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Carl Sagan

  1. Space

    Today We Learned Our Friend Bill Nye Took Astronomy Classes From Carl Sagan [VIDEO]

    Our friend Bill Nye is being profiled by the new PBS/NOVA series The Secret Lives of Scientists. Previously, he's shared his origin story and spoken about his penchant for bowties. In this clip, Bill chats about how deeply he's been influenced by Carl Sagan (you know, the host of the original Cosmos), and how Bill hopes to continue Sagan's legacy.

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  2. Entertainment

    Earth’s Mightiest Broadcasters Team Up for This PBS: The Movie Avengers Parody [Video]

    We've shown you some of the videos by Gritty Reboots before, but PBS: TheMovie stands out for a few reasons. The first being that we love us some PBS, but it also stands out because we can't imagine something we'd want to watch more than a movie where Fred Rogers, Carl Sagan, Bob Ross, and Bill Nye team up to kick some ass.

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  3. Science

    Happy Birthday, Carl Sagan! We Are Sorry You (Inexplicably) Didn’t Get A Google Doodle

    Today is Carl Sagan's birthday, which, if there were any justice in the world, would be celebrated in the fashion we've become accustomed to for nerds of note -- with a Google Doodle commemorating the day that one of the world's best and brightest science celebrities was expelled from the womb. As there is clearly no justice in the world, though, Sagan's birthday was overlooked by Google's legions of doodlers, who were no doubt exhausted by celebrating Bram Stoker's big 165 yesterday. I don't think we need to tell you why this is clearly unacceptable.

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  4. Science

    Research Shows Stars Create Organic Matter of Unexpected Complexity

    For years, scientists have been trying to solve the mystery of "Unidentified Infrared Emission features," a set of emissions from interstellar space that, up until now, has been relatively unexplained. The thought was that they must be produced by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, simple organic particles made up of carbon and hydrogen atoms. Now, research shows that is not the case, the emissions are actually being given off by much more complex organic matter that is being created by the stars. Prof. Sun Kwok and Dr. Yong Zhang of The University of Hong Kong have made the groundbreaking discovery that much of the previously unexplained organic matter that floats between the stars is startlingly more complex than previously thought. Some of the structures are actually so complex that they resemble coal and petroleum, the kinds of organic matter we have previously only associated with, well, organisms. It kind of turns the idea of "organic matter" on its head.

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  5. Space

    Neil deGrasse Tyson Will Host Sequel to Carl Sagan’s Cosmos, Produced by Seth MacFarlane

    Fox has given the greenlight for a reboot of Carl Sagan's iconic TV series Cosmos, to be hosted by famous and well-respected astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. The show will be produced by none other than Seth MacFarlane. Yes, Seth MacFarlane, the creator of Family Guy will be the mind behind a 13-part docu-series to air in primetime as a successor to Sagan's original Emmy and Peabody Award winning series. For Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey, MacFarlane will be working with Sagan's original collaborators from the Cosmos: A Personal Voyage series that ran on PBS in 1980. These collaborators include Sagan's widow writer and producer Ann Druyan, and astrophysicist Steven Soter. The National Geographic Channel will co-produce Cosmos and will air a same-night encore of the episodes after they air on Fox. The program is expected to air in 2013, which is around the same time that Fox plans to launch MacFarlane's take on the Hanna-Barbera classic, The Flintstones.

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  6. Space

    Carl Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot, Animated [Video]

    As a final thesis for an illustration class at Sheridan College, Adam Winnik animated an excerpt from Carl Sagan's book Pale Blue Dot, bringing visuals to what he thinks of as "scientific poetry."

    (via Ehdubya)

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  7. Space

    Fan Made Carl Sagan Videos Raise the Bar for NASA [Video]

    At first I thought this was a bold new piece of NASA's thriving social media efforts. It struck me as a bit surprising that they would embrace the great Carl Sagan right now, but it looks great and is downright inspiring. I was entirely mistaken. The video is in fact fan-made, from a very frustrated individual with the YouTube username damewse. On the info for this video, damewse writes:

    I got frustrated with NASA and made this video. NASA is the most fascinating, adventurous, epic institution ever devised by human beings, and their media sucks. Seriously. None of their brilliant scientists appear to know how to connect with the social media crowd, which is now more important than ever. In fact, NASA is an institution whose funding directly depends on how the public views them. In NASA's defense, they have embraced social media. I guess my point is that they don't fully understand how to best use it. In all of their brilliance, NASA seems to have forgotten to share their hopes and dreams in a way the public can relate to, leaving one of humanity's grandest projects with terrible PR and massive funding cuts.
    Damewse has also made a short TV-spot-style video and other space-related videos. NASA, take a look at this person. He or she has got the chops to make great media, and has the passion to back it up. (via io9)

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  8. Science

    Developing a Scientific Worldview: Why It’s Hard and What We Can Do

    While performing monotonous, brainless tasks at work, I’ve begun the habit of listening to podcasts.  And let my friends tell you: have I been listening to WNYC’s Radiolab or what?  (I feel like I recommend an episode to someone every few days.)  The other morning, I got completely stuck on a 2-minute clip from the episode “Time” (~29 min – 31 min).  The hosts, Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich, had just been speaking with theoretical physicist and author Brian Greene about the theory of relativity and how, well, time is relative. Jad asks the question: “What do you with this information? … I know this is what science tells me, but my common sense tells me that that is COMPLETELY WRONG.” The key quote here is from Brian Greene:
    This is one of the great conundrums, it seems to me, that what you learn in science is so different than what you feel in your regular life!  How do you live between those two worlds when what you knowand what you feel are so different?
    To be honest, this is not something I had thought about too hard before. I grew up immersed in science.  Any facts that exist that I couldn’t reconcile with experience, I just chalked up to the limitations of my senses or even my brain’s ability to conceptualize (the latter usually reserved for when I’m dealing with astrophysics). But if you aren’t well-versed in how science works and perhaps the basics, this stuff sounds completely insane!

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  9. Geekolinks

    Geekolinks: 9/26

    The Webcomic Model Works for Warren Ellis (Warren Ellis Dot Com) Guy Gardner Shares My Feelings On Recent Batman Plot Developments (Comic Book Resources) A Mr. Bill Game for iOS (Joystiq) Putting the President in Your Video Game (Kotaku) Fallout: New Vegas TV Spot (gameinformer) Iron Man Whines at Robots for Five Minutes (Marvel News) This Is A Clockwork Carl Sagan (Larriva) (pic via shirt.woot!)

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  10. Entertainment

    Your Prescribed Dose of Neil DeGrasse Tyson

    Stephen Hawking was quoted last week on the possibility of alien life in the universe:
    If aliens visit us, the outcome would be much as when Columbus landed in America, which didn't turn out well for the Native Americans.
    This Tuesday, CNN had Neil Degrasse Tyson on, to weigh in on Hawking's bold pronouncement. Professor Tyson's responses are befitting of an arguable spiritual successor to Carl Sagan.

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