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2011 Festival Events

June 1 - June 5

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Wednesday

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Thursday

  • Pioneers in Science

    Josh Zepps, Eric Lander, Mary-Claire King Shimkin Hall

    Pioneers in Science is an annual program that gives middle and high school students the rare opportunity to interact with world-renowned scientists. In this installment, groundbreaking geneticists and humanitarians Eric Lander and Mary-Claire King met live and online with local New York City high school students and others from around the globe. During the weeks leading up to the event, invited students from various schools immersed themselves in the work of these pioneering scientists. In partnership with the Global Nomads Group, the program offered students the unique opportunity to learn about the lives and follow in the footsteps of trailblazing scientists.

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  • Science & Story: The Art of Communicating Science Across All Media

    Bill Weir, Alan Alda, Natalie Angier, Emily Bell, Deborah Blum, Timothy Ferris, Brian Greene, Seth Mnookin, Siddhartha Mukherjee, Steven Pinker, Louie Psihoyos, Andrew Revkin, Simon Singh, Howard Swartz, James Watson, Jonathan Weiner, Edward O. Wilson, Carl Zimmer, Bora Zivkovic The Paley Center for Media

    Science grapples with some of the most abstract of ideas, and bringing its drama to life for a broad audience is a significant—and vital—cultural challenge. In an all-day, multisession program, the World Science Festival will explore the communication of science—on the page, on the screen, and on the stage—illuminating the process of translating science to story. Some of the foremost interpreters of science for the general public—including scientists with literary sensibilities, journalists, authors, bloggers, composers, actors, filmmakers, and dramatists—will discuss how their narrative crafts are helping to shift science to its rightful place at the cultural center.

    Presented in collaboration with the Paley Center for Media


    Science on Screen

    Participants: Bill Weir, Louie Psihoyos, Simon Singh, Howard Swartz

    Fantastic imagery and groundbreaking journalism dominate the best of documentary science storytelling. Director Louie Psihoyos’ Oscar-winning documentary The Cove (2009) stands as one of the most audacious and dangerous-to-film operations in the history of the conservation movement.  NOVA’s Emergency Mine Rescue (2010) chronicled the unprecedented technological feat of rescuing 33 trapped Chilean miners.  Today’s best producers of on-screen science are pushing the envelope, using a range of computer-based tools—including the highly cinematic techniques of digital science animation—to take viewers on a swooping ride through previously unseen worlds.  How do these newly available techniques influence and enhance their editorial judgment? And what stories of science are left to be told?
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    Science Storytellers

    Participants: Steven Pinker, Siddhartha Mukherjee, James Watson, E.O. Wilson, Brian Greene, Jonathan Weiner, Deborah Blum, Natalie Angier, Timothy Ferris

    Scientists with literary sensibilities are telling extraordinary stories about their quest to understand the natural world. With consummate narrative skill, these scientist-storytellers are creating compelling works that provide broad audiences with an entryway into otherwise impenetrable scientific subjects. They are joined in this panel by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists who have ventured into strange but thrilling fields of science. Their work turns the abstract and the seminal into writing so memorable that the rest of us can embrace the science and fully appreciate it. Note: There will be a 15-minute intermission.
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    Improvising Science

    Participant:  Alan Alda

    What happens when scientists try a short course of training in improvisation? Actor-director-writer Alan Alda, who has interviewed hundreds of scientists from around the world in his role as host of the Emmy-award winning PBS series Scientific American Frontiers, is leading an effort to teach improvisational techniques to scientists. The goal is not to turn scientists into actors, pretending to be what they’re not, but to bring about greater authenticity, clarity, and personal presence. The exercises help scientists communicate with a warmth and lucidity that makes their work more understandable to a lay audience and to colleagues across other disciplines.
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    Telling Science Stories in Print and on the Web

    Participants: Seth Mnookin, Carl Zimmer, Andrew Revkin, Bora Zivkovic, Emily Bell

    A new generation of science writers is tackling issues where the repercussions of not communicating responsibly with the public have enormous policy and research implications. Meanwhile, it is the best of times and worst of times for science writing on the Web. An expanding cadre of fiercely independent, talented, and often very young science bloggers is coming to grips with a new dilemma: Just how do they fit into the changing landscape of science journalism, and to what degree are they willing to incorporate some old media standards into their new media work?
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  • BIORHYTHM: Music and the Body

    Eyebeam Art + Technology Center

    World Science Festival presents the US debut of the exhibition BIORHYTHM: Music and the Body from Science Gallery Dublin.

    Why does a minor chord sound sad? Is there a formula for the perfect hit? Whistling, dancing, finger-snapping, and toe-tapping—what makes us do it? Find out when music and science join forces in an interactive bazaar of beats, sounds, and rhythm in this new exhibition called BIORHYTHM. Learn what drives sound manipulation and discover how different types of music evoke different emotions. Trace the power of an impactful pop hook in a song, measuring the way our brains and bodies react, down to the responses in our fingertips.

    Watch the video

    BIORHYTHM, as part of the World Science Festival, is open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 12 noon until 6:00 PM, with an opening reception Friday evening 6-9PM. BIORHYTHM at the Eyebeam Art + Technology Center is made possible through the generous support of Imagine Ireland, an initiative of Culture Ireland, and the Cordover Family Foundation. BIORHYTHM is created by Science Gallery and Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.

    Friday, June 3rd | 6:00 PM
    WSF + BIORHYTHM Opening Reception

    Saturday, June 4th | 2:00 PM
    Music, Memory, and Emotion

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  • The Illusion of Certainty: Risk, Probability, and Chance

    Marcus du Sautoy, Amir Aczel, Gerd Gigerenzer, Leonard Mlodinow, Josh Tenenbaum Tishman Auditorium at The New School

    Stuff happens. The weather forecast says it’s sunny, but you just got drenched. You got a flu shot—but you’re sick in bed with the flu. Your best friend from Boston met your other best friend from San Francisco. Coincidentally. What are the odds? Risk, probability, chance, coincidence—they play a significant role in the way we make decisions about health, education, relationships, and money. But where does this data come from and what does it really mean? How does the brain find patterns and where can these patterns take us? When should we ditch the data and go with our gut? What took place was a captivating discussion that sought to demystify the chancy side of life.

    More from this series: The Illusion of Certainty


    This program was part of The Big Ideas Series, made possible with the support of the John Templeton Foundation.

