Episode #919 – Neil DeGrasse Tyson

Episode #919

Neil DeGrasse Tyson is an author, astrophysicist most famous for his discovery that Pluto is a dwarf planet and his regular podcast StarTalk. Neil also released a series called ‘Cosmos’ inspired by the late Carl Sagans series.

Tyson Quotes:

“The universe has no obligation to make sense to you” – Neil DeGrasse Tyson
“It has jack shit to do with your consciousness” – Neil DeGrasse Tyson (Talking about the observer effect)


Neil talks about being in shape and that he doesn’t have the time to do it at the moment, but he was a wrestler in high-school and was buff.  Intermittent fasting – Only eating about in a 10 hour cycle forces your body to burn fat and not carbohydrates.
“If there was a diet book written by a astrophysicist it would be written as one sentence: ‘Consume calories at a lesser rate than you burn them'” – Niel DeGrasse Tyson.

Hat Size Formula = circumference of your head / pie

People attacked Tyson for posting on Twitter about Isaac Newtons birthday being on Christmas day. This is his most retweeted post by Tyson ever.  He says that some Christians were very upset about this post but Joe goes on to argue that if you are christian you would realize that Jesus’ birthday was actually shifted to suit Pagan tradition.






























Pop Culture + General Discussion

Neil says that people get angry when he comments on movies, Joe brings up the movie Gravity and his comments on that.

Here is a clip about it:

Star Wars The Force Awakens

Neil tells Joe that his favorite tweet reply from this post was simply ‘Shut the fuck up’. He says he does not do this to annoy people but people get very offended. Since this incident he does not tweet about movies anymore. Check It Out here where an article was written about his ‘fact checking’.

2001: A Space Odyssey
Neil talks about this movie and how correct it was with a lot of factual integration of real space physics. He goes on to say that the contents of the straw goes back into the tray when he stops sucking and that is gravity.








Audio Book:


Space and Time

Space Travel
Joe offers the idea to Tyson to get people who believe in the flat earth conspiracy theory an invitation to go into space just to see that the earth is actually of spherical shape.

This is the invaders episode from the twilight zone that Joe and Tyson discuss about points of views.




NASA has an announcement about space this week. Neil is guessing that it involves the news that there will be a planet orbiting a nearby sun that is possible to be habitable. Here is a link to the announcement.
In 1995  the first year that another planet had been found outside of our solar system. Neil says when he does a live show he will often tell the audience that if they are born after that year then they have only ever lived in a time where we knew that.  He calls them “Generation Exoplanet”, there are over 3000 exoplanets found now.

This is the website is the debris we have left in space and track it in real time.

This is a video that Young Jamie shows:


Maths and Science

Neil talks about infinity and numbers. He says that there are an infinite amounts of infinity. Joe says it hurts his brain and it’s hard to understand, here is an article about “The Simple Proof That There Must Be Multiple Levels Of Infinity” that may help your head hurt less or maybe more.

Titus-Bodes Law “is a hypothesis that the bodies in some orbital systems, including the Sun‘s, orbit at semi-major axes in a function of planetary sequence.”

Physics 101
If you shoot a bullet out of a gun at the same height as a stuffed toy falling to the ground. The bullet and the toy would hit the ground at the same time.

Propulsion and 0 Gravity in space
Neil and Joe talk about this article and how long it would take to get to mars when traveling at 1g constantly.

Particles, Electrons, Atoms you name it

The electron is a subatomic particle. Neil says that is in electron has no size, we can’t measure it and refers to his series The Great Courses: The Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries” which discusses all of the things that we can’t explain.

Joe asks the question about how similar a brain cell is to how we perceive the known universe in the image below. Neil says they look the same but operate under completely different laws of physics. Brain cells use electromechanical impulses which we can disrupt or enhance with stimulation or drugs where as the universe has no relation to that. “It’s a fascinating similarity”, “It’s fun to think about artistically.” – Neil

Atoms and Molecules
Particles can pop in and out of existence or join together.
Joe poses the question about Superstring theory and Neil cannot answer it, saying ‘You’d need to bring in a string theory guy for that’.
Atom means indivisible in Greek and they are almost right, but the Atom is divisible into subatomic sub atom particles, electrons, neutrino’s and more. Then even these are divisible which gives us quarks.

