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Reading Room
The Top 10 Science Books of 2010

In the tradition of making end-of-the-year lists of the “Top 10 X” Michael Shermer presents his personal picks for the Top 10 Science Books of 2010.

eSkeptic for 10-11-17

In 1998, at eleven years of age, a young girl named Emily Rosa published a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Emily had conceived and executed an experiment that challenged the basis of one of the most accepted “alternative” healing procedures known: Therapeutic Touch (TT). She became the youngest person ever to have a research paper published in a peer reviewed medical journal. In this week’s feature article, Larry Sarner (chairman of the National Therapeutic Touch Study Group) discusses Emily Rosa’s investigation.

eSkeptic for 10-09-22

In this week’s eSkeptic, we present the first-ever, 18th-century, scientific investigation of an extraordinary claim — mesmerism — commissioned by King Louis XVI of France, designed and conducted by scientific luminaries Benjamin Franklin, Antoine Lavoisier and others, translated by Charles and Danielle Salas, with an introduction by Michael Shermer about its importance in the history of skepticism.

Past Lecture
Brain, Mind & Consciousness Conference 2005

The Brain, Mind & Consciousness conference, on what Nobel Laureate Francis Crick called “the greatest unsolved problem in biology,” was held over the weekend of May 13–15, 2005 at Caltech. Watch the entire conference for free in three sessions (approximately 7.5 hours over 3 videos).

eSkeptic for 04-07-05

In this week’s eSkeptic, to commemorate Ernst Mayr’s 100th birthday, we reprint an interview from Skeptic magazine, The Grand Old Man of Evolution: An Interview with Evolutionary Biologist Ernst Mayr.

Past Lecture
Three Views of Carl Sagan

In this Skeptics Distinguished Lecture at Caltech from 1999, three science biographers take an illuminating look back over the life and legacy of one of the 20th Century’s most celebrated astronomers: Carl Sagan.

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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 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. The lectures each range from 32 to 45 minutes.

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 why do they tend to proliferate? Why does belief in one conspiracy correlate to belief in others? What are the triggers of belief, and how does group identity factor into it? How can one 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

Do you know someone who has had a mind altering experience? If so, you know how compelling they can be. They 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.

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