Dr Who is back, and this speaker is geeking out! In 1963, Dr Who was conceived as being partly educational, incorporating real science and history for children. It hasn't exactly lived up to that. But, every now and again real science has made its way into the show, and this talk will move past the times science words were used as mere technobabble nonsense, to look at the attempts to incorporate real, grounded ideas.
Some were creative, like 2017's World Enough & Time, using time dilation near a black hole as a plot device. Some were mis-guided, like 1970's The Silurians and 2012's Dinosaurs on a Spaceship, jumbling up Earth history and human evolution. Some were ahead of their time, like 1967's The Ice Warriors showing a future on a brink due to anthropogenic climate change. And once Douglas Adams mis-dated the origin of life by 3 billion years.
Every era of Dr Who has something to contribute to this celebration of science fiction, even Jodie Whitaker's!
About the Speaker:
Trevor Sloughter is a PhD student working on marine ecological models at the University of Strathclyde. He is giving this talk when he should be writing his thesis, and it's understood everyone will "be cool" about it if they speak to his supervisor.
His academic background spans physics and ecology, and this is his first public talk in Scotland to not be focused on either climate change or the Arctic.
He is also a loyal member of the Glasgow Skeptics team, and can usually be found hiding behind the sound mixer.