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Sensing Space

Ariel Waldman ( & Science Hack Day)
Location: Fire House

Less than 5% of the universe is solid. Science often helps make the invisible visible through its quest for knowledge. However, simply making the invisible visible is only half the battle. It’s how we can cleverly experience the otherwise invisible nature of our existence that can have a profound impact on scientific progress. Through Science Hack Days, particle physicists team up with designers, marketers join forces with open source rocket scientists, writers collaborate with molecular biologists, and developers partner with school kids. Leagues of science hackers are mashing up ideas, mediums, industries and people to create crude yet cunning devices that change how we experience science. From the collisions of subatomic particles to the explosions of supernovas, this presentation takes you on an unusual trip through the weird, whimsical and fun ways to physically sense our universe.

Photo of Ariel Waldman

Ariel Waldman & Science Hack Day

Ariel Waldman is the founder of, a directory of ways to participate in space exploration, and the global instigator of Science Hack Day, an event that brings together scientists, technologists, designers and people with good ideas to see what they can create in one weekend. Ariel is currently an appointed National Academy of Sciences committee member of a congressionally-requested study on the future of human spaceflight. The Committee on Human Spaceflight has been tasked with a study to review the long-term goals of the U.S. human spaceflight program and make recommendations to enable a sustainable U.S. human spaceflight program. She is also a fellow at Institute For The Future. Recently, Ariel received an honor from the White House for being a Champion of Change in citizen science.

For her work on Science Hack Day, Ariel has been awarded grants from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. In 2012, she authored a white paper on Democratized Science Instrumentation that was presented to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Previously, Ariel worked at NASA’s CoLab program whose mission was to connect communities inside and outside NASA to collaborate. She has also been a sci-fi movie gadget columnist for Engadget and a digital anthropologist at VML.