p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l ...
p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l ...
p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l ...
Integrated
and
differential
creativity
Planet, Tyson reminded us, means wanderer. To the ancients, they
wandered against t...
Elemental
nationalism
The right hand side of the periodic table were discovered and
named by the British. They are inert, ...
Cultivating
Science
Two-thirds of stars that have names have Arabic names. 1000 years
ago, the Arab culture sparked “one o...
p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l ...
p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l ...
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Neil deGrasse Tyson is about to crack “a knowledge egg on your ass” #CannesLions #OgilvyCannes

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Neil deGrasse Tyson at #CannesLions 2014 with Worldwide Chief Creative Officer of Ogilvy & Mather, Tham Khai Meng

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Neil deGrasse Tyson is about to crack “a knowledge egg on your ass” #CannesLions #OgilvyCannes

  1. 1. p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l e C o l l a b o r at i o n “a knowledge egg on your ass” Neil deGrasse Tyson is about to crack
  2. 2. p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l e C o l l a b o r at i o n neil degrasse tyson’s 13 part reboot of the famous Cosmos series is airing all over the world, and he’s become this generation’s Carl Sagan—only way cooler. His Cannes talk¬—the fourth entry in the Ogilvy & Inspire series—earned a standing ovation (the first one we’ve seen at Cannes this year) from a packed house.
  3. 3. p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l e C o l l a b o r at i o n Accessory to Planetcide Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson had something he needed to get off his chest. “I was blamed for killing Pluto,” he said, “but I was just an accessory. I drove the getaway car.” But he’s not recanting his confession—it’s still not a planet. Even though an American discovered Pluto, a British girl named it. After all, at the time of Pluto’s discovery, Americans were enjoying a widely-advertised mineral laxative branded Pluto Water. Just remember: “When nature won’t, Pluto will.” 1
  4. 4. Integrated and differential creativity Planet, Tyson reminded us, means wanderer. To the ancients, they wandered against the black velvet of the night sky. This inspired wonder—and poetry: “When I trace at my pleasure the wanderings of the heavenly bodies, I no longer touch earth with my feet. I stand in the presence of Zeus himself.” 1500 years Issac Newton looked up at the stars and was having none of that. He went off and just figured it out. “Talk about creativity. This is stuff we slog through today, and he invented it just because he had a problem to solve.” In the hands of a creative mind, “what was previously viewed to be complex was made simple.” Those are the people who drive the world. When confronted with something new, they apply the tools and methods they have learned, and the figure it out. 2 p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l e C o l l a b o r at i o n
  5. 5. Elemental nationalism The right hand side of the periodic table were discovered and named by the British. They are inert, and are called the noble gasses. “They don’t interact with anybody else. You’ve got your class system on the periodic table, just so you know.” The Americans, by contrast, discovered a whole bunch along the bottom row. Uranium, Neptunium, and Plutonium (the last one named for that non-planet Pluto). Plutonium was discovered in the 1940 and had it weaponized by 1945. Look what that said about the US at that time: “The United States valued research in physics driven by war.” Other countries put great scientists and their discoveries on currency. The US has only Ben Franklin, and he’s there for being a Founding Father, not a great investigator into electricity. 3 p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l e C o l l a b o r at i o n
  6. 6. Cultivating Science Two-thirds of stars that have names have Arabic names. 1000 years ago, the Arab culture sparked “one of the most intellectually fertile periods in the history of the human species.” Algebra was invented then—algorithm, too, Arabic numerals, major advances in navigation and medicine. All of that happened “while Europe was disemboweling heretics.” A culture of scientific curiosity is no guaranteed thing. In the wake of a the codification of what a good Muslim should do (hint: manipulating numbers wasn’t on the list), Arab scientific discoveries dried up. If you’re content that happens is the will of God, “you will not be the one who discovers gravity…You have been removed from the company all of those whose curiosity leads to solutions to problems.” Contrast this with the Jews today. The Jews have 25% of the Nobel Prizes in science, despite having a population of just 15 million. “Look at Islam,” Tyson laments. “Three. I lie awake at night wondering how many secrets of the universe lay undiscovered because 2 billion people are no longer participating in that exercise.” Tyson wonders what will happen to his country, the place that “tried to invent the 21st century In the United States, we’re losing it.” 4 p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l e C o l l a b o r at i o n
  7. 7. p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l e C o l l a b o r at i o n The Source of Creativity Scientific curiosity is important to ad folks, too, since “It’s all related. If you’re in a creative culture, you solve problems. You discover problems you didn’t even know were there previously.” After that explanation, Tyson showed the audience a map distorted by the vibrancy of each nation’s scientific culture. The results tracked closely to the distribution of health and wellbeing around the globe. The US has done well, perhaps, because it is an irreverent culture. But what of cultures where you cannot correct your elders. Can you ever break free of their world view? Is irreverence, Tyson wonders, “the source of creativity.” If you step outside of well-trod paths, you’ll make mistakes, to be sure. But, “if you stop making mistakes, you are no longer on the frontier. Because the mistakes you would make are mistakes no one would have ever made before—because no one has ever stepped there before.” 5
  8. 8. p h o t o c r e d i t : N A S A , E S A , an d T h e H u b b l e H e r i ta g e ( S T S c I /A UR A ) - E S A / H u b b l e C o l l a b o r at i o n “I was blamed for killing Pluto... but I was just an accessory. I drove the getaway car.” Neil deGrasse Tyson

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