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  • From Dust to…: The Radical New Science of Longevity

    Bill Ritter, Leonard Guarente, Judith Campisi, Michael Rose, Aubrey de Grey The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College

    Getting old is an unavoidable truth of life. And yet, for most of modern history this mortal coil has baffled scientists. Over the past decade, however, researchers have made great strides in understanding the cellular, molecular, and genetic tableau of aging—which has brought the next question into sharp focus: Can aging be stopped? While a full answer remains elusive, recent advancements have opened the door for significantly extending the human lifespan. One controversial researcher even claims that the first person who will live 1,000 years has already been born. Mainstream researchers are decidedly more cautious in their predictions, but the prospect of postponing mortality, even in modest ways, raises important ethical, social, and practical questions. How would we control an increasingly out-of-control global population? Does life have meaning without death? Even if we could live forever, would we want to?

    On the Blog: The Great Escape: Science’s Oldest Dream

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  • Cancer’s Last Stand? The Genome Solution

    Richard Besser, Eric Lander, Mary-Claire King, Olufunmilayo Olopade, Siddhartha Mukherjee Eisner & Lubin Auditorium

    The deadly scourge of cancer has confounded doctors since ancient Egypt. Now, The Cancer Genome Atlas (modeled after the Human Genome Project) promises a new and powerful approach in this age-old battle. We joined a discussion including Eric Lander, Mary-Claire King and other leaders in the field as they described how and why the balance of power in the war on cancer may finally be shifting.

    Related WSF Salon: Genetics and Cancer


    More from this series: Cancer’s Last Stand


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  • Spotlight: Women in Science

    Faith Salie, Joy Hirsch, Jean Berko Gleason, Priyamvada Natarajan, Corina Tarnita, Tal Rabin Galapagos Art Space

    Strip away the trimmings of a traditional science presentation, add cocktails, and you have the WSF Spotlight. An intimate, cabaret-style setting provides an unobstructed glimpse into the minds of some science’s most visionary women. It’s a science happy hour featuring cutting edge science and one-of-a-kind talks that promise to entertain, engage, and enlighten.

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  • The Dark Side of the Universe

    John Hockenberry, Brian Greene, Glennys Farrar, Katherine Freese, Michael Turner, Saul Perlmutter, Elena Aprile, MOMIX NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts

    For all we understand about the universe, 96% of what’s out there still has scientists in the dark. Astronomical observations have established that familiar matter—atoms—accounts for only 4% of the weight of the cosmos. The rest—dark matter and dark energy—is invisible to our telescopes. But what really is this dark stuff? How do we know it’s there? And what does it do? From the formation of galaxies to the farthest reaches of space, it appears that darkness rules. Without dark matter and dark energy, the universe today and in the far future would be a completely different place. We were joined by leading researchers who smash together particles, dive into underground mines, and explore the edges of the known universe in search of clues to nature’s dark side.

    Related WSF Salon: The Mystery of Dark Matter

    This program was part of The Big Ideas Series, made possible with the support of the John Templeton Foundation.

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Friday

  • World Science Festival Salon: Genetics and Cancer

    Emily Senay, Charles Sawyers, Eric Lander, Mary-Claire King, Siddhartha Mukherjee Rosenthal Pavilion

    Cancer claims the lives of more than one half million Americans each year. Now, the end to that may come from the work of scientists that was once called misguided. Leaders in the field of genomics who have devoted themselves to preventing and curing cancer gather to discuss this important effort. As the National Cancer Institute continues developing its Cancer Genome Atlas, geneticists in laboratories around the world are stepping up their research. Here, some of the best in the field sit down to talk about how they’re doing.

    Some of the advanced topics to be explored may include the differences in cancers that do and do not come from inherited genetics; the personalized treatments that genetic breakthroughs have brought; and the manipulation of DNA repair pathways to enhance the effect of chemotherapies.

    World Science Festival Salons are an opportunity for in-depth conversations with world-leading scientists, extending the discussion of the Festival’s flagship public programs at a level appropriate for graduate students, postdocs, faculty and particularly well-informed members of the general public.

    Related flagship program:
    Cancer’s Last Stand? The Genome Solution
    Learn more about all the WSF Salons

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  • BIORHYTHM: Music and the Body — Opening Reception

    Chesney Snow, The Theremin Inspectors, Sonic Bed, Optofonica Capsule, Stone Forest Ensemble Eyebeam Art + Technology Center

    World Science Festival presents the US debut of the exhibition BIORHYTHM: Music and the Body from Science Gallery Dublin.

    Why does a minor chord sound sad? Is there a formula for the perfect hit? Whistling, dancing, finger-snapping, and toe-tapping—what makes us do it? Find out when music and science join forces in an interactive bazaar of beats, sounds, and rhythm in this new exhibition called BIORHYTHM. Learn what drives sound manipulation and discover how different types of music evoke different emotions. Trace the power of an impactful pop hook in a song, measuring the way our brains and bodies react, down to the responses in our fingertips.

    More about BIORHYTHM

    Join us from 6–9 pm as we kick-off our three-day engagement with BIORHYTHM. Festivities include one-on-one interactions with select artists and installations, as well as a live interactive performance featuring NYC beat boxer Chesney Snow and the Stone Forest Ensemble. During the performance, members of SARC (Sonic Arts Research Centre) Queen’s University, Belfast, Northern Ireland, will guide the audience through a sound experiment using physical energy generated by audience interactions and touch.

    Note: The gallery will be open 12 noon to 6 pm before the opening. BIORHYTHM at the Eyebeam Art + Technology Center is made possible through the generous support of Imagine Ireland, an initiative of Culture Ireland, and the Cordover Family Foundation. BIORHYTHM is created by Science Gallery and Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.

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  • World Science Festival Salon: The Mystery of Dark Matter

    David Kestenbaum, Elena Aprile, Glennys Farrar, Enectali Figueroa-Feliciano, Katherine Freese, Jocelyn Monroe, Priyamvada Natarajan Rosenthal Pavilion

    Leading researchers have called this the ‘Decade of Dark Matter,’—the era in which data finally establish the identity of the universe’s unseen matter. As results are released, what will they tell us about our current theoretical models, and the properties of dark matter? What are the plans for new detection experiments? And if no dark matter is found, what then? Are there plans for more refined experiments? Will attention turn to maverick theories that seek to explain observations without invoking dark matter?

    Some of the advanced topics to be explored may include: Annual modulation signals for dark matter; reconciling the CoGeNT, DAMA, CDMS and XENON experiments; the ICECUBE and DEEPCORE experiments; possible connections between dark matter and dark energy; modified gravity approaches.

