by ecorazzicontributor
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President Obama really knows how to make us TiVo shows, doesn’t he? We told you that the social media butterfly would be making an appearance on the Discovery Channel show Mythbusters, and now that it actually happened Wednesday night we’re here to give you the low down.

On the episode Obama stated that, “Science requires a lot of trial and error. Part of what Mythbusters is about is testing out various hypotheses, and I think we’ve got a big one that hasn’t been thoroughly tested.”

The challenge for hosts Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage was to test the hypothesis behind Archimedes’ solar death ray, which allegedly used giant mirrors to reflect sunlight towards attacking Roman ships around 212 BC, the end effect being that they would catch fire.

The president said that, “Nothing is more important to our country’s future than getting young people engaged in math and science.”

True that! And in the spirit of engaging that youth demographic, the team enlisted the help of 500 middle and high school students who tried to set a boat sitting in the San Francisco Bay on fire with mirrors. In the end, even with all that manpower, the boat heated up to about 300 degrees but no actual fire was started.

The hosts reminded everyone at home that failure isn’t a bad thing, but instead it means that you’ve ruled out one possibility and now have a new direction to discover even more.

Even though it’s a little odd to see the president on TV for purposes other than addressing our country from the confines of the Oval Office, it is empowering to see him taking a stand on where we need to be with education. Who knows, with any luck one of these kids could be the next scientist to set about solving some of our major environmental problems.

Keep studying kids!

Check out a clip from the episode here.

  • herwin

    its not green and its not gossip, so i get slightly confused again why, o why, i have to read this on Ecorazzi.
    Its not even interesting or funny, its just the pres who urges young kids to study math and science, not exactly rock and roll, eh.

    • don miguelo

      I would imagine there would be an update about this from the staff fairly soon, especially if this a policy change, wink-wink-nudge-nudge I’m looking at you website that is the “latest in green gossip” but should be “the latest in mostly green, interesting or just positive stories – especially in the past 2 weeks” hahaha. At least this one was tagged correctly.

      But I’m sure if enough posters question the change it could be addressed in an official way.

  • fern

    What part of harnessing the sun to channel a giant beam of energy isn’t green enough for you? Isn’t that what the focus of that particular show was?

    • don miguelo

      Well it was literally “to test the hypothesis behind Archimedes’ solar death ray, which allegedly used giant mirrors to reflect sunlight towards attacking Roman ships around 212 BC, the end effect being that they would catch fire.” That’s science, and nature is involved, and by association, energy (solar power).

      I think herwin is just noicing a general trend at ecorazzi that is new and as yet unexplained. Diva’s singing for the troops has nothing green either (and that one is tagged ‘green and famous’!) so it’s more about all that than this particular story, I think.

      For the record, it’s NOT about certain poster’s green standards, it’s about a recent change in this website’s direction (which they have every right to do, of course), but that change might go over better if it was announced on the website, IMO.

    • herwin

      Urm, this was some funny science program for young geeks about testing “cool” science hypothesis. This episode was about testing “death rays” about setting the enemies ships on fire with solar rays.
      The only words that the president muttered (as quoted above)were words about the importance about math and science and studying hard for the sake of The Bright Future Of Our Society.
      So yeah, it didnt strike me as a green episode or a green message.
      But then again, what you say, harnassing the sun into a beam of energy is very green, no doubt about that, so thanks for sharing that point of view. I guess we did read it diferently. :-)

  • BenCat1000

    The “hypothesis” behind Archimedes’ solar death ray is best understood after watching Ancient Aliens on the History channel………