A podcast about science, sort of science, and things that wish they were science. - Paleopals et. al.

Episode 153 - The Armadillo at the End of the Universe

Episode 153 - The Armadillo at the End of the Universe

You can see the edge of the Universe right there.
You can see the edge of the Universe right there.

00:00:00 - Diane Kelly decided to tell the story of how she came to accept scientific sacrifice through the lens of the armadillo penis. This, somehow, leads a larger discussion of scientific storytelling prowess.

00:23:55 - Drinks are a lot like penises, often unexpected and sometimes disappointing. Ryan enjoys the Canadian-made Unibroue Grande Réserve 17, because somebody has to represent the beers of the great white north. Ben enjoys the 'soft' version of the piña colada as made by SoBe. And Kelly calls back to the previously enjoyed Leinenkugel Summer shandy, that she enjoys while also calling back to the #SciFund Challenge which is about to start Round 3!

00:30:57 - Kelly is also super stoked for the upcoming found footage horror movie The Bay, which involves the evolution of isopod causing them to parasitize humans instead of cute fishies. THE HORROR!

00:42:22 - Ben talks about how physicists claim that they can build a clock lasting longer than the universe. Ryan and Kelly are skeptical because it involves crystals, which are notoriously pseudoscientificBut Ben deftly explains the pros and the cons.

01:01:39 - PaleoPOWs are lot like clocks, they can be hard to interpret. Kelly has an e-mail from Miles T. asking for our help promoting Ada Lovelace Day supporting women in science, technology, engineering and math(s). Which Ryan is all for as soon as Ben explains to him who Ada Lovelace was. Ben wants everyone to know about this year's Podcast Awards, as well as the new and exciting Stitcher Awards! Please consider nominating us today! And finally Ryan reads an iTunes review from Tom, who gave us 5-stars in response to Ryan attempting to trade reviews for new shows.

The Ada Lovelace E-Mail:

Hello Paleopals,

I’m writing to let you know about Ada Lovelace Day, October 16th, an international celebration of the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering & maths, in which people write or talk about the women who have inspired them. This year we have two fantastic events in London that your listeners might be interested in, with more being organised independently around the world.

Since Ada Lovelace Day began in 2009, we’ve had a phenomenal reaction from the community which shows that there is a lot of demand for what we do. In order to support that demand, we have launched our first fundraiser with the aim of creating a formal charitable organisation to develop and expand Ada Lovelace Day.

We would be very grateful indeed for any help you can give us with spreading the word about Ada Lovelace Day. Below are summaries of our fundraiser and events with links to further information.

1. Ada Lovelace Day Fundraiser

Since its inception, Ada Lovelace Day has been run entirely by volunteers and by partnering with organisations like the Women’s Engineering Society, Association for UK Interactive Entertainment, London Games Festival and BCS Women. We have managed a huge amount through the kindness and generosity of our volunteers and partners, but there is more we could do.

We now want to create a formal charitable organisation to support women in STEM, not just on one day of the year, but all year round. Some of our goals include creating educational materials about iconic women, providing media training, and building a directory of expert speakers. The fundraiser uses the ‘keep what you earn’ model so all money donated will go towards helping women in STEM.

More information:


2. Ada Lovelace Day Live! Featuring the WES Karen Burt Award

Last year’s Ada Lovelace Day Live! event, held with BCSWomen, was such an amazing success that we decided to do it again on 16 October at the IET in London! We are collaborating with the Women’s Engineering Society who will be presenting the prestigious Karen Burt Memorial Award to a newly chartered woman engineer at the event. Performers include:

Dr Suzie Sheehy, accelerator physicistGia Milinovich, technology and TV presenterDr Helen Scales, marine biologistHelen Keen, comedianDr Alice Bell, science communicatorSarah Angliss, robot maker and thereministSydney Padua, creator of the Lovelace & Babbage webcomic

All hosted by inimitable songstress and one third of the Festival of the Spoken Nerd, Helen Arney!

It will be an fantastic evening of science, technology, comedy and song, featuring all manner of wonders, from marine biology and particle physics to the secrets of fridges and performance robots. We would love to see you there if you can make it!

Tickets are £10 and available from:


3. XX Game Jam

We are delighted to have partnered with the Association for UK Interactive Entertainment and the London Games Festival to put on the XX Game Jam, an all-female games hackday where teams will compete to produce the best computer game in just 24 hours. Held on the 26th and 27th October, it’s the first all-women event of its type.

We’re looking for programmers, producers, artists, designers, sound designers or composers, who would like to try their hand making a game! Direct experience of game development is not required.

Sign up (free):


Thank you!

We realise this is a bit long, so thank you if you made it this far!

We depend upon bloggers and podcasters like you to help us spread the word, so we really appreciate your efforts in reaching out to your community - whether that’s via a blog, podcast, social media or mailing list - and telling them about our fundraiser and events. If you want any further information, either take a look at http://findingada.com/, which has a lot more info about our history, mission and these events, or just send over your questions.

Many thanks for all your support, and see you, in one way or another, on 16th October.

Miles T.

On behalf of Suw Charman-Anderson, Founder, Ada Lovelace Day

Discuss this episode and other podcasts from the Brachiolope Media Network on our forum!

Music for this week's show provided by:

Killing in the Name - Rage Against the Machine

Alcohol - Barenaked Ladies

(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay - Otis Redding

Rock Around The Clock Tonight - Bill Haley & His Comets

Image Credit: H. R. Santa Coloma

Episode 154 - Whether Or Not We Should

Episode 154 - Whether Or Not We Should

Episode 152 - A Strong Tail Wind

Episode 152 - A Strong Tail Wind