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"From Dark Matter to ET -An Assortment of Interesting Questions" by Brian Thomas tonight, Saturday, June 23, 7pm at Perkins.

From: cole m.
Sent on: Saturday, June 23, 2012 12:04 PM
Midwest Skeptics Society:
"From Dark Matter to ET -An Assortment of Interesting Questions" by Brian Thomas tonight, Saturday, June 23, 7pm at Perkins. 
Brian is always a lot of fun with a lot of facts!  Plus, Adrian Mellot, at his last visit to the Skeptics, asked us to ask him a certain question. I will ask him this question toward the end. 
Don't MISS this night! 
To RSVP:http://www.meetup...­
Can dark matter bend light?  How big is the universe anyway?  Is other intelligent life in the universe likely?  I will attempt to answer these questions and others in a grab-bag of topics about our amazing universe.
Prof Brian Thomas.
***DON'T MISS THIS NIGHT!  Brian is a lot of fun with facts to back up his statements.
Eric Dollard sent Prof Thomas a list of questions for possible topics for the Skeptics.  Below are those questions and after that, Brian's reply -which lead to this format. Please read:
Eric, "Last night you asked for some topics or issues about which Dr Thomas could speak.  I have some suggestions."

1.  Can strong gravitation fields, such as those around a black hole, affect the Doppler effect?
2.  How do we know that the edge of the observable universe is about 13.7 billion light-years away?
3.  How do we know that our galaxy is approximately 100,000 light-years across?
4.  Any thoughts on why the expansion of the universe now appears to be accelerating?
5.  What is the probability that intelligent life (comparable or higher than human) exists elsewhere in the galaxy?  In the universe?
6.  Any thoughts about the anthropic principle--the idea that the universe has been fine-tuned for human life?
7.  Can dark matter bend light rays?  If so, how would we be able to determine the extent of the effect?

If I think of any more questions, you might want to put a blocker on your email.

>>Then, Prof Thomas replied to us:
Hi, guys,
Interesting questions.  I'm not sure if any of them alone is suited to a single presentation.  I could probably do more with #5;  there's some firm science, but it's still highly speculative. I haven't thought much about #6 recently.  There's been some papers floating around, but I haven't read them.  I could probably group 2,3,4 and 7 together under a "basic cosmology" kind of talk, like what I do in my astro class (but shorter).
>>That is when I thought of having several questions instead of just one single topic and Brian agreed.  Thank you, Brian.
Also, Adrian Melott wanted me to ask Brian a question,... so I will at the end of the topics.
Cole Morgan [address removed]  [masked]

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