What Counts As Successful Outreach?

Part of this past weekend’s meeting of the Committee on Informing the Public was to evaluate 100+ proposals for “mini-grants” of up to $10,000 for new outreach activities. It wouldn’t be appropriate to go into detail about any of the proposals or what we decided (the PI’s of the proposals we decided to fund will […]

Media Skills for Scientists

Everybody’s favorite science-and-politics blogger has posted a video clip showing part of what’s wrong in science communication. It’s a clip from the BBC from last December, featuring one of those head-to-head quasi-debates about “Climategate” between Prof. Andrew Watson of the University of East Anglia and political consultant Marc Morano, who has made himself a nice […]

Electron Spin for Toddlers

The subject of the “spin” of the electron comes up again and again, so as pointed out in a comment, I really ought to do a post explaining what it is and how it works. As a bonus, this gives me the opportunity to do the dorkiest thing anyone has ever done with a cute-toddler […]

I Need to Work on My Sound Bites

One of the questions asked of Neil deGrasse Tyson at the WSF thing last week was “When did you change from a mild-mannered astrophysicist to a rock-star scientist?” (or something close to that phrasing). In his answer, he said that after his first tv interview was edited down to a three-second shot of him wiggling […]

Bath-Time Fluid Dynamics

SteelyKid’s every-so-often bath was last night, and as always, she was fascinated by scooping up water in a hexagonal cup thing that’s part of one of her bath toys, and watching it drain out. Which is completely understandable– not just because she’s a baby, but because there’s a bunch of physics at work, here. I […]