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World Science Festival: Had we but time enough

Posted on behalf of Richard Van Noorden What happens when seven people, in 90 minutes of unscripted conversation, try to explore the nature of time? At Saturday’s World Science Festival ‘Time Since Einstein’ event a confusing but inspirational mess emerged: a verbal Jackson Pollock. Which – when explaining the nature of spacetime, the general theory of relativity, quantum mechanics, reconciling the two, time’s arrow, entropy, non-locality, the big bang, and our personal conceptions of past, present and future – was probably as much as the organisers could hope for.  Read more

World Science Festival: Cabaret science

Happy hour starts early in New York, at least it does when you’re hanging out with scientists. At 5 pm on Friday an eager audience took their seats at the 92Y-Tribeca for a cabaret-style presentation of science, comedy and, the biggest surprise, a singing Nobel Prize physicist.  Read more

World Science Festival: See through brain

The title for the session Transparent Brain: Visible Thoughts was inevitably misleading: each speaker fully acknowledged that their research has made only a small step towards the ambitious goal of understanding the thoughts brewing in the crevices of the brain.  Read more

World Science Festival: Razzamatazz

“Bringing science to the cultural center” was how Tracy Day, co-founder of the World Science Festival put it. And given the contributions by Broadway musical stars (Jonathan Hadary and Danny Burstein), two outstanding classical musicians (Yo-Yo Ma and Joshua Bell), celebrity actors (Alan Alda and Glenn Close), a full orchestra on stage playing music specially composed by Philip Glass, a Baptist choir, and a children’s ballet group all appearing at the Alice Tully Hall at the Lincoln Center for Performing Arts, her claim was amply justified for the packed audience at least. This was a true razzamatazz science-festival launch that only New York could have delivered with such style!  Read more