John Fishwick

Science, Literature, Art, Philosophy, Logic

Events/Lectures

A LIST OF LECTURES BY JOHN FISHWICK

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Topics

A LIST OF LECTURES BY JOHN FISHWICK                                       April 9, 2014

1.  A CRITIQUE OF ALTERNATIVE OR COMPLEMENTARY MEDICINES

A discussion of acupuncture, homeopathic medicines, herbs, etc.

  1. A QUESTION OF VALUES

Moral and ethical issues are examined

  1. ARE SCIENCE AND RELIGION COMPATIBLE?
  2. ARE WE ALONE IN THE UNIVERSE?

The search for extraterrestrials is discussed as are the moral and social issues should we make contact.

  1. ASTRONOMY FOR THE YOUNG AT HEART

The fascinating aspects of astronomy are discussed, including black holes, time travel, space travel, the duality of the properties of light, the effect of gravity and speed on the flow of time.

  1. BAD ASTRONOMY AND BAD SCIENCE

The misinterpretation of astronomical events and the nature of pseudoscience

  1.  CLIMATE CHANGE

Previously called Global Warming, the changes in Earth’s climate over the last 4 billion years are outlined as are the reasons for these changes.

  1. COSMIC AND EARTHLY CATASTROPHES

The Earth has undergone huge devastations in its history. There have been five major extinctions in which about 90% or more of the species have died. The extent to which these are caused by asteroid strikes, volcanoes, and other events is discussed and explained.

  1. CRITICAL THINKING

How to think clearly and logically using the scientific method.

10.  DECISIONS, DECISIONS

A discussion of how to avoid making bad decisions.

11.  ENERGY SOURCES

All energy sources, including renewable and non-renewable, are explained and their relative merits are discussed.

12.  EVOLUTION THEORY AND THE ORIGIN OF SPECIES

The origin of life and its development from simple single-celled marine organisms, to fish, tetrapods, reptiles, birds, and primates to homo sapiens (us) is outlined.

13.  GEOLOGY OF THE EARTH AND THE MOON

Shortly after the Earth cooled, it was hit by a Mars-size asteroid that knocked off a piece of the Earth that became our moon

14.  GLASS AND TELESCOPE MIRRORS

15.  HOW TO MANAGE CONFLICTS AND COMMUNICATE WELL

16.  INTELLIGENCE

The nature and importance of IQ is discussed and the bell curve explained

17.  RELATIVITY THEORY FOR THE NON-SCIENTIST

Time is not absolute as Newton thought but relative as Einstein discovered

18.  LATITUDE, LONGITUDE, AND THE EARLY EXPLORERS.

Latitude was fairly easy to measure, but longitude required a reliable timepiece.

19.  LIGHT, GRAVITY, AND TIME

20.  MEASURING THE COSMOS

How do we know the distance from the Earth to the Sun and to the Moon? How do we measure

the distance to the planets and to the stars. How do we calculate the size of the galaxies and the age of the universe?

21.  MYTH, PERCEPTION, AND REALITY

The easiest person to fool is ourselves.

22.  PARTICLE PHYSICS EXPLAINED

What is going on at the subatomic level?

23.  ROGUE ASTEROIDS AND DOOMSDAY COMETS

It’s not a question of if our planet will be hit again, but when.

24.  THE RELATIONSHIP OF ART AND SCIENCE

Did the famous painters know about the advances in science when they painted their masterpieces? Picasso, Manet, Monet, and many others are discussed.

25.  THE BIRTH AND DEATH OF OUR UNIVERSE

Everything eventually dies and our universe is no exception.

26.  THE DYNAMIC EARTH

The US was once over the poles and once over the equator as a result of continental drift and plate tectonics. If we didn’t have this phenomenon, we probably wouldn’t be here!

27.  THE FIRST AMERICANS

Where did we come from? The lowering of sea level by 400 feet caused by the last ice age, created a land bridge between Siberia and Alaska (Beringia) allowing people to populate North America.

28.  THE FUTURE OF ALMOST EVERYTHING

What’s the future for computers, marriages, religions, energy sources, books, brick and mortar stores, medicine, nanotechnology, etc?

29.  THE HISTORY OF GLASS AND GLASSMAKING

30.  THE HYDROGEN ECONOMY

Will hydrogen fuel be in our future?

31.  THE TRUTH, THE WHOLE TRUTH, AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH

The nature of logical fallacies, commonly used in advertising and by politicians, is explained.

32.  WHAT EXACTLY IS TIME.

Time is relative and not constant. The flow of time is like that of a river-it depends on the observer.

33.  WHAT IS RADIATION AND HOW DANGEROUS IS IT?

Cell phones, microwave ovens, cat scans, dental x-rays are examined as is the irradiation of foods.

 

1 Comment

  1. If you find that you are invited to lecture anywhere within a short drive of Asheville, John, I’d love to wrangle an invitation and just sit quietly in the back of the room. Any topic, any day, any location. —Dave Ehlert

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