    World Science Festival Salons are an opportunity for in-depth conversations with world-leading scientists, extending the discussion of the Festival’s flagship public programs at a level appropriate for graduate students, postdocs, faculty and particularly well-informed members of the general public.

    Related flagship program: The Dark Side of the Universe
    Learn more about all the WSF Salons

    | More »
  • Mysteries of the Mathematical Universe

    Robert Krulwich, Jonathan Borwein, Keith Devlin, Marcus du Sautoy, Simon Singh Tishman Auditorium at The New School

    Mathematical mysteries have challenged humanity’s most powerful thinkers and inspired passionate, lifelong obsessions in search of answers. From the strangeness of prime numbers and the nature of infinity, to the turbulent flow of fluids and the geometry of hyperspace, mathematics is our most potent tool for revealing immutable truths. The event was a vibrant tour to the boundaries of the mathematical universe, and explore the deep puzzles that have been solved, the masterminds who powered the breakthroughs, and the towering challenges that have shaken the confidence of some of today’s most accomplished mathematicians—even as they enlist new ways to pursue mathematical truths.

    On the Blog: Why I Became a Mathematician

    This program was part of The Big Ideas Series, made possible with the support of the John Templeton Foundation.

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  • A Thin Sheet of Reality: The Universe as a Hologram

    John Hockenberry, Gerard ’t Hooft, Leonard Susskind, Raphael Bousso, Herman Verlinde NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts

    What we touch. What we smell. What we feel. They’re all part of our reality. But what if life as we know it reflects only one side of the full story? Some of the world’s leading physicists think that this may be the case. They believe that our reality is a projection—sort of like a hologram—of laws and processes that exist on a thin surface surrounding us at the edge of the universe. Although the notion seems outlandish, it’s a long-standing theory that initially emerged years ago from scientists studying black holes; recently, a breakthrough in string theory propelled the idea into the mainstream of physics. What took place was an intriguing discussion on the cutting-edge results that may just change the way we view reality.

    On the Blog: Space Is an Elaborate Illusion


    More videos from this series: A Thin Sheet of Reality

    This program was part of The Big Ideas Series, made possible with the support of the John Templeton Foundation.

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  • The Unbearable Lightness of Memory

    Dan Harris, Daniel L. Schacter, Lynn Nadel, Todd Sacktor, Elizabeth Phelps The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College

    It’s the thought of your childhood home. It’s that comforting aroma you can still smell ten years later. It’s the way you define yourself. It’s your memory. Where is memory stored? How do we recall? Why do we forget? We’ll shine a light on these and many other questions about long-term memory from a molecular, psychological, and emotional perspective. The audience discovered how their long-term memories can be naturally twisted, tweaked, and changed, and how memories of the past could also help us peer into the future. We explored the bumpy road even a youthful mind sometimes travels when experiencing déjà vu, succumbing to suggestibility, or having a “senior” moment.

    Related WSF Salon: Manipulating Memory: Progress and Implications

    On the Blog: The Biological Mechanism That Gives Life Meaning

    See all the content from this program

    This program was part of The Big, the Small, and the Complex, a Series made possible with the support of The Kavli Prize.

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  • The Secret Behind the Secret of Life: Facts and Fictions

    Lynn Sherr, Anna Ziegler, Donald Caspar, James Watson, Raymond Gosling 3LD Art & Technology Center

    In the 1950s, three labs raced to unravel the structure of DNA. Five decades after the Nobel Prize was awarded for the breakthrough, the contribution of one scientist—Rosalind Franklin—remains controversial. The event was a riveting performance of The Ensemble Studio Theatre Production of Anna Ziegler’s Photograph 51, directed by Linsay Firman, a historical drama that explores Rosalind Franklin’s electrifying story, followed (in Friday’s performance) by a discussion among three of the men whose lives the play dramatizes—Nobel laureate James Watson, Raymond Gosling, who worked closely with Franklin at King’s College and co-authored one of Franklin’s 3 papers published in ‘Nature’ in 1953, and emeritus professor of biology Don Caspar—illuminating one of science’s most remarkable, influential, and controversial discoveries.

    Presented in collaboration with 3-Legged Dog Media + Theater Group, created with the support of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

    | More » Additional tickets may become available at the door an hour before the program.
  • The Mind after Midnight: Where Do You Go When You Go to Sleep?

    Carl Zimmer, Carlos H. Schenck, Matthew Wilson, Niels Rattenborg Eisner & Lubin Auditorium

    We spend a third of our lives asleep. Every organism on Earth—from rats to dolphins to fruit flies to microorganisms—relies on sleep for its survival, yet science is still wrestling with a fundamental question: Why does sleep exist? During Shakespeare and Cervantes’ time, sleep was likened to death, with body and mind falling into a deep stillness before resurrecting each new day. In reality, sleep is a flurry of action. Trillions of neurons light up. The endocrine system kicks into overdrive. The bloodstream is flooded with a potent cocktail of critically vital hormones. Such vibrant activity begs the question: Where do we go when we go to sleep? Based on new sleep research, there are tantalizing signposts. We delved into the one-eyed, half-brained sleep of some animals; eavesdropped on dreams to understand their cognitive significance; and investigated extreme and bizarre sleeping behaviors like “sleep sex” and “sleep violence.”

    Watch the replay »


    On the Blog: Parasomnias: Basic Instincts Unleashed In Sleep

    On the Blog: “We spend our lives crashing back and forth through a wall we don’t understand”

    On the Blog: A Curious Case of Sleep Violence

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  • Another Earth: The Art and Science of Parallel Universes

    Faith Salie, Mike Cahill, Brit Marling, Brian Greene Museum of the Moving Image

    It is the eve of the discovery of a duplicate Earth. Tragedy strikes, and the lives of two strangers become irrevocably intertwined.  But when one of them is presented with the opportunity to travel to the other Earth and embrace an alternate reality, which path will she choose?  Can the mistakes made on our Earth be undone, or will they also be made on the other? We hosted a special preview screening of the much-anticipated Fox Searchlight film Another Earth—recipient of this year’s Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film and the Special Jury Prize at Sundance - 2011. A post screening discussion then explored the art and the science of parallel universes.

    Presented in collaboration with the Museum of the Moving Image

    This program was supported by the Alfred P Sloan Foundation as part of its Public Understanding of Science and Technology initiatives.

