Monday, December 29, 2008

two thousand nine

the year 2009 begins in a few short days! two thousand nine is the international year of astronomy as initiated by the international astronomical union and UNESCO "to help the citizens of the world rediscover their place in the Universe through the day- and night-time sky, and thereby engage a personal sense of wonder and discovery."

i'm excited about the 365 days of astronomy project, where different people from anywhere in the world talk about their interest in, fascination of, or knowledge about a particular aspect of the universe! there will be a unique podcast available for everyone to listen to every day next year! and there are still many days available throughout the year for anyone to create podcasts, so i encourage anyone and everyone to participate!

i've agreed to create a couple podcasts throughout the year, but i wanted to ask you all a favor... i'm looking for inspiration for more topics to talk about and so i'd like to get your suggestions. what questions do you have about the universe? what would you like to hear someone talk about for 5-10 minutes? my research focuses on galaxy formation and evolution, but i would be willing and interested to talk about anything if an interesting question sparks an idea. the challenge for me, i think, is that i'm so used to using visual aids in the classroom or on this blog, that it will be exciting to create the proper effect via auditory senses only.

thanks for your help!


Anonymous said...

Idea for a podcast: I just heard that the Milky Way is a barred galaxy. You could talk about 1) how we know this, and 2) how and why barred galaxies form. Considering that everything out there is either spherical, elliptical, or spirally, it isn't intuitive how a straight line bar can form.

Anonymous said...

Erm... If you don't mind my saying, you gave one of the best talks on red vs blue galaxies I've been to. :)

Alternatively, I'm sure lots of people would be interested in something about galactic habitable zones...