Guest post by Gregory Gadow, Bio Track Lead:
With the schedules now (mostly) in place, I’d like to share some highlights from the Biological Sciences track. Be sure to check the schedule at the con for times, rooms, and panelists.
On Thursday, Biology of a Zombie Apocalypse will examine actual processes that cause zombies, such as fungi infections in insects and drugs that can eliminate human will. The Future of H. sapiens will examine how humans have changed since they first appeared 200,000 years ago and where we might be 200,000 years from now. The questions of which languages will we take into space and why will they be chosen will be discussed in Speaking Amongst the Stars.
Friday starts off with a look at how Evolution Is Just a Theory! If you use the correct definition of “theory,” that is. The Anatomy of a Pandemic examines how the United States and the world would likely respond to an emerging contagious threat. If you still have questions after that, you can bring them to Ask the Experts: Biology, where our panelists will take your questions on botany, evolution, language, medicine, and more. After dinner, you can chat about Klingon, Dothraki, and Na’vi with people who know and even wrote the Languages of Speculative Fiction.
Saturday is set aside for the hardcore science geeks. Blinded By Pseudoscience makes a repeat appearance, with spirited discussion on how to tell good science from bad. The Molecules of Life will be about DNA and RNA, the building blocks of all life on Earth. Panelists will answer your questions about the Facts & Fictions of Cancer and discuss their own experiences. A conversation about the Ethics of Animal Experimentation will round out the day.
For Sunday, the discussion goes out of this world. We will start off with Cryptids & Cryptozoology and examine why some people believe in yetis, sasquatches, and mermaids. Alien Harvest looks at why tossing some seeds onto the surface of a foreign planet probably won’t work, no matter how Earth-like the world may be. Finally, we will discuss the issues involved with exodiplomacy in Alien Communication.
I think we have a great line up of biology panels this year with a fantastic group of panelists. Hope to see you there!