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Hey Bill Nye! Does the Universe Go on Forever?

Young Aaron asks the Science Guy about the uncountable lengths of space. Bill responds with a challenge.

Aaron Hernandez: Hi Bill Nye the Science Guy. I’m Aaron the Science Guy and I want to know why does space go on forever?

Bill Nye: Aaron the Science Guy. Good to see you. Why does space go on forever? That’s a great question. It’s a deep question and no one really knows the actual answer to that. Maybe you’ll be the one that figures it out. The nearest we can tell, the farther we look into space, the farther it seems to go. With that said we can see that all the stars are moving apart and so people have figured out that they must have all been in one place about 13.6 billion years ago. And so people can observe light that we believe is 13.5 billion years old. But nobody knows what’s beyond that or if it’s even a meaningful question to ask what’s beyond that. Like what would the world be like if there were no world? It would be different. And so these are deep, deep questions and the people who think about these questions are called astrophysicists. They study the motion of stars. "Physics" is the study of motion and "astro" has to do with stars. So perhaps you will be an astrophysicist who figures this out. Cool question.

In this week's edition of #TuesdaysWithBill, Young Aaron asks the Science Guy about the uncountable lengths of space. Why is it like that? Why is it so big?


Bill responds with a challenge. No one really knows the answer now, so maybe Aaron can become an astrophysicist some day and find out.

The “new normal” paradox: What COVID-19 has revealed about higher education

Higher education faces challenges that are unlike any other industry. What path will ASU, and universities like ASU, take in a post-COVID world?

Photo: Luis Robayo/AFP via Getty Images
Sponsored by Charles Koch Foundation
  • Everywhere you turn, the idea that coronavirus has brought on a "new normal" is present and true. But for higher education, COVID-19 exposes a long list of pernicious old problems more than it presents new problems.
  • It was widely known, yet ignored, that digital instruction must be embraced. When combined with traditional, in-person teaching, it can enhance student learning outcomes at scale.
  • COVID-19 has forced institutions to understand that far too many higher education outcomes are determined by a student's family income, and in the context of COVID-19 this means that lower-income students, first-generation students and students of color will be disproportionately afflicted.
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Why is everyone so selfish? Science explains

The coronavirus pandemic has brought out the perception of selfishness among many.

Credit: Adobe Stock, Olivier Le Moal.
Personal Growth
  • Selfish behavior has been analyzed by philosophers and psychologists for centuries.
  • New research shows people may be wired for altruistic behavior and get more benefits from it.
  • Crisis times tend to increase self-centered acts.
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How Hemingway felt about fatherhood

Parenting could be a distraction from what mattered most to him: his writing.

Ernest Hemingway Holding His Son 1927 (Wikimedia Commons)
Culture & Religion

Ernest Hemingway was affectionately called “Papa," but what kind of dad was he?

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How DNA revealed the woolly mammoth's fate – and what it teaches us today

Scientists uncovered the secrets of what drove some of the world's last remaining woolly mammoths to extinction.

Ethan Miller/Getty Images
Surprising Science

Every summer, children on the Alaskan island of St Paul cool down in Lake Hill, a crater lake in an extinct volcano – unaware of the mysteries that lie beneath.

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The biology of aliens: How much do we know?

Hollywood has created an idea of aliens that doesn't match the science.

Videos
  • Ask someone what they think aliens look like and you'll probably get a description heavily informed by films and pop culture. The existence of life beyond our planet has yet to be confirmed, but there are clues as to the biology of extraterrestrials in science.
  • "Don't give them claws," says biologist E.O. Wilson. "Claws are for carnivores and you've got to be an omnivore to be an E.T. There just isn't enough energy available in the next trophic level down to maintain big populations and stable populations that can evolve civilization."
  • In this compilation, Wilson, theoretical physicist Michio Kaku, Bill Nye, and evolutionary biologist Jonathan B. Losos explain why aliens don't look like us and why Hollywood depictions are mostly inaccurate.
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