Category Archives: Science

Television Review: Prehistoric Planet

This past week, Apple TV premiered its new dinosaur documentary, Prehistoric Planet. This is a bigger deal than it may sound. Okay, so, for a long time, the gold standard for dinosaur documentaries was Walking with Dinosaurs, which premiered on … Continue reading

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How Bad Would the Greenhouse Effect in The Calculating Stars Really Be?

In Mary Robinette Kowal’s The Calculating Stars, a meteor hits the east coast of the United States in the 1950s, obliterating Washington DC and causing global climate catastrophe. Mathematical genius and future Lady Astronaut Elma York calculates that the climate … Continue reading

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A Study in Parallel Universes: the Diproton “Catastrophe”

Advocates of “fine-tuned universe” claim that if the physical laws of our universe were just slightly different, life would not be able to exist. Some of my colleagues and I previously looked at these claims with the “Weakless Universe,” where … Continue reading

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Do the Demographics of Logan’s Run Make Sense?

As a companion to this week’s episode of A Reader’s History of Science Fiction, I wanted to take a closer look at the science behind one of the books I’ll be talking about: Logan’s Run by William F. Nolan and … Continue reading

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Flat Earth Challenge Follow-Up: Refraction

One year ago today, I posted a Challenge to Flat Earthers on this blog. I proposed an experiment that could photograph the curvature of the Earth directly without having to worry about camera distortions, which is what Flat Earthers usually … Continue reading

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TV Review: Cosmos: Possible Worlds, Week 1

During the previous season of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, I reviewed the series to discuss how it measured up to the original, and I wanted to do the same thing again. Granted, the new season, Possible Worlds, doesn’t exactly lend … Continue reading

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Cosmos: Possible Worlds Premiers on Fox Tomorrow

Back in March, I posted about the new season of Cosmos. This is Neil deGrasse Tyson’s second follow-up to Carl Sagan’s classic series. He already did Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey in 2014, which I enjoyed and reviewed extensively at the … Continue reading

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Could a Planet-Sized City Work?

In Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series, the planet Trantor is a single, huge city spanning its entire surface (also known as an ecumenopolis), an idea that was famously replicated with Coruscant in Star Wars. As a companion to tomorrow’s podcast on … Continue reading

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Cosmos Season 3 Starts Tomorrow!

Correction: as of March 10, Cosmos is NOT available on Disney Plus. As far as I can tell, you can currently get it only on cable services like Hulu Live TV or YouTube TV. (Ugh. If I wanted to pay … Continue reading

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What’s coming in Astronomy in the 2020s

At this time of year, many news sites, blogs, and others like to post a year in review…I’m not going to do that. It’s been a long, crazy year, much like the four-ish years before that. The news cycle has … Continue reading

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