The Secret Lives of Scientists and Engineers

by Katie Bowell, Curator of Cultural Interpretation

When you think of secret identities, you might first think of people like Clark Kent, Peter Parker and Bruce Wayne. You know, the mild-mannered reporters, photographers and millionaires of the world who done costumes that often look like footy-pajamas and go out to save the world. But there are other secret live-ers out there. What about a biochemist who’s also a beauty pageant queen? Or an astronomer with an enviable tie collection? A climatologist who  juggles?

Nova has begun compiling The Secret Lives of Scientists and Engineers, documenting the hidden talents and passions of the people who spend their days exploring the world around us. And the coolest part? Not only are the secret lives fascinating (founding member of a Harry Potter rock band, anyone?), but so are the scientific lives. Explore the site to learn more about a girl who discovered a supernova when she was just 15, a man who went on the search for a leech that only lives in the rear ends of hippos, and an engineer who is redesigning space suits.

What about you? Do you have a secret life?

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1 Response to “The Secret Lives of Scientists and Engineers”


  1. 1 Laurel Kornfeld October 7, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    I am a writer and actress with a not so secret life. I’ve become known affectionately online as “Plutogirl” since I have spent the last four years actively working to get Pluto–and all dwarf planets–reinstated as a subclass of planets. I run my own blog advocating planet status for these small planets and chronicling worldwide efforts toward that end, including documenting works of art, music, etc. on behalf of Pluto. I encourage people to buy products that keep Pluto in our solar system and to boycott those that take it out. My advocacy also includes public speaking and presentations, including one at the national Great Planet Debate, held at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab in August 2008. So far, I have recruited over 200 people to the Facebook Cause “Bring Pluto Back.” In 2009, I went back to school through Swinburne University to formally study astronomy. I’m often photographed wearing one of the many Save Pluto T-shirts I have bought over the years. Currently, I am working on a book “The Little Planet that Would Not Die: Pluto’s Story.”


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