BAHFest Houston 2017

BAHFest is a celebration of well-argued and thoroughly researched but completely incorrect scientific theory. Our brave speakers present their bad theories in front of a live audience and a panel of judges with real science credentials, who together determine who takes home the coveted BAHFest trophy. And eternal glory, of course.

Come join us on Saturday, February 17, 2018 at Rice University. Tickets are now available at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/bahfest-houston-2017-tickets-36560496429

Host and Keynote

Joel Watson

Joel Watson

Host

Joel Watson is a writer, voice actor and the Creative Director for Explosm, the studio behind Cyanide & Happiness. Their daily comics, YouTube animated shorts, Cyanide & Happiness Show on Seeso and intensely popular card game, Joking Hazard, reach millions of people around the world and entertain at least a portion of those they reach.
He is also the creator of the webcomics HijiNKS ENSUE and Sharksplode, and the inventor of a method for taking shots of maple bacon tequila out of a Cadbury Creme Egg called “The Sadbury Egg.” You can find him on most social media outlets @hijinksensue.
Jorge Cham

Jorge Cham

Keynote

Jorge Cham is the creator of Piled Higher and Deeper (PHD Comics), the comic strip about life (or the lack thereof) in Academia. Often called the Dilbert of academia, PHD has appeared in the Stanford, MIT, Caltech and Carnegie Mellon newspapers among others, and is published online where it is read by over 6 million visitors a year from over 1000 universities and colleges worldwide. Jorge Cham was born and raised in Panama. He obtained his B.S. from Georgia Tech and his M.S. and Ph.D. in Robotics from Stanford University. He was an Instructor and Research Associate at Caltech, where his work focused on “Smart” Neural Implants. Five PHD book collections have been published. His latest book, with Physicist Daniel Whiteson, is called “We Have No Idea: A Guide to the Unknown Universe.”

Judges

Phil Plait

Phil Plait

Judge

Phil Plait is an astronomer, science communicator, and sometimes Weinersmith co-conspirator. He writes the Bad Astronomy blog for SYFY (http://www.syfy.com/tags/bad-astronomy), was the head science writer for the first season of “Bill Nye Saves the World”, and was the science consultant for the CBS drama “Salvation”. He also wrote and hosted “Crash Course Astronomy”, which currently has over 25 million views on YouTube. He’s written three books: “Bad Astronomy”, “Death from the Skies!”, and “2^7 Nerd Disses: A Significant Quantity of Disrespect” with Zach Weinersmith and Jess Fink (https://www.amazon.com/Nerd-Disses-Significant-Quantity-Disrespect-ebook/dp/B00GI25TSC). It’s not widely known, but his PhD thesis was the inspiration for BAHFest.
Julia Saltz

Julia Saltz

Julia Saltz holds an AB in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology from Princeton University and a PhD in Population Biology from the University of California, Davis. She received postdoctoral training in the Molecular & Computational Biology department at the University of Southern California before joining Rice’s faculty in 2014. Her lab uses the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, to study the interplay between individuals, genetic variation and the environment, focusing specifically on how individuals engineer their social environments, and how experiences in the environment shape behavior over time. Her service activities include leading Rice’s Women in Natural Sciences (WiNS) group.
Nicole Stott

Nicole Stott

Judge

Seeing the Earth from space, Nicole had an epiphany.  In awe of the overwhelming beauty of our home planet, she knew that she would dedicate the rest of her life to sharing that experience with others.  She believes that sharing this perspective has the power to increase everyone’s appreciation of and obligation to care for our home planet and each other.

Always an Artist, Nicole brought a small watercolor kit with her on her mission to the ISS. She is the first Astronaut to Paint in Space.
Nicole is a veteran astronaut with two spaceflights and 104 days living and working in space on both the Space Shuttle and the International Space Station (ISS).  She performed one spacewalk, was the first person to fly the robotic arm to capture the free flying HTV cargo vehicle, she was the last crew member to fly to and from their ISS mission on a Space Shuttle, and she was a member of the crew of the final flight of the Space Shuttle Discovery, STS-133.  She is also a NASA Aquanaut who along with her NEEMO9 crew lived and worked in saturation during an 18-day mission on the Aquarius undersea habitat.
After 27 years with NASA, she is on her next adventure as a full-time Artist and SciArt Education Advocate.  Through her artwork, she uniquely shares the awesome beauty and impressions she was blessed to experience through the windows of her spacecraft.  She also continues to promote the amazing things we’re doing every day in space that benefit us all right here on Earth.  Combining her artwork and spaceflight experience, she is actively working to generate widespread interest in the inspiration that comes so wonderfully through the integration of Art and Science.