Massachusetts Institute of Technology / MIT Museum
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Fall 2014 Soap Box: How to Make Life and Influence Planets
Discover the origins of life on earth and how life itself can drastically alter the landscape of our planet. Then learn what prospects lie ahead of finding habitable planets and even other types of life outside of the Earth. Come with questions, share your thoughts, and leave with new knowledge and understanding.
Tuesday, 10/7: 6:00-7:30pm
Origins of Life on Earth
Discover what we can we infer about the origin of life from the genomes of living organisms and what the geological record tell us about the Earth's environments during life’s beginnings. What does this mean for the search for life beyond Earth?
Greg Fournier - Associate Professor of Geobiology, MIT
Francis Macdonald - Associate Professor of Geology, Harvard
Tuesday, 10/14: 6:00-7:30pm
The Invisible Majority
Most fossils are too small to see—most of life’s history is microbial. How do we identify signatures of microbial life in rocks? What do molecular fossils and structures built by microbes tell us, and how might we use them to recognize life elsewhere?
Ann Pearson - Professor of Environmental Sciences, Harvard
Giulio Mariotti - Crosby Postdoctoral Fellow, EAPS, MIT
Tuesday, 10/21: 6:00-7:30pm
Why Life Got Big
For much of the earth's history, microbes were the only living organisms on the planet. What spurred the evolution of larger sized and more diverse animals?
David Gold, Postdoctoral Associate, Summons Lab, MIT
David Johnston, Associate Professor of the Natural Sciences, Harvard
Tuesday, 10/28: 6:00-7:30pm
Life Beyond Earth - Mars and Exoplanets
Discover what we know about the possibility of life in the rest of our solar system and beyond. What does that mean for humanity in the future?
Christopher Carr, Research Scientist, MIT
Vlada Stamenkovic, Postdoctoral Associate, Habitability Labs, MIT
Archived videos of previous speakers can be viewed in an edited format on MIT World™.
If you have ideas for Soap Box, or are interested in sponsoring the series please let us know.