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  • Retraining Your Brain: The Articulate Hand

    Stuart Firestein, Andrew Dawson, Jonathan Cole, Kodi Azari Galapagos Art Space

    Through both art and science, explore the remarkable connection between mind, brain, and body. Based on his collaboration with neurophysiologist Jonathan Cole, performance artist Andrew Dawson presents The Articulate Hand, a media-rich, on-stage portrayal of patients whose peculiar impairments—physiological and neurological—provide stunning insights into just how we humans are wired, and how adaptable that wiring may be. Dawson and Cole will be joined in a post-performance conversation by plastic surgeon Kodi Azari, whose groundbreaking work with hand transplant patients offers complementary insights into how the brain copes with dramatic and traumatic bodily changes. Please note new starting time of 8 PM.

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  • From the City to the Stars: A Night of Stargazing at Brooklyn Bridge Park

    Charles Liu, Timothy Ferris, Carter Emmart, Patrick Billard Brooklyn Bridge Park

    Join professional and amateur astronomers for a free evening of urban stargazing. An outdoor party beneath the Brooklyn Bridge and the twinkling canvas of the night sky, it will be a night to explore and discover the vast wonders of the cosmos. Bring your telescope if you have one, or use one of the dozens we’ll have on hand. Or crawl under the night canvas of the Discovery Dome, an HD curved projection theater featuring asteroids, the solar system, and future space technologies for living on the moon and beyond. Bring a blanket, grab a tasty street bite and a glass of wine from the area food trucks, and space out to the cosmic beats of DJ Duckcomb (from the band Trap.Avoid) as we look to the stars together and imagine the worlds beyond.

    Amateur Astronomers: Please click HERE to pre-register your telescope specs in order to ensure proper support. All others: No need to register; see you there!

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Saturday

  • Science on Site: Explorations on Governors Island

    Timothy Ferris, Mark Kurlansky, Dean Pesnell, Robert Naczi Governors Island

    Adventures await! Choose your own adventure on Governors Island and learn to see the world as scientists do! This rich outdoor environment presents a rare opportunity for urban explorers to discover the science all around us—from New York’s underwater world and its oyster population, to the unique cosmopolitan critters and plants beneath our feet, to our planet’s favorite star, the Sun. Join scientists and experts from a wide variety of scientific disciplines for a day of exploration that starts with a free ferry ride and ends in a world of wonder.

    For directions and ferry information, click HERE.

    Check out the map »

    Activities Include:
    Oysters of New York Harbor
    The harbor that surrounds us is teeming with life. Join New York Times bestselling author of The Big Oyster: History on the Half Shell, Mark Kurlansky, for a hands-on exploration of the oysters in our waters. Learn how these “ecosystem engineers” are cultivated; discover new experimental reefs created to study the restoration of oysters in NY Harbor; and join in the effort by personalizing shells that will become a part of the reefs.  Presented in collaboration with The Hudson River Foundation, The River Project, Urban Assembly New York Harbor School, NY/NJ Baykeeper.
     
    The Delicate Art of Sungazing
    See the Sun in ways you never have before! Join renowned science writer Timothy Ferris, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, and local amateur astronomers as we peer through dozens of telescopes at sunspots and solar weather.  Get a close up look at the sun from space via satellite.  Explore the sun from the ground with compasses, sun dials, and UV beads.  Bask it its early summer radiance with fellow sun worshippers!  Presented in collaboration with NASA Solar Dynamics Observatory, local amateur astronomers associations.

    The Great Bug Hunt
    Explore the little (and not so little) winged wonders of the arthropod world on Governors Island. In this mysterious world run by insects and their relatives, there are pollinators, predators, plant munchers, and soil cultivators. Many will do everything they can to trick our observant eyes, hide out in flowers, or dupe us into thinking they’re another insect or plant altogether. Take a journey with AMNH naturalist, Jay Holmes, that will introduce you to these amazing creatures right under your nose, over your head, and beneath your feet!  Presented in collaboration with American Museum of Natural History.

    Botanical Safari
    What’s growing on Governors Island? Make history by being the first to compile a list of the spontaneous plants growing there.  Take a closer look and you’ll be amazed at the island’s diverse plant life.  With magnifying glass in hand, identify local plant species, find out what differentiates poisonous and edible plants, and use a plant press to keep a record of the specimens you collect.  Join us as we learn the ropes of botany from New York Botanical Garden’s best!  Presented in collaboration with The New York Botanical Garden.

    Birding Governors Island
    Make sure to bring your binoculars and join AMNH ornithologist, Joseph DiCostanzo, on a bird-watching adventure on Governors Island. We’ll investigate different habitats—trees, fields, shorelines, and the surrounding harbor—looking for all kinds of exciting bird species, from the waterbirds of New York’s Upper Bay to migrant birds stopping over on their way to their next destinations.  Don’t miss your chance to meet some of Governors Islands fine feathered inhabitants.  Presented in collaboration with American Museum of Natural History.

    Weather World
    What causes wind? How do our city’s buildings, trees, and coastlines influence our local weather? Governors Island provides the perfect opportunity to explore weather—from wind to clouds to the “seabreeze effect.”  Come make tornados (in a bottle), watch atmospheric pressure and convection currents work wonders on cans and food coloring, and see what kite flying and shooting a basket while spinning have to do with the weather and atmosphere. Presented in collaboration with CUNY NOAA-CREST Research Center and Howard University’s NOAA Center for Atmospheric Sciences

    Fly Sky High: Kites on Governors Island
    In January of 1897, for the first time in America, a kite lifted a man into the air… and it happened on Governors Island! Come see a “man-lifting kite” just like the one flown on the island over a century ago and see the modern version of that kite flying high today. Watch–and get some hands-on experience–as kites are used in wind experiments on the Parade Ground and then head to Picnic Point to build your own kites and enjoy the WSF Kite Garden! Presented in collaboration with Kiteman Productions.

    | More » Please check back, sign up for our email list, or follow us on Twitter for updates on upcoming participants and event information.
  • All Aboard the Mystic Whaler!

    Yankee Pier, Governors Island

    Folksinger Pete Seeger founded Clearwater over 40 years ago to teach people about the ecology and special heritage of the Hudson River.  Join Clearwater educators to raise the sails on the schooner Mystic Whaler, set your course using charts and compass, and set off to to explore the Hudson as a citizen scientist.  Identify the amazing variety of fish and invertebrates living beneath the waves; sample plankton; perform basic water quality tests; and learn about environmental issues impacting this important ecosystem.  Enjoy sailing on-board a tall ship, sing some traditional sea songs, and enjoy a day of science on the Harbor that you’ll never forget.

    As part of the World Science Festival’s all-day Science on Site
    on Governors Island.

    For directions and ferry information, click HERE.

