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Michael Shermer and Mr. Anthony Bush, the curator and administrator of Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm, discuss the differences between apes and humans.

A Skeptic Goes Inside Noah’s Ark

Michael Shermer goes into the belly of the beast for creationists — Noah’s Ark — during his lecture tour of England during the Darwin celebrations the first two weeks of February, taking in Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm, a zoo dedicated to teaching the school children of England that the biblical story of creation is supported by science, or at least the science according to the zoo’s curator.

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While you’re there be sure to read the blog posts of the other Skepticbloggers: Brian Dunning, Kirsten Sanford, Mark Edward, Phil Plait, Ryan Johnson, Steven Novella, and Yau-Man Chan.


Darwin

Dr. Joel Smith has been added to the
Darwin Celebration at Caltech

Sunday, February 22, 2009 at 2:00 pm
Baxter Lecture Hall, Caltech (map)

Dr. Joel Smith is a post-doctoral scholar in the biology department at Caltech, specializing in bio logical information processing, stem cell and cancer biology, and the evolution of development (evo-devo). Dr. Smith’s talk is on:

Darwin in the Age of Systems Biology

Consider the numbers involved in evolution: four billion years of evolving life forms, millions of years to create new species, 100 trillion cells in the human body, 3.3 billion genetic “letters” in the human genome, along with the uncounted number of species and uncountable number of chemical reactions per second in each cell. This is the subject of systems biology, which allows us to deal with the complexity of individual organisms through the construction of Regulatory Networks, detailed logic maps of the “circuitry” of living organisms. By comparing Regulatory Networks from different species we can see how the program has changed over the course of evolution, and we can identify the precise changes in DNA sequences that have created those changes.


the Spring Season of Lectures at Caltech

Mark your calendar! The Skeptics Society is pleased to announce its Spring 2009 season of the Skeptics Distinguished Lecture Series at Caltech. This continues the fifteen-year-long series, presenting over 200 lectures by some of the most distinguished experts in the world.


All of the following lectures are on a Sunday at 2 pm at Baxter Lecture Hall. Tickets are sold on a first come first served basis at the door. Sorry, no advance ticket sales. Seating is limited. $8 Skeptics Society members & Caltech/JPL Community; $10 General Public

William Lobdell

Losing My Religion

with William Lobdell

March 22, 2009

READ more about this lecture >

Alan Boss

The Crowded Universe

with Dr. Alan Boss

April 5, 2009

READ more about this lecture >

Peter Ward

The Medea Hypothesis

with Dr. Peter Ward

May 10, 2009

READ more about this lecture >

Barbara Oakley

Why People Behave Badly

with Dr. Barbara Oakley

May 17, 2009

READ more about this lecture >

Michael Dowd

Thank God for Evolution

with Michael Dowd

June 7, 2009

READ more about this lecture >

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Detecting Baloney

Baloney Detection Kit Sandwich (Infographic) by Deanna and Skylar (High Tech High Media Arts, San Diego, CA)

The Baloney Detection Kit Sandwich (Infographic)

For a class project, a pair of 11th grade physics students created the infographic shown below, inspired by Michael Shermer’s Baloney Detection Kit: a 16-page booklet designed to hone your critical thinking skills.

FREE PDF Download

Wisdom of Harriet Hall

Top 10 Things to Know About Alternative Medicine

Harriet Hall M.D. discusses: alternative versus conventional medicine, flu fear mongering, chiropractic, vaccines and autism, placebo effect, diet, homeopathy, acupuncture, “natural remedies,” and detoxification.

FREE Video Series

Science Based Medicine vs. Alternative Medicine

Science Based Medicine vs. Alternative Medicine

Understanding the difference could save your life! In this superb 10-part video lecture series, Harriet Hall M.D., contrasts science-based medicine with so-called “complementary and alternative” methods.

FREE PDF Download

Top 10 Myths of Terrorism

Is Terrorism an Existential Threat?

This free booklet reveals 10 myths that explain why terrorism is not a threat to our way of life or our survival.

FREE PDF Download

The Top 10 Weirdest Things

The Top Ten Strangest Beliefs

Michael Shermer has compiled a list of the top 10 strangest beliefs that he has encountered in his quarter century as a professional skeptic.

FREE PDF Download

Reality Check: How Science Deniers Threaten Our Future (paperback cover)

Who believes them? Why? How can you tell if they’re true?

What is a conspiracy theory, why do people believe in them, and can you tell the difference between a true conspiracy and a false one?

FREE PDF Download

The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

Mind altering experiences are one of the foundations of widespread belief in the paranormal. But as skeptics are well aware, accepting them as reality can be dangerous…

FREE PDF Download

Top 10 Myths About Evolution

Top 10 Myths About Evolution (and how we know it really happened)

If humans came from apes, why aren’t apes evolving into humans? Find out in this pamphlet!

FREE PDF Download

Learn to be a Psychic in 10 Easy Lessons

Learn to do Psychic “Cold Reading” in 10
Easy Lessons

Psychic readings and fortunetelling are an ancient art — a combination of acting and psychological manipulation.

FREE PDF Download

The Yeti or Abominable Snowman

5 Cryptid Cards

Download and print 5 Cryptid Cards created by Junior Skeptic Editor Daniel Loxton. Creatures include: The Yeti, Griffin, Sasquatch/Bigfoot, Loch Ness Monster, and the Cadborosaurus.

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