Genius of the Day: Homer Simpson Predicted Higgs Boson Before Scientists

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In a 1998 episode of “The Simpsons” called “The Wizard of Evergreen Terrace,” Homer knew about the Higgs boson (aka “God Particle”) many years before it was even discovered.

He is shown writing an equation on a chalkboard, which actually turns out to be a lot more than just a bunch of gibberish.

“That equation predicts the mass of the Higgs boson,” Simon Singh, author of The Simpsons and their Mathematical Secrets, told “The Independent”. “If you work it out, you get the mass of a Higgs boson that’s only a bit larger than the nano-mass of a Higgs boson actually is. It’s kind of amazing as Homer makes this prediction 14 years before it was discovered.”

Peter Higgs theorized about the particle in the ’60s, and it was finally discovered in 2012.

The writers on the show are all a bunch of math geeks, who have hidden easter eggs throughout the series since it premiered. Another of the equations Homer is working on in the same scene references Fermat’s Last Theorem, which Singh also has written about.

You can read more about the chalkboard scene and the math involved in this chapter from Singh’s book published at Boing Boing.

Here’s a more detailed explanation about the Higgs portion:

The first equation on the board is largely Schiminovich’s work, and it predicts the mass of the Higgs boson, M(H0), an elementary particle that that was first proposed in 1964. The equation is a playful combination of various fundamental parameters, namely the Planck constant, the gravitational constant, and the speed of light. If you look up these numbers and plug them into the equation,1 it predicts a mass of 775 giga-electron-volts (GeV), which is substantially higher than the 125 GeV estimate that emerged when the Higgs boson was discovered in 2012. Nevertheless, 775 GeV was not a bad guess, particularly bearing in mind that Homer is an amateur inventor and he performed this calculation fourteen years before the physicists at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, tracked down the elusive particle.



The Simpsons have also made headlines for “predicting” a number of other future events, including the Syrian civil war, the ebola outbreak, the Siegfried & Roy tiger attack, smartwatches andmalfunctioning voting booths.

But you would think as longest-running animated series in U.S. TV history that they would eventually get a few things right.

Preview of the Day: Simpsons are ‘Frozen’ in Christmas Couch Gag

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Fox has released latest couch intro for "The Simpsons" prior to this weekend's holiday themed episode.

Highlights: Otto smoking a candy cane bong, Mr. Burns as a snow queen in a sleigh of rottweilers and a brief but obligatory "Frozen" reference with Lisa as Elsa and Homer as Olaf.

Pop Art of the Day: Young Artist Turns 2D Sketches Into 3D Images

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Links of the Day: What You Might Have Missed This Weekend

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Watch Out Nate Silver. Bing Accurately Predicted 95% of the Mid-Term Elections [Bing]

Reddit Was on TV Sunday Night, But Not in a Good Way [WaPo]

Nude Subway Rider Proves New York is Becoming More and More Like Jerry Seinfeld's New York [New York Post]

Matt Groening's Worlds Continue to Collide with "Simpsons"/"Futurama" Crossover Episode [EW]

Crazy Burger of the Day: Feast Your Eyes on the Bacon D'oh Nut Burger

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Philadelphia based PYT burger is famous for their outrageous burgers and this time they created as an homage to Homer Simpson. The burger features "a warm glazed donut filled with delicious bacon cheeseburger and topped with bacon sprinkles." My heart hurts by my stomach is growling.

Ever Wonder What the Simpsons Would Look Like in Other Animated Franchises?

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As part of this year's Halloween special, we got a look at how the Simpson family would appear as other cartoons and anime, including Attack on Titan, Adventure Time, South Park, and more! Which version of the Simpsons is your favorite?

Check Out This Crossover Teaser of the Griffins Meeting the Simspons

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This drool-worthy episode for fans of The Simpsons and Family Guy will premiere September 28.