SGU 24hr

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SGU 24 hr
23-24th September 2011
SGU 323 SGU 324
Skeptical Rogues
S: Steven Novella
R: Rebecca Watson
B: Bob Novella
J: Jay Novella
E: Evan Bernstein

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SGU held a 24hour live streaming video event 23-24 September 2011. Guests on this show included:

  • Adam Savage
  • Phil Plait
  • Jamy Ian Swiss
  • Australian Sceptics
  • Richard Wiseman
  • Brian Dunning
  • George Hrab
  • Tim Minchin
  • Joshie Berger
  • Fraser Cain
  • Pamela Gay
  • DJ Grothe

The video from this event was originally available from prior to the service's shutdown. The videos are now available in this YouTube playlist. An index to what happened when (but not a complete transcript) is available from sgu24index at WikiDot. You can download MP3s of the SGU 24 - this is simply the audio stripped from the video chunks, converted to mp3. Most of them are 2 hours long (except where there were technical difficulties on the SGU 24 which cut a chunk short).


Part 1[edit]

Joe Peppy and Steve: Tour of Skeptalair (0:00:00)[edit]

E: All the microphones are open. It's the air conditioner.

S: Lights!

J: Everybody do kung fu parking.

JP: Hi, hey there. I've got your seat. (shouting) We're streaming, right now.

S: Right now?

JP: Over there. It's right there. This thing.

S: Can you hear me, am I on?

JP: We got audio?

S: Hello? Alright.

JP: OK, good. Good.

S: So who are you again?

JP: I'm Joe Peppy. Jay brought me down here to fix the place up a bit.

S: Jay hired you?

JP: Yeah, Jay hired me.

S: So what are you doing here.

JP: I'm here just to install a couple of things. What are you doing, a 24 minute show here?

S: 24 hour, yes.

JP: How long?

S: 24 hour. Or 23 and a half.

JP: What's the matter with you?

S: So he hired you to get things ready. Is it upgrades?

JP: Yes, so what I did was, see the computer here?

S: Yeah, nice.

JP: I installed a new interface for this thing here, I did a new AI.

S: A new AI?

JP: Yeah (unintelligible) it's a HAL 9000, an upgrade from the HAL 7000, a sweet-ass linguistics...

S: Nice.

JP: Wait until you see it. It takes about 30 minutes to boot up. Yeah, it's good. Alright. Big part of the show by the way.

S: I think I caught your show as well.

JP: I don't have catchy talk like you.

S: We should talk about your investigation methods.

JP: I'll teach you a few things later. See you've got your standard set of Tom Cruise (unintelligible) 13th or 14th century something like that you know. I got your hell-fire here, working around the set the 7 from the 6 you know. And you've got various stuff here molten books of magical necromantic spells and stuff back here. Oh yeah... so just in case you're invaded by orcs or something like that, I got your men light weapons. I sharpened your bat'leth here. Yeah, I studied, I know how to sharpen these things because I studied under (Klingon shouting).

S: Is that right?

JP: Yes I did. So it's beautiful, ritualistically done. Very respectful. And you've got your globe. It's just a globe, it doesn't do anything.

S: Does that thing work in there.

JP: Yeah, wait until you see what I put in there.

S: Oh, nice.

JP: Alright. So yeah, this baby here, when she comes up. I call her "she" but I gave it a male voice.

S: OK, sort of like Salvatore I guess?

JP: No, no no. What, what are you trying to say? No, no no. Oh yeah... you're going to want this.

S: Yes, that's why I'm here.

JP: OK. Yes this thing is ticking like crazy.

S: Getting close to the red there, yeah.

JP: We've had a lot of difficulty with the audio.

S: Yeah, am I still coming through OK?

JP: You're still coming through good. Alright, alright. You're all wired up there.

S: Yeah, I'm good. I'm ready to go. My colleagues should be arriving at any moment.

The Rouges Arrive (0:04:34)[edit]

JP: Let me just check that there. Hey how are you?

S: Let's get you wired up.

E: Like this? Thanks. Oh I know you, you're from that G-string hunters, right? I remember that.

B: Hey Steve.

S: Bob, out of your crio-tank I see?

B: Mmm... thank you.

S: Jay!

J: Hey guys.

S: You got the refreshments?

JP: There you go buddy. Alright.

S: You guys are a little late, come on, we've got Adam Savage at 30 minutes.

E: That's right.

J: Oh, hey Joe.

S: Jay, you hired this guy?

JP: Alright, I'm going to leave you to it OK?

S: Yeah, we've got this.

