Meet The Skeptics!

Never heard of George Hrab? Oh, you have! My bad.

I’ve been a big fan of the Geologic Podcast ever since I realized that the title referred to the “Logic of Geo” as opposed to rocks. Nothing against Geologists, but it’s more fun to hear Geo’s mom reading Jay-Z lyrics than it is to hear about erosion of sandstone.

I had the chance to stop off at the Geologic Headquarters during a recent trip to Pennsylvania. It was definitely worth the detour. Well, to be fair, it was a very minor detour but HAD it been a longer trip out of the way it still would have been worth it. I think 43 or 44 minutes further would have pressed the issue a bit but anything less than an additional 40 minutes was definitely worth the sidetrack. Well, then again Ms. Information gave me an apple for the road, so that perhaps was worth the extra 5 minutes so maybe 45 minutes would have been a sufficiently appropriate venture time to obtain the audio, digital bits contained herein. Now that I think of it, I would have likely stopped for a McFlurry at about that time anyway just to break up the trip so I’d have to account for about 8 - 9 minutes anyway so maybe a 53 - 54 minute drive would have satisfied my sense of balance. But wait, Geo didn’t make me an ice cream treat so I’m not sure if the whole 8 - 9 minutes should count. Oh hell, just press play.

Follow Geo on Twitter at @GeorgeHrab and follow me @MeetTheSkeptics.

www.GeologicPodcast.com

Direct download: Meet_George_Hrab.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Mike Meraz could well be described as the Dale Carnegie of the Skeptical world. A few years back, he recognized that while critical thinking skills and Skepticism are essential tools for navigating society effectively, very few of us are putting forth an effort to effectively and attractively communicate those skills. Mike created a podcast, "Actually Speaking" to deal with this exact topic. Each episode is concise and full of real world examples and well balanced advice for topics such as "The Human Nature of Prejudice," "Managing and Aggressive Tone," and "The Art of Listening."

If this weren't enough, Mike also works on a podcast with his young son Aaron, who actually hosts the show! If you have kids into science and especially dinosaurs, you HAVE to let them have a listen.

www.ActuallySpeaking.com

Aaron's World

You can also follow Mike on Twitter at @factually, and don't forget to follow me too at @MeetTheSkeptics!

Direct download: Meet_Mike_Meraz_2.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

MTS: Meet Sid Rodrigues

Sid Rodrigues is best known as the organizer for the London Skeptics in the Pub group. The Skeptics in London have consistently proven to be some of the most active and effective groups in the world. 200 - 400 people regularly show up to skeptics meetings where they get to hear great presentations from Scientists, Activists, and even in one instance, a Creationist.

Sid and I talk about how to organize your own group, how he deals with such large groups, his background as an escape artist, his involvement with the Little Atoms podcast, and much more.

Follow Sid on Twitter at @sidrodrigues and don't forget to follow me too at @MeetTheSkeptics.

http://www.sidrodrigues.com/

Direct download: Meet_Sid_Rodrigues.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

MTS: Meet Eugenie Scott

It was a sincere honor to speak with and interview Eugenie Scott recently. Not only is she one of the brightest people I’ve had the opportunity to chat with, she’s at the forefront of the Creationism/Evolution debate across the United States as the Executive Director of the National Center for Science Education. Anybody who values science education in the United States owes a sincere debt of gratitude to Dr. Scott.

 

Eugenie somehow manages to maintain a great sense of humor in the midst of some very stressful and potentially discouraging circumstances. If you ever have the chance to see her speak. I cannot recommend more strongly that you take the time to do so. If you are unable to see her live, make sure to check out some of her presentations on the NCSE YouTube Channel.

 

If you live in an area where the teaching of Evolution is under attack in the local schools, do not hesitate to contact the NCSE.

 

NCSE Website

 


Direct download: Meet_Eugenie_Scott.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Robynn McCarthy is better known as the "Swoopy" half of Derek and Swoopy of the Skepticality podcast. Skepticality is one of the Official Podcasts of Skeptic Magazine. Since podcasting first came on the scene, Derek and Swoopy were there with regular thought provoking shows, serious insights, and goofy banter. 

Since 1996 Swoopy has been largely in charge of the entire planning and production of the podcast. I warn you, if you listen to just about any Skepticality episode you WILL end up putting one more book on your "to read" list. Go ahead, I dare you to listen and not run out to buy the book of the author she was interviewing that day.

