Kirsten Sanford

November 12th, 2007

I’ve been interested in science for as long as I can remember, but it was somewhere in the middle of graduate school that I realized I didn’t want to be a scientist for the rest of my life. Somebody could have told me that a little earlier! But, nevertheless, the journey I have been on that allowed me such a realization also helped me to recognize that I am good at teaching, and that my experience in science research enhances my capacity for helping others to understand it. I want to help inform people about science and the important place it holds in our society. So, I have decided to become a science journalist and media personality, and in doing so infiltrate print, broadcast, and internet mediums with science.

In 1999, I started a radio show called This Week in Science with a good friend. The friend has since moved on to different pastures, but I have maintained the program and brought it to more people than ever before by turning it into a podcast in 2005. I have even more plans in store for this little radio show. Can you say video-cast?

In 2006, I worked at WNBC-TV in NYC as a producer for the medical/health reporter, Dr. Max Gomez. TV is quite a different world from radio, but my whistle is whetted. I’m currently pursuing the many various science video programming employment options.

I started this blog as well, so that I could practice and sharpen my writing skills, and share my thoughts with others.

I received my PhD in Physiology with an emphasis in neurophysiology in December of 2006 from UC Davis. My area of specialization is avian learning and memory, and my dissertation topic was on spatial memory in non-storing songbirds. Don’t tell me any jokes about bird brains, please. I have heard them all.

In my spare time, I also study tae-kwon-do, and received my black-belt in 2005. When I’m not kicking or looking at brains, I enjoy hula hooping to dance music turned up loud. Occasionally, I will even add fire to the mix with my extra-special fire hoop. I am a multi-year veteran of Burning Man, and will most likely be making the annual pilgrimage to the desert again this year.

I hope that you enjoy this blog, and if you have the time and inclination, my radio show as well. If you would like to see my science media resume, click here. If you would like to see my CV, click here.

105 Responses to “Kirsten Sanford”

  1. Juan Frias on November 27, 2007 5:37 pm

    Hi Kirsten,

    I am a big fan of TWIS and listen to you and Justin every week on my iPod. I also just found out (to my surprise) that you use twitter, have a web-blog and a video podcast which I find very informative and entertaining. How do you find the time to do all this?

    I also found it very interesting when Justin started interviewing you while you where away for travel and where calling into the show. You two should really think about having a show interviewing each other and posting it to the home page so people know a little more about you.

    On a personal note I am always very interested on what religious and spiritual beliefs scientists have. Now days it is pretty hard to reconcile science and beliefs without sounding like a total right wing lunatic or a hard-core skeptic. So far Buddhism seems like a good candidate for me (aside from reincarnation) so I’ve been taking a closer look. How about you, what have been your experiences? Have you asked other scientist about this or now of any surveys on the topic? Inquiring minds what to know!

    Thanks for all the great stories and keep up the great work.

    - Juan the Software Engineer in Marin County

  2. Bob K Mertz on January 8, 2008 11:36 pm

    Hey Kirsten,
    I am a new listener to TWiS and an almost instant fan. Its rare to find someone that takes things that can be really deep to post and presents it in a refreshing way that anyone can understand and the advanced can appreciate. As I read some of the bio stuff you wrote about yourself I was completely floored to see that “The Bird Brain” isn’t just a random reference but because you actually have an interest in the study of avian animals. Interestingly enough this is something that I became interested in about a year ago. I’ve always had a love for pets (especially fish) but I began working at a pet store and fell in love with a cockatiel that I had to buy and bring home. A little more than a year later I now have a cockatiel, a sun conure, and a quaker parakeet…. and I am fascinated by the way they think and what their responses are to their surroundings. I’ve learned an awful lot about myself and the human mind in general just by watching my birds and thinking on the differences in behaviors.

    Anyway, I thought I would pass along a blog entry that I made a while ago that I think you may find interesting. If you get a chance to read it and can leave a comment, that would be great. The URL is

    I’m really glad that I found your podcast and I am looking forward to listening to it every week. I hope that 2008 is a great year for you!

  3. Perrin Davis on January 9, 2008 3:51 pm

    Got a question … I’m editing a textbook and I’m trying to find out how many neurons there are in the average chimp’s brain. I am having absolutely no luck at all, and my Web research led me to your page. Could you suggest a resource where I might find this arcane bit of information?

    Thanks …

    Perrin Davis

  4. Carlos Batista on January 11, 2008 9:34 pm


    So I just watched your video podcast of Food Science and I really enjoyed it. Reminds me of Good Eats on Food Network. Anyways, I couldn’t help to notice your LOL necklace. It’s pretty much the coolest piece of jewelery I’ve seen. After about 30 minutes of looking online I gave up, and decided to contact you and ask you about it. :D Pretty random I know, but I think that the necklace would make an awesome gift. So if it’s not too much trouble just let me know where I could find that. Thanks a bunch

  5. Tom on January 15, 2008 2:38 pm

    “My area of specialization is avian leaning and memory, …”

    Is most avian leaning a result of one-legged birds?

  6. Jeffrey on February 7, 2008 2:04 pm

    Great blog. here, here.


