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Reporting Science Thomas Abraham. knowledge/

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1 Reporting Science Thomas Abraham

2 knowledge/

3 Where do we live? Asking the big questions… Composite image of middle of our galaxy from Hubble, Spitzer telescopes and Chandra X ray observatory

4 Source: Christopher R Scotese, Paleomap project

5 Map: Christopher R Scotese


7 Image from the Hubble telescope: Where are we going? Are we alone?


9 Where will we live? Santa Maria Crater, Mars. Photo taken by Nasa’s Mars exploration vehicle. Dec, 2010



12 A Hawkings’ eye view of humanity “The human race is just a chemical scum on a moderate-sized planet, orbiting around a very average star in the outer suburb of one among a hundred billion galaxies”

13 apr/24/tech-tycoons-asteroid-mining- venture



16 /main/index.html


18 Where did we come from…..and where are we going?

19 James Ussher, Bishop of Armagh, Ireland. 1581-1656 The first day of creation began on the night preceding October 23, 4004 BC

20 What was actually happening between 4000-5000BC? Human beings learned to grow crops and settled down in settled communities Rice began to be cultivated in China The wheel was developed in India Humans had learned to brew beer reationist-congress-early- earth_n_2234540.html

21 It was assumed that all species were created in one instant… Archeopetryx fossil

22 Charles Darwin (1809-1882) Evolution through natural selection

23 The Voyage of HMS Beagle- 1831-1836


25 Where did life come from? Supernatural origins? Extraterrestrial origins? Some sort of process whereby the basic chemicals present in the primitive earth became self replicating, evolving systems?

26 Genetics and re-engineering humans? venter_unveils_synthetic_life.html

27 Science is about fundamental human questions Who we are What we are becoming Where we are going Good science writing needs to connect to these broader themes

28 Some of the things we are going to look at during the course Climate Change Artificial intelligence Nano technology

29 Reporting Science-the mainstream media ex.html ex.html cenow/ cenow/ vironment/

30 Scientists who blog

31 News sections of scientific journals

32 Popular science magazines

33 A new wave of science journalism ml ml

34 Science and development

35 About science writing Good stories need to connect to broader themes Explain the science What theories are being tested? What are the prevailing theories? What experiments are being used to test the theory? To do this, you need to understand some of the science

36 Course work One feature length science story ( 1,500-2,000 words) on the work of a scientist in Hong Kong ? Every class, each one of you will talk about the latest stories in one of the following: Nature, Science, Discover, Scientific American, New Scientist, Wired, Huffington Post Write a paragraph or two, and I will post it on our blog Read Michio Kaku book

37 Your feature It should be interesting. I should want to read it…. Good stories need human beings, doing things, saying things, thinking things Scientific concepts are abstract; science stories need to make these come alive

38 Understanding the science Talk to the scientist..ask them to explain in lay terms Read: you might find high school text books useful.

39 Homework Do the assigned readings Think about your feature- pitch a story One person lead discussion for next class

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