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A Great Year for SciAm Google Hangouts!

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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As the year winds down, I’m pleased to share the google hangouts on air I’ve done with SciAm, some in collaboration with my venture with co-host, Jeff Shaumeyer, Read Science!

This summer, Scientific American polled its readers about their favorite summer science reads. By your choice, the winners were:

Ungifted: Intelligence Redefined–The Truth about Talent, Practice, Creativity, and the Many Paths to Greatness by Scott Barry Kaufman
Animal Wise: the Thoughts and Emotions of Our Fellow Creatures by Virginia Morell
Zombie Birds, Astronaut Fish, and Other Weird Animals by Becky Crew.

We invited these authors to join us for a chat. The books were quite diverse and this led to a fantastic conversation!

I was contacted by E.O. Wilson’s publicist from W.W.Norton about having Ed on as a guest for a chat about his latest book, “Letters to a Young Scientist” as well as to talk about communicating science to the general public. It took some time to get the details worked out, but in the end it was a very enjoyable collaboration for SciAm and Read Science! Ed was as charming as can be, and my cohost, Jeff and I really enjoyed our conversation with him. At the end, Ed expressed how he enjoyed the relaxed feel of the Google hangout medium!

Shortly thereafter, Jeff and I collaborated once again with SciAm for a chat with Temple Grandin and her coauthor of “The Autistic Brain“, Richard Panek, for yet another fascinating hangout.

I had been invited by the Laboratory for Atmospheric Sciences team at University of Colorado, Boulder, the ones in charge of the MAVEN Mars Orbiter to learn more about the mission and thought that the Scientific American audience would like to hear more about it, so I invited a member of the science team, Nick Schneider, as well as astronomy author, Chris Impey, to a chat about the importance of robotic space exploration and, in particular, the goals of the MAVEN orbiter’s mission.

The final collaborative SciAm/Read Science! hangout this year was with Chris Hadfield as he was making the rounds promoting his book, “An Astronaut’s Guide to Life On Earth“. There was a bit of a glitch in the screen switching this time around, but Cmdr. Hadfield was quite the pro at holding his own as he held center stage.

I look forward to inviting more guests on behalf of Scientific American. If you have any favorites you’d like to see, and certainly if you have contacts for them, please send them along.

Joanne Manaster About the Author: Joanne Manaster is a university level cell and molecular biology lecturer with an insatiable passion for science outreach to all ages. Enjoy her quirky videos at, on twitter @sciencegoddess and on her Facebook page at JoanneLovesScience Follow on Twitter @sciencegoddess.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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  1. 1. Uncle.Al 12:21 pm 12/21/2013

    “Ungifted: Intelligence Redefined–The Truth about Talent, Practice, Creativity, and the Many Paths to Greatness” “that the way we interpret traditional metrics of intelligence is misguided” Intellectual potlatch.

    “The Bell Curve” and the California Academic Performance Index (artificial sweetener with a sour aftertaste) applied to 700,000 students in the Los Angeles Unified School District oozing social promotion, Ebonics, diversity. Compassion is an empirically stupid act committed at others’ expense.

    The 1958 National Defense Education Act was astoundingly successful in generating genius in the New York City school system. Even the concept was prohibited in 1965. CUNY output a dozen Nobel Laureates, 17% of them women. A CUNY diploma is now toilet paper. The NDEA shunted resources to the objectively Gifted, treated the mediocre with equanimity, and abandoned the bottom 10%. Think of it as evolution in action.

    Link to this

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