  7. gabriel on February 14, 2008 4:11 pm


    It was nice meeting you at the GGG (girlsgonegeek) podcast academy last month :)

    I recently came across this Pop! Pop tech! Podcast of Homaro Cantu (he’s a bit
    err eccentric but cool) and I thought of your podcast and was a wonderful
    synergy it would be…

    Hope you can check it out :)


    I remember reading an article about him in Fast Company Magazine in 2006

  8. smallduck on February 16, 2008 5:06 am

    I just heard my first episode of your funny TWiS show! Wow, I’m a fan now. And I just told all my crackbook friends so. I’ll point some people to your foodscience show too, people who I know are into that kind of thing. If you’re ever back in Vancouver and desperately need to find house music (say), let me know! : p

  9. Aaron Campbell on February 20, 2008 2:07 pm

    What’s the word on the Video-Cast? Are you going to let me play it on in January 2010?

    ***Roger Rabbit***
    “ppppplllllllease Kiki”

    It is non-profit, for the love of science only:)

  10. Em on March 5, 2008 3:10 pm

    Happy World Maths Day!
    Keep up the good TWiSness

  11. Mark Lancaster on March 28, 2008 3:22 pm

    Hey Kirsten, just recently started watching popSiren and definitely enjoy the show. Keep up the highly entertaining work!

  12. Kevin on April 11, 2008 6:19 am

    I just discovered you through Twitter and am intrigued by your expertise on food science. In that area, do you talk about food allergies at all? I have strong suspicions that my son has allergies to dairy products that impact him beyond simply digestive issues. I’m amazed that traditional allergists completely dismiss the notion that foods can have no other impact on the body other than digestive.

    What’s your take?


  13. ruminator on April 18, 2008 10:51 pm

    Greetings, Young Ph.D. Welcome to the world of the terminal degree. ;) I discovered your website via a search after I saw a few episodes you did for MacBreak. I was intrigued by the young woman with the doctorate who is working the technical circuit.

    I wish you all the best on your goal of working as a scientist in the media. We need rational heads who can convey the technical in understandable ways.

  14. Richard FineMan on April 28, 2008 4:35 pm


    I’m hooked.

  15. Shawn on May 10, 2008 11:58 am

    Hi There, I heard your interview on The Skeptics Guide and Its nice to see a real life Gorgous Woman in Science,I agree the sterio-types with women are skewed in the media.Although one of my favorite movies The Saint does portray a gorgous woman of science.there…Goodluck…

  16. Ian Dodd on May 13, 2008 1:13 pm

    Just heard you on the Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe podcast and have now subscribed to TWIS. First episode is now downloading and I’m looking forward to it.

    I was particularly intrigued by your comments about “smart is sexy” girls and science. I have a 16 year old daughter, tall, California blonde, gorgeous (if I do say so myself) who also has a black belt in TKD (though she has now set that aside for basketball). Last week I had to take her to the doctor who, to make small talk, asked where she saw herself in 10 years. Her response, “In grad school, finishing my Ph.D. in astrophysics”, left the poor doc completely slack-jawed and speechless. The look on his face to me was priceless!

    The public presence of women like you and Rebecca (skepchicks) Watson is a great reminder that it’s okay to be sexy AND athletic AND a rocket scientist. Maybe someday my daughter will be a guest on TWIS.

  17. Bryce on May 13, 2008 2:42 pm

    I’m catching up on my Skeptics Guide podcast and it lead me to your site.
    I just wanted to let you know that 1/2 way through paragraph two of your bio it says “avian leaning and memory” which I think is supposed to be “learning”.
    Keep up the interesting work!

  18. Dave C. on May 16, 2008 1:04 am

    Just listened to my first episode of TWiS (Brain-Kluge show). Very nice.

    You may be interested in a couple more excellent books on brain stuff. “Brain Rules” by Dr. John Medina just came out - extremely interesting. Also working my way through “On Intelligence” by Jeff Hawkins which discusses primarily how the neocortex and the senses work. Good stuff.

  19. Naomi R on May 28, 2008 8:28 pm

    What a fantastic blog from a fantastic scientist!

    It is wonderful to see a young woman of your talent choose to go into teaching and media. Way to influence young girls (and boys) And me too!

    Thanks Dr Kiki!

  20. Dr. Jimbo - Team Robomaster on June 22, 2008 7:40 pm

    Great site and talented journalist. Keep up the great work and magnetic reporting.

  21. Brian on June 26, 2008 2:17 am

    I miss your show Food Science. I hope it returns in one form or another. I have an idea for a topic: Flour. Bleached, Unbleached, Bread, All Purpose, Cake, Quick Mixing (Wondra)? Only one other request. Take your time. Sometimes your presentation is a little quick-fire. Some people, like me, need a second or two for some things to sink in before you go to the next. When it’s all read like one paragraph, it sometimes loses some meaning. But I enjoy the information and the presentation. Thanks!

  22. Watch The Science Word « Skepacabra on August 9, 2008 10:54 am

    […] The Science Word Dr. Kirsten Sanford, host of the This Week in Science podcast and author of the science blog The Bird’s Brain […]

  23. Philippe on August 12, 2008 3:56 pm

    I’m a PhD student working on actin cytoskeleton in Paris, France.
    I discovered you in “food science”. you’re great!
    keep making great podcasts and videos.
    Congratulations for your excellent work!
    Thanks to you, I’m sure more people will be interested in science and maybe you’ll make some children want to do a PhD!