R: Who is it?

B: Rebecca!

JP: I'm Joe Peppy, I'm your sound guy here.

R: Yes.

JP: You want to put this on? You've got your cameras right here. This is your A, this is your BB.

R: Alright.

JP: Clip this somewhere comfortable. Put this around there.

R: Like this?

JP: Very nice.

R: You guys know I was doing stuff, right? I have a life.

S: What were you doing Rebecca that's more important?

R: Very awesome, very cool things you don't even know... at a bar.

S: At a bar?

R: Yeah, probably. For all you know. I was being cool.

S: Alright, let's do an audio test, what can we do to improve the sound?

J: I think we have to pull the main down. Can we pull down a little bit on the main down?

E: Yeah sure, we're too hot, is that what we're saying.

R: We're never too hot.

J: And people are telling us we have a lot of reverb.

S: Keep going.

E: How's that?

S: That sound better?

J: Let's see.

E: Better? Are we better?

S: Sound good?

J: Testing, one two. Anyone out there let us know.

E: We good? Any feedback? No?

J: People are still reporting that we're not sounding good.

S: What's the problem with the sound?

E: Steve, do you want to pop in the earbuds and see what you hear?

R: It's almost like we haven't been giving an audio podcast for 6 years.

J: Well it's a brand-new lair.

E: People don't usually see what it takes to prepare. We spend a ton of time preparing for those shows.

J: I'm hearing that we're getting doubled, or reverb.

S: I'm not hearing that, it's not coming through the board, we are very hot though, let me turn it down a little bit.

E: Check.

B: Testing.

Introduction (0:08:00)[edit]

S: Well here we are guys.

E: This is it.

R: Yeah.

S: You're probably wondering why I called you all to the Skeptilair.

R: I thought we agreed to never call it that.

S: You agreed.


R: No, I decided and you all agreed.

S: No you decided and we all ignored you. So the skeptilair, nice upgrades Jay by the way, I like it. SAL 9000 is still booting up I understand.

R: I don't trust the look of that thing.

S: Why, it's kind of overseeing the operations.

R: Yeah, it's just a little nefarious, there's just something about it.

S: So the reason I called you all together is because of the skeptimeter over there, you can see it's getting dangerously close to the red.

R: Is everything just going to have skepti- in front of it?


R: It's skeptilicious.

S: Skeptilicious? So in the red is a total gullible worldwide meltdown. We're still in the orange but we're getting scarily close to the red. Orange is a relative state of gullibility and scientific illiteracy in the world that we've been wallowing in in the world, but we're almost ready to tip over into gullible scientifically illiterate melt-down. So I decided that we needed 24 hours of continuous scientific education and skepticism. We'll walk our way around the globe talking to skeptics and scientists around the world to try to push the meter back at least somewhat closer to the yellow.

E: 24 hours.

J: We have to fix our audio, we still have audio issues.

S: So let's tweak our audio then, let's do it. We sound good at our end, I think it might be the streaming. Joe, can you check the stream there, do you think I need to turn down the board a little bit?

R: Some people are reporting that the sound is a lot better, and some people...

J: Is it possible to stream... the stream might be pumping out the audio too hot.

S: Might be the... should I turn the audio down further on the board?

J: Cut it by half and see what happens?

E: Should I turn Joe up?

S: This is him?

E: No, this is Joe. Go from control is here.

S: Alright.

B: I thought he was in chaos.

E: Hey Joe say something into the mic please?

J: Joe are you still with us?

JP: Yeah...

J: OK, that helped a lot what we just did.

R: That's how Joe normally sounds like, just so everyone is aware.

J: What did you do?

S: Is he this one? Joe say something again, Joe. Joe, talk to us.

JP: (very soft) Hoi hoi hoi what do you want? This is a test...

S: No, we're not getting Joe.

JP: (very soft)

S: Alright, well while Joe is walking on his audio we're going to have to push forward. We have put together some sponsors for the show. The sponsor for the first hour of our 24-hour show is Jim Preston. So I'd like to thank Jim.

R: Yeah, thank you Jim.

S: Jim says, "I'm happy to support the SGU in whatever small way I can. It greatly saddens me that there are people in the world like the anti-vaxers who do so much harm through misplaced good intentions. And peddlers of pseudo-science who do so much harm out of sheer wilful ignorance. But I take great solace that the world is a far better place because of people like Steve, Bob, Rebecca, Jay and Evan." Thank you Jim.

R: Thanks Jim.

J: Thanks Jim.

E: Thank you.

