Hello again Science fans!
Stop and think for a minute about the age in which we live. Of all the times in human history, can there be one more fascinating than the current? We are about to see something we've never seen before...close up images of Pluto! The closest approach will be on July 14, but images are already coming in showing both Pluto and it's moon Charon. You can see the images, and read about the mission here. Whether you agree with the decision to declassify Pluto as a planet or not, this is an historic event. With the passing of Pluto, the US will become the only nation to explore all of the known planets in our solar system.
The people with the vision to explore far off worlds, in fact those that explore anything scientific, were influenced somehow along the way, probably early in life. Some event or person planted a seed that grew into curiosity and perhaps a life-long purpose. I was once again reminded of these early influences by an email that crossed our virtual desks here at the Schmooze this week. It came from an author and educator named Eric Niderost who teaches at Chabot College in Hayward. He has written a book called "Sonnets and Sunspots; Dr. "Research" Baxter and the Bell Science Films" and provided us an electronic copy to review.
I'm sure many of our readers are too young to remember these films, but I'm not. I was one of the millions who saw them on TV and in school. I specifically remember the first two, "Our Mister Sun" and "Hemo the Magnificent". Using primitive (by today's standards) animation, interviews with experts, and a fatherly figure for a host, these two films told the story of our Sun and the human blood system. "Hemo" made me realize, for the first time, that I was a