Everything in the observable universe is made out of these things:

Dark Matter and Dark Energy
We can measure these two things and about 90% of the universe is made up of these things “but we have no idea what’s driving them”.

The Observer Effect
Paraphrased explanation
of The Observer Effect: “I am looking at you, the only reason I can see you is because there is light reflecting off your face” “If the lights not on then I can’t see you. When you start becoming the size of a Molecule or Atom and I turn on the light… the photon comes down and hits the atom and POPS you into another location. The very act of trying to measure your position, prevents me from measuring your position.”

Planets & Stars

Planet 9
Planet 9 resides in the Kuiper Belt and based on the movement of the objects that reside in the belt, they don’t move based on the Newtons laws of physics. Therefore the only reasonable explanation is to place an object in a place that would inherently effect the belt in such a way hence Planet 9 was born. This would make Planet 9 Twenty-Thousand times further away from the sun than earth is. Neptune was discovered with the same formula.

Our moon has 5x the mass of Pluto. Neil is one of the people who measured the size of Pluto in the early 2000’s and found that it’s a dwarf planet and does not could as a part of our solar system.

Nemesis is a hypothetical red dwarf or brown dwarf, originally postulated in 1984 to be orbiting the Sun at a distance of about 95,000 AU (1.5 light-years), somewhat beyond the Oort cloud, to explain a perceived cycle of mass extinctions in the geological record, which seem to occur more often at intervals of 26 million years.”

Comet Shoemaker–Levy 9 was an asteroid that flew into Jupiter. It was flying so fast that when it hit the gas of jupiter it exploded bigger than the size of the earth.

Arizona Meteor crater

Famous People Mentioned

Dan Aykroyd – The Coneheads is a recurring sketch on Saturday Night Live (SNL) about a family of aliens with bald conical heads. 
Joe references this movie when talking about hats and head sizes.

Steve Maxwell – “Steve Maxwell (December 3, 1952), is an American fitness coach, physical educator, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instructor. Maxwell was named one of the top 100 trainers in the United States by Men’s Journal.”

Bill Nye – “popularly known as Bill Nye the Science Guy, is an American science educator, television presenter, and mechanical engineer. He is best known as the host of the PBS children’s science show Bill Nye the Science Guy”

Chris Austin Hadfield – “is a retired Canadian astronaut who was the first Canadian to walk in space.”
Joe talks about him not being able to adjust to earths gravity.

Harrison Hagan “Jack” Schmitt  – an American geologist, retired NASA astronaut, university professor, former U.S. senator from New Mexico, and the most recent living person to have walked on the Moon. He is also the last living crew member of Apollo 17.


Myths, Legends and Conspiracy’s

Dinosaurs aren’t real
Humans have not gone to the moon
Therapeutic Touch

Flat Earth
Neil explains the story that BoB went to a mountain and looked at Manhattan and by the calculations of a curved earth you should not be able to see anything on the horizon. Due to BoB being on a mountain and the building being so tall, the formula had not taken this into consideration.
Read here: BoB v Neil deGrasse Tyson: flat-earth rap beef takes on new dimension.
Here is a rap about the issue

Obviously Neil doesn’t believe in astrology and here is his bit on it:


Authors Note:
Neil is one of my personal hero’s in life and I often listen to Star Talk, he is a pleasure to listen to with his completely nerdy tones on any subject. Taking a scientific point standpoint in every situation including movies and comedy he is one of the greatest educators of the 21st century, devoting his life to the stars. – Grhylln

One thought on “Episode #919 – Neil DeGrasse Tyson

  1. I love this website. Great idea and execution. It’s a lot better than I expected it to be. If I had one complaint it is that it does not list the specific episodes of the twilight zone they discussed. Other than that keep up the good work.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *