Bay Area Skeptics

The San Francisco Bay Area's skeptical organization since 1982

We CAN Get There with the SciSchmooze

from the decrepit cerebrum of David Almandsmith

My dad remembered when folk in his town got around on horse-drawn wagons and young men would gather for ‘drag races’ – astride their favorite horses. A couple of richer folk bought unreliable automobiles that reliably got stuck in the mud on the unpaved roads. “Get a horse!” was the taunt of everybody else. The last 110 years has brought nearly incomprehensible changes – at least to first-world countries.

¿What will the next 110 years bring?

On the plus side, there will be fewer and smaller pockets of undereducated folk and medical science will bring health to many who today suffer and die from diseases and genetic disorders.

And if more of we richer folk (all things being relative) work for better distribution of wealth, poverty can be diminished.

On the negative side, many millions of people will be forced to retreat from rising ocean levels and some agricultural land will be rendered useless due to climate change . These changes could easily result in famines and armed conflicts.

Concerned About Climate Change? – Want to be part of the solution? The California Academy of Sciences is recruiting volunteers.  Set aside January 26, 2020 for a visit to see what is involved.

On the fun side, video gaming will undoubtedly benefit from technological advances, and maybe we will finally get our flying car. Frankly though, traffic jams on the ground are bad enough; traffic jams in the sky could be just as aggravating – or worse. Hmmm, maybe there will be blimps in our future. Not the exploding kind, thank you, but rather airships filled with helium, especially since this gas might soon become more plentiful.

The fields of basic physics and astronomy have advanced enormously and are likely to continue advancing. Scientists who are searching for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) are an optimistic bunch. ¿But would we know an extraterrestrial language if we heard it?

Here are my picks for the week:

  1. When is sustainability in the eye of the beholder?Wednesday 6pm Tiburon
  2. Psychoactive Drugs in World HistoryThursday 6pm Berkeley
  3. 49th Annual San Francisco Fungus FairSunday 10am – 5pm San Francisco

18,000 year-old puppy dog? Maybe.

I’m certain you’ve recently heard a lot about the scourge of plastics in the environment. Well, Slovakia has gone and done something about it: they’ve passed a law banning single-use plastics as the EU has already done. We definitely need to do likewise.

You’ve probably seen impressive thunderheads boiling into the sky. Something similar has been observed on Mars but these columns are not full of water vapor, they are full of dust.

Even cats watch TV. You can get out and experience life for real!

David Almandsmith
Board member, Bay Area Skeptics

“I had this desire to see the world. So I got up and went outside.”
― Anthony T. Hincks, Author

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