Download Now – “Dark Energy and the Dark Energy Survey”

DavidGerdes-150x150This is the audio recording of the 9/21 meet-up with Dr. David Gerdes.  Dr. Gerdes discussed the evidence of dark energy by past experiments and observations, and then introduced us to the current project in Dark Energy research called “The Dark Energy Survey.”

(The beginning of the recording was cut off, and so it begins with Gerdes explaining the evidence for dark energy).

Download Now – “Communication Amongst Non-Human Primates”

Ethiopia_5July2012 014This is the audio recording of the 06/08 meet-up with Morgan Gustison.  Morgan provided a presentation about her research regarding lip-smacking by gelada monkeys, and its relevance to non-human primate communication.




Download Now – “The Ethics of Animal Testing”

CarlCohenThis is the audio recording of the 02/16 meet-up with Carl Cohen.  The topic for the get-together was to better acquaint ourselves with Cohen’s arguments that animals do not have rights, and thus can be used for animal testing.

Carl Cohen is a professor of philosophy at the University of Michigan.  You can find out more about his activisim in a variety of controversial areas by visiting his wikipedia page.

I’ve provided a list of conversation highlights and time marks for easier locating: (how Carl Cohen become involved in animal rights at 1:00), (on animals being used in research at 5:00), (explaining rights and obligations at 9:00), (what animal research would be too far or not allowable at 15:00), a discussion of rights and interests at 24:00), (how animals were used in testing Polio vaccines at 32:00), (on using mice in labs at 44:00), (on Nobel prizes in medicine based on animal research at 53:00), (on “consent” at 1:00:00), (analogy between animals and humans who are cognitively impaired at 1:08:00), (on pain and suffering at 1:14:00), (return to “consent” and sex with animals at 1:22:00).

Download Now – “The Higgs and other particles that Matter”

This is the audio recording of the 01/19 meet-up with Sean Tulin.  The topic for the get-together was to help better understand the discovery of the Higgs Bosun, and its importance to the Standard Model of Physics.  We also talk a bit about the hunt for dark matter, quantum mechanics, and the early formation of the universe.

Sean Tulin is a theoretical particle physicist at the University of Michigan.

Download Now – Tom Shellberg “Evolution and Human Behavior”

This is the audio recording of the 10/27 meet-up with Tom Shellberg.  The topic for the get-together was to understand how some biologists see evolution as shaping human behavior.

Tom is the author of Choosy Women and Cheating Men: Evolution and Human Behavior.

Note: The conversation contains some adult discussion on sex and sexual behavior.  Not all views expressed in this conversation are necessarily shared by the members of the group.

Download Now – “Paranormal Investigations with Grimstone Inc.”

This is the audio recording of the 09/22 meet-up with paranormal investigator, Chris Bailey, of Grimstone Inc..  The topic for the get-together was for skeptics to get a better understanding of paranormal investigations; and the distinction between how Grimstone does them versus how typical ghost hunting groups do them.  And Chris was gracious enough to respond to our members about our skepticism of paranormal phenomena. For more information about Grimstone Inc., please visit