Edinburgh Science Festival 2012: what looks particularly amazing

Oooh, I love the Science Festival. I love them even more since they just gave me Buck’s Fizz at 10:30am. I was attending the festival launch in the National Museum of Scotland. They have a lovely new auditorium that I never knew existed, which is going to be a great venue. Short talks were given by festival director Simon Gage, deputy director Amanda Tyndall and Fiona Hyslop, the Scottish culture minister. There was a worrying focus on ‘dad dancing’ but a great enthusiasm and a feeling of forward motion with lots of innovative programming. Amanda Tyndall is in charge of revamping the programme for adults so I’m really interested to see how that works out over the next couple of years. I do love traditional lectures but it’s also interesting to see alternative modes of presentation, especially if they’re interactive.

Speaking of interactive, I got tangled up in some rope by these guys who were also making balloon kebabs and playing with dry ice.

dry ice

I had a good look at the programme on the way home and the things that excite me most are:

InMotion: this is a combination of science, dance and sport that will take place at the National Museum. I’m really impressed with how they’ve done the sport aspect actually. Everything seems to be going for the Olympics thing this year which I tend to find rather yawnworthy but this looks really interesting, bringing in robotics, prosthetics and physiology. And I’m really looking forward to seeing Scottish Ballet’s and Dance Base’s contributions.

E2: The Edinburgh Enlightenment Exchange. Ignoring the dodgy use of the square and the fact that as far as I can see there are actually three Es going on there, this event looks brilliant. To quote from the programme, it is “bringing together some of Scotland’s most creative individuals… scientists, artists, musicians, authors and other creative innovators”. For someone like me who would love to be a polymath and ends up being a bit of a gadfly, this sounds like loads of fun. It’s a whole day of presentations and performances.

Future Human: A series of films and talks about where humanity is going – I’m really looking forward to the talk on ‘the self illusion‘ and the showing of the film ‘Transfer‘.

Since I just spent the last of my Christmas money on tickets for StAnza, I’m particularly looking out for free events, so I’m really pleased to see that ‘At the Fringe of Reason‘ (talks organised by Edinburgh Skeptics) is coming back to the Banshee Labyrinth – I loved it at the Fringe and I’m really keen to see the programme! I’m also looking forward to the mathematical walking tour and the photographic exhibition that’s already up in St Andrew’s Square.

There are so many other exciting events going on – and I haven’t even touched on all the stuff for kids.  I would love to hear which ones you are looking forward to.

PS.  If you are interested in the environmental events, craftygreenpoet has a useful list of them over here.

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