Bay Area Skeptics

The San Francisco Bay Area's skeptical organization since 1982

View Post

Volcanic eruption from satellite

from the desk of Herb Masters

Greetings to Everyone who Thinks Science is (or might be) Cool!

Let’s get a couple of basics taken care of. Aside from the tragic loss of lives, homes, and livelihoods, the latest eruptions of Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai in Tonga have generated many stories and discussions. I have to say that when there is a major natural event on the planet I always find some satisfaction in how it reminds us that whoever or wherever you are, you still need to recognize that regardless of political or economic division we are all on the same blue marble and we need to help each other. There have been endless reports about the eruption. I recommend checking out these three…

Volcanic Eruption May Be Biggest Ever Seen From Space
Tonga volcano eruption caused ‘significant damage’
Why the volcanic eruption in Tonga was so violent, and what to expect next

I have written many times about the incredible opportunities, we here in the SF Bay Area, have to learn about how the universe works. We have world renowned universities, museums, academies, and businesses within pretty easy access, even using public transit. These are great places to go and learn, but if those are all we go to, we are truly missing opportunities. Most of these “institutions” started because of someone’s passion. Many people who work in these do have that passion to learn and discover to make the world a better place. What I would like you to consider are those places that aren’t in the news so much. Places that are scrappy, sassy, adventurous places that are trying to do amazing or just excellent things on a much smaller scale and budget. There are probably some in your neighborhood. For instance, have you ever heard of the Mission Science Workshop or the Lindsay Wildlife Experience?

This past week I met an amazing team that is doing just that. Midori, Jan, Eric, and Aragon are a few of the folks that make CuriOdyssey a truly wonderful place. I met Midori the other day when I walked in to see ILLUMINODYSSEY as it was closing down for the season. She was handing out LED lanterns to people coming in to see it. Her excitement about science and sharing it was fun and darned near infectious! She did carefully sanitize every lantern when it was returned to her though!-} Visiting with Jan, Eric, and Aragon was really inspiring. Most people don’t realize that it was founded 67 years and 3 names ago. They have a zoo with an incredible walk in aviary as well as a science museum reminiscent of the explOratorium and have built many of their own exhibits. They are getting ready to break ground on a major construction/expansion project and you can sense the excitement of everyone who works there.

So here’s what I’m suggesting. Find your local science museums and informal science learning places and visit them. A google search may not be enough to find them! Don’t think too hard about this, go ahead and make a donation or join! I’d like to hear about them. Please feel free to drop me an email at and tell me about them. I’d love to travel some of the region in search of science museums I haven’t been to. Be sure to tell them that we here at the SciSchmooze want to support them. Feel free to tell them that they can post their public events on our calendar.

Here are a few things that I think are worth your consideration…

Wonderfest: Climate & Social Justice: Q&A with Prof. Dan Kammen – Livestream Wed @ 7
Burrowing Owls of the South Bay Area – Livestream
Nature Photography – Baylands and Beyond – Livestream Sat @ 4

I have to admit that this is the presentation I’m looking forward to this week… Physics and Psychology of Cats – An (Improbable) Conversation Thu @ 1

The James Webb Space Telescope continues its journey. It is mind-boggling that it is 470 ℉ hotter on the sun facing side than the space facing side and that it has decelerated from 25,000 mph to 598 mph. Watch that link!

I’m not a computer code person but I have to share this with you and any coders that may read this. Back in 1969 the poodoo almost hit the moon

I’m still baffled by the loss of respect and faith in science… Why–and When–Did the United States Turn Against Science?

Have a great week celebrating and learning science.
herb masters

“Getting the right answer to the right question matters” 
Marcus Munafò

Upcoming Events:
Click to see the next two weeks of events in your browser.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *