Thursday, 22 November 2012

End of the World

Last night featured the latest in the series of Institute of Physics South Central Branch talks that I organise at the University of Surrey.  We hosted Alok Jha, Guardian Science correspondent, Guardian ScienceWeekly podcaster, and author, who was talking about scenarios for the end of the world - meant either as the end of civilisation, or the literal destruction of the planet.  He's a nice speaker, he engaged very well with the audience, and provided an entertaining talk.  I usually try to have at least one speaker per year who is not necessarily talking about their own physics research, but rather has spent time understanding and digesting an area and presenting it to a public audience, and Alok fitted the bill very well.

Of course, with the prospect of the End of the World, we clearly are in need of Superheroes.  By coincidence, the Physics Department's student physics society is organising a talk on the physics of superheroes next week.  Like the IoP talks I organise, it is open to the public, and is at 7pm in Lecture Theatre F, so if you're in the vicinity of Guildford, it should be a fun way to spend an hour.  The speaker is Prof Alan Davies, University of Hertfordshire. A quick search indicates that he is not a floppy-haired actor, but a mathematics professor.  He even has his own wikipedia entry (I don't!).