Monday, November 29, 2004

100 Thing to Do Before You Die

New Scientist published this fun little booklet free with its 27/Nov/2004 issue. In "100 Thing to Do Before You Die (plus a few to do afterwards)" each idea is described in a paragraph or two. They serve not only as entertainment (some are impractical or even impossible) but also little insights into the natural world. Some of the items are submitted by various science and popular science celebrities. Most items also have concise but detailed instructions on how to do stuff you previous thought was impossible for non-scientists.

I've been able to cross a few things off the list already, (mostly unglamorous):

  • Inhale Helium
  • Experience the nocturnal world
  • Ride the Bangkok rush hour
  • Watch the night sky
  • Read A Brief History of Time - I did, honest! It says "read" not "understand".
  • Fall in love

There are some far more glamorous and interesting ones though, and quite a few that are funny but impossible. Here are some that appeal to me and I think I have a chance of doing in my lifetime or can be done in the kitchen:

  • Swim in a bioluminescent bay
  • Extract your own DNA
  • Find a meteorite
  • Make a dilatent liquid
  • Weigh your own head
  • Measure the speed of light with chocolate

Finally a few of the more mind mending ones:

  • emphatise with a machine
  • See an atom
  • Be a gecko
  • Visit Tuvalu before it sinks