Archive for January 31st, 2010

A Wooster Geologist on the 2012 Doomsday Phenomenon: Pseudoscience, Baseless Fears, and the Mysterious Planet Nibiru

January 31st, 2010

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WOOSTER, OHIO–Last week I gave a talk about the coming End of Time scheduled for December 21, 2012.  You may have heard that the Mayan Long Count Calendar ends on the day before the 2012 winter solstice, and that all sorts of global catastrophes have been predicted to mark the event.  I was invited by Ohio State University Mansfield and North Central State College to describe the cataclysmic ideas about 2012 and explore the pseudoscience behind them.  It was a good opportunity to explore the value of science and scientific thinking … and hearty skepticism.

I’ve attached the 2012 lecture here as a PowerPoint file which should open in your browser with a click-through display.  There is no audio, alas, so you’ll just have to imagine the jokes.

You might also be interested in the “living syllabus” of our First-Year Seminar course on “Nonsense“.