Bay Area Skeptics

The San Francisco Bay Area's skeptical organization since 1982

Spectral Schmoozing on π Day

The Pi Edition

Greetings Science Advocates and Supporters,

There’s so much going on it’s hard to decide where to start. Until recently a lot of people had no idea what, where, or why about Ukraine. Like many things, the more you learn the more you realize that you probably forgot important parts of the story. Many people would say that this didn’t start a few weeks ago but started in 2014. It’s hard to keep how the world works in perspective. Sadly we fail to understand how much different countries and cultures have contributed to our ways of life. With that in mind have you ever heard of these people? Mykola AmosovOleh AntonovEnableTalk glovesÉlie Metchnikoff… I could go on with many more, thanks in part to Lubomyr Romankiw, my point is that every culture or group of people (of course there are exceptions!) has so much invested in being part of the global community we really need to welcome them.

We seem to be heading towards some sort of crossroads in history in another way as well. Science in the last 200 or so years has become increasingly more reliable when it comes to understanding how things work, or not, in all matters of human experience. One of the amazing things is how often we learn that something that we thought was simple and easily divided into just a few discrete categories isn’t. In politics in the US, one of the saddest things happening is how decisions about how to treat transgender kids are being decided by lawmakersGender is kind of like race, and they are both like light. Each covers a very wide spectrum and a large part of it you can’t see. We as a society are facing some difficult times learning that we don’t really know each other that well! We really need science but we also need empathy, understanding, and compassion. Here are few articles to ponder about politics and science… Pseudoscienceand COVID-19 — we’ve had enough already Study: to beat science denial, inoculate against misinformers’ tricks Why Some Citizens Reject Science Why do people reject science? Here’s why …

This month, among other topics, is Women’s History Month. Similar to what I you just read, often we don’t know who came up with great ideas and we don’t recognize the challenges that have been overcome to develop them. So… of course I’m going to suggest some sources to add to your already well developed sense of curiosity! Female mathematiciansForces of Nature, The Women Who Changed Science120 statues of Women in STEM

So what are you going to learn this week?

Monday is probably, or should be, going to involve some celebration of π Day! I hope that you know that the explOratorium has a place in history with π Day.

Next weekend is the 12th Annual Whalefest Monterey and probably a good way to try leaving town for a day now that covid appears to be becoming less of a threat. Celebrate π Day with NASA

I have been perusing a lot of stuff in the last couple of months. Here’s a few that I think are worth your attention…

Isaac Newton’s life was one long search for God
How to Spot Misinformation Online
Don’t throw those masks away yet!
How NASA moved the $10 billion James Webb Telescope
A Bizarre Rock on Mars
An amazing find at the bottom of the world from 107 years ago!

Have a great time learning cool new things. But pay attention, the world needs you,
herb masters

”The worst disease afflicting humankind is hardening of the categories.”
Bob Miller

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