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Re: Are you running Natural Selection from Mirage 3D??

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  • Patricia Reiff
    We have been running Earth science shows in the Houston Museum of Natural Science since 1999. Our best selling show Earth s Wild Ride now has 69 licensed
    Message 1 of 13 , Nov 16, 2011
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      We have been running Earth science shows in the Houston Museum of Natural Science since 1999. Our best selling show "Earth's Wild Ride" now has 69 licensed copies in ten languages - probably one of the best selling (in terms of sheer numbers) planetarium shows out there. We have more than 140 portable (and small fixed) Discovery Domes out in the field, and probably 75% have at least one earth science or life science show. HMNS created "Lucy's Cradle" (which features evolution) back in 2007 when Lucy first came to the US, and as far as I know, noone ever complained about the content of the show, even in Texas! Admittedly, Lucy's cradle does not sell as well as Earth's Wild Ride, but it has sold copies every year. The HMNS show on extremeophiles "Fantasy Worlds" is being updated this year. "Microcosm" (a variant of the E&S version) and "Body Code" (the new HMNS show, which also uses some E&S footage), also do quite well.

      I like Natural Selections but haven't sold any yet.

      So, bottom line: Earth and Life science shows DO sell well, particularly in the portable rental market. Teachers frequently choose "Force 5" when they are teaching about weather, "Body Code" when they are teaching about the human body, and "It's about Time" when they want to teach seasons.

      Actually, I just ran the statistics. Counting the four Rice shows and 13 HMNS shows that we have been involved in developing, (not counting We Choose Space which opens this weekend, or the wonderful shows from other producers which we sell)
      The "Earth Science Focus" shows, as a group, have done the best: Earth's Wild Ride, Force 5, Dinosaur Prophecy, Ice Worlds, Secrets of the Dead Sea
      Astronomy shows have done next best: Impact Earth (which of course has some Earth), It's About time (ditto), Amazing Astronomers of Antiquity, 2012: Mayan Prophecies (fairly new still), Star of Bethlehem
      Space shows have always done well: Future Moon and now We Choose Space
      and Life Shows are steady: Body Code, Lucy's Cradle, Microcosm, and Fantasy Worlds (plus Life in the Universe which is new)

      All our shows (plus some of other producers which we sell) can be watched in their entirety online in widescreen and now also in fisheye mode from our website
      http://tinyurl.com/domeshows

      On Nov 15, 2011, at 2:49 PM, Linke, Matthew wrote:

      > If you are running "Natural Selection," I would like to hear about your experience thus far. We have had a surprising amount of negativity on running "such a show" in the planetarium. Your feedback would be helpful—maybe comforting.

      > Matt Linke
      > University of Michigan Museum of Natural History planetarium
    • Simon at Space Odyssey
      Hi Matt I certainly haven t shown Natural Selection in my mobile planetarium here in the UK, although if I had the money to afford it, I d love to. I can
      Message 2 of 13 , Nov 16, 2011
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        Hi Matt

        I certainly haven't shown "Natural Selection" in my mobile planetarium here
        in the UK, although if I had the money to afford it, I'd love to.

        I can only offer support and encouragement to you to continue using it to
        educate the public as it's an awesome and inspirational film with lots of
        important science in it that deserves as wide and diverse an audience base
        as possible. At its UK premiere at the British Association of Planetaria
        conference at Winchester last spring, Robin Sip (its creator) deservedly
        received a hugely enthusiastic standing ovation from the delegates.

        Respect the nay-sayers for their opinion, but be encouraged that you're
        doing a great service by showing that fantastic film.

        Best regards

        Simon Ould
        Space Odyssey mobile planetarium
        www.spaceodyssey.co.uk



        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "Linke, Matthew" <mlinke@...>
        To: <fulldome@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2011 8:49 PM
        Subject: [fulldome] Are you running Natural Selection from Mirage 3D??


        Hi,

        If you are running "Natural Selection," I would like to hear about your
        experience thus far. We have had a surprising amount of negativity on
        running "such a show" in the planetarium. Your feedback would be
        helpful-maybe comforting.

