Aren’t we all tired of that dude? »« I’m gonna boycott unless they rename it “Utnapishtim”

Comments

  1. shadow says

    Sibling has birthday on Sunday as well.

    PZ:

    Hopefully Cosmos has enough squid for you.

  2. Alverant says

    Congrats on making it on another trip around the sun without dying.

    I’m concerned that Cosmos is being produced by Fox and how much “editorial” control they have over it.

  3. gussnarp says

    OK, I know there are lots of non-parent types out there who don’t care about this, but I’ve got two young kids I’d love to watch this with and it’s on at 9 p.m. on a school night on a network where the commercials will be chock full of awful stuff like 24 promos that they don’t really need to be watching. I understand putting it on Fox in hopes of reaching lots of people who are not “in the choir” like I am, to use an unfortunate metaphor, but I wish it wasn’t and I don’t understand it being at 9 at all.

    I guess I might watch it without the kids, but that makes me sad.

  4. infraredeyes says

    @gussnarp, can’t you Tivo it or something? Because if it’s even half as good as the original, you don’t want your kids to miss it.

  5. screechymonkey says

    Alverant@3:

    I’m concerned that Cosmos is being produced by Fox and how much “editorial” control they have over it.

    Don’t confuse Fox with Fox News. They may share corporate ownership, but if there’s any political/cultural agenda at regular Fox, I can’t detect it If anything, Fox is a little more willing to tick off red-state America than the other major networks: Fox was airing The Simpsons and Married With Children back in the days when conservatives were denouncing them as anti-family, and it currently has gay-friendly shows like Glee.

    (Unless you just mean that you’re concerned about the dumbing-down possibilities of having any major network be involved. Which is possible, I guess, but it’s not like The History Channel or Discovery have great track records, either.)

  6. Scr... Archivist says

    PZ, today I found a website that had synopses for all thirteen episodes. Fortunately I saved the page, because now most of the synopses have been removed.

    It looks like episode 2 will be about evolution and extinction, episode 6 will look a bit at the human brain (among several other non-biological topics), episode 10 will be about the geological history of Earth, and episode 12 looks at the ecosphere and climate change. But most of the series seems to be about physics, astronomy, and cosmology. And it seems like female scientists will get more attention than they usually have gotten.

    Assuming that the website’s sources were correct.

    http://www.rocketstem.org/2014/03/05/exclusive-episode-synopses-cosmos-spacetime-odyssey/

  7. gussnarp says

    @infraredeyes – that would necessitate buying a Tivo. I don’t watch enough TV to justify the investment. Do they work on broadcast signal?

    I’ll probably wait and check it out of the library on DVD, or maybe buy it.

  8. lorn says

    Inclusion of commercial breaks is a major distraction, I get tied up in the rhythm and pace of the program and then … DO YOU HAVE PROBLEMS GETTING IT UP, YOU MAY HAVE LOW-T. (Sorry for the caps but commercials always come across like they are shouting.) That, and the repetition and slow rate of factual delivery has made the History channel essentially unwatchable for me. On the up side there are plenty of opportunities for bathroom breaks, getting a snack, and as long as the break is kept under five minutes you are in no danger of missing anything.

    I’ve been told that the repetition and slow pitch delivery is necessary to accommodate today’s low information, multitasking mindset. I hope they don’t dumb the thing down to that level. It would be a travesty, and only watchable for me if I had a belly full of beer and a head full of smoke.

  9. says

    That, and the repetition and slow rate of factual delivery has made the History channel essentially unwatchable for me.

    This is one of the reasons I rarely watch documentaries on television, or news for that matter, on television. The lack of information density bothers me, and when combined with the fact that pretty much everything has to start from the basics to get people up to speed because we cannot expect people to have a basic level of knowledge, means there is often very little information. I get most of my information in text form, it is much more efficient.

    I do love a lot of documentaries but they are all older, Cosmos, anything by James Burke, and while they do not have that much information in them, at least they leave me with a sense of excitement and often result in my reading more about the topics, but there is something missing from many popular documentaries now, but I am not sure what it is.

