Have you ever thought about the person responsible for starting the movement behind eliminating Pluto as the 9th planet in our solar system? Said person was also awarded “World’s Sexiest Astrophysicist Alive” by People magazine in 2000. Spoiler Alert: That person is Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, and he will grace SXSW with his distinguished intellectual presence as a keynote speaker for Interactive today.
The first scientist to attract more than a million Twitter followers, Dr. Tyson has had a huge influence on scientists and the general public alike. He has been a frequent guest on the Daily Show, Colbert Report, Real Time with Bill Maher, and Jeopardy. From 2006 – 2011, he hosted the educational science show NOVA ScienceNow on PBS. Currently, he serves as the Frederick P. Rose Director of the Hayden Planetarium at the Rose Center for Earth and Space and a research associate in the department of astrophysics at the American Museum of Natural History. Tyson also hosts the popular radio show and podcast called “StarTalk”. A fun fact is that Adam Savage, recent StarTalk guest and host of Mythbusters, is also keynote speaker at SXSW Interactive.
Dr. Tyson has written ten books including two New York Times best-sellers Death By Black Hole and Space Chronicles, Facing the Ultimate Frontier as well as his memoir titled The Sky is Not the Limit: Adventures of an Urban Astrophysicist. Interested in learning more about the fall of Pluto as a planet? He wrote a book about that, too.
The recipient of 19 honorary doctorates, Dr. Tyson has also been awarded the NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal. His contributions to the public appreciation of the cosmos have been recognized by the International Astronomical Union in their official naming of asteroid “13123 Tyson”. In 2007, Time magazine selected Tyson as one of the 100 most influential people in the world.
Dr. Tyson has a long list of accomplishments, but the most recent exciting news is that tomorrow night, March 9, Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey premieres on 21st Century Fox networks around the United States and Dr. Tyson is the series’ presenter / narrator. The show is co-produced by Seth McFarlane and Ann Druyan, the widow of Carl Sagan who presented the original iconic series Cosmos: A Personal Voyage.