The Standard Model

Following Kuhn, any nascent revolution in the sciences faces the hurdle of putting aside only those accepted ideas that prevent extension to applications beyond the reach of existing theory. In other words, it must explain everything that came before, as well as things that are new. This imposes an enormous barrier to entry for new ideas. It is typically exacerbated by the politics and sociology of conceptual change. New ideas are almost always misunderstood by existing practitioners.

To aid us in putting one over on the recidivists, let's be certain that we have a handle on what we currently believe, and why we believe it.

The non-technical reader will probably find this treatment almost totally opaque. You should skip ahead here.