  10. Akira MacKenzie says

    I’m surprised none of the usual assholes on the Right have complained about this. Don’t they know that this series will spread evolution, materialism, environmentalism, and other blasphemies against the dual gods of Yahweh and America.

  11. Rob Grigjanis says

    “The new Cosmos tries to reconcile science and faith”

    Funny, because he was pretty dismissive of religion in the Moyers interview.

  12. andyo says

    I’m concerned that Cosmos is being produced by Fox and how much “editorial” control they have over it.

    I would say about as much as the have over Family Guy and American Dad.

  13. Cinzia La Strega says

    Happy Birthday PZ. I am going to send you a present, but it isn’t ready yet.

    Why are so many people born in March?

  14. beatgroover says

    Here’s to hoping for a respectable representation of neutral theory (and not just Modern-Synthesis-style boring vanilla neo-Darwinism) in the evolution segment ;)

  15. JohnnieCanuck says

    June weddings only explains the first born. None of ours were conceived on our anniversary, anecdatally speaking.

  16. Crudely Wrott says

    For those worried about the discomfort of Fox TeeVee or commercial TeeVee in general, please check your local Public Broadcasting System listings. I understand that they will be starting the series a day later than Fox at 10 pm EST.

    Awfully late for kids who, in my opinion, are the core audience.

    There are also InnerTubes streaming options.
    ______
    A quick Ixquick search yields these:
    For Fox TeeVee

    If you do the Hulu

    The lamentable NatGeo channel will also air the series. Check local listings.
    _______
    Happy annual falderal day, PZ. I do hope you are well and that you are happy.

    So, you’re going to turn 57? That’s nice, Sprout. ;^>

    May the returns be ever informative and ever welcome.

  17. krubozumo says

    Only 57? You young buck.. Three years to go to reach geezerdom. Take care of yourself. Ihope you make it. It is a kind of paradise.

  18. opposablethumbs says

    shadow

    Sibling has birthday on Sunday as well.

    Eric Taylor

    Sunday is MY birthday I thought the whole Cosmos thing was for me.

    nonononono! Sunday 9th is my birthday! We can’t – I mean, we can’t just go around having birthdays on the same day?!?!! It’ll end up with dogs and cats living together, I tells ya.

    Happy circumnavigation day for Sunday, PZ, I’ll be raising a glass to you!
    .
    lorn, Travis

    That, and the repetition and slow rate of factual delivery has made the History channel essentially unwatchable for me.

    Have you seen Jim Al Khalili’s Chemistry: A Volatile History, his The Secret Life of Chaos and Shock and Awe: The Story of Electricity, and Brian Cox’ Wonders series? Great programming aimed at a non-specialist audience.

  19. ekwhite says

    PZ@23:

    First – Happy Birthday!!!

    Second – by an amazing coincidence, I was born almost 9 months, to the day, after Christmas.

    Third – a new Cosmos sounds like an excellent birthday present. Neil DeGrasse Tyson has some big shoes to fill. The original Cosmos inspired millions across the world.

  20. minusRusty says

    Yeah, you suck, PZed!

    Don’t bother googling that, or looking up SuperDuperNatural.com of minusRusty, or blah blah bah.

    You come out to Denver, I’m leaving Wynkoop at 6:30, whether you’re there or not!

    And with St Pats day, Atheist Fools’ Day, and other things on the plate, I’m just now thinking of going back to Sunday, 2/2/14.

    Happy Bill Murray Day, damn you!

    Sincerely,

    -Rusty frankenSteil

  21. carlie says

    The LATimes article says :

    Tyson, the director of the Hayden Planetarium in New York City, is a popular recurring guest on “The Daily Show” and may be America’s most well-known astrophysicist.

    “May be”?! Who else is on their list of well-known astrophysicists?

  22. Moggie says

    Travis:

    I do love a lot of documentaries but they are all older, Cosmos, anything by James Burke, and while they do not have that much information in them, at least they leave me with a sense of excitement and often result in my reading more about the topics, but there is something missing from many popular documentaries now, but I am not sure what it is.

