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My Life as a Science Promoter – Deep Space Adventure July 7-9, 2011

July 11, 2011

Welcome to my new series of posts about my life as a science promoter. Many people have asked me (especially this past weekend), “What does a science promoter do?” I figure I’ll make a “journal” where people can follow along to see what I do. But basically I tell them:

I visit science museums, organizations, & institutions to attend events, meet scientists, take pictures, and blog about it all with the intent to make science cool, fun, and interesting to the world.

With that in mind, this is my first entry. All of them will be unedited with the exception of a spell check. So, thanks for reading and following my life as a science promoter in Chicago….

Last week I spent 2 full days at Adler Planetarium walking around as if I was an employee, but no, I’m just a cool science geek. Adler opened up their new upgraded state-of-the-art Grainger Sky Theater with a show called Deep Space Adventure. In a post later this week, I’ll provide my personal review of the show which included mind-bending visualizations and a script written by Nick Sagan (sci-fi writer and son of Carl Sagan). Here is one picture of a colorful visualization from the “waiting room” for the show:

Deep Space Adventure

Throughout the 2 days I had conversations with the entire production crew, including the producer (Dr. Doug Roberts, chief technology officer at Adler) and Nick Sagan, along with other  scientists, graphic artists, visualizers, composers and writers. What an experience!! I felt kinda awkward a few times b/c I was simply hanging around the crew for as long as I could. See there was a planned Meet & Greet from 2-3pm and I was 1 of only 8 people to attend. Fortunately this allowed me to ask many questions. (I’ll provide them in my ‘review’ post). But the questions included “How did you select Billy Crudup to be the voice of the main, and only, character of the show?” and “How many years has this show been in the making?”

Getting back to the Meet & Greet, afterwards the production crew went outside to the front steps for a photo. Until someone told me to get lost, I was going to follow, and lucky was I to take this photo:

Deep Space Adventure

With my colored shoes and my Smurf space tshirt, everyone treated me very nicely. Nick Sagan even gave me 20 minutes of his time to talk about science communication. He told me a few of his secrets to cure writer’s block. In return I told him where to find a great Chicago pizza (Bacinos Pizza) and a veggie hot dog (the hot dog stand outside the Field Museum). One of his friends happens to take hot & cold showers to cure writer’s block. I oughta try that sometime. Nick and I:

deep space adventure

I have to digress a bit and show you this picture. Beforehand, I walked around the museum and visited a few of the exhibits. Here I am playing the role of teacher back in the days of Galileo (notice my fun shoes):

deep space adventure

I also stopped to learn about fecal collection bags that astronauts took on their journeys to the moon:

deep space adventure

Here I am, back in the “waiting room” for Deep Space Adventure where they have neat interactive games on the walls. Its cool because they are touch screen games, but you touch them with your shadow. You’ll have to come visit the show to play:

deep space adventure

I must say THANK YOU to Nick Sagan and Dr Doug Roberts for your time. I hope our paths cross again as we all support and promote science. Also thanks to Shera Street, the Project Manager for the event, for letting me tag along for the group picture. That’s all for this adventure. Thanks for reading and let you be you.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Tony Tovar permalink
    September 13, 2011 4:13 PM

    I have seen the show and it’s awesome!

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