Series 3, Episode 1
If you’re using the player above to listen to this episode, click here to open this page in a new browser window so you can visit the links below without losing your place.
In a surprise first episode of Series 3 (truly, no-one is more surprised than us to be popping up in your feed with a third series…) Steve tells the truth about the Prime Meridian, Helen brings a song from her new musical “Almost Astronauts”, and Matt attempts to divert an apocalyptic future scenario – with maths:
- 00:48 – Steve’s bit
- 17:01 – Helen’s bit
- 34:06 – Matt’s bit
If you’d like inbox updates about this podcast and our plans for future live shows, join our mailing list. If you’re into merch, DVDs, downloads or books check out the Spoken Nerd Shop. If songs are your thing, Helen has created a free album on Bandcamp with tracks from (almost) every episode so far.
This series is sponsored by Brilliant.org, the place to learn maths and science through interactive online lessons. Start your free trial at Brilliant.org/apoud, and the first 200 Unnecessary Detail listeners who sign up for annual membership will get 20% off on the same link.
Corrections and clarifications:
- Alice Zhang has pointed out that there’s no single word for all the different definitions of “down” in Chinese.
- If you’re upset by the two different definitions of “meridian” not lining up in Greenwich, you can make yourself feel better by finding out what happened with the equator marker in Ecuador…
And here’s a heap of extra Unnecessary Detail from this episode:
- Why the Greenwich meridian moved.
- The “Big C(l)ocks!” gallery at the Royal Observatory.
- Turn on grid lines to see exactly where the meridian is on Google Earth.
- Airy’s Reflex Zenith Tube – a liquid mercury telescope.
- The Google Leap Smear.
- An introduction to the Mercury 13, as the 13 pilots are now known.
- Jerrie Cobb being tested on the MASTIF aka Multi-Axis Intertia Facility aka The Spinny Cage Thing.
- See a bit of Helen’s show “Almost Astronauts” in 1st December 2023 at The Other Palace, London (tickets on sale soon).
- Read “Wally Funk’s Race For Space” by Sue Nelson in paperback or e-reader from all the usual places.
- Pay what you want to download the song “Wally Funk’s Race For Space” from Bandcamp, sung by Nora Perone and Charlotte Hannah, with Rob Gathercole on the piano.
- The meteorite that Matt’s ring is made of.
- The pre-DART paper that just couldn’t wait to be published.
- Sabina Raducan on Twitter/X.
- Matt was wrong and the post-DART paper he mentioned is not out yet but you can read a summary here.
- More of Sabina’s post-DART papers are over here.
- Here’s those visuals from the DART cameras, just before impact (ouch!).
- And, finally a link to pre-order Matt’s book! Oh hang on, that’s not out yet either. Make sure you’re on our mailing list to hear about it first…
A Podcast Of Unnecessary Detail is part of the Acast Creator Network. Thanks for listening!