SGU Episode 179

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SGU Episode 179
December 23rd 2008
(brief caption for the episode icon)

SGU 178                      SGU 180

Skeptical Rogues
S: Steven Novella

B: Bob Novella

R: Rebecca Watson

J: Jay Novella

E: Evan Bernstein

Quote of the Week

“The truth of things is the chief nutriment of superior intellects.”

Leonardo da Vinci

Download Podcast
Show Notes
Forum Discussion


You're listening to the Skeptics' Guide to the Universe, your escape to reality.

News Items ()[edit]

Jeremy Piven’s Mercury Poisoning ()[edit]

What’s the Harm ()[edit]

Da Vinci Sketches Revealed ()[edit]

Medium Experiments Follow up ()[edit]

Questions and E-mails ()[edit]

Question #1 ET Life ()[edit]

We frequently hear from scientists that life on other planets would require the presence of water or carbon or a particular range in temperature. This may be true if they are looking for life as we find it on Earth. But is this a parochial bias? Are there reasons why life, which would require molecules with the ability to replicate themselves, cannot be fundamentally differently organized from what we find locally, and exist in radically different conditions?

Daniel Robbins
New York City

Question #2 Winter Myths ()[edit]

This news article talks about commonly held beliefs which the study says are wrong. I wondered if you had seen it and what your thoughts on it were.


Sion Hughes

Science or Fiction ()[edit]

Item #1: In a recent study researchers find that the children of first cousins have an overall lower risk of genetic disease than the general population. Item #2: Researchers have developed a new kind of laser from a device one-tenth the thickness of a human hair. Item #3: Scientists have documented a case of a blind man who can flawlessly navigate an obstacle course without relying upon any other senses.

Skeptical Quote of the Week ()[edit]

“The truth of things is the chief nutriment of superior intellects.”- Leonardo da Vinci

S: The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe is produced by the New England Skeptical Society in association with the James Randi Educational Foundation and For more information on this and other episodes, please visit our website at For questions, suggestions, and other feedback, please use the "Contact Us" form on the website, or send an email to If you enjoyed this episode, then please help us spread the word by voting for us on Digg, or leaving us a review on iTunes. You can find links to these sites and others through our homepage. 'Theorem' is produced by Kineto, and is used with permission.


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