  24. sf on August 14, 2008 4:38 pm

    typo in your bio?
    “My area of specialization is avian leaning and memory”
    Avian leaning or avian learning?
    all the best,

  25. Laura on September 12, 2008 10:15 am

    I am reading about you in my C&E News. I, too, am a lip gloss loving scientist but more importantly, I am a new mom. I’ve recently returned to work and have found out that I contain an excess of lipase enzyme in my milk and have storage issues. I read that I heat it to 180F to denature the enzyme but for how long at that temp and is that really the minimum temp required to deactivate the enzyme? I do not have time or the milk volume available to experiment so I was taking a chance to hear your opinion. Thanks.

  26. Ryuho on September 24, 2008 1:38 am

    Saw you on System (Revision3), you’re probably just a quick replacement for Patrick, but you were great. Hope to see more of you in podcasts.


  27. Jered Reynolds on September 29, 2008 1:38 pm

    I must say that I miss your food science podcast. It was very funny and entertaining. It is because of this podcast and the most recent TWIS that I pose these questions to you.
    I have been the food news portion of the cooking up a story podcast and the question keeps coming up about the value of science in food. Has all of the changes influenced by the scientific community made food better? Their episodes on the michael pollan, the movie King Corn and the series on carlo petrini are those that interested me the most. Links to all follow made tiny to reduce irritation. and last Thanks

  28. Scott on November 17, 2008 10:19 am

    From one science geek to another, great job! Love what your doing, and watching you do it. wink wink.

  29. Sara on December 16, 2008 2:30 pm

    I’m a recent PhD graduate in Marine Biology and Biochemistry with an undergradute degree in Journalism. Like you, I’d like to escape the lab and pursue a career in science writing. Do you have any advice for a fledgling?

  30. Vedpal Yadav on December 21, 2008 5:39 am

    Ah! I am Food Technologist and a teacher for Diploma in Food Technology students. I appreciate your videos on on Food Science. i would love to see some more for food digestion etc. We all learn and laugh a lot while watching your videos. Thanks for opening new window in teaching Food Science.
    Vedpal Yadav, Haryana, India

  31. Tony Carolla on December 22, 2008 3:01 pm

    Thanks for a great source of scientific information from a grounded point of view. I am an armchair scientist, who doesn’t have a degree beyond HS, but I have done much reading, and I strive to understand things that appear on my radar, beyond what most dumbed-down media sources tell you, but not quite at the textbook level. I am formulating an interesting hypothesis, and would be interested in your opinion of it. If you are interested, email me and I can summarize it, and maybe you can tell me if I am completely off the deep-end of sanity, or if I might just have hit on something that is core to humanity.

  32. Duncan on February 3, 2009 6:49 am

    Hi there KiKi,
    I heard you recently on TWIT with Leo and thought I’d follow you on twitter.
    I was happily surprised that you hold a black belt in TKD, as I’m hoping to grade to 2nd degree this year.

    Great site and keep on kicking :)

  33. Thorarin Bjarnason on February 7, 2009 7:30 pm

    Hi Dr Kiki,

    I have subscribed to your rss feed using Drupal’s feed reader. For some reason it does not pick up your feed. Does anyone else experience these difficulties? Maybe some people don’t notice and just assume your blog is inactive.

    If you wants to see the issue drop me a line .

  34. Douglas Arrison on February 9, 2009 2:13 am

    Hi Kiki,

    I stumbled onto your blog in the midst of a wholly unrelated task, and watched a few of your videos. Great stuff! I’ll be back. Thank you for your insight!



  35. REALscience on February 26, 2009 6:28 pm

    Hi Kirsten,

    Picture it, Spokane October 2007. It was the CASW/NASW conference. We were hanging out and sitting on a LONG bus ride to the Tri Cities and PNNL talking about taking over the new media science world. Remember, those good old days?

    Let’s reconnect and start strategizing. Reciprocal link?

    Take care,


  36. Jon on March 6, 2009 10:59 am

    What’s up with Potential Energy? I really liked the topics and discussions. Is it dead, or is there the potential to bring it back?

  37. Julie on March 12, 2009 12:33 pm

    Just watched one of your food science videos and it was so cool and quirky that I googled your name to find out if you were just a personality or really a scientist. Apparently you really are both. I am a mom of three who used to own a daycare and am now going back to school and upgrading my science and loving learning new things. Thanks for making me smile while trying to learn a thing or two. You have obviously found your path.

  38. Daniel Marmolejo on March 19, 2009 3:29 am

    I am a big fan of Food Science, thank you for sharing your food knowledge. I do have one question, I took a beverage management test and never found a sufficient answer to a beer question. The question was asking why beer went so well with spicy foods. I was hoping to get an answer that explains the science more in a classic “food science” style. Thank you. Maybe you could even have a new episode on this. I’m local “Lodi” if you need an apprentice for your next shows, will work to learn.

    Thanks for your time.

  39. Roland on April 3, 2009 10:36 pm


    maybe this can explain a little more than Dr. Bestseller… The real questions, why objects fall to the ground and what is making graity? No answer yet? Checkout this page maybe you can find some here -> ;)

    All the best
    put a smile on the rest

  40. DJ on April 15, 2009 9:26 pm

    Hi Dr. Sanford.

    I just wanted to say that it’s been a real treat for me listening to the old Potential Energy podcasts. It’s been enlightening, especially the Water/Energy Nexus. I’m hoping you can help direct me towards some information.