    You didn’t mention The Ascent of Man! How can you praise old documentaries without mentioning The Ascent of Man? If you haven’t watched it, I envy you, because you’ve got that treat ahead of you!

  23. gussnarp says

    @Crudely Wrott #26: Thanks for the linkage. I’ve been so out of the TV habit I hadn’t even thought about streaming it on Hulu. That may be a good option.

  24. twas brillig (stevem) says

    re @19:

    I’m concerned that Cosmos is being produced by Fox and how much “editorial” control they have over it.

    I would say about as much as the have over Family Guy and American Dad.

    Seth rules!!! ummm Seth McFarland is the Exec.Producer and it was he who suggested “shopping around” for the broadcaster, and included Fox, to which Tyson just chuckled and relented. I think Seth was able to sell it to Fox based on his CV of Family Guy, American Dad, …. Seth’s involvement gives me hope that Murdock will keep his nose out of it, since F.G. is so un-Murdoch. Murdoch just takes out his frustration with Seth by using FauxNoise, WSJ etc. etc. I don’t ‘really like’ any of Seth’s programs (they’re okay) [except Stewie Griffin] but they are so un-Murdoch; it’s hopeful.
    Commercial breaks do concern me; maybe DVR and skip over the commercials, but that means “waiting”, I don’t wanna wait… ;-(

    ;-D Happy 57, Dr. Myers!!!1!1!1! ;-D

  25. Isaac Crabtree says

    Interesting that airing opposite Cosmos on ABC will be the series premier Resurrection, which I can only assume to have vastly religious overtones.

  26. Trebuchet says

    The lamentable NatGeo channel will also air the series. Check local listings.

    The channel is lamentable because it’s half owned, and wholly operated (as far as I can tell) by Fox. I’ve subscribed to the magazine for nearly 60 years. NGS should be ashamed of itself.

  27. cardinalsmurf says

    PZ, I may be wrong, but from what I’ve heard about the show, it will not be for you. I heard that this version of Cosmos was designed for The Kardashians, not fans of Cosmos or Carl Sagan. I hope I’m wrong.

    What I heard was that the logic behind that is thus: true fans of Sagan aren’t watching TV, nor do they need a remake of Cosmos. This show is designed to reach The Others.

  28. richcon says

    [SPOILER ALERT]

    I watched the premiere screening and Q&A in a movie theater Tuesday, and it settled any concerns I had about Fox’s involvement. While it’s hardly the place for an atheist screed and at no point attacked religion itself, much of the first episode was spent explaining why religions and religious governments need to stay out of the way of science. It includes a very hard-hitting segment about Giordano Bruno and the religious “thought police” who persecuted, imprisoned, and killed him.

    Tyson presented the age, size, and scale of the known Universe brilliantly while also touching on the possibility of a multiverse.

    Ann Druyan is back as a writer on it, giving it a lot of continuity with the original series and a very similar level of excitement — albeit with much better effects. And Tyson is a brilliant presenter of science.

    In the Q&A afterwards Tyson said his primary goal is not to simply show what we now know, but to show how we know it. He touched on the “how” briefly in opening episode by mentioning a couple of the ways we know the age of the Universe and discussing the scientific method and the need for data to support any theory, but I’m hoping to see much more of that as the series goes into more detail.

  29. richcon says

    [Spoiler free here]

    By the way, one of the best moments of the Q&A after the screening was when some guy asked if humans could have migrated here from Mars when Mars became uninhabitable. Ann Druyan brushed that off with a quick “no” but then launched into a discussion of panspermia and whether the basic ingredients for life or even whole bacteria could have travelled between planets by meteoroids ejected into space.

    Neil deGrasse Tyson then pointed out that since the near side of the Moon has collected a great deal of Earth rocks that were ejected from here by meteorite impacts, and since there is no erosion on the Moon, it’s hypothetically possible that future astronauts could find Earth rocks there preserving a chemical record of what early life was like over a billion years ago.