Written by Kelly Herbst, Astronomy Curator for the Virginia Living Museum. Updated every two weeks, more or less.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

So, What Do You Think?

Hello all!

Third post, and already I'm asking for your help.

I'm writing this tonight from a conference I attend every year for planetaria who own a system like the one we have at the Abbitt Planetarium.  We all get together and share techniques, ideas, and learn new ways to make our shows better.  We also watch a lot of trailers for new shows, and sometimes get to watch an entire show, so we can make informed decisions about what programs we'd like to bring to our theaters.

So my question for you, my readers, is this:

What topic would you like to see in a new planetarium show?

At the conference so far I've seen shows on the history of the universe, the history of life on Earth, the history of the Earth for kids, the history of the Earth for adults, the lifecycles of stars, black holes, and Charles Darwin and his theories.  Keep in mind that this list is a tiny portion of the shows available, so feel free to go off the board and suggest any topic that interests you, even if it has only a very loose connection to astronomy or space science.  I'd really love to know what you think, so please leave your ideas in the comments section.  I tried to make it a poll, but the system is fighting me and making the thing unreadable.  So please, comment away!

I'll write a longer post when I get home again and digest all the new information I've learned - and believe me I'll need two weeks for that!  But my tip for you this week - wake up early Thursday morning and watch the final landing of a Space Shuttle.  Atlantis is scheduled to return to Earth at 5:56am on Thursday morning, July 21st.  It's your last chance to watch one, so be sure to tune in.  American human spaceflight is coming to an end, and I for one will sorely miss it. 

The crew of Apollo 1.  NASA

The last crew of Challenger.  NASA

The last crew of Columbia.  NASA

In memory of those who gave their lives in pursuit of knowledge of the universe...
Carpe Noctem,

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