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  • Mathemagician

    Arthur Benjamin Eisner & Lubin Auditorium

    Join us for a truly amazing presentation of mental mathematical gymnastics that will seemingly turn math into magic. We watched as mathemagician and math whiz Arthur Benjamin “out-calculated” an electronic calculator and figured out the weekday of any date in history with lightning-fast speed. We discovered the fun side of math that’s sometimes easy to forget when doing your homework, and met a surprising young guest who just might be a worthy mathemagical opponent.

    The Mathemagician event was followed by Mathemagician’s Apprentice, a workshop in which Benjamin divulged some of his amazing mental-math secrets. For ages 10 and up.

    | More » Limited number of WSF Supporter tickets still available here. Additional general admission tickets may become available at the door an hour before the program.
  • Mathemagician’s Apprentice

    Arthur Benjamin Kimmel Center Room 914

    This exclusive event followed the main Mathemagician program. A workshop in which the Mathemagician divulged some of his amazing mental-math secrets, the Apprentice was a rare opportunity to get one-on-one instruction form the legendary math whizz.

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  • On The Shoulders of Giants: A special address by Steven Weinberg, The Future of Big Science

    Steven Weinberg Rosenthal Pavilion

    Each generation benefits from the insights and discoveries of those who came before. “If I have seen a little further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants,” wrote Isaac Newton. In a new annual series, World Science Festival audiences are invited to stand on the shoulders of modern-day giants. For this year’s inaugural address, “The future of Big Science,” Nobel laureate and physicist Steven Weinberg considers the future of fundamental physics, especially as funding for basic research is reduced. Weinberg will explore physics’ small origins, starting with the discovery of the atomic nucleus 100 years ago by a single scientist, and moving to the present-day, when collaborations involve hundreds of researchers and billions of dollars. What has motivated this growth spurt? What results has it yielded? And what would we stand to lose if Big Science were to suffer? Weinberg, one of the most revered voices in science, offers a distinguished vantage point for this crucial discussion.

    | More » Additional tickets may become available at the door an hour before the program.
  • Rhythms on the Brain: Music, Memory, and Emotion

    Joe Levy, Dave Katz (Sluggo), Joseph LeDoux, John Leventhal Eyebeam Art + Technology Center

    What makes us dance? Why do we sing the blues? Could there be a formula for the perfect hit?  Whether it’s a pop song or country ballad, musicians and record producers want to capture listeners; individual styles may vary but they’re all searching for just the right lyric, melody, or seductive guitar chord.  A few manage to turn out hit after hit – “hooking” our brains with irresistible beats. These songs become part of our collective identity. Years may pass, but as we all know, a song has the power to rekindle memories and emotions long forgotten. Can science illuminate why we respond the way we do?

    As part of the BIORHYTHM: Music and the Body exhibit. Note that the gallery and installations are open to the public 12 noon to 6 PM.

    BIORHYTHM at the Eyebeam Art + Technology Center is made possible through the generous support of Imagine Ireland, an initiative of Culture Ireland, and the Cordover Family Foundation. BIORHYTHM is created by Science Gallery and Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.

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  • Cool Jobs

    Baba Brinkman, Beth Shapiro, Heather Knight, Mark Moffett, Nate Ball NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts

    Imagine hanging out with some of the world’s kookiest critters in the jungle’s tallest trees, building a robot that does stand-up comedy, inventing a device that propels you into the air like Batman, or traveling back in a DNA time machine to study ancient animals! We met the scientists who make it possible. They included ecologist and explorer Mark Moffett, aka “Dr. Bugs,” roboticist Heather Knight, mechanical engineer and daredevil Nathan Ball, and evolutionary biologist Beth Shapiro. We found out what they do, how they do it, and how they got the coolest and weirdest jobs on the planet.

    Watch the Replay

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  • Scents and Sensibilities: The Invisible Language of Smell

    Juju Chang, Leslie Vosshall, Sissel Tolaas, Consuelo De Moraes, Avery Gilbert Tishman Auditorium at The New School

    What does fear smell like? Love? Can we use scent to control behavior? Do humans really sense pheromones? What if you could diagnose diseases just by smelling them? And exactly how does our brain convert floating organic molecules into chemical signals that our brain processes as odor? Over hundreds of thousands of years, our ancestors learned to encode specific scents with information that saved their lives. Many species still depend heavily on smell for their daily survival. Described as “the most direct pathway to the brain,” olfaction is subconscious, pre-cognitive, and emotional. We were joined by neuroscientists, chemists, artists, and radical scent designers for a “scent interactive” discussion about the fascinating science of smell and how it offers a powerful window into our brains, behaviors, emotions, and communication.

    On the Blog: “Smell is a secret language, a coded vernacular whispering subtle cues”

    | More » Limited number of WSF Supporter tickets still available here. Additional general admission tickets may become available at the door an hour before the program.
  • Keeping Secrets: Cryptography in a Connected World

    Josh Zepps, Brian Snow, Simon Singh, Orr Dunkelman, Tal Rabin Eisner & Lubin Auditorium

    Since the earliest days of communication, clever minds have devised methods for enciphering messages to shield them from prying eyes. Today, cryptography has moved beyond the realm of dilettantes and soldiers to become a sophisticated scientific art—combining mathematics, physics, computer science, and electrical engineering. It not only protects messages, but it also safeguards our privacy. From email to banking transactions, modern cryptography is used everywhere. But does it really protect us? What took place was a discussion of cryptography’s far-reaching influence throughout history (from Julius Caesar’s reign to Julian Assange’s WikiLeaks), and the ways in which it—and our privacy—are constantly under assault today as threats lurk behind IP addresses, computational power increases, and our secrets move online.


    More from this series: Keeping Secrets

    | More »
  • All Aboard the Mystic Whaler!

    Yankee Pier, Governors Island

    Folksinger Pete Seeger founded Clearwater over 40 years ago to teach people about the ecology and special heritage of the Hudson River.  Join Clearwater educators to raise the sails on the schooner Mystic Whaler, set your course using charts and compass, and set off to to explore the Hudson as a citizen scientist.  Identify the amazing variety of fish and invertebrates living beneath the waves; sample plankton; perform basic water quality tests; and learn about environmental issues impacting this important ecosystem.  Enjoy sailing on-board a tall ship, sing some traditional sea songs, and enjoy a day of science on the Harbor that you’ll never forget.


    As part of the World Science Festival’s all-day Science on Site
    on Governors Island.