    I am putting together a poster for my Environmental History course and would like to trace water usage per energy source as a comparison. Do you happen to have those sources mentioned in the podcast - I believe they were studies by Sandia Labs? In any case - continue on. Looking forward to hearing from you and to checking out your other podcasts!


  41. Jeremy on April 29, 2009 6:24 pm

    I believe that you have a typo in your bio. Quoted line: “…December of 2006 from UC Davis. My area of specialization is avian leaning and memory…”. Did you mean “learning” instead of “leaning”? Or do birds lean when they are trying to recall a memory :-)

    Hope you have a great day!


  42. Ken on May 7, 2009 9:57 am

    Why do birds suddenly appear

    every time

    Kiki is near?

  43. Scott Nuffer on May 7, 2009 2:25 pm

    Hi Dr. Kiki,

    Can I make a request? Would you have your Science hour available in Mp3 format for those of us who want to listen while in the car and don’t have time to sit in front of the computer to watch? Thanks!

  44. john rael on May 11, 2009 12:16 pm

    Thought you might like this:

  45. RFS on June 10, 2009 11:15 am


    All the red-tailed hawks I see nowadays are perched on light poles at freeway onramps waiting for cars to squash bunnies and squirrels. Is this going to affect the way their brains work? Evolve them from predators into scavengers?


  46. Billy Simons on June 25, 2009 2:40 pm

    Hi Kristen, you beautiful hunk of woman. I have a red hot news flash for you. The film that Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin made in 1967 in Northern California at Bluff Creek of Bigfoot was real. Here is what they filmed 42 years ago on that October day. Long before Jesus was born there were thousands of slaves who ran off around the world and started their own countries. When these slaves ran off there was a large group of men and boys of all different ages and sizes that took off and ended up in Africa. Some of them were large and tall. As tall as 9 ft. or taller. There were giants back then just like there’s giants now. Some of these men and boys went exploring to Borneo and caught female Orangutans and took them to South America and had sex with them and created the American Indian. The men and boys who stayed in Africa caught female Gorillas and had sex with them and created the Black man. When scientists found the bones in Africa they thought we evolved from a female Chimpanzee. But it wasn’t a natural evolution it was a man made evolution. That’s where Bigfoot, Sasquatch, Yeti, Orangutan Man and the Skunk Ape comes from. They are half man and half Gorilla and half man and half Orangutan. They use to call the American Indian the red man. The Orangutan has reddish hair. When those men bred out the hair the Indian’s skin remained red. The Gorilla has black hair and skin. When those men bred out the hair the Black man’s skin remained black. Bigfoot and the rest are not prehistoric creatures from millions of years ago but they are man made creatures from several thousand years ago. Some of the Indians and Africans are tall. And some of the Bigfoots are tall. They are tall because the men who created them were tall. Scientists believe that we evolved from a female Chimpanzee. Have you ever seen an 8 ft. tall Chimpanzee? I haven’t either. The creature that Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin filmed in 1967 was half man and half Gorilla. It was a female Bigfoot that they named Patty. Patty was not a man in a costume, she is not our missing link, and she is not a figment of our imagination. Patty was a creature that was created by men having sex with female Gorillas and Orangutans a long time ago. BS

  47. Bob Rayburn on June 26, 2009 11:48 am

    Your Brink link led me to a video on solar power collectors in space which are due to microwave beam power down to CA by 2016.
    This power could be used to separate the hydrogen out of water.
    Then pipe the hydrogen as a basis of a hydrogen economy.
    These thoughts are also in Gerard K. O’Neil’s book “2081 A Hopeful view of the Human Future.”

  48. DAN on June 29, 2009 8:47 am

    you are very beautiful
    and very funny
    ideal woman

  49. Brian luther on July 8, 2009 9:50 pm

    When is Dr. Kiki’s Science Hour on TWIT going to show up as a downloadable podcast instead of having to go to ODTV.ME and download.

  50. Everett on July 21, 2009 7:32 am

    So, am I the only one who does not know what a burning man pilgramage is?

  51. Jeremy on July 24, 2009 8:07 am

    Dr. Kiki,
    Love watching your podcast, science has always interested me. If I had a professor as smart, funny, and beautiful as you, I might of actually paid more attention, better late then never I guess ;-)

  52. Amit Patel on July 28, 2009 10:06 am

    Is it just me or have the comments on this post gotten stranger and stranger from 2007 to 2009?

  53. John Kahler on July 31, 2009 8:19 pm

    Dr. Kiki,

    Thank you so much for all of your work. Now I have something to do besides staring at my Seti screensaver, hoping for hits.

    Please do a Science Hour on emergent properties of complex systems.

  54. David Dionne on August 4, 2009 1:06 am

    Hey, saw u on The Science Channel and just wanted to swing by and show some luv…good stuff.


  55. Joseph Miller on September 7, 2009 11:58 pm

    Hello Kiki,
    First saw you on Brink talking about stem cell research in China. I was particularly interested because my daughter has Aicardi’s Syndrome. Born without her corpus callosum that part of the brain that ties right and left brain together. So she has seizures that are basically untreatable without meds that are so strong that they knock her out 95% of her life. So she is bedridden and although she is 4 years old has developed only to maybe the level of a 2 month old child. I’m writing because you and your readers are on the leading edge of science and this is where Nicole needs to be to ever have any hope of a life. Otherwise she is doomed to her bed. Stem cell therapy is probably her only hope so I am writing to ask you to keep your ears open for the latest in that field relative to the brain and nervous system. Thank you, Joseph

  56. Paul on October 23, 2009 12:12 am

    So let me get this straight… you’re 35 (although you look older), unmarried, childless, and very much involved with your “career”. If you continue on this trajectory, you will die a childless and miserable woman, and worst of all, you will have denied Western civilization (and this world) your progeny. It is because of women like you that whites will be an extinct group within a few hundred years. Your time is very near the end. Good luck with your meaningless career.