The JREF (0:11:51)[edit]

S: I'd also like to point out that the James Randi Educational Foundation is also generously sponsoring the SGU 24-hour show.

R: Go Team Randi.

S: Team Randi, absolutely. As most of our viewers and listeners probably know, the James Randi Educational Foundation, or JREF as we call it, is an international organisation that exposes pseudo-science and paranormal scams and works to educate, especially young people, in critical thinking skills and science. They hold workshops and conferences, especially The Amaz!ng Meeting or TAM. Now they have agreed to do a special membership drive during the SGU 24-hour show. If you renew or sign up for a new membership during the show, you will get a set of DVDs from the TAM 2009 in London and in addition you will be entered into a special drawing, the winner of which will get the TAM experience package for TAM 2012 in Las Vegas. So go to and sign up for the newsletter and for the membership and you'll be entered to win, and this is a $1200 value package. We will do the drawing at the very end of the show and DJ Grothe in fact is going to come on to announce the winner in the last hour of our 24-hour show.

R: I hope that the TAM experience is like the Star Trek Experience was in Vegas, with holodecks and transporters and stuff.

S: Right, that'd be nice.

R: Yeah. I'm going to expect that. I'm going to say that that is exactly what it is.

S: And that is going to be the last TAM.

R: Really?

S: Because 2012 is the end of the world.

R: Oh, that's right, how could I forget?

S: So no 2013, right?

R: Yeah, no.

B: We've got to go out in style, do something really crazy.

S: Absolutely.

R: Yeah.

The Skeptalair Panel (0:13:46)[edit]

  • YouTube
  • Twingly - shows blog posts around the world in real time on a globe

J: So Steve, what do you think of the Star Trek-like

This Day in History - Discovery of Neptune (0:15:35)[edit]

  • The existence of the planet was predicted before it was observed

It is 8:46pm Rouges time (0:22:00)[edit]

NASA News Item. Grail A and B Launched To Moon (0:25:45)[edit]

SAL9000 Boots Up (0:29:40)[edit]

Science or Fiction (0:33:00)[edit]

  • Bob goes first and finally answers at 37:40. Answers are in Part 1 at 0:03:00

Interview with Adam Savage (0:42:00)[edit]

0:50:29 Major technical issues bring the event down. It restarts Part 2

Part 2[edit]

Feed Recovery (0:00:00)[edit]

Joe Pepe

Science or Fiction Answers (0:02:59)[edit]

Why Steve is drinking vitamin water (0:11:16)[edit]

Phil Plait (0:15:00)[edit]


Top Ten List - Future Technologies (1:10:55)[edit]


Spin the Wheel (1:37:24)[edit]

  • Bob spins

Rebecca's Science or Fiction (1:39:51)[edit]


Sadie Crabtree from the JREF (1:52:00)[edit]

Fred Bremmer (1:59:45)[edit]

  • 'Skype a Skeptic' guest

Part 3[edit]

Fred Bremmer (continued from Part 2) (0:00:00)[edit]


Jamy Ian Swiss[edit]

Initial contact and technical glitches (0:06:05)[edit]

JREF on NBC Nightline (0:11:34)[edit]

Toronto Psychic Refuses To Take the Million Dollar Challenge (0:27:35)[edit]

How to Survive a Zombie Apocalypse (0:28:45)[edit]

Spin the Wheel (1:02:40)[edit]

  • Evan and Jay spin

Top 10 works of Fiction (1:12:00)[edit]

Eating animals (1:53:50)[edit]

Questions From the Audience (1:57:56)[edit]

Part 4[edit]

Questions From the Audience (continued) (0:00:00)[edit]

Evan Demos Pressure Point on Bob (0:12:00)[edit]

  • Israeli Martial Arts

Drug use and What Pseudoscience Have the Rogues Been Sucked In By (0:16:00)[edit]

The Australian Skeptics (0:20:41)[edit]

  • Richard Saunders, Jo Benhamu, Dr Rachel Dunlop
  • 3 am Rogues Time

Power Balance/Placebo Bands (0:23:30)[edit]

Anti-Vax (0:35:00)[edit]

  • Dr Rachel Dunlop

Titanium Ion Band (0:36:40)[edit]

  • Steve Novella Returns from one hour on the can

Anti-Vax (0:50:00)[edit]

  • Dr Rachel Dunlop

Ear Candles/Butt Candles (0:54:15)[edit]

CAM, TGA, FDA the media (0:59:00)[edit]

The One - Search for Australia's top Psychic (1:07:39)[edit]