    For directions and ferry information, click HERE.

    | More »
  • World Science Festival Salon: Manipulating Memory

    Julie Burstein, Cristina Alberini, Adam Kolber, Joseph LeDoux, Lynn Nadel, Elizabeth Phelps, Todd Sacktor Rosenthal Pavilion

    We are our memories, but can they be tampered with? Erased? What are the ethical considerations? Whether enhancing memory for an aging population or inhibiting memories that prevent function, new drugs bring new possibilities for abuse and misuse. Even in their most welcome applications, these drugs raise profound questions about the relationship between the subjective experience of memory and the true nature of what we remember.

    Some of the advanced topics which the conversation may explore include: Latest progress in memory research, including the enzyme PKMzeta and memory “erasure,” infusion of the protein synthesis inhibitor anisomycin, problems of animal models in memory research, and therapeutic implications inherent in these discoveries.

    World Science Festival Salons are an opportunity for in-depth conversations with world-leading scientists, extending the discussion of the Festival’s flagship public programs at a level appropriate for graduate students, postdocs, faculty and particularly well-informed members of the general public.

    Related flagship program:
    The Unbearable Lightness of Memory
    Learn more about all the WSF Salons

    This program is a part of The Big, the Small, and the Complex, a Series made possible with the support of The Kavli Prize.

    | More » Additional tickets may become available at the door an hour before the program.
  • Illuminating Light: The Journey of a Photon through Time and Mind

    Josh Zepps, Carter Emmart, Joy Hirsch American Museum of Natural History

    The wildly dancing beams of color and shape of The Joshua Light Show provided a spectacular jumping off point for exploring the nature of light and how we interact with it. Following the light show, we traveled through time with Carter Emmart, director of Astrovisualization at the American Museum of Natural History’s Hayden Planetarium, racing along with a photon—a particle of light—as it sped from the edge of the universe to the back of your eye. Then joined neuroscientist Joy Hirsch, co-curator of the Museum’s current exhibition, Brain: The Inside Story, as she followed light’s journey through your eye to the cascade of activity it generates in your brain. Kids and families were invited to examine light at the speed of thought.

    Presented in collaboration with the American Museum of Natural History

    | More »
  • The Moth - Dark Night: Stories of Stars Aligned

    Mike Daisey, Kodi Azari, Eric Lander, Janna Levin, James Fallon, Roald Hoffmann, Lisa P. Jackson The Players Club

    Presented with New York’s innovative storytelling collective, The Moth, esteemed scientists, writers and artists tell on-stage stories about their personal relationship with science. In keeping with Moth tradition, each story must be true and told within ten minutes, without notes. The result is a poignant, hilarious, and enjoyably unpredictable evening that’s sure to intrigue and surely hard to forget.


    More from The Moth series

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  • Beautiful Minds: The Enigma of Genius

    Marcus du Sautoy, R. Douglas Fields, Philip Glass, Rex Jung, Dean Keith Simonton, Julie Taymor NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts

    Immanuel Kant, who coined the term genius in the 1700s, defined it as the rare capacity to independently understand concepts that would normally have to be taught by another person. Since then, the spectrum of abilities that we call genius has widened, but pivotal questions remain: What exactly is genius? Where do the remarkable abilities of genius come from? Is genius something that lives within all of us, or is it a categorically different way of seeing the world that is bestowed upon only a few? With the emergence of new imaging technologies and a fundamental shift in the understanding of how information is spread through our brains, we’re beginning to find some answers. We joined neuroscientists, psychologists, renowned thinkers, and special performers as they untangled the complicated nature of genius, creativity, and exceptionality.

    Watch videos from this event now

    On the blog: The Other Brain of Genius

    This program was part of The Big Ideas Series, made possible with the support of the John Templeton Foundation.

    | More »
  • The Secret Behind the Secret of Life: Facts and Fictions

    Lynn Sherr, Anna Ziegler, Esther Conwell, Leslie Bernstein, Pamela Bjorkman, Joan Siefert Brugge, Raymond Gosling, Donald Caspar 3LD Art & Technology Center

    In the 1950s, three labs raced to unravel the structure of DNA. Five decades after the Nobel Prize was awarded for the breakthrough, the contribution of one scientist—Rosalind Franklin—remains controversial. A riveting performance of The Ensemble Studio Theatre Production of Anna Ziegler’s Photograph 51, directed by Linsay Firman, a historical drama that explored Rosalind Franklin’s electrifying story.

    Presented in collaboration with 3-Legged Dog Media + Theater Group, created with the support of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

    | More » Limited number of WSF Supporter tickets still available here. Additional general admission tickets may become available at the door an hour before the program.
  • Music and the Spark of Spontaneity

    John Schaefer, Pat Metheny, Jamshed Bharucha, Charles Limb, Aaron Berkowitz, Gary Marcus The Great Hall, Cooper Union

    Music. Improvisation. Spontaneous creativity. How does the brain do it? In the world of improvised music, eighteen-time Grammy award-winning jazz guitarist Pat Metheny is a legend. We took a live tour of his masterful musical mind at work as he performed and engaged in discussion with leading scientists who are also all musicians—Jamshed Bharucha, whose research in cognitive psychology and neuroscience will serve to explore the biological centers of creativity; Charles Limb, an otolaryngologist, surgeon, and neuroscientist who uses fMRI to study musicians while they improvise;  Gary Marcus, a developmental psychologist who taught himself to play guitar at age 40 in order to examine the process of learning music; and Aaron Berkowitz, author of The Improvising Mind: Cognition and Creativity in the Musical Moment. Through performance and conversation, the program explored the neurological processes underlying improvisation and what they tell us about human creativity and the structure of the brain.

    | More »
  • Man-Made Minds: Living with Thinking Machines

    Faith Salie, Hod Lipson, David Ferrucci, Eric Horvitz, Rodney Brooks The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College

    In recent years, machines have grown increasingly capable of listening, communicating, and learning—transforming the way they collaborate with us, and significantly impacting our economy, health, and daily routines. Who, or what, are these thinking machines? As we teach them to become more sophisticated, how will they complement our lives? What will separate their ways of thinking from ours? And what happens when these machines understand data, concepts, and behaviors too big or impenetrable for humans to grasp? We were joined by IBM’s WATSON, the computer Jeopardy! champion, along with leading roboticists and computer scientists, to explore the thinking machines of today and the possibilities to come in the not-too-distant future.

    Watch videos from this event now

    | More »
  • Rebooting the Cosmos: Is the Universe the Ultimate Computer?

