Tuesday, February 17, 2009

College Info. Stuff and Pseudoscience

CollegeWise does free presentations at the library a couple of times a year. Take a look at their website, especially their latest newsletter about being a "joiner." http://www.collegewise.com/

I was passing by the new nonfiction shelves and this title caught my eye: Death From the Skies! These are the ways the world will end by Philip Plait, PhD. If you're into The Earth's Final Days this is a book for you. It explains scientific concepts and debunks information that's just plain wrong. Dr. Plait has another book called Bad Astronomy: misconceptions and misuses revealed, from astrology to the moon landing "hoax." He has a column/blog in Discovery: www.badastronomy.com

If you like reading about hoaxes, or just getting the 411 on science and the occult check out these webpages:
www.randi.org James Randi is a debunker extraordinaire. His website posts a $1 million reward to anyone who can prove occult powers/events. I don't believe anyone has won yet.
www.snopes.com Great for getting the facts on urban myths and those irritating stories in your e-mail.

For actual books:
James Randi. Flim Flam! the truth about unicorns, parapsychology and other delusions.
Carl Sagan. The Demon-Haunted World: science as a candle in the dark.
Michael Shermer. Why People Believe Weird Things: pseudoscience, superstition and other confusions of our time.
Martin Gardner. Did Adam and Eve Have Navels? Discourses on reflexology, numerology, urine therapy and other dubious subjects. Gardner's book Fads and Fallacies in the name of science opened my eyes when I was in college.

This is just to get you started. There's loads more info out there.

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