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The Science Guy Returns 347

Posted by Zonk
from the science-rules! dept.
hende_jman writes "When I was in high school, the dry science videos that I watched in my classes made me miss the silly and sometimes irreverent Bill Nye the Science Guy. So I was excited to read in the latest issue of Wired that everyone's favorite Science Guy is coming out with a new show, The Eyes of Nye where he tackles some more serious issues like addiction, sex, cloning, and climate change."
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The Science Guy Returns

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  • by brilinux (255400) <kg4qxk&arrl,net> on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:28PM (#12017422) Homepage Journal
    Oh God, get that image out of my mind!
    • by Skyshadow (508) * on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:30PM (#12017439) Homepage
      Yeah, the abstinence-only crowd apparently has more creativity than I would have assumed.
        • by cgenman (325138) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @10:16PM (#12018963) Homepage
          The pledging group was also less likely to use condoms during their first sexual experience or get tested for STDs, the researchers found.

          This is one of those sad realities that you see day in and day out, even with otherwise well balanced people. If there is an activity that you swear off, and promise never to do, invariably it will be done and it will be done irresponsibly. The people in college who really burned out their brains on drugs were the ones in High School who swore they would never do any. The people didn't use condoms were the ones who swore they would never have premarital sex. By swearing off an activity, these people weren't mentally prepared to engage in the activity in a rational fashion. When people fall off the wagon, they fall hard.

          To pull this back towards topic, hopefully this is the kind of controversial reasearch that Bill Nye will tackle. Hopefully, politics be damned, he will show that schools which teach abstinence-only sexual education have significantly higher rates of teenage pregnancy than districts with real sexual education courses, even accounting for things like income disparity and location. Or even that 50% of high school students are already sexually active, and educational programs should be tailored to this fact. Of course, it might be stepping over the line to point out that the bible belt has the highest rates of teenage pregnancy, higher than the hedonistic blue states, but no fact should be too controversial for Bill Nye.

          Please, please let no fact be too controversial for Bill Nye. Please tell me he doesn't have to cut a story on life forms in aquatic thermal vents because it makes passing reference to evolution.

          • by The Rizz (1319) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @11:38PM (#12019729)
            If there is an activity that you swear off, and promise never to do, invariably it will be done and it will be done irresponsibly. The people in college who really burned out their brains on drugs were the ones in High School who swore they would never do any.

            From my experience, that's not exactly true. I swore off drugs, and never "burned out my brain" in college. There have been other things that I have, to one degree or another, sworn off. The ones I have later actually done I did with caution, not irresponsibly, and never over-did to the point of causing a problem. I have also seen this in other people, so I know it's not just me who is like this.

            On the other hand, I (and those others I mention) have generally sworn something off based on our own decisions, after considering actually doing it. Among those I have seen who swore something off because they were told to do it, your scenario is much more likely.

            The problem is not the insistence that you will not do something so much as having that decision forced on you. If you decide upon such a thing yourself, that generally means you have considered the information and are aware of the risks involved, as well as the possible precautions to be taken if you are involved in the activity. Those who have such things forced upon them are generally lacking in the basic knowledge of what you can do to be safe while doing that activity - after all, if you tell someone they will never, never be allowed to do something, why would you bother to tell them how to do it safely? (Yes, logically you should - but the situations we are talking about are generally forced by people who are are not looking at things logically, but rather as a matter of dogma.)

            • Very true. I should have made that distinction.

              However, the distinction does become a bit finer. It's not just a question of whether the decision was forced on the person, but how the person came to that decision. If a person decides not to do, say, LSD because they've done a thorough investigation of the effects of LSD, they know the rate of people who become insane on it, they know how situations can turn bad and how to deal with them, and the risk just isn't worth the payoff, then they are making a q
    • by The Amazing Fish Boy (863897) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:39PM (#12017548) Homepage Journal
      Bill Nye: "So you see, if we take the Ultra-Glide Lubrication Of Science and rub it well over the penis..."
      Deep voice guy: "You know, Bill, I don't know that this is such a... AUUUGH!!!"
      Child Assistant Kwon: "Wahhhh, I thought we were talking about grasshoppers today... can I have my passport now?"
    • Now! Follow me over to the GIANT Vas Defernes model OF SCIENCE!!

      DID YOU KNOW THAT??!!>Gonorrhoea is characterized in male patients by dysuria accompanied by thick, copious, purulent (condensed milk-like) urethral discharge is the most common presentation and examination show a reddened external urethral meatus?? NOW YOU KNOWWW!!!