  57. Kirsten Sanford on October 28, 2009 6:01 pm

    Re: the previous comment: Wow. So, this is what being trolled feels like. Not my favorite feeling in the world. Thanks, Paul.

  58. A very different guy named Paul on November 9, 2009 3:01 pm

    Dr. Kiki you rock like its 2525 !!! The world needs smart talented people like you to explain science and it’s complexities to dull normal folks like me so keep doing what you are doing because you, in case you missed it earlier, rock !!! Thanks and have a swell day.

  59. Robert Arauz on November 10, 2009 7:38 pm

    Hello Dr. Kiki, I met you at “Lets have a fun fun time doing science” event at UCSF last month. Our group is interested in perhaps meeting with you in an effort to coordinate a way for us to reach the community in regards to our project. Please feel free to check our website or contacting me if you have any questions.

    Thank you

  60. stephen benson on December 4, 2009 4:19 pm

    your a great person keep it up

  61. Jared P. Dempsey, Ph.D. on December 7, 2009 1:56 pm

    Dr. Sanford:
    We would like to invite you to present at Research Week at OSU. I’ve emailed you information at your TWIS email account. If you do not receive it, please let me know.
    Jared Dempsey

  62. Erika on December 16, 2009 2:37 pm

    Just caught your podcast on iTunes. Super cool! Do you sell your science music cd compilations (I’m guessing that’d be illegal, but figured it best to ask)? Looking for a present for my HS science teacher hubby!

    P.S. Paul, if you’re still reading, you’re a freak.

  63. Michael Horn on January 1, 2010 11:48 pm

    Hi Kirsten,

    I notice that you were linked to Phil’s blog, where I’m providing a little bit of provocative information, and testing the waters to see if there are truly scientific thinkers over there or just, well, skeptics.

    I’m also engaged in a delightful exchange with Michael Shermer who, as I mention at Phil’s blog, appears to be a bit stumped by info I’ve provided him from my site ( such as contained in this article:

    I would be delighted to exchange thoughts with you and your readers in the spirit of pursuing the truth.

    Just in case it would be helpful to establish that I am indeed very familiar with common but disproved theories about “UFO hoaxes”, etc. (not that they don’t exist in abundance) please feel free to see how well the good fellows at IIG fared in trying to make their case, in a format generously provided by me in my film:

    Anyway, nice to have found you here and I do look forward to any and all correspondence.

  64. David Hennessee on January 8, 2010 9:11 am

    Have you ever done a podcast on vitamins, Pros and Cons?


  65. Eric on February 1, 2010 10:35 pm

    Greetings Kirsten! I’ve just discovered you and your TWIS podcast. I’m a great fan of science, particularly astronomy. I’ve had a lot of experience recently in, uh, “debating” the moon landing hoax issue with the most stup-, er, stubborn of people. I see you’re also aware of Phil Plait’s Bad Astronomy/Universe Today site. Do you happen to participate in the BAUT forum as well?

    I’d appreciate it a lot if you can arrange a moon landing-related episode of your podcast! Maybe you could even get Phil or Jay Utah involved! For that matter, I could skype in and chat with you, though I’m not nearly the expert either of those fellows are.

    No matter what, though, keep up the fine work!

  66. Prem Misri on February 11, 2010 10:32 pm

    Hello Dr. Kiki,

    I am new in the tech world and doing everything to get into the loop. At the moment I live in Thailand working as a PR for a new startup website. Part of my job description is to keep up with all podcasts and videos. I would say that it’s the best part of my job as well as making contacts with people in the business. One of my favorite shows is TWIS and I look forward to them. You are a model for me as far as personality and style. Thank you so much!

  67. Rod Martel on February 12, 2010 1:12 am

    Hello Kirsten,

    I’m just watching Leo and you interviewing Roz Savage (Roz Rows 60). I happy to hear that you will be the one doing podcast with her. Can’t what for her next leg of here trip.

    One very important subject that was brought up was climate change.

    I live here in Edmonton Alberta Canada. Our provincial Government is talking about building a Nuclear Power Plant near Weberville, 30 kilometers north of Peace River. This is our Government’s answer to global warming? (No thank you!) I believe it’s to power the Oil Sands Project. (A very bad idea.)

    We do have a windmill farm in southern Alberta, near Pincher Creek. If our Government would tax these oil giants accordantly and put that money into more windmill farms, solar farms and geothermal farms then maybe we Albertans can cut our use of Petroleum and shut down the oil sands.

    We are trying to do our part by installing compact fluorescent bulbs, LED bulbs, programmable thermostats, Smart Power Meters, better windows, doors, 95% efficient furnaces and appliances.

    With Smart Power Meters we can sell solar and wind energy back to our electric power suppliers.

