Talk:Bill Nye

From RationalWiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Icon sociology.svg This article contains information about one or more living persons.

Articles about living people must be handled carefully, because they are more open to legal threats.
Reference any contentious allegations solidly; unreferenced allegations should be removed.
If legal threats are raised on this page, please direct the potential litigant to RationalWiki:Legal FAQ; do not interact with them.

Didn't Bill Nye have a fail once during an interview about Fukushima? I think it was on CNN around the time of the crisis. Osaka Sun (talk) 03:18, 1 December 2011 (UTC)

Bill Nye never fails. Sam Tally-ho! 03:24, 1 December 2011 (UTC)

Something interesting[edit]

Reddit AMA for one of the kids on the show. --TheLateGatsby (The end of the dock ) 10:54, 27 May 2014 (UTC)


I haven't Identified the talk show he was on in this video.[edit]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R5bV96Oc6Kc

I wanted to add this in the list of appearances.— Unsigned, by: 174.25.18.37 / talk / contribs

I'll look at it when I can and see if it is apropriate. Zero (talk - contributions) 12:30, 29 September 2014 (UTC)

The almost (homonym) namesake[edit]

Should there be a pointer to [1]? 82.44.143.26 (talk) 15:21, 6 January 2017 (UTC)

I don't think anyone visiting would get them confused, and we should minimize unnecessary offsite redirects. Petey Plane (talk) 15:42, 6 January 2017 (UTC)
'Category of topics where a note on the talk page suffices'? The actor will probably be the more familiar person in the UK. 82.44.143.26 (talk) 15:59, 6 January 2017 (UTC)

Bill Nye Saves the World[edit]

Can we get some attention to his show? It's definitely worth it to put it in this article. Thanks! #Can'tComeUpWithACleverSignature 17:57, 27 April 2017 (UTC)

I agree. I also saw user reviews on IMBD and it's a doozy. I'm not convinced by those reviewers who cry "political agenda" and "liberal science" and many reviews have very transphobic undertones. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 03:15, 1 May 2017 (UTC)
Just watched the GMO episode (decided to check out show, went to this episode first). It was "awful" for me, since I learned almost nothing. For others it may be more useful. A half hour is simply NOT enough time to get into detail on this subject. StickySock (talk) 05:14, 1 May 2017 (UTC)
Ay, that's disappointing. I still think we should offer our own review so we have something more substantial than "wah wah SJWs". --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 03:44, 2 May 2017 (UTC)
There might not be much to review besides "this show was a mistake". While "Bill Nye Saves the World" might try to showcase valid points and views, it hardly brings much evidence or reasoning to the table to support them. The fact that the whole point of the show is convincing "the other side" that the gender spectrum (or whatever the topic of the current episode is) is real, only makes the lack of evidence or clear reasoning hurt the show even more. Trying to explain to the audience the differences of gender, gender identity, and biological sex isn't that effective when it's watered down to a song and dance number about a woman's "sex junk". However this is all just my personal opinion. megalodon (talk) 16:24, 3 May 2017 (UTC)
I never seen the show, but what I've gathered from talking to people it's too short of a show (30 minutes per episode), so it offers weak stances on issues.—€h33s3βurg3rF@€3 Spinning-Burger.gif (talkstalk) 17:03, 3 May 2017 (UTC)

Bill Nye the Scientist[edit]

Sorry, folks! But Nye has never been one. He started out as a mechanical engineer before becoming a science communicator. Nerd271 (talk) 02:41, 10 November 2017 (UTC)

