Carl Sagan's Legacy: Scientists as Consultants in Hollywood, Discussion and Film Screening at American University, Washington D.C.
Matthew C. Nisbet, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Communication Studies, Public Policy, and Urban Affairs at Northeastern University. Nisbet studies the role of communication and advocacy in policymaking and public affairs, focusing on debates over over climate change, energy, and sustainability. Among awards and recognition, Nisbet has been a Visiting Shorenstein Fellow on Press, Politics, and Public Policy at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, a Health Policy Investigator at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and a Google Science Communication Fellow. In 2011, the editors at the journal Nature recommended Nisbet's research as “essential reading for anyone with a passing interest in the climate change debate,” and the New Republic highlighted his work as a “fascinating dissection of the shortcomings of climate activism."
Readers in the Washington, DC area may be interested in this free event coming up at American University this week Thurs. Oct. 27 and sponsored by the School of Communication. A video of the discussion will also be available in the weeks following the event.
SCIENCE AND SOCIETY FILM AND LECTURE SERIES
Scientists as Consultants in Hollywood:
Book Discussion with David Kirby and Screening of Carl Sagan's Contact
Join SOC Professor Matthew Nisbet and University of Manchester (UK) scholar David Kirby as they discuss the role of scientists as Hollywood consultants on blockbuster movies ranging from Jurassic Park to a Beautiful Mind. Kirby, author of the new book Lab Coats in Hollywood: Science, Scientists and Cinema, will show clips and explain how consulting scientists on films not only shape cultural understanding but also the direction of scientific research.
Following the hour-long discussion with Kirby there will be a screening of Carl Sagan’s Contact starring Jodie Foster and Matthew McConaughey. Kirby will also be signing copies of his book.
SpaceX plans to launch about 12,000 internet-providing satellites into orbit over the next six years.
- SpaceX plans to launch 1,600 satellites over the next few years, and to complete its full network over the next six.
- Blanketing the globe with wireless internet-providing satellites could have big implications for financial institutions and people in rural areas.
- Some are concerned about the proliferation of space debris in Earth's orbit.
Protected animals are feared to be headed for the black market.
Here's the science of black holes, from supermassive monsters to ones the size of ping-pong balls.
- There's more than one way to make a black hole, says NASA's Michelle Thaller. They're not always formed from dead stars. For example, there are teeny tiny black holes all around us, the result of high-energy cosmic rays slamming into our atmosphere with enough force to cram matter together so densely that no light can escape.
- CERN is trying to create artificial black holes right now, but don't worry, it's not dangerous. Scientists there are attempting to smash two particles together with such intensity that it creates a black hole that would live for just a millionth of a second.
- Thaller uses a brilliant analogy involving a rubber sheet, a marble, and an elephant to explain why different black holes have varying densities. Watch and learn!
- Bonus fact: If the Earth became a black hole, it would be crushed to the size of a ping-pong ball.
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