    John Hockenberry, Edward Fredkin, Fotini Markopoulou-Kalamara, Jürgen Schmidhuber, Seth Lloyd Eisner & Lubin Auditorium

    As computers become progressively faster and more powerful, they’ve gained the impressive capacity to simulate increasingly realistic environments. Which raises a question familiar to aficionados of The Matrix—might life and the world as we know it be a simulation on a super advanced computer? “Digital physicists” have developed this idea well beyond the sci-fi possibilities, suggesting a new scientific paradigm in which computation is not just a tool for approximating reality, but is also the basis of reality itself. In place of elementary particles, think bits; in place of fundamental laws of physics, think computer algorithms. But is this a viable approach? Is the universe the ultimate computer running some grand cosmic code? A discussion among the brightest minds in digital physics to explore math, computer science, theories of consciousness, the origin of life, and free will—and delve into a world of information that may underlie everything.
    More from this series: Rebooting the Cosmos

    | More »
  • The Origins of Orientation: Sexuality in 2011

    Andrew Solomon, Meredith Chivers, Jim Pfaus, Paul Vasey, Marc Breedlove Tishman Auditorium at The New School

    Sexuality and gender play a profound role in shaping identity, but for much of human history how they are determined has remained obscure. How does sexual orientation develop? What is it? Can it be changed? What is the relationship between sexuality and gender? How do biology and culture interact to produce it? Why does homosexuality defy evolution’s dictate for reproduction? The long list of questions that has spanned centuries may finally be getting answers.
    See all Sexuality content

    | More »
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Sunday

  • 2011 World Science Festival Street Fair

    Washington Square Park

    The Washington Square Park area was transformed into a science wonderland when the World Science Festival Youth and Family Street Fair returned to New York City on Sunday, June 5, 2011.  This year’s extravaganza featured a non-stop program of interactive exhibits, experiments, games, and shows designed to entertain and inspire. Some highlights of this year’s Fair included:

    Check out the map »


    The CSI Experience, sponsored by John Jay College of Criminal Justice
    Kids of all ages became Forensic Detectives as they explored the Crime Scene at John Jay College’s CSI Experience. They collected evidence, examined blood splatter, conducted DNA analysis, excavated bones, dusted for finger prints, and became a CSI Detective.


    Dinosaur Train and Sid the Science Kid
    We were joined by The Jim Henson Company and friends as they investigated why some dinosaurs had feathers, and discovered if they are related to our present day feathered friends. Also in tow were our friends Sid and Buddy the T-Rex as they strolled through the festival taking in the sights, sounds and science of the Street Fair.


    So You Think You Can Do Science
    The Dancing Mad Scientist, Jeffrey Vinokur performed “So You Think You Can Do Science,” an unforgettable high-energy science show that combined the hottest dance moves with a science twist.


    Smell Lab hosted by International Flavors & Fragrances Inc.
    Test your Smell IQ, Concoct your Own Unique Fragrance from Scratch, “Recreate Whiffs of Reality,” and Guess that Celebrity scent at the Smell Lab, hosted by International Flavors & Fragrances Inc.


    Doktor Kaboom! 
    Doktor Kaboom took us on a sidesplitting journey of increasingly spectacular, and often successful, experiments and demonstrations. 


    Central Park Zoo’s Wildlife Theater
    The Central Park Zoo’s Wildlife Theater introduced two new shows that will have you singing, laughing and learning with the “Polar Bear and the Beat” and the “Penguin State of Mind.”


    This is Your Brain on Ping Pong
    Wendy Suzuki, a leading Neuroscientist and specialist from NYU, discussed the effects of the fast pace, strategic decision making and eye-hand coordination of ping pong on your brain. Professionals battled it out as you learned how your mind and body connect to play fast and win.


    Museum of Mathematics
    Kids got a chance to ride a square-wheeled tricycle, explore geometry with the laser-based Ring of Fire, and play with human-sized geometric puzzles—it was math as you’ve never seen it before.  New to the Festival this year was Math Unleashed, where untangling a rope yields surprising results, and Coffee Cup Curves, a hands-on exploration of the beautiful light patterns created by curved surfaces. 


    American Museum of Natural History’s Moveable Museum: Dinosaurs: Ancient Fossils, New Discoveries
    We explored the evolution of dinosaurs and possible causes of the mass extinction 65 million years ago. We also examined dinosaur nests and tracked ways to interpret their social behavior, and explored the fossil evidence found in the earth’s rocks.


    Lynn Brunelle’s Pop Bottle Science and Camp Out experiments
    Lynn Brunelle, Emmy Award winning writer for Bill Nye the Science Guy, teacher, and author of Pop Bottle Science, Camp Out and Mama’s Little Book of Tricks. Children got the chance to smash a few leaves, crush a pop bottle with the power of the atmosphere, layer some liquids, make a lava lamp, blow up a balloon without using your mouth and make raisins dance. Science is a blast!


    NYSCI
    The New York Hall of Science helped create Oobleck, a classic science experiment that’s perfect for entertaining both kids and adults. Oobleck acts like a liquid when being poured, but then acts like a solid when a force is acting on it. You can grab it and then it will ooze out of your hands.


    New York City/ New Jersey FIRST Robotics
    We met the New York City/New Jersey FIRST robotic program students, who shared and showed their state-of-the-art robot creations that will keep you saying “How do they DO that?”


    Discovery Theater and Authors Alley
    Meet and greet your favorite science authors and other experts in Discovery Theater and at Author’s Alley. Enjoy a day full of conversations, readings and demonstrations with today’s top science writers.


    What Lies Beneath: Science of Underwater Exploration
    We explored with scientists how they investigate the secrets of the water world, be it in your local estuaries or the vast oceans. Dive right in!


    The Messier Starship
    Mary Seidman and Dancers and composer Bruce Lazarus flew you through the universe with a live dance and musical performance enhanced by beautiful visual projections of star clusters, galaxies, and time travel. Carter Emmart, Director of Astrovisualization for the American Museum of Natural History guided us from the earth into outer space with his 3-D atlas of journey through the stars. This unique performance brought to life astronomer Charles Messier’s Elliptical-Spiral Galaxy, Ring Nebula, Whirlpool Galaxy, and Pleiades star cluster on stage.


    Discovery Labs
    Kids visited our hands-on Science Labs for “take home” science experiments throughout the day. It was your chance to build your own volcano, plant your own seeds, determine DNA and discover science in a pop bottle.


    How Does Exercise Change My Brain?
    Get your heart pumping as you join in an IntenSati session, a form of exercise that combines movements from kickboxing dance and yoga with positive spoken affirmations.