  • Richard Saunders

Ninja House (1:13:00)[edit]

Dr Rachel Dunlop

Top 10 Scientific Discoveries of All Time (1:15:00)[edit]

Australopithecus Sediba‎ News (1:33:00)[edit]

  • 4am Rogues Time

Coming to Terms With the Female Orgasm (1:41:00)[edit]

Part 5[edit]

Siphonophores (0:00:00)[edit]

Top 10 That Did Not Make the Top 10. Top 10 Imaginary Numbers (0:05:00)[edit]


Richard Wiseman (0:13:00)[edit]

Interview with Richard Wiseman (0:16:15)[edit]

  • Mind reading monkey

New Lie Detector Technloogy (0:25:00)[edit]

Cognative Testing (0:35:24)[edit]

  • 5:30am Rogues Time

Sally Morgan Psychic (0:47:20)[edit]

Card Trick (0:59:00)[edit]

Where Would You Time Travel To? (1:01:00)[edit]

Toothpaste, Amsterdam (1:05:00)[edit]

This Day in Skepticism (1:15:00)[edit]

  • USS Enterprise: The First Nuclear Powered Aircraft Carrier

Favourite Fiction (1:17:30)[edit]

Glow in the Dark Cats and AIDS (1:23:30)[edit]

Jay Returns (1:28:00)[edit]

  • Sponsor asks for Jay to make something up.

Spin the Wheel (1:30:00)[edit]

Jay: "Act like a primate" Bob: "Jar Jar voice" and "Improv" Evan: "Exoplanets"

Questions from Chat (1:47:30)[edit]

PC Talk (1:49:55)[edit]

Music talk (1:49:00)[edit]

Scientology Slavery (1:54:50)[edit]

Favourite Video Games (1:58:00)[edit]

Part 6[edit]

Favourite Video Games (continued from part 5) (0:00:00)[edit]


  • Sponsor: David Young

Brian Dunning (0:06:04)[edit]

  • Skeptical activism / finance, craziest things said in defence of woo, etc.

George Hrab (0:58:23)[edit]

  • George enters the Skeptilair

Intro repeated w/ sound (1:01:30)[edit]

  • The 12 hour mark

Discussion of intro's production (1:05:10)[edit]

Skeptimeter reading (1:08:34)[edit]

Sleep deprivation (1:10:11)[edit]

George Hrab: Various, including drum circle (1:11:30)[edit]

Rebecca returns from nap (1:15:00)[edit]

Spin the Wheel (1:48:23)[edit]

  • Jay spins

Part 7[edit]

The Moon (0:00:00)[edit]

David Young: Evolution (0:11:30)[edit]

  • 9:09 am Rogues time

David Young: Positive Psychology, Material Possessions & Happiness (0:20:27)[edit]

Spin the Wheel (0:42:21)[edit]

Jay spins

Steve's aversion to the taste of fish (0:47:20)[edit]

George Hrab: Top Ten Intellectual Heroes (1:01:59)[edit]

Tom Maydon: SGU Quiz (1:28:00)[edit]

  • Skype from South Africa

Part 8[edit]

Quiz continues (0:00:00)[edit]

Interview with Tim Minchin (0:29:00)[edit]

  • Skype audio interview


  • Sponsor: Soren Kongstad

Inorganic life (0:16:00)[edit]

Dr Oz on Arsenic in Apple Juice (0:21:00)[edit]

Crazy Stuff Said in Defence of Woo (0:28:54)[edit]

Crystal Head Vodka (0:36:00)[edit]

Dan Akroyd and UFOs (0:39:00)[edit]

Family Guy Is Not That Funny (0:43:45)[edit]


  • Sponsor: Joseph N. Germani

Neil deGrasse Tyson for President (0:45:50)[edit]

Science or Fiction (0:49:00)[edit]

Part 9[edit]

Science or Fiction (continued) (0:00:00)[edit]

  • Steve calls quackery on this

Spins Wheel and Calls Mum (0:04:30)[edit]

  • We hear about Rebecca's fur coat and church

Proto-Feathers Preserved in Amber (0:10:30)[edit]

Jake Wilson: SGU music writer (0:19:15)[edit]

Steve Spins the wheel - Skype a Sceptic (0:23:25)[edit]

Minesota Skeptics (0:25:00)[edit]


  • Sponsors: Christopher Burr, Aaron Roberts, Joachim Schoffer, Erich Fleischbein

Joshie Berger: Food & Chat (0:29:00)[edit]


  • Sponsors: Simone Grant, Bill Cameron, Michael Brandstein

D&D Session (1:20:40)[edit]