    Twit has become a very big in podcast/videocast media on the internet. As Twit’s only scientist I am asking you to spearhead a new podcast about renewable energy and poke Leo with a stick and get him to go along with it. We won’t make him give up his Ford just yet.

    I know there are a lot of podcast of this type but they do not have the audience that Twit has.

    I would also like to see the Twit Cottage start adding solar panels to help with global warming.

    Thank You,

  68. Stefano Marcelli on February 13, 2010 7:25 am

    I read of you in an Italian blog, regarding to acupuncture and conflict of interest.
    Please I would like to share with you some findings in the controversial domain of the acupuncture evidence.

    I hope you’ll like it and aid me to make my work known in the US.
    I would not want to tell you are a beatuful woman, but by now I did it :-).


  69. Matches Malone on March 2, 2010 4:55 pm

    First time I’ve read this, although I’ve been following you awhile…. Most of what you want to do TVwise can be DIY at this point. I’d offer to produce, however, you’re in SF, and I’m hovering down here in LA. That, and we have a fundamental difference of opinions on a few topics, which might preclude us ever working together :)

  70. Student Interview with Dr. Kristen Sanford « CONFERENCE ON WORLD AFFAIRS on March 15, 2010 7:31 pm

    […] Check out Dr. Kiki’s blog at […]

  71. wagdog on March 23, 2010 5:50 pm

    “I’m a PhD scientist … and is now making…”

    That doesn’t sound very grammatical.

  72. Helen on May 11, 2010 2:25 pm

    Hi Kirstin,

    I’m an attorney at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University. In 2009 we launched the Online Media Legal Network (OMLN), a free legal referral network that helps independent journalists and online publishers find free legal help. The network provides assistance in a broad range of legal issues, including pre-publication review of content, copyright counseling and licensing, freelancer agreements, and representation in litigation.

    We’re reaching out to the community of science journalists and scientists who blog about their work or comment upon science coverage in the news media. Our services are completely free, but we do have some limitations on who we can help. If you would like to learn more about our project, I encourage you to visit our website at or email me directly.

    Please also feel free to spread the word about OMLN and to fellow scientists and science journalists!

  73. Jesus Christ on May 17, 2010 7:47 pm

    1915 - 1.8 Billion people,
    2010 - 6.8 Billion people,
    Past 95 years - 5 Billion people,
    Next 300 years - 22 Billion people,
    Problems - Poverty, starvation, global warming, hole in the ozone layer, crime, pollution, land destruction, pain and misery,
    Solution to world’s problems - “STOP CREATING BABIES”!!!

  74. Paul Riley on May 30, 2010 5:36 pm

    Is it possible to observe in space two close black holes that have jets of material traveling near the speed of light colliding with each-other? Black holes are often found near the center of galaxies or where ever they might be and are rare to find. The jets of material from the two different black holes in space that collide with each-other might be similar to observing particles from collisions in the Large Hadron Collider…. I listen or watch Dr. Kiki’s Science Hour and find it very interesting….


  75. Ronnie on June 11, 2010 8:52 am

    Kiki You are a super hero
    You blinded me with science :)

  76. Matthew Stoops on June 14, 2010 10:55 am

    Dr. Kiki, I just heard on Tom’s TNT show that you’re starting a green show in July. We’ve been publishing a 1/2 hr. weekly renewable energy podcast since 2006. It’d be fun to collaborate. If you have the time, check one out:

    Our podcaster is Stephen “Podstar” Lacey, and can be contact here:


  77. Scott Adkin on July 5, 2010 8:51 am

    I look at Nasa’s home site. They are only listing the Juno and Glory probes. Would you know if they are planing on replacing the Chandra and its sister generation craft after they wear out?

    Also. I love your pod cast! Thank you so very much for enriching my life!

    Roanoke Va.

  78. Joel Calhoun on July 23, 2010 4:41 pm

    Sorry I coudn’t find where else to post this.
    I’m just listening to Dr. Kiki’s Science hour and your call for topics.

    This is a link to Astronomy Cast. I think the Science of Science Fiction shows would be a great topic and Dr.

    NASA scientist Dr. Kevin Frazier is the guest on this episode and I think he would make a great guest.

    Thanks, love the shows,

    Everett, WA

  79. Stephan on August 27, 2010 8:59 am


    congratulation! in February a new life will be starting for you, an unknown lucky male an this what the Toaster leave. I like that twittter message it’s keep me smiling.

    I hope you are well an everything is in a good mood.

    best wishes from germany


  80. Stephen on September 11, 2010 8:35 pm

    I just listened to your TWiT August 31 Podcast - Dr. Kiki’s Science Hour 61: Injunction Junction What’s Your Function? (

    You tipped-toed around (ignored) two very important questions regarding human embryonic research which are at the heart of the funding controversy. The most important question is, when does a human life begin? and secondly, is it moral to sacrifice human life to better the life of other humans (future humanity)?

    Human embryonic scientists want to ignore these questions. (Moral philosophy is not part of my job title.)

    I am really troubled when science thinks it can operate in a moral vacuum.

  81. Terry Ricketts on October 4, 2010 1:42 pm

    With reference to your Science Hour #65 you might be interested in this article on msnbc:

    It appears that the trial was NOT about his view of the solar system but about whether he had the right to interpret the bible. In light of the fact that the reformation had happened a few years earlier it is understandable that the church was a bit touchy on this subject.
    The church was not as anti-science as we have been lead to believe!