Robynn and I talked about how they got Skepticality started, her involvement with DragonCon, the process of creating each Skepticality episode, how she became a Skeptic, and so much more. You can follow Robynn on Twitter: @Swoopy. Don't forget to follow me too at @MeetTheSkeptics.

 

Skepticality Podcast

SKEPTIC Magazine

Direct download: Meet_Robyn_McCarthy_Swoopy.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Brian Dunning is one of the names you’ll come across in the Skeptical world quite often. He hosts Skeptoid, a weekly 10 - 15 minute podcast taking on some of the sacred cows of pop culture as well as having several other ventures of a similar nature. Brian thoroughly researches each and every topic before building a solid and seemingly unassailable case for logic and reality. Unlike free flowing interview shows, Skeptoid is brutally efficient and to the point. If you have a 15 minute commute to work each day, you could do far worse than to spend it listening to Skeptoid once or twice a week.

Here Be Dragons: The Movie

InFact

Skeptoid: Critical Analysis Of Pop Phenomena 

Skeptoid 2: More Critical Analysis Of Pop Phenomena

Pirates, Pyramids, and Papyrus (Skeptoid)

 

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @MeetTheSKeptics

Direct download: Meet_Brian_Dunning.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Tom Croucher is the 4th Australian I've interviewed for this podcast! Somehow, I highly doubt he'll be the last.

Tom and his brother Nick are more commonly known as the Skeptic Bros. They co-write a blog affectionately titled "The Zombie Apocalypse Survival Guide." More recently though, they have made a pretty big splash in the Skeptical world by manufacturing and selling "Placebo Bands." These are a perfect knockoff of the more widely known Power Balance bracelets. The key differences are a) the Placebo Bands are appropriately named and b) The Placebo Bands cost about 5% of what the Power Balance bands cost for an essentially identical product.

Check out Placebo Bands featured on Scam School with Brian Brushwood!

Check out Tom at any of the following: 

www.SkepticBros.com

Twitter: @tomfoolery_101

Follow me on Twitter too!: @MeetTheSkeptics

Direct download: Meet_Tom_Croucher.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

MTS: Meet Jay Novella

While I’ve gotten a unique kick out of each interview so far, this one was particularly interesting in that it was done as we walked through a Haunted Corn Maze owned by Bob Novella, Jay’s older brother and one of the co-hosts of Skeptics Guide to the Universe. Jay adds a wry sense of humor and a lighthearted comedic touch to the SGU podcast and he was as fun in person as he seems on the show.

 

During the interview, we talked about additional projects that Jay and the SGU crew were getting involved in. One past project was a comedic video series that Jay produced himself. While it didn’t go very far, I really enjoyed it. Here’s Part 1 of the first Episode.

 

Enjoy the interview and follow me on Twitter: @MeetTheSkeptics.

 

Direct download: Meet_Jay_Novella.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

Jason Brown is a Skeptical activist in Sydney Australia. Primarily, he organizes Sydney's Drinking Skeptically group. He's also a bit of a podcaster himself, plays Bass Guitar on Youtube, and is a wine aficionado with a Wine Podcast that is under construction at the time of this episode.

In Vino Veritas Podcast

More prominently, Jason runs the website www.Skepticator.com. This is an inceredibly helpful site that aggregate feeds from Skeptical sources all over the world. In essence, if you're looking for good stuff to read and think about, Skepticator's the place to find it.

In our interview, we spoke about TAM Oz, local organization, homeopathy, and the Anti-Anti-Vaccine movement known as "Stop the AVN.

 

Follow me on Twitter @MeetTheSkeptics and follow Jason @DrunkenMadman.

Direct download: Meet_Jason_Brown.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

As both an entertainer and an educator, Art Benjamin has inspired and excited people about math for several decades. He is a Professor of Mathematics at Harvey Mudd College and has produced several courses for The Great Courses, including The Joy of Mathematics and Discrete Mathematics in addition to writing the book “The Secrets of Mental Math.”

 

Secrets of Mental Math: The Mathemagician's Guide to Lightning Calculation and Amazing Math Tricks


I’ve been a fan of Dr. Benjamin’s since I was sipping coffee on a Sunday morning almost a year ago and scrolling through the great videos on TED. His presentation was labelled “Jawdropping” by the other viewers so I decided to check it out. By combining rapid mental calculations and magic, he has created a unique show that defies belief. Are you skeptical? Check it out right here.

Direct download: Meet_Arthur_Benjamin.m4a
Category:Science and Skepticism -- posted at: 12:00am EDT