      (sorry, I just had to...)
  • by DrEldarion (114072) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:29PM (#12017428)
    everyone's favorite Science Guy

    I thought Mr. Wizard was far more popular. Most likely especially with the crowd here.
  • Bill Nye (Score:5, Funny)

    by KillerDeathRobot (818062) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:30PM (#12017438) Homepage
    Bill Nye was the best science teacher because he was also a comedian. I remember seeing him once on some old sketch comedy show (Almost Live?) where he talked about his girlfriend from hell or something.

    Incidentally, my 8th grade science teacher looked almost exactly like Bill Nye.
    • Incidentally, my 8th grade science teacher looked almost exactly like Bill Nye.

      Was her voice like his, too?
    • Re:Bill Nye (Score:3, Informative)

      by Hutchizon (696741)
      Yes, Bill Nye did get his TV start on Almost Live, which ran from 1984 to 1999. I regret its passing. They tried to go national if I recall, but much of the humour was very Seattle area specific. Bill Nye was one of the best regular bits they did. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0149413/
      • Almost Live was a brilliant show, considering what I gather was a pretty small budget. I was a dedicated watcher from the late 80s up until it went off the air. We got it off one of the Seattle TV stations up here in British Columbia.
    • He was also one of the high fiving white guys, but my favorite is Reebok cross dressers. He looked good in heels.

      The worst girlfriend song goes:
      "She's the worst girlfriend in the world the psycho-bitch from hell, yah that's the girl, she's the worst girlfriend in the world."

      Great show.

      more info: http://www.jumptheshark.com/a/almostlive.htm
    • Incidentally, my 8th grade science teacher looked almost exactly like Bill Nye.

      That's funny, my highschool janitor looked exactly like Bill Nye.
    • Re:Bill Nye (Score:5, Informative)

      by StateOfTheUnion (762194) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:44PM (#12017596) Homepage
      Bill Nye . . . The Science Guy was originally a sketch on Almost Live. He would do things like take vinegar and baking soda and say that mixing these was like putting the superbowl and a wedding anniversary on the same day . . .

      I liked his Speed Walker sketches . . . a superhero that walked heel-toe, heel-toe . . . and he was also one of the "High-Five'en White Guys"

    • Re:Bill Nye (Score:5, Informative)

      by L-Train8 (70991) <Matthew_Hawk@@@hotmail...com> on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:47PM (#12017628) Homepage Journal
      Bill Nye was an engineer at Boeing before he was a comedian. He was on Almost Live! for years. I remember when I first saw the Bill Nye the Science Guy character was in an Almost Live! sketch. He was spoofing Mr. Wizard and I think he was really inept and caught himself on fire. Later, he took the character on David Letterman and doing other TV guest spots, before finally getting his own show.
    • Almost Live rocked.

      I loved his Speed Walker sketches.

      microsoft distributed one of the almost live sketches on an MSDN CD, where bill nye played a sexually frustrated microsoft geek-employee. wish i could find it again.
  • Bill Nye is great (Score:5, Interesting)

    by js7a (579872) <james@bovikBOHR.org minus physicist> on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:30PM (#12017443) Homepage Journal
    I gave him a copy of my TIMIT CD-ROM from the Linguistic Data Consortium, and he accepted it! No other television personality would have been likely to do that, in my estimation.
  • thinking.. (Score:3, Funny)

    by RalphLeon (856789) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:31PM (#12017448) Homepage

    Thinking of bill "tackling sex" is just getting me all excited to!

  • Don't insult Nye (Score:2, Insightful)

    by XeRo_X4i (857603)
    Bill Nye the Science Guy was great. It was a lot better than listening to some old hag in class.
  • Bow Tie (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:31PM (#12017462)
    There's something disturbing about the image of a pasty, thin nerd in a bow tie talking about sex.

    Oh god, is that why my wife grimaces whenever we make love??
  • I loved that show when it was on. Just comical. Even my parents found it amusing to watch. It was educational while very entertaining with it's bizarre humor.

    Bill Nye is drab and boring by comparison. Then again, what do you expect from Disney...
  • by Telastyn (206146) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:32PM (#12017467)
    It's TV. People don't want serious science, people want entertainment. There's a reason the Mythbusters blow something up each episode!