Strawman? It's "Bill Nye the Science Guy". The article does not say he is a scientist.
RSamys (bla) 09:18, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
@Rsamys It does not explicitly. But somebody added the Category: Scientist, which I removed. My above statement was the justification. Nerd271 (talk) 14:51, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
Not that I actually care that much - but "scientist" isn't actually a qualification. It's a kind of general term for someone who investigates or follows the scientific method.--Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 15:26, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
@Bob M It is on my book. In addition to the traits you described, you need a PhD in the relevant field(s) in order to qualify as a scientist. If not, you are but an amateur. Not that amateurs, people like James Prescott Joules, should be categorically be ignored, but science has progressed so enormously over the last few hundred years that advanced training in the relevant field(s) is required. And even that is not sufficient; you will also need postdoctoral training to get you up to speed with the subfield(s) you chose. Furthermore, science and engineering are not the same thing. This is a common misconception. For example, people say "rocket science" when they actually mean "aerospace engineering". Nerd271 (talk) 16:26, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
I know they are not the same thing. I did not say they were. Furthermore you definitely need a qualification to be an engineer. (Well, you do in the US and most of the rest of the world - the word tends to be used a bit more loosely in the UK where the guy who comes to fix the photocopier might be called an "engineer".)Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 16:48, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
Ah, so we are actually in agreement. Bill Nye has some qualifications alright, but in engineering rather than science. Nerd271 (talk) 16:58, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
Maybe. And to be honest I'm a bit bored - so to continue the discussion. Einstein published his first scientific paper in 1900 - but he didn't get a PHD until 1905 (from his WP article) . Using your definition, then, would you argue that he was not a scientist in 1900 although he had scientific papers published? Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:05, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
No, he was an emerging scientist. (Since you mentioned Einstein, his first papers concerned aspects of statistical mechanics already covered by others, such as J. W. Gibbs and L. Boltzmann. It was in 1905 that he broke new grounds.) Today, graduate, and even undergraduate students may publish research papers in peer-reviewed journals. Nerd271 (talk) 17:09, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
So - if he had not obtained his PHD, but had published his subsequent works on relativity - he still wouldn't have been a scientist?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:13, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
Interesting scenario there. Like I said, he was free to send his works to peer-reviewed journals. If they proved to be that good, which they were, he would most likely have received a PhD. In any case, he had already gotten his Bachelor's degree (or its equivalent in Switzerland, which I cannot remember right now) from the ETH Zurich. Since you mentioned relativity, both "The Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies" (1905) and "Foundations of The General Theory of Relativity" (1916) qualify as doctoral dissertations. He also published more papers on relativity between these two, such as one showing how the principle of equivalence leads to gravitational lensing in 1907. (Sorry but I cannot remember its title.) There are many candidates to choose from, and those are among the best. Nerd (talk) 17:23, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
OK. I would still prefer to define a scientist as "One who does science" rather than "One who has a scientific qualification" (Assuming that I am not making a straw man of your position.) However, it occurs to me that Mr Nye would probably meet neither definition as, to the best of my knowledge, he does not actually carry out research. :-) Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:35, 10 November 2017 (UTC)
@Bob M I define a scientist as someone with advanced training and qualification whose conducts research. And you are right. Bill Nye fits neither your definition nor mine. But that is no problem at all. This world needs people like him working tirelessly to combat anti-intellectualism and scientific illiteracy. Nerd (talk) 00:36, 12 November 2017 (UTC)

Credentials[edit]

Bill Nye is criticized ([2][3][4]) for his lack of any scientific credentials. Should this be covered in the article?ClimbTheStairs (talk) 08:02, 7 June 2019 (UTC)

A lot of this seems to be his enemies having a go and the links are more in the category of personalized rants than reasoned arguments (he manages to offend both the climate change denialists and the anti-GMO nuts). He doesn't claim to be a scientist, he presents TV programs about scientific topics, just as other people do without having PhDs (he's more qualified than the Mythbusters team or Penn and Teller; Patrick Moore had no degree, David Attenborough only an undergraduate degree, etc; although some science popularizers such as Carl Sagan, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Richard Dawkins, Brian Cox, etc did do higher study, doctorates, and research). Just having a PhD doesn't mean you can talk sensibly, especially on topics outside your expertise. His education (undergraduate degree in engineering) at least demonstrates basic familiarity with physical science and math. Maybe the page should mention his qualifications, but appearing on TV doesn't require advanced study and years of lab work. --Annanoon (talk) 10:48, 7 June 2019 (UTC)

"questioning the existence of UFOs"[edit]

I don't supect anyone questions that people see things they can't identify; is it rather that Nye questions the existence of ET spacecraft, and if so, could we please get that clarified, with a reference? CogitoNotStirred (via telepathy) (talk) 14:05, 22 July 2019 (UTC)

Every story I can find is literally 2 sentences long, with exactly the same pull quote An example "it's probably one part of the military not telling the other part of the military what they're up to, for a good reason." ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:01, 22 July 2019 (UTC)
Perhaps we could take it out of the head paragraph and move it to Current Activities, then? CogitoNotStirred (via telepathy) (talk) 15:30, 22 July 2019 (UTC)
Yeah, that's good. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:48, 22 July 2019 (UTC)