Geek Girl: Your Weekly Roundup of Sexy, Cool Science News and More
Yearning for Doctor Who? Need to find out where to buy a Wampa? Who’s appearing at New York Comic Con and other fab news here!
– Lucia Peters and PJ Gach
If you’ve got a questing, eclectic mind like ours, science is just as sexy and fun as celebrity news, tips on dating and style stuff We’ve created a yummy dish of science, science fiction and other cool things for you to read. Yup, they’re all low-cal too. Since we’re BettyConfidential, this dish is served with a dose of snark, humor and of course cool sexy angles. We’d never let you down!
Doctor Who Makes Us Sad, Happy, and Sad Again:
Do you guys love Doctor Who? Because all of us here at BettyConfidential do. And yet somehow, we can’t help but think that loving Doctor Who is sometimes like a really terrible friendship: It’s mean to us, then it’s nice to us again, and then it’s mean to us again. Take the most recent bout of news, for instance:
1. Series 7 has been delayed until Fall of 2012. What?! That’s NINE WHOLE MONTHS to wait between the Christmas special and the next season! Boo!
2. But, to soften the blow a little, there’s going to be a five episode miniseries called Night and the Doctor included on the series 6 DVD set to tide us over until series 7. No word on how long a miniseries that will be, though; the episodes could be five minutes long, or they could be 20 minutes long. We don’t know. But hey, any Who is better than no Who!
3. However, this series marks the endof Doctor Who Confidential, the unique behind-the-scenes show that aired after each episode. No more peeks behind the walls of the TARDIS for us. Sad face.
Curse you, Steven Moffat and the BBC!
Have Your Wampa and Wear It, Too:
Look! Wampa sneakers! You heard me: WAMPA. SNEAKERS! No, they’re not made out of actual Wampa skin, though they do kind of look like they are. In any event, though, they’re a real thing, and I don’t know about you, but I’m absolutely tickled about that fact.
So who makes these marvelous shoes? Surprisingly, Adidas. They’re a variation on their popular Campus 80s sneakers with a wonderfully nerdy bent. Here’s what Adidas has to say about them:
“Inspired by that abominable snow beast from Planet Hoth that almost made Luke Skywalker into a meal. These Adidas Star Wars Campus 80s shoes dress up the retro basketball shoes with a faux Wampa fur upper made from horsehair, with a Wampa tongue badge and a laser-cut Wampa logo.”
They feature a breathable, full grain leather upper, Star Wars-print removeable insoles, and Herringbone-patterned outsoles for grip. So just in case you find yourself heading to Hoth anytime soon, you’ve got the shoe thing covered. Nab them for $150 at shopadidas.com.
Note: No Wampas were harmed in the making of these shoes.
Sesame Street Puts Its Engineering Cap On:
How many generations have grown up on Sesame Street? It’s been a staple of children’s television since it debuted in the ‘60s. The beauty of Sesame Street is that not only is it educational and entertaining for kids, it’s also entertaining for the adults and parents who may be watching the show WITH the kids. Glee parodies? Yes please! Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark commentary? Awesome! Grover as the Old Spice Guy? Bring it on!
But one of the other great things about Sesame Street is that it rolls with the times. Case in point: Carol-Lynn Parente, the show’s executive producer, thinks it’s time to introduce a new concept to preschoolers—and that concept is engineering. As she told ABC News, “It really boils down to a curriculum of asking questions, observing … making a hypothesis and testing it out.”
Too many kids end up going through their school years thinking that they’re “bad at math” or “bad at science”; but research has shown that kids who watch Sesame Street as preschoolers generally tend to get higher grades later in life. Yes, we know that correlation is not causation, but it’s pretty likely that this correlation isn’t an accident. So, maybe if kids start learning math, science, and engineering from Sesame Street early on, they’ll later find themselves to be more mathematically and scientifically inclined. Would that be great?
Here’s a sneak peek at one of the new recurring segments they’ve got planned: A science experiment with Murray the Monster.
Score one for kids’ television!
Capsule Review: Contagion
Starring: Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, Marion Cottilard, Elliott Gould, Laurence Fishbourne and Gwyneth Paltrow.
If you like contagious diseases like I do, you’ll love Contagion. The entire cast throws themselves in their roles and they become the characters. You’ve never seen sleazy until you’ve seen Jude Law as an unscrupulous Aussie blogger living in San Francisco. The movie is enthralling; from the opening to closing credits you’re lost in it. The plot charts the rise and domination of a pandemic in modern society and it’s socio-medical-psychological impact on society. There are some scientists think that conditions are now rip for an outbreak similar to Spanish Flu to hit us now. Could this movie be like a how to be prepared or a warning bell? Your choice.
Bonus round: You can clap when Gywneth Paltrow died. I did.
Neutrinos Are Sexy Beasts:
Neutrinos rule. They’ve taken over the spot that’s always been reserved for Quarks in my heart. Why do neutrinos, those tiny little buggers shine in such a bright light? They’re fast. They’re faster than fast. In fact, they’re so fast that if Einstein was still around, his head would spin and he’d be hiding under a table at the same time. Okay, this probably doesn’t make sense. Let me cut the hyperbole. On September 23, 2011, scientists at the CERN Labs in Switzerland (this is the same lab that some people think will cause the end of the world via the scientist’s curiosity) released information on a recent experiment they conducted. To whit, they lit a fire under subatomic particles known as neutrinos and had them fly like the wind. These babies flew from the lab in Geneva, Switzerland through the Earth’s crust to an underground detector over 450 miles away. How fast were they? They flew 60-billionths of a second faster than light would take to cover the same distance. In other words, they moved faster than the speed of light.
According to Einstein’s theorem E=mc2*, that can’t happen. Which means that this experiment literally blew everything we thought we knew about science to be wrong. A few months ago, Dr. Shengwang Du categorically denied that we could ever time travel. EVER. His theorem was based on what we knew then about physics. Now, the possibilities are endless. Look we just found a real Tatooine. A planet with two suns. I’d like to remind you that scientists said in the past that that type of thing could only exist in science fiction. As an adult woman, I would like to say to the guys who said time travel wasn’t possible and there’s no such thing as a planet with two suns, “Nyah, nyah, nyah, nyah!” Nope you can’t see me wiggling my ears but I’m doing so.
As someone who’s long held the belief that time is non-linear, I feel vindicated.
Catch Mark Hamill, Frankie Muniz, Jay and Silent Bob AKA Jason Mewes and Kevin Smith, Rose McGowan, Judah Friedlander and other stars at the New York Comic Con, October 13 – 16, 2011. Held at the Javits Center in New York City, you’ll find oodles of things to do there, besides ogle the costumes. There’s screenings,like Fox’s pilot Lock & Key. Panels on everything from the upcoming season of Adult Swim to the history of graphic novels. You can participate in a wand dueling symposium (no, I’m not making that up) or speed date. Geeks need love. Hang out with the folks from Dark Horse Comics, and much, much more. Oh yes, and there will be zombies there too! The folks from Zlango are premiering their Walking Dead Andriod skins. So, they’re going to have a pack of zombies running around. Walk over to them and say, “Hi!” They won’t bite you, they have giveways to hand out.
*After Einstein had created the Theory of Relativity (E=mc2), I’d like to point out that he did squat after that.
Lucia Peters is BettyConfidential’s associate editor and a fierce Whovian.
PJ Gach is Senior Editor: Style + Beauty at BettyConfidential. She loathes linear time.