    Speaking of which, I wonder how much that show's success had to do with exec's decision to bring Nye back.
  • by snuf23 (182335) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:32PM (#12017469)
    Wow. Addicted clones having sex are bringing about climate change?
    I can't wait for this show!
  • by blacklite001 (453622) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:34PM (#12017489)
    Apparently it was too hard to actually link it in the post? http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/13.04/play.html ?pg=4 [wired.com]
  • This guy is great! (Score:4, Informative)

    by dannytaggart (835766) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:34PM (#12017490) Homepage
    He even made the sundial [nwsource.com] used on the Mars Rovers.
  • Even though I liked a good many of them - I hope they skip the psuedo-music videos in this series.

    Then again... if they could get the likes of They Might Be Giants and U2 working on it, instead of poor B-52's impersonations...

    Ryan Fenton
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:34PM (#12017496)
    Seemed like a pretty cool guy. Even after his speech, he asked to be part of the line where graduates walked to get their diplomas and shake hands with everybody though he was under no obligation to do so. RPI class of '99.

  • I would love to know how they will extend "DON'T DO IT!" out to 30 minutes.
  • Beekman's World? (Score:2, Redundant)

    by MagicDude (727944)
    I have to say I liked Beekman more then Bill Nye. Beekman had the "Mad Scientist" feel to him, while Bill Nye was the nerdy and geeky scientist, complete with bow tie. Mr. Wizard was kinda like your grandpa who knew all sorts of neat stuff and you knew he could do so much more cool stuff if mom wasn't so uptight about breaking out the propane tank and the fireworks.
  • by Daetrin (576516) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:36PM (#12017511)
    What i want to know is when is Almost Live going to come out on DVD?! Maybe they think it won't sell well because it has a lot of topical material relevant to the time it was produced, but people still watch reruns of Saturday Night Live and i think Almost Live would fare just as well.

    (And if you think this is off topic you need to check up on your Bill Nye history)

    • indeed.

      unfortunately a lot of the Almost Live humor was specific to the pacific northwest, unless you lived in vancouver/seattle/portland you probably didnt get a lot of the jokes.

      i would love to see the billy kwan sketches again. and bill nye's speedwalker sketches were great.

      if anyone has almost live recorded, i'd love to know about it.
  • I was surprised to see the show times list [eyesofnye.org] missing CA stations. :(

    Also, Mozilla v1.7.6 doesn't render the list correctly. :(
  • In the UK, we have Johnny Ball [absolute-speakers.co.uk] - I remember watching his shows in the 1970s and 80s - he was just ***sooo** enthusiastic about his topics - he made science fun as well as informative.
  • by QuantumFTL (197300) * <justin.wickNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:37PM (#12017519)
    Bill Nye has been quite active in the outreach efforts for the Mars Exploration Rovers mission. Back in the summer of 2003, at a launch party, I had the pleasure of sharing a few drinks with him on the beach one evening, and he was telling me about his ideas for this show. It sounded very cool - Mr. Nye is very insightful and is rightly concerned about a lot of these serious issues.

    A side note - he really seems to hate people making a big fuss over him being "the science guy" (then again with that annoying theme song, who wouldn't?). He's just a very sharp guy who has a lot of interest in science and outreach. I think he'll be quite capable at holding the attention of adults.

    Also, when he was telling me about the show, it was originally entitled "Through the Eyes of Nye," I wonder why they changed it...
  • by theWrkncacnter (562232) * on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:37PM (#12017521)
    I lost my respect for Bill Nye when went on a ride at Epcot called "Universe of Enegry". The ride was sponsored by Exxon, and narrated by Bill Nye and Ellen Degeneres (sp?). Anyway, it was very clear that someone at Exxon had written the script. It totally ruined Bill Nye for me.
  • It just wouldn't be the same without them. However, imdb doesn't show them as being part of the cast. Hopefully, this show will help cram some science into kids again, but who wants to take bets as to how long it will be before Creationists or other anti-science conservatives attack the show for claiming that Earth is 4 billion years old, we evolved from rodents, and that the Sun is the center of our solar system? I'm betting it will happen in the first season given the bad state of science today. Maybe thi
  • by el-spectre (668104) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:40PM (#12017554) Journal
    For anyone interested, Bill Nye will be speaking at the Skeptics Society meeting on April 24. Details here [skeptic.com].

