Drunk Science: Charles Q. Choi explains speciation (and also orcs)

What is a species? That's not a simple question.

And it's even harder to answer after you've had a few.

Intrepid science journalist Charles Q. Choi takes inspiration from both the Drunk History series of videos and a really awful lot of whiskey to try and help you better understand a scientific concept (and also the finer points of orc biology). This was an idea I had, which came together with the help of several science journalist friends during the Science Online conference back in January. I'm still impressed with how accurate Charles was on the science while in that state. I can't speak to the Tolkien mythology.

Video Link (Note: This seems to play softly on some computers. If you're having trouble hearing it, plug in headphones or turn up your speakers.)

Thanks to Rose Eveleth, Colin Schultz, and Jennifer Honn — whose work on editing and producing this video was invaluable. Also thanks to John Rennie, Steve Ashley, Olivia Koski, Maki Naro, and Stephen Granade — whose input and assistance made this possible. And, of course, special thanks to Charles, who really was fully recovered by the next morning.

Image: Orc, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from ton's photostream

Notable Replies

  1. I'm too lazy to go get my earphones, but I could read the text... I like the idea of this thing, but 18 drinks is seriously too much.

  2. LDoBe says:

    You're not missing out on much. He's so drunk he's not intelligible for about 80% of the time.
    There's a medium between sober and blacked out, Homer calls it professor Barney.

    Professor Barney Gumble

  3. No, actually, that's a microphone problem. The mic we were using broke and we ended up having to film the whole thing with the audio from the camera. If you have headphones on (or good enough speakers) he's actually completely intelligible. But the sound quality sucks, unfortunately.

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