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Book Club: The Emperor of All Maladies by Siddhartha... [caption id="attachment_2131" align="alignright" width="197"] The Emperor of All Maladies[/caption]This month's book is The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee, an oncologist...

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SitP: David Ropeik and the Risk Perception Gap Update! Thanks to Andrea and Francois, we now have a video of David Ropeik's talk available on our

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SitP: Larry Gilbertson on GMOs and Biotech [caption id="attachment_2117" align="alignright" width="300"] Feeding the world[/caption]The population of the earth will exceed 9 billion people by 2050. Arable land is decreasing, dietary preferences...

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In brief…

Posted on : 23-02-2010 | By : Jared | In : Blog Post, Event, Skeptics in the Pub

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Hey gang!

First, we just want to thank everyone who came to SitP last night. Jeff Lieberman was fantastic, and we’re very grateful to him for speaking to us! And in case you stayed home in favor of watching the video version of this month’s event: sorry, but there IS no video this month! You really missed out this time. Plus, our videos don’t tell the whole story, so it’s always worthwhile to come out and meet your fellow skeptifriends!

We also announced next month’s SitP speaker: Kimball Atwood IV! Kimball is a practicing anesthesiologist, a blogger at Science-Based Medicine, and was named a CSI (Committee for Skeptical Inquiry) Fellow! We’ll have more information about this event closer to the date, as Kimball is scheduled to speak on Monday, March 29th at 7PM. This will be an excellent opportunity to meet him prior to his appearance at NECSS the following month.

Lastly, this week’s BS Book Club meeting is at 2:00 PM, not 2:30 as had previously been announced in yesterday’s post. That post has already been redacted down the memory hole, and we have always been at war with Eastasia. The venue and book have not changed, so check yesterday’s post for the details!

That’s it for now. Thanks again for your support!

Event Update

Posted on : 22-02-2010 | By : Jared | In : Event, Skeptics in the Pub

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Hi everyone! Do you have plans for tonight? Well, I certainly hope not, unless those plans involve stopping by Tommy Doyle’s in Harvard Square for tonight’s edition of Skeptics in the Pub!

That’s right! It’s finally time for this month’s talk, featuring Jeff Lieberman of the Discovery Channel’s Time Warp, the band gloobic, and all those other projects we talked about here! So just in case you forgot, well, that’s happening tonight at 7 PM. Get there early!

Also worth noting: This coming Saturday (Feb. 27th) is the next meeting of the Boston Skeptics Book Club! There’s still time to read this month’s book, 59 Seconds by our good friend Richard Wiseman. It’ll take you longer than 59 seconds, I suspect, but it’s still a quick and entertaining read. So be sure to come to the Clear Conscience Cafe in Central Square at 2:00 PM to join in the discussion!

And finally, a bit of a head’s up: Do you have plans for the early afternoon on Sunday, March 14th? Well, congrats on planning things so far in advance (a skill we could stand to cultivate!) but you MAY want to keep some time open. We HOPE to have more about this soon.

So there’s a quick summary of our upcoming events! We’d love to see you (yes, YOU!) at all of them!

Boston Skeptics in the Pub: TIME WARP Edition!

Posted on : 11-02-2010 | By : Jared | In : Event, Skeptics in the Pub

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Skeptics in the Pub: February Edition

with Jeff Lieberman!!

WHEN
Monday, February 22, 2010 (pronounced “twentington”)
7:00pm – 10:00pm

WHERE
Tommy Doyle’s in Harvard Square (top floor)
96 Winthrop Street
Cambridge, MA

Facebook event page

Well, it’s been a few months since we’ve had a speaker here at Skeptics in the Pub, so we’re absolutely JAZZED to be able to bring you Jeff Lieberman as February’s special guest!

Jeff will no doubt be familiar to some of you as the host of Time Warp on the Discovery Channel! Time Warp uses high-speed photography to show you ordinary things in extraordinary detail. If you’ve ever noticed a strange amount of Cambridge-area content, well, that may be because Jeff is a local!

In addition to his work on Time Warp, Jeff is a renaissance man, and is well known in several fields! He’s an MIT trained scientist, with degrees in Math, Physics, Engineering, and Media. He plays electronic music in the group “gloobic,” makes his way through the art world for both photography and sculpture, and is also a roboticist who MAY be building a robot to TAKE OVER THE WORLD. Well, I made up the “taking over the world” part… or did I?

At any rate, come on out for Jeff’s talk, and you can ask him questions about any and all of those things! Get there early, we’re sure this going to be a popular talk. RSVP in the comments or over on Facebook to let us know you’re coming, so we can let Tommy Doyle’s know how many people to expect. We hope to see you all there, as the material covered WILL be on your final exam! :)

NB: Don’t forget about our Brunch this Saturday! The fact that we’re bumping that post is NO excuse for slacking!

Boston Skeptics Waffle Frolic/Brunch

Posted on : 09-02-2010 | By : Jared | In : Event

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Apologies for the rather late OFFICIAL notice, but the latest Boston Skeptics Brunch will be taking place this Saturday, February 13th at 11:00 AM, at the Asgard in Central Square. If you’ve never been, our brunches are really informal gatherings where we just eat, drink, and spend time getting to know other cool skeptical people. So come on out, if the tardiness of our announcement hasn’t put you off!

Besides, if we didn’t wait until now, we’d have missed out on the fantastic term “waffle frolic.”

According to Wikipedia:
“Thomas Jefferson brought a waffle iron from France, and waffle frolics or parties became popular in the late eighteenth century.”

Is it true? WHO CARES? It’s an awesome name. So come, hang out, relax, and eat yummy things with us this Saturday! Be sure to RSVP on Facebook so we know how many people to expect!

* NOTE * The Asgard may not actually serve waffles, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a waffle frolic IN OUR HEARTS.

Boston Skeptics’ Book Club #3

Posted on : 02-02-2010 | By : Mary | In : Blog Post

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We had an awesome meeting two Saturdays ago (yes, I am a lazy blog poster) on Saturday, January 23rd to discuss Mary Roach’s Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife. If you haven’t read it yet, it’s basically the author’s attempt to research all of the different ways that people try to understand the afterlife, and the chapters include topics such as reincarnation, mediums who allege that they can speak with the dead (who always seem to have very banal things to say), and how modern technology is co-opted into the search for ghosts. Mary Roach’s style of writing is interesting, as her footnotes could be chapters unto themselves. I found the book to be light-heartedly skeptical (she seems a little reluctant to label herself as a skeptic and let go of her irrationalities) and a mostly fun read.

Our next book is Richard Wiseman’s 59 Seconds: Think a Little, Change a Lot, in which Wiseman discusses various topics (e.g. relationships, parenting, motivation, etc.) from a psychological point of view and backs up all of his arguments with scientific literature. Each chapter is accompanied by a summary which can presumably be read in less than a minute. Unfortunately, I wasn’t in town to have more sex see Richard Wiseman when he came to Boston, so I picked this book in his honor.

If you’d like to come to our next meeting, we are meeting on Saturday, February 27th at 2:30 pm in the Clear Conscience Cafe (same bat time, same bat channel). The cafe is nice and warm and the conversation is skeptical and scintillating!

On a related note, as our book club grows we are always looking for new coffee shops or other places to host it in. If you have any suggestions, please comment below. I drive into Boston from New Hampshire, so I don’t know the local places as well, but any place that could accommodate 8-12 people and is good for facilitating conversation would be awesome. (Or if anyone wants to host a book club meeting, I promise to bring pastries and tea and stay to clean up!)