From the mid-1980s, an international collaboration of 600 physicists embarked on the investigation of subnuclear physics at the high-energy frontier. As well as discovering the top quark, the heaviest elementary particle ever observed, the physicists analyzed their data to seek signals of new physics which could revolutionize our understanding of nature.
Anomaly! tells the story of that quest, and focuses specifically on the finding of several unexplained effects which were unearthed in the process. These anomalies proved highly controversial within the large team: to some collaborators they called for immediate publication, while to others their divulgation threatened to jeopardize the reputation of the experiment.
Written in a confidential, narrative style, this book looks at the sociology of a large scientific collaboration, providing insight in the relationships between top physicists at the turn of the millennium. The stories offer an insider's view of the life cycle of the "failed" discoveries that unavoidably accompany even the greatest endeavors in modern particle physics.
The most recent development in the production process of the book is the choice of a cover. I made an effort to produce something I liked, although I am not a graphic designer, and submitted this as inspiration to the professionals at World Scientific:
As you can see the cover is quite descriptive of the book content - you see the place (Fermilab) and explicitly the buildings where the action develops; you see the CDF detector, and also the SVX, the detector whose construction is described with many details and anecdotes. And you see the display of one of the most controversial collision events collected by CDF in Run 1. Plus, there's a picture of Aldo Menzione, one of the masterminds behind the use of silicon detectors, which were the winning horse in the rush to the top quark.
World Scientific replied with three possible designs. Here they are: Version 1 -
Version 2 -
and Version 3 -
Which one do you like the most ? Please use the comments thread to express your opinion. I will tell you mine in a few days.