the site of Adam Stevens

I’m a Scientist (lordy), Get Me Out Of Here!

I signed up for I’m a Scientist… quite a while ago, not expecting it, like most of my projects, to go anywhere.

But go it did, and started today.

It was an interesting day. I started early, as I wanted to get some studying done before my first live chat. I had already answered a large batch of questions over the weekend, some in between giving diving lectures for USSAC. But none of those, no matter how random or strange, quite prepared me for the chats.

The three half hour sessions couldn’t have been more different.

The first was frenetic, full of spam, kids being stupid or trying to impress their friends (we get no impression of the classroom at the other end of the chat window). But between the dross and repeated entreaties about dubstep were some real gems. I managed to have a couple of (short) discussions about the geopolitical ramifications of the development of atomic weapons and how a society beginning life on a new planet could arrange its political structure.

Just before lunch we talked to a slightly younger group. Their questions were simpler, their spelling worse (on the whole) and it seemed as if they had been primed a bit moreā€“lots of questions about how big/far away planets were.

Finally, hours after they should have been home from school, we talked to an after school club. “For the clever ones” as they put it. All three of them. They showed a remarkable breadth of knowledge and interest. A couple already seemed to have a good idea what they wanted to do at University and asked us the best way to get there.

A strange day, definitely, but fun. The best bits were getting follow ups to questions I had answered or comments I had made in the chats.

I think I’m hooked.

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