Comment about sociology of discovery
The recent situation in particle physics is fascinating sociologically. Theoreticians who have worked their professional life with Higgs paradigm, want desperately to believe that it is Higgs. Easy to understand. We are humans after all.
The twice too high rate for decays to gamma pairs reported again and again by both ATLAS and CMS is an excellent example about social forces in action. It is just reported that data are consistent with standard model Higgs. Or when the blogger sees the two-gamma discrepancy, he just says "The rate to gamma pairs is two times too high. Interesting!", and forgets that this has been the situation from the very beginning one year ago so that the explanation as a statistical fluke does not work anymore. After a while he continues without hesitation "Congratulations! Higgs has been discovered!".
This looks strange at first. I can understand this only as an example of phenomenon which we all know so well: when you go to lift in which all people standard with back towards door, you do the same within 15 seconds! As a theoretician I am a lucky one: I am working outside the academic circles and able to avoid these horrible social pressures that would force me to groupthink.
Much more than Higgs is actually in the game. Scalar vacuum expectation value defines the basic paradigm of modern theoretical physics. Extremely strong social forces are fighting to keep VEV paradigm alive since everything done during last four decades in theoretical physics and cosmology relies on it. We would lose M-theory, standard SUSY, and inflationary cosmology without this paradigm (one can of course wonder whether the loss would so fatal after all!;-)).
Thanks for God that the data processing at CERN is blind!
Addition: After the first wave of hype the attitudes towards the discovery of new particle are becoming more objective. "Higgs" is transforming to "Higgs like": two photon decays occur too fast for standard model Higgs, and we do not even know whether it is scalar or pseudo-scalar. May we will know this before the end of the year. Also Lubos wrote a nice article also instructing how to use Phil Gibbs's combo java applet to predict what ATLAS and CMS will report together next.