle AlpineKat, made a nerdcore hip-hop video to explain how the machine works. (Thanks to BoingBoing, Slashdot for the links.)

As hip-hop goes, it's a little weak, and I'm not talking about the weak nuclear force. But as an educational primer on what the LHC does, it's a fairly concise explainer of everything from the LHC, dark matter, antimatter, gravity and the Big Bang.

It also is a nice continuation of the strange (no, not that kind of strange) tradition of explaining particle physics through 1980s-style rap flows, which I believe began with David Weinberg's Dark Matter Rap. It gained noteriety when excerpted in Timothy Ferris's The Whole Shebang. There's also the raunchy MC Hawking, if electronic voice-work is more to your tastes.

For physics education, it's a great leap forward, and for rap a giant step into the wayback machine.