  82. Phil Thouin on October 10, 2010 12:32 pm

    Dr. Kiki,
    Two things:
    First, I want to express my deep appreciation for your weekly podcast that I listen as I walk in the woods and parks of the Lower St-Lawrence in Quebec (Canada). Congratulations for your inspiring interviews & for your pregnancy you mentioned a few issues ago.

    Second, if you have room for topic suggestions for future issues, I recently read about Dr. Gilbert N. Ling’s controversy concerning the cellular ‘Sodium Pump’ process (circa 1979). Here is one link on the subject:
    Sorry if you have already touched on this subject in a past podcast (I couldn’t find an index going back to the first 40 or 50 issues of ‘Dr. Kiki’s Scoience Hour’)

    Thank you!

  83. Don Morgan on October 23, 2010 5:33 am

    Yes i was Wondering Like i Always Do i Have Ask Eveyone To Work on Voice Automation How Far Do You Think We Are i Would Like Voice Automation To Be Intergrated into Robots To Preform Task Thanks
    Don :):):)

  84. Vance McPherson on November 7, 2010 1:48 am

    Good day, Dr. Sanford,

    I recently published a review article in The Crucible, something of a trade magazine for science teachers in Ontario, Canada. The purpose for the article was to survey, very briefly, some of the people who have successfully popularized science over the years. The argument was that science students need to be exposed to more of this sort of thing than what they are currently getting. The authors I chose to review were Charles Darwin, Stephen Jay Gould, Bill Bryson (the sole non-scientist of the lot, nominated for his excellent “A Short History of Nearly Everything”), Stephen Hawking, and you. I thought it was important to capture a serious science writer who is making use of Web 2.0 and the new media, and you epitomize those characteristics.

    My review was published in the September 2010 issue of The Crucible. Let me know if you’d like the pdf.

    — Vance McPherson,
    Virtual High School (Ontario)

  85. Richard Barry on November 9, 2010 7:12 am

    Hi Dr Kiki

    I listened to the episode you did on lighting in GTT.

    There was an item on eye problems caused by “blue” (really white, with a hint of blue) LEDs and BLEDs on the 20h evening news - these include macular disease, and similar. I notice lots of these on cars , travellators, and public space lighting in Europe, and one is concerned that if every car (for example) uses BLEDs rather than conventional lighting, it will be impossible to choose to avoid this pollution.

    You might consider including it in a future show. Google & Co have lots of stuff on the issue.


  86. Martín Javier on December 1, 2010 8:58 am

    Hi Kiki!
    My name is Martin, I’m from Buenos Aires, Argentina.
    I’m looking for the scripts of this episode “Green Tech Today 9: The California Lighting Technology Center”
    if you have the printed script, I can generate the subtitles for deaf people.
    My idea is translate the scripts to Spanish too
    Thanks you very much

  87. » Nightlife @ CalAcademy of Sciences // Oct. 11, 2009 // San Francisco, CA on January 4, 2011 1:58 am

    […] this week, host Kirsten Sanford brings her radio show “This Week In Science” to NightLife. She will be recording a show in our […]

  88. Green Tech Today 3: Google Goes Green « TreeMagazine – For People who CARE! on January 27, 2011 1:03 am

    […] I’m a PhD scientist (Neurophysiology) who somehow escaped from the lab and is now making my way in independent Science media and journalism. Check out my bio page here […]

  89. Steve Morgan on January 31, 2011 2:16 pm

    Hi Dr Kiki,

    I’m writing from a British television company, we’re making a Science Channel programme at the moment and it would be great to chat with you to see if your interests and expertise overlap with the subject matter. Drop me a line on the email address supplied if you’re interested.

    Best wishes,

    Steve Morgan

  90. Niels on April 9, 2011 4:27 pm
  91. Bloggingheads: Growing Pains in Gas Country - on April 23, 2011 7:21 pm

    […] Postscript: I spent an hour on Thursday exploring the state of the planet on “Dr. Kiki’s Science Hour” with Kirsten Sanford, a neurophysiologist and science writer and interviewer: […]

  92. Dot Earth: Bloggingheads: Growing Pains in Gas Country - World Bad News : World Bad News on April 24, 2011 6:21 pm

    […] Postscript: we spent an hour on Thursday exploring a state of a world on “Dr. Kiki’s Science Hour” with Kirsten Sanford, a neurophysiologist and scholarship author and interviewer: […]

  93. Dot Earth: Bloggingheads: Growing Pains in Gas Country on April 24, 2011 7:57 pm

    […] Postscript: we spent an hour on Thursday exploring a state of a universe on “Dr. Kiki’s Science Hour” with Kirsten Sanford, a neurophysiologist and grant author and interviewer: […]

  94. michael Carroll on April 27, 2011 8:44 am

    I am writing a short story about a conversation between the three brains (reptilian, mammalian and executive). I have characters for these - a frog, a cat and a human. but I am puzzled about where a bird comes in. Which brain or brains does it have? Would like to add a fourth character.


  95. Terry Jackson on May 18, 2011 9:56 pm

    Hi Dr Kiki I have seen the odd show of yours before, but I have just recently found myself hooked and will prob have to go back to episode 1 and see everything I have missed. I love what you do with your show and it brings one of my favorite topics, namely science, to life. I just thought I would pass my feelings along. I did however notice that on episode 78 for Jan 6 2011 the date on the title screen said Jan 6 2010. I guess I am not the only one that has trouble writing the date when a new years starts. Keep up the great work.