    Cooper Union
    We learn how Cooper Union Students built their own competitive racing car from scratch, watched sumo robots battle it out and learned what it’s like to be an engineer.


    Math and Science Arcade
    The arcade engaged your game addictions and improved your math and science skills at the same time!  Children had the chance to step up to more than 50 laptops and game stations including Microsoft’s Kinect, SMART Boards, and dance pads to play innovative games that are both fun and educational!


    Franklin Institute’s Traveling Scientists
    Can liquid nitrogen be used to make a cannon? Does air really take up space? This band of merry scientists got to the bottom of these questions and more through a series of demonstrations.


    The New York Botanical Garden
    We enjoyed hands-on gardening activities and plant-science discovery with The New York Botanical Garden. Families could pot up plants to take home. Kids could create their very own junior scientist field notebook to investigate, observe, and record signs of seasonal change in nature in their neighborhood or local park.


    The Large Hadron Collider: Discovering the Secrets of the Universe
    Families learned about the world’s largest science experiment, Large Hadron Collider. It took more than 15 years and $10 billion to build the Large Hadron Collider. This amazing machine is probing a new frontier in high-energy physics and may reveal the origin of mass of fundamental particles, the source of the illusive dark matter that fills the universe, and even extra dimensions of space.


    Underwater Engineering: Biomimetic Robots and Smart Materials
    You’ve probably heard about 20,000 leagues under the sea. But what about 20,000 robots under the sea? At the NYU-Poly Dynamical Systems Laboratory tent we learned about different types of underwater robots, including biomimetic robotic fish that swim with real fish and animal-safe submarines. We explored new smart materials that can silently propel robotic fish as real muscles would do and that can scavenge free energy from little eddies and small vibrations in water.


    NYU Poly: Smart Materials for Underwater Engineering Lab
    We participated in a hands-on activity which explores artificial muscles that can aid technological progress and scientific discoveries of the world underwater. Prof. Porfiri demonstrated smart materials that can silently drive small robotic fish, sense the surrounding aqueous environment, and scavenge untapped energy underwater.


    Fab @ Home
    Fab@home is a low-cost, hackabale, computer-controlled platform for 3D-Printing, milling, carving, cutting and automated measuring. Fabricate any object from any material, from cheese to stainless steel.


    Before Cave Walls…
    Christopher Agostino, author of Transformations: The Story Behind the Painted Faces, presented an interactive program on this art of transformation.  An exceptional visual artist and fascinating speaker, he delved into the use of masks and makeup in cultural traditions and world theater, symbols and iconography in tribal body art. This performance challenged audiences to consider the origins of our collective humanity while taking performance art in a new direction—illustrated live on the faces of volunteers.


    Urban Science Education for the Hip-hop Generation
    Christopher Emdin of Teachers College, Columbia University and member of rap group Ghosttown performed songs from his mixtape Urban Science Education for the Hip-hop generation, which features raps on basic science concepts, and science teaching and learning.


    Rap Science 101
    This lab session introduced participants to the connections between hip-hop and science in a short presentation, and provide them an opportunity to explore rap lyrics that connect science and hip-hop in a brand new way.


    Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s DNA Learning Center
    Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s DNA Learning Center, a world leader in genetics education, brought science to the streets of NYC! Families experienced how DNA can help you study the biology of the boroughs. Just as a unique pattern of bars in a universal product code (UPC) identifies each item for sale in a store, a DNA barcode is a DNA sequence that uniquely identifies each species of living thing.

    NYC Center for Space Science Education
    There’s no up and down in space!  This can be disorienting to astronauts.  Inversion goggles simulate this feeling. We joined the NYC Center for Space Science Education and experienced how simple tasks become difficult when you can’t tell up from down.

    Liberty Science Center
    Kids got their hands dirty digging for fossils. We sifted through rocks and searched for fossils that you could take home. We took a look through a Global Microscope and learned about the Earth’s surface, global warming and hurricane formations.


    The Mad Science
    Walloping Weather Pavilion

    We explored the natural world and the wonder of weather as we demonstrate rapid changes in pressure to create clouds in bottles. We used our powers of observation and estimation to stamp out our own weather forecast on our special Mad Science weather maps. We also discovered how to be sun safe as we create Ultra-Violet Detector Key Chains that will help determine how strong the sun is on any given day.


    The Mad Science
    Crazy Chemworks Pavilion

    We were joined for even more science fun as we explored chemistry and got to create ooey-gooey polymers using a new brand of Mad Science. Mix up a Mad Science Slime sample you get to keep.
    Scrapkins
    What can you make from all that junk you throw away? The ScrapKins®, an industrious monster tribe who live in a recycling center, gave step by step instructions to turn milk cartons into pirate ships.


    From Earth to the Universe (FETTU)
    From Earth to the Universe is a collection of astronomical images that showcases the most dramatic views of our Universe. The images are at once artistic and informative, weaving together themes in multi-wavelength astronomy, planetary science, and heliophysics. Including contributions from backyard astronomers to the largest telescopes in space, the collection represents the current state of astrophysics as seen through the eyes of the scientific community.

    Phantastic Physics Demo Show
    Join Mark Croft and David Maiullo, from the Rutgers University Physics Department, as they use everyday objects in exciting physics demonstrations to explain the “laws” of physics.  Both enlightening and entertaining, the show is fast paced and illustrates how physics principles can be easy to grasp and understand.  Mechanics, fluid mechanics, waves & sound, thermodynamics and electricity & magnetism will all be explored.  Great for all ages!

    | More »
  • Chemistry On Canvas: A Revealing Portrait of Monsieur and Madame Lavoisier

    Garrick Utley, Kathryn Calley Galitz, Harold Varmus, Roald Hoffmann Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bonnie J. Sacerdote Lecture Hall

    When Antoine Lavoisier, the father of modern chemistry, was beheaded during the French Revolution, he left behind a widow whom history has overlooked. Two Nobel prize-winning scientists and an art historian share a passion for a beguiling portrait of the Lavoisiers by Jacques-Louis David, painted just 6 years before the famed chemist was led to the guillotine. They’re not alone in this passion; the work now presides over a gallery at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. What is it about this depiction of the Lavoisiers that captures the imagination of both scientists and art lovers? A conversation among two esteemed scientists, both savvy politicians, and an art historian from the Met. The three explored their infatuation with this portrait and revealed all that is hinted at on the canvas—and all that is not.

    Presented in collaboration with the Metropolitan Museum of Art

    | More » Note: Free with Metropolitan Museum admission
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