        Matt Linke
        University of Michigan Museum of Natural History planetarium
      • cja31497
        ... For those who haven t seen it, there s an excellent article in the latest issue of Physics Today, listing some of the other words/phrases that hold very
        Message 3 of 13 , Nov 16, 2011
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          --- In fulldome@yahoogroups.com, "Ken Scott @ Digital Chaotics" <ken.scott@...> wrote:

          > I suspect you're referring to a few opinionated (and noisy) people who
          > insist that Natural Selection is "just a theory", and they want
          > Intelligent Design to receive equal time. I'm afraid you can't ignore
          > them, but you can point out that their understanding of the word
          > "theory" is incorrect. They seem to think that "theory" means the same
          > as "hypothesis" or "don't really know for sure", which those of us
          > who've studied science know isn't what a theory is at all.

          For those who haven't seen it, there's an excellent article in the latest issue of Physics Today, listing some of the other words/phrases that hold very different meanings for scientists than for the lay public. The article is about how scientists can do a better job communicating the science of global climate change, but I don't want to stir that pot here. For purposes of this discussion, just scroll down to the last table:

          http://www.physicstoday.org/resource/1/phtoad/v64/i10/p48_s1?bypassSSO=1

          Chris Anderson
          Production Specialist
          Faulkner (not yet fulldome) Planetarium
          College of Southern Idaho
          Twin Falls, Idaho, USA
        • marshalljay44
          Tom, I agree with your response. People, like it or not, you are in the entertainment arena when dealing with the general public and the science arena when
          Message 4 of 13 , Nov 17, 2011
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            Tom, I agree with your response.

            People, like it or not, you are in the entertainment arena when dealing with the general public and the science arena when dealing with the schools and universities. All I can say is, watch your customer service skills when dealing with the general public. You can take your stands on scientific principles and such, and you will be turning off half your potential audience. If you can afford to do that, go for it.

            Spoken like a true businessman, Tom. Keep up the good work.

            --- In fulldome@yahoogroups.com, Tom Casey <tom@...> wrote:

            On Nov 16, 2011, at 2:36 AM, Ken Scott @ Digital Chaotics wrote:

            > I suspect you're referring to a few opinionated (and noisy) people who
            > insist that Natural Selection is "just a theory", and they want
            > Intelligent Design to receive equal time. I'm afraid you can't ignore
            > them, but you can point out that their understanding of the word
            > "theory" is incorrect. They seem to think that "theory" means the same
            > as "hypothesis" or "don't really know for sure", which those of us
            > who've studied science know isn't what a theory is at all.

            > I wish you the best. It's a frustrating conversation.

            I usually ignore these kinds of conversations, but let me mention another way of looking at this without any of the usual arguments. From an an independent producer's view, approaching it with a stubborn "it's science, dummy" attitude is a no win route for our market.

            Think about it this way. I'm not sure about other parts of the world, but in the US, more than half of your potential paying planetarium audience rejects the evolutionary belief, opinion, or whatever you claim the definition of "theory" is.

            So it doesn't matter how sure you are, as a planetarium ,about your science, by taking an approach where you consider over half of your audience as noisy, you have thrown away half of your potential ticket sales. And if that half does purchase a ticket, it may be their last after the experience... and, of course, being noisy, they will spread the word.

            In a market where funding for shows is difficult to gather does this make sense to approach it this way? I would suggest not.

            Tom




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            Tom Casey
            President & Creative DIrector

            100 First Avenue - Suite 450
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          • Ken Scott @ Digital Chaotics
            ... Well said, all. Tom Casey identified the crux of the matter: if your primary mandate is entertainment, business, and profit, then you have a fiduciary
            Message 5 of 13 , Nov 19, 2011
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              On 11/16/2011 6:38 AM, Linke, Matthew wrote:
              > If they're shooting at you, you must be doing something right.

              Well said, all.

              Tom Casey identified the crux of the matter: if your primary mandate is
              entertainment, business, and profit, then you have a fiduciary duty to
              respond to the marketplace. On the other hand, if your primary mandate
              is education, then your duty is to place education above profit. Not an
              easy road, by any means, but certainly worthy of praise.

              --
              Ken Scott (VJ Chaotic)
              Founder and CEO of Digital Chaotics
              http://www.DigitalChaotics.com
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