Denver Hub, black holes, and me

By Phil Plait | March 3, 2008 9:31 am

I gave my talk "Seven Ways a Black Hole Can Kill You" last week at Fiske Planetarium, and a reporter, Kevin Villegas, from the Denver Hub was there. He wrote an article about the talk, me, and the blog for his paper. It almost makes me seem respectable. Don’t be fooled.


Comments (14)

Links to this Post

  1. Buchempfehlung: Bad Astronomy /// Astrodicticum Simplex | March 3, 2008
  1. Ut

    Ooo! Look at all of those pots and faders! Anyone know what kind of projection system they use at the Fiske? From the one image of the theatre I’ve managed to hunt down, it looks like they have a Zeiss (or Zeiss style) central star projector. By the control panel, I’m guessing it’s fairly modern — definitely newer than the Cosmorama Mark V I have at work. I assume they’re using panoramic LCD video projectors, as well.

  2. “…is somewhat of a celebrity in astronomy circles.”


    Isn’t there a Phil Plait for President group? :)

  3. I was at Fiske on Friday night, and had a lovely time. Even my wife, who doesn’t generally give a rip about scientific stuff, enjoyed herself. Good job, and I look forward to reading your book.

  4. BlondeReb3

    So you’re coming to New England soon to give a talk right? RIGHT!?

    Oh, and Dr. BA, you’re very respectable, believe me!

  5. I still have the QShow version i downloaded… what 2 years ago? HYSTERICAL! I Agree you have to come to New England.

  6. Thanks folks!

    I may come to New England again; a friend teaches at a college in New Hampshire and wants me to talk there again. I’ll announce any talks I’ll be giving!

  7. Sounds like the talk went well! I wish I could have seen it.

    Ooo! Look at all of those pots and faders!
    Ut, your geek is showing ūüėČ

  8. Ut

    “Ut, your geek is showing.”

    I can’t help it. I work in a planetarium that just decommissioned its Zeiss star projector in favour of a full-dome video system. I’ve spent the last eight months turning pots and sliding faders so that people can find Cassiopea. It’s the only planetarium I’ve ever been in, so I’m more than a little curious as to what other science centres are using.

    Man, I love my job.

  9. Chris

    All the information I can find is here:

    It says that Fiske uses a Zeiss Mark VI that was purchased in 1971. I don’t know any more than that, though they do have several other projectors.

  10. Ducky

    Fiske’s projector is named Fritz. That is way more vital than what sort of projector it is.

    Also, the Moon is almost always out of phase. But that’s just a quirk everyone’s OK with. I will be very sad when they get rid of Fritz in favor of a digital projector.

  11. John Weiss

    The Fiske projector, Fritz, is a Zeiss. It was purchased with a single, ear-marked donation back in 1971, which is how CU got its hands on the beastie. I’m told that it’s the best-maintained of its model in the world. (According to the regular maintenance guy who services the various ones around the world.) As Ducky stated, it’s a good projector and very lovable.

    — John, who is checked out to run Fritz… and due to give a talk there in June. :-)

  12. MandyDax

    “I may be big in the science blogging field, but compared to what’s out there on the Web as a whole, I’m in a small pond,” Plait said. “Still, the water’s nice here.”

    BA, you should watch out, you know who studies aquatic lifeforms… ūüėČ

    Also, spaghettification was the first way that a black hole can kill which I learned about. I was maybe seven or eight. I think it was a “NOVA” episode about them. I remember my dad showing me Saturn through a telescope, too. We’d watch the PBS science shows like “NOVA” and “The Nature of Things” together. There was a partial solar eclipse one summer, and I set up the same telescope to view it on a card. I even saw a few sunspots. I had to manually track, though. You never realize how fast the Earth spins until you have to do that. … I rambled. :)

  13. Guy

    The talk was great, and we also had an expert on black holes in the audience too so between the two doctors we got some really great information. I’m looking forward to the book when it comes out for more of the gory details.

    I also spoke with one of the operators there and he highly recommended the “city of stars” show, so I’m going to check that out sometime soon.


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