Over the last fifty years, high-energy physics collaborations have grown from a handful of physicists in the 1940s, through dozens in the 1960s to hundreds in the 1980s, and now, in one of the most extraordinary association of scientists, to several thousand scientists on each of two experiments at CERN. At each stage of expansion, scientists have been painfully aware of how, fundamentally, credit and attribution were in flux. In this discussion, I analyze just what this struggle has yielded, and what the entity is that produces the results of these collaborations. When one of these CERN experiment like ATLAS announces a result, who, or what, is speaking?
Wednesday, May 16, 2012