  96. Aaron Bruchis on May 30, 2011 6:18 pm

    I emailed this to Leo, and wanted to copy you as well.

    Howdy Leo and Dr_Kiki!
    With all the extra room you will have in the new studio, I was thinking it might be possible to partner with some of the students at the High School in the area that were science nerds and to do projects with them. DrKiki recently had Joseph Lazio from JPL as a guest. Not only is he a expert is radio astronomy, but when he talked about there being readily available kit’s, and/or plans for building backyard radio telescopes for only a few hundred dollars, not only did that make me want to build one, but it made me think, what a PERFECT podcast. The kids could work on it during the week and edit it together to make an interesting 30 minutes to an hour. Heck, you could work on optical astronomy, rocketry, robotics… all sorts of things. Perhaps even get Dell or Ford to help subsidize the show (Dell to subsidize the radio telescope at least…. that just makes sense!)

    It would not only be Edutainment like the majority of the podcasts you do now, but this could rally change some lives as well as being edutainment.

    I mean, they have solar DIY kits, you could have a project that helps with a bit of the new studio’s electricity costs as well as howing how easy it is to do!

    Anyway, I think it would be a popular show, and even could open up the TWiT audience and get it to grow.
    Offer it to science teachers to show in class’s, make it a real resource, and get a younger crowd excited about the potential for what they can do.

    It might even be something Jerri Ellsworth would be interested in. (Just sayen)

    Heck, you could pay for the radio telescope with a bake sale! That just blows my mind.

    Anyway, again, I think ity would be an exciting direction for TWiT to explore, and a great use of resources.

    Hope you agree

    AaronB from chat

  97. Arsen the dentist. on May 31, 2011 7:04 pm

    Hi Kiki.
    I came across to your blog and immediately got hooked. I love your writing, even though you say that you are trying to sharpen your writing skills, I think that you are already there. And I have to mention that you look absolutely stunning. And your eyes took my heart hostage.

  98. Douglas Lamore on June 21, 2011 9:34 pm

    I’m Douglas Lamore, a independent writer and director. For the past four years, I’ve been working with my film partner Brian Harrison Mack (writer/producer) shooting ultra low budget, high quality short films. Together, we comprise Charlatan Studios, and we’ve made around 20 such films to date.
    Our short films have seen a lot of success in festivals around the country, but now its time to tackle our first feature-length project, and we’re looking for your support! FALL OF GOD will be our first feature film–a dark, off-beat, religious satire that deals with the subjects of art and religion. The story focuses on three main characters and how their worlds collide.

    Please visit our kickstarter campaign here:

    Thank you!

  99. bertrand russell on July 21, 2011 1:53 pm

    Dear Kiki

    I would like to point out that your forum (that I am posting on right now!!) is backwards….it should be that the newest posts go at the top of the page and older posts get relegated further and further down the page!

  100. paul baldovin on August 22, 2011 3:44 am

    send my good friend at google an email about your g+ situation..

  101. Twitter και blogs από επιστήμονες για επιστήμονες | The BioMed LabS Magazine... on November 7, 2011 11:16 am

    […] The bird’s brain: Kirsten Sanford, a PhD scientist (Neurophysiology) who somehow escaped from the lab and is now making [her] way in independent Science media and journalism. Check out [her] bio page here. […]

  102. kris on November 14, 2011 9:25 am

    Dr. Kiki,

    We met at Science Hack day. I am the mother of Spud, the 6 year old who loves (LOVES!!) science. I thought that you’d be in a unique position to point us in the right direction.

    My son loves science. He loves chemistry. He loves physics. Loves math (if he does not have to do it at school). But I have a really hard time finding a child appropriate outlet for his interests.

    If he was into baseball, we’d enroll him in little league and go to practices and games. He’d know the batting averages of players and we’d BBQ at home for Major league games. But Spud loves science. He knows the atomic weight of some elements not baseball stats. There are no weekly gatherings for kids who build trebuchets or ramps. Instead of world series he finds science hack day and Maker Faire. Instead of other kids, he’s peer group tends to be 23-35 year old grad students/ ph.d’s. His icon is a man named Hackett (from Stuck with Hackett) who builds things and looks a bit unkempt. I am not sure I would have Mr. Hackett over for Thanksgiving dinner… (although he may be a wonderful guy).

    BUT HE IS 6. He acts like a 6 year old. He bounces. He giggles. He has the attention span of a flea. Meeting actual scientists at actual science events works out sometimes. Sometimes he understands everything. Sometimes he looks like a mini-me to the other guys. But sometimes he bounces and talks too much and distracts people. Sometimes he trips over a powercord and really upsets people.

    Do you know of any events, groups or organizations that can accommodate a young boy?

    Thank you,

  103. Marty Baird on January 30, 2012 11:23 am

    Working through back shows. However wanted to say I love you on TWitt

  104. Mike on February 8, 2012 10:09 am

    Kiki, I would very much like to take you out to dinner.


  105. Ron Gaines on March 30, 2012 2:10 pm

    I am glad I stumbled upon your Twitter page and this one. Not only are you great at explaining all the things I watch on the Science Channel, but you are also the best lookin AScientist I have ever seen…lol

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