    Meetings are at Cal Tech (Pasadena, CA)
  • by lawpoop (604919)
    Addiction, sex, cloning, and climate change?! This guy has a lot of personal issues! I guess nerds are still members of the human race. For all the idealists commited to science, they are still subject to the same frailties of any other ordinary person.
  • Mr. Wizard (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SoLO (91992) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:42PM (#12017576)
    Bill Nye was a bit after my time, but does anyone remember Mr. Wizard on Nickelodeon? Apparently he was around even when my parents were growing up, on NBC.

    Check out this site: http://www.museum.tv/archives/etv/W/htmlW/watchmrw iz/watchmrwiz.htm [museum.tv]
    for some good history on Don Herbert, the real name of Mr. Wizard.

    Here is his official page [mrwizardstudios.com], which says Don operates the site himself! Cool.
  • Beakman was always better than Nye. How can you not love a show with a guy in a giant rat suit?
  • by TrevorB (57780) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:48PM (#12017634) Homepage
    After seeing Bill Nye do a PBS documentary on shuttle astronauts (very well done and not over the top like science guy) as well as seeing Bill testify before Congress, I knew then that Bill deserved his own science show someday.

    Way to go Bill! You've come a long way from "Speed Walker", wiggling your ass in tight shorts superhero costume for laughs on "Almost Live"
  • by Sebastopol (189276) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:50PM (#12017653) Homepage
    Bill spoke at my Alma Mater (RPI) years ago.

    He said to remember three things if anything:

    1 Use the metric system

    2 Never write a memo longer than 1 page

    3 Make sure you enjoy what you plan on doing for the rest of your life

    Months later I saw him on a panel hosted by Bill Maher with Craig Barret, Pen and Teller, and Peggy Noonan (i think). He was complaining about internet porn affecting people's lives. People laughed, but he was totally serious.

    Fascinating man. Even in my late 20's I enjoyed his show on tape as a way to decompress after a long day workin on my PHD

  • by domenic v1.0 (610623) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @07:50PM (#12017661)
    ...that I donated $50 to my local PBS station. Growing up watching this show proved to be far more valuable than most "dull" classroom environments i've encountered. I learned the order of the planets and newton's laws of physics when I was 10 years old because of this show. It made "understanding" what we were learning actually fun and now that I have a 5 year old daughter, I'm glad he's back into educating and hopefully making learning fun again.
  • we always watched these science videos with some crazy guy who will go down forever in my memory for the way he would punctuate each experiment with something like...

    watch it... watch it..... THERE it is!!

    does anybody know who this might have been? I think he was some crazy old guy with white hair, if that helps... :)

    • was it an old guy in lab goggles with a vyn dyke and pattern baldness?

      voiceover by a woman.

      occaisional monologues by a short man with an austrian accent and big glasses?

      i know the show, it still on PBS, something about chemistry...

      i'll reply when it pops into my head...

      something like "the world of something..."

  • Anyone listen to Dr. Science on NPR? (Remeber, he's not a real doctor. He has a Master's degree.... in science!)
  • by StateOfTheUnion (762194) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @08:06PM (#12017826) Homepage
    If you're looking for dry science videos, try the avgeeks [avgeeks.com] . . . a collection of over 14000 dry videos like those cheesy ones made for high school students in the 60's
  • How about professor Honey Dew and Beaker?
    Now there was a science team.
  • For me, Bill Nye will always be Speed Walking to fight crime, or singing children's songs about his bitchy ex-wife. That "Almost Live" shit was hilarious, especially him and that short bald guy who was in every sketch.
  • Is there still an animatronic robot Bill Nye talking about dinosaurs and fossil fuels at Disney World?
  • ...with ira flatow!

    back when PBS used to be cool...
  • There's a blast from the past reference there, Bill!

    Say hi to Steve Jarrett for me!

    And don't get caught biking the wrong way around the lake!
  • and climate change.

    What's there to explain? The world's gonna melt away in 100 years, and everyone agrees.

  • Science Guy DVDs (Score:3, Interesting)

    by superultra (670002) on Tuesday March 22, 2005 @09:46PM (#12018702) Homepage
    As an expecting father, this made me realize that I'd love to have the entire Bill Nye series for my kid. I loved the series while in college, and always imagined that with whatever band I'd eventually form up we'd know we'd made it when we had a song and music video on Bill Nye.

    Imagine my surprise when I found out that there are no DVDs to buy of Bill Nye. For all the crap TV shows that are coming out on DVD this month, how is it possible that Bill Nye has not yet arrived on DVD?

    If such a torrent link existed, now would be the time to share it, yes?

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