Part 10[edit]

D&D Session (Continued) (0:00:00)[edit]

Sarah Mayhew: How To Draw Manga (0:09:45)[edit]

Feed Goes Down (0:21:00)[edit]

Part 11[edit]

Brian Trent: Secularism Out of the Closet (00:02:45)[edit]

Fraser Cain and Pamela Gay[edit]

Satellite Crash (00:23:30)[edit]

Civilisations on the Moon (00:33:30)[edit]

NASA's New Heavy Lift Rocket (0:41:30[edit]

Old Components in the New Rocket (0:45:32)[edit]

NASA Funding and Congress (0:47:00)[edit]

Commercial Space Projects (0:50:15[edit]

Ding Ding Steve Falls Asleep (0:55:00)[edit]

  • Spins wheel for shock device

Fraser Cain and Pamela Gay[edit]

Death of the space shuttle (0:58:00)[edit]

Space X (1:00:00)[edit]

China's Space Program (1:01:00)[edit]

Nasa Funding Again (1:03:00)[edit]

Next Year's SGU24 and Nude Video Casting (1:05:45)[edit]

John "Machine Gun" Kelly (1:08:30)[edit]

  • John appears in the introduction video

Chicago Skeptics[edit]

Bed Sores and Bacon (1:19:33)[edit]

Sleep Deprivation and Skepticism (1:21:30)[edit]

Philosophy of Skepticism and Politics (1:23:30)[edit]

  • 5pm rogues time

True Fellas Video (1:28:00)[edit]

Doug: True Fellas co-writer. Discusses the creative process (1:38:00)[edit]

  • The Mitchell and Web video they mention is here

Meet the SGU24 Off-Camera Crew (1:46:00)[edit]

Jay's Weddng Plans (1:48:30)[edit]

Top 10 Cool Things We Should Know About the Universe (1:54:30)[edit]

Part 12[edit]

Top 10 Cool Things We Should Know About the Universe (Continued) (2:00:00)[edit]

Plausablity of HG Wells' War of the Worlds (2:02:00)[edit]

Dolphin Tool Use (2:05:10)[edit]

Funny Baby YouTube Videos (2:07:25)[edit]

Steve Explains the Baby's Behaviour (2:09:09) ==

Kung Fu Bear (2:11:00)[edit]

Trial Mission To Mars (2:12:00)[edit]

Hamster Hibernation Lengthens Telomeres (2:16:00)[edit]

  • Aging research

Electric Cars as a Renewable Energy Store (2:18:30)[edit]

Skeptinary (2:21:37)[edit]

  • Pictionary with Skeptical words

Middle Easten Geoglyphis (2:44:45)[edit]

  • 2000 year old Big jelly fish shapped drawings only visible from the air

Joe Novella - The Novella Boys' Father (2:47:00)[edit]

  • How he brought up skeptcial geeks
  • 81 years old tommorow

Brain stimulation - TDCS - stroke recovery and speed learning (3:00:00)[edit]

  • 22.5 hour mark

Higgs Boson (3:09:20)[edit]

Best and Worst Part of Being a Skeptic (3:14:05)[edit]

What Would Perry DeAngeles Think of the 24hr Show? (3:24:17)[edit]

  • Perry is a former SGU Rogue who died a few years back

Why Do the Rogues Groan When the Science or Fiction Has a Theme? (3:27:15)[edit]

Bird vs Monkey (3:28:15)[edit]

Part 13[edit]

Rogues' Day Jobs (3:30:30)[edit]

Kermit the Frog vs Carl Sagan (3:34:00)[edit]

Interview with DJ Grothe (3:35:40)[edit]

  • President of the JREF

DJ Grothe Announces the Prize (3:46:30)[edit]

Steve's Girls Julia and Autumn Take a bow (3:50:55)[edit]

DJ Grothe Announces the Prize (3:52:30)[edit]

The Intro Video With Sound (3:55:36)[edit]

  • Appears in better quality in Part 5

Thank-yous (4:00:10)[edit]

Rouges Read a Script from a Sponsor (4:03:25)[edit]

  • The skeptic dictionary iPhone app

Questions from the Plebs (4:06:00)[edit]

Funniest Moment from Skeptical Career (4:13:40)[edit]

Behind the Scenes (4:21:15)[edit]

Searching for ET (4:25:30)[edit]

SAL 9000 (4:27:25)[edit]

Skeptical Quote (4:29:30)[edit]

  • James Luther Adams

Steve Close out 4:31:11 4:31:55 -