This had already been posted on PZ Myers‘ mega-traffic blog, Pharyngula, but I wanted to post it here too, since it is so awesomely nerdtastic!
Carl Sagan – ‘A Glorious Dawn’ ft Stephen Hawking (Cosmos Remixed)
I have some super geeky fan devotion of my own to post; Darwin, Einstein, Sagan, and Newton…all drawn in manga ‘bishounen’ style! No, I’m not kidding—-I have Charlie and Albert sketched already and am inspired to finish & colour all four, after having seen this awesome display of nerdom!
I live in a small northern Ontario town and this was the view from our balcony the other day. Snow is nice, as long as you stay indoors looking out at it. We have much more snow now than what is in this picture. November is just the first month of snow, which will continue right on until March/April. Fortunately, in the middle of this northern Ontario winter I will be escaping all the snow for Long Beach, CA; I’ve been invited as a fellowship member to the TED 2009 conference. Lucky!
TED (Technology Entertainment Design) is an annual idea conference in California. Its moto is Ideas worth spreading. They chose 20 individuals to attend as fellowship members and I’m so excited to be one of them. I’ll be heading to LA for the first week in February, which surprisingly seems just around the corner. More info about TED can be found on their website here.
I have a member profile you can check out which includes some of my favourite TED talks. Each week day, a new video of a TED talk is posted and I’m pretty much addicted to it; I can’t wait to see who will be speaking at TED 2009. Here is one of my favourite talks, which is by Michael Shermer from TED 2006.
I don’t have a manga doodle to go along with this entry (I’m working on Legend of the Ztarr). I just wanted to post about the Beyond Belief conferences, after recently finding out that the 3rd conference, BB3: Candles in the Dark, took place earlier this month. The videos were available online through The Science Network’s website, but apparently had to be taken down do to overwhelming demand and will be available through Google video sometime soon. Beyond Belief 3: Candles in the Dark, has a wonderful Carl Sagan quote on the about page:
In The Demon-Haunted World, Carl Sagan wrote:
Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking. I have a foreboding of an America in my children’s or grandchildren’s time — when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers are in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what’s true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.
One of my favourite talks is from the 2006 conference, in the second session, which is by Neil deGrasse Tyson. I couldn’t get enough of the first conferences so finding out about the third is really making me geekout. These kinds of lectures make me giddy as a schoolgirl.
Tyson’s talk is basically about the “god of the gaps” argument. I’ve come to realize that even atheists aren’t immune to this type of thinking, despite their lack of belief in a deity. Atheists can still believe in astrology, homeopathy, psychics, dowsing, acupuncture, or any other paranormal/pseudo-science faith based systems, without ever invoking a god to fill in the gaps. Instead, they can throw around words like “energies”, “vibrations”, or fill in what they don’t know with quantum magic words “entanglement”, “fields”, or my favourite gap-filler, “uncertainty principle”. You can be an atheist and still not be a critical thinker, still not be a skeptic. The atheist equivalent to the ‘god of the gaps’ that I’ve come across most often is to say that there are just some things that are out of the realm of science. I think Tyson’s talk illustrates very well that it’s this kind of thinking that hinders discovery.
This is the sketchblog of Sara E. Mayhew--that's me! Nerdy ramblings on my favourite topics are combined with geek-a-licious manga artwork.
Support the Artist!
Buy me a drink!
A thing is not necessarily true because a man dies for it. — Oscar Wilde