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Bob Siederer

Solar Flare, January 20. NASA/Solar Dynamics Observatory

from the desk of Bob Siederer

Hello again Science Fans!

I fully realize that with a subject line/title such as the one I wrote this week, I run the risk of shooting myself in the foot with an unclear editorial today. Ah, the risks we take…

As I’m sure you know, California faces a serious drought condition. While the rain and snow we received so far has lessened the severity, the drought is far from broken. So we’re under water use restrictions that call for a 15% reduction in water usage compared to our 2019 usage. So far, so good.

A 2021 Review with the SciSchmooze

The James Webb Space Telescope blasts off on December 25, 2021

Hello again Science fans. We hope your holidays have been happy and bright!

This is the last SciSchmooze of 2021. It has been quite a year. Let’s take a look back at some of the most significant science events of the past 12 months.

COVID-19
The most persistent story of the year has to be COVID-19. Early in the year, two mRNA vaccines were approved for emergency use by the Centers for Disease Control and the US started rolling out vaccinations against COVID. There were peaks and valleys in the measurement of cases and deaths, but clearly the vaccines had an impact, and came just in time.

Just when it looked like we might be getting the upper hand on the pandemic in the US, the D


Travels with the SciSchmooze

from the desk of Bob Siederer

galaxies black and white photos from hubble space telescope
Two colliding galaxies (left) and a rare odd number of arms. Source: NASA

Hello again Science fans!

I recently took a road trip back east, my first journey of more than 50 miles or so from home since COVID-19 broke out. It felt good to get away, but also a little unsettling. I’m sure th


Eclipsing with the SciSchmooze

Lunar Eclipse. Photo by Chandra Grahan

from the desk of Bob Siederer

Hello again Science fans!

Early on Wednesday, May 26, the full moon will move through the shadow of the Earth, creating a total lunar eclipse. It will be visible here in California, with the window of totallity running from 4:11 AM to 4:26 AM, relatively short for a lunar eclipse. The moon will also be pretty low in the western sky at that time of night, so you will need to be somewhere with a good view to the west to see it. Wa


The SciSchmooze Celebrates the Earth

Earth Day, Every Day

Hello again fans of Science!

The first official Earth Day observance was in 1970. That’s 51 years ago that organizers proclaimed the day as one to take action on our environment. While a lot has been done since that first Earth Day, including the start of the recycling movement, the introduction of unleaded gasoline, and significant pollution restrictions, have we really improved the planet?

That’s a difficult question to answer. I would say it all depends on where you look. In some areas great strides have been made. In others, not so much. And overall, climate change continues seemingly unabated while politicians and governments continue to talk about the issue rather than do as much as possible to fix it.

Here’s a rather

An abundance of Schmoozing

by Bob Siederer

Hello again fans of Science!

What an incredibly busy two weeks we have coming up. There are over 180 events listed on our calendar right now, with more sure to be added as the week goes by.

For starters, the Bay Area Science Festival kicks off Friday, October 26 and runs through November 3. Many of the tours and events require advance registration, which began on the 19th. Many are sold out or taking wait list reservations already. You can look at the festival calendar directly here. The three Discovery Days events do not require registration, so just show up for those.

UC San Francisco Medical School will be holding a Mini-Med School starting this week. There are two lectures each week, one each on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, through December 6. Check out the topics on our calendar. The first Digital Heritage conference to be held in the US begins Friday, 10/26 in San Francisco. It runs through Monday and, while pricey, has a rich event list for attendees, should your interests run in this area. My top three non-festival events are:
  1. History and Geology of Livermore Oil - Mon 12:30PM at Stanford. Who kn

The First SciSchmooze of Fall, 2018

by Bob Seiderer

Hello again Science Fans,

It is now officially Fall, although around here you would be hard pressed to prove it. While I realize some people miss having four seasons, I'm not one of them. Having grown up in the northeast, I'm glad to not have winter's snows to deal with here. Still, the signs of change are there, just more subtle. One of those signs is the quantity of events on the calendar! This edition of the Schmooze lists 145 events over the next two weeks. That's the most I've seen of the newsletters I've edited. Having this many events to pick from makes selecting just three to highlight impossible. I'd highlight three on Monday alone! So here are a few that seem unusually interesting to me:

  1. Monday: The Challenges of Self-Driving Trucks - 4PM in Berkeley, Nerd Nite East Bay - 7PM in Oakland, and Wonderfest: Big Ideas about Big Animals - 7PM in Novato, all on Monday
  2. Tuesday: Tech and the Dark Side

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