Stories tagged contest


Buzzketeers, it's a big problem.

A ginormous, hulking, frozen, messy problem.

See, here in St. Paul, we've had a very snowy winter. (As of today, it has been the seventh snowiest winter on record. And the snow season isn't over yet.) When the City plows the streets, they have to put the snow somewhere. And one of the places they put it is the parking lot of the St. Paul Saints Midway Stadium, on Energy Park Drive.

The result?
Mt. Midway: Looking NNW from the few open parking spaces off Energy Park Drive. See those little bamboo fronds at the peak? Who needs Hawaii?
Mt. Midway: Looking NNW from the few open parking spaces off Energy Park Drive. See those little bamboo fronds at the peak? Who needs Hawaii?Courtesy Liza Pryor

The 550-spot parking lot is completely -- and I mean COMPLETELY -- covered with snow. It's 30, even 50, feet deep. And it goes from Energy Park Drive north to the train tracks, and from the stadium west to the end of the property. It's impressive, peeps.

It goes on...: and on...and on...I'm standing on the snow pile, with the peak with the tree to my left (west) looking north toward the train tracks.
It goes on...: and on...and on...I'm standing on the snow pile, with the peak with the tree to my left (west) looking north toward the train tracks.Courtesy Liza Pryor

And here's the problem, friends: the St. Paul Saints season opener is May 8th. And there's no way all this snow is going to melt before then. Baseball needs its parking lot back.

More pictures of Mt. Midway.

So how can we get rid of the snow? Trucking it away isn't an option, and minimal use of fossil fuels is a good thing. Buzzers, it's time to go all Mythbusters here and submit your ideas. If you've got a good one, you might get to see it in action.


singing songs of science at the Dana Centre in London
singing songs of science at the Dana Centre in LondonCourtesy Gaetan Lee
It's almost Friday, and if that thought alone doesn't brighten your day, this certainly will:

The British Society for the History of Science (apparently not as stuffy as it sounds) has just announced its annual competition to find the world's most imaginative and poetic songs about science. You can read all of the details about how to enter the competition here - and I really think you should, if only because studies show that making music is good for you!

The basic idea with this contest is to take a familiar tune like 'Yankee Doodle Dandy' or 'Clementine' and rewrite the words, but more original efforts will be welcomed, if not by the BSHS, than by Science Buzz readers! Feel free to post your ideas and inspirations here for a critique! The contest organizers are also encouraging people to submit videos of themselves and their friends performing their songs in a creative manner similar to the Dance Your PhD Thesis contest that happened in Vienna last year. Who knew?

To get you all started on your award winning compositions, I suggest listening to these 1950's tunes sung by Tom Glazer and Dottie Evens, then do the Constellation Jig!

The PBS TV show "Design Squad" is doing a casting call. You have to be 18-19, passionate about engineering, and excited to spend the months of June through August in Boston (and traveling) tackling design challenges and competing for the $10,000 prize. The program's goal is to get viewers excited about engineering and the design process. Apply by Friday, April 11.


Calling all Science Museum of Minnesota staff and volunteers: do you have a photo of the museum you really love? In honor of the Museum’s 100th anniversary, Science Buzz is holding a behind-the-scenes photo contest. We’re looking for all the really juicy stuff that our visitors don’t get a chance to see, like the towboat being hoisted into place, or fossil crocodiles under plastic before being put on exhibit, or the light filtering into the atrium just so…you get the idea.

Submit your photo before January 1, 2008. All images will appear here, under this post, where people all over the world will be able to see them. Buzz staffers (and maybe Ethan Lebovics, who had the idea for this contest—are you reading, Ethan?) will pick the winning photo on the basis of relevance, artistry, and all-around coolness, and the winning photographer will win an as-yet-undetermined prize. And bragging rights.

Here’s how to enter (it’s probably good to open another window, and follow the steps there so you can still read the instructions without flipping back and forth):

  1. First of all, if you don’t have a Buzz account, you’ll need to register.
  2. Once you’re logged in, come back to this post. Scroll down to the bottom, or click on "add a new comment." See that little icon at the bottom that looks like a Polaroid photo with a green plus sign on top? Click on that.
  3. A new window opens on your screen. At the very top, you'll see a purple link that says "upload." Click that. Now give your image a title, hit “browse” to locate the image on your computer, and give yourself credit for the photo. (Ignore the pull-down menu that says "Buzz Blog Images.") In the field labeled “Body,” give your photo a caption. Then hit “submit.”
  4. Cool. Now you’ve uploaded your image.

You're done! Good luck to everyone that enters. Can't wait to see the photos.


Nanohazrd: What will come next?
Nanohazrd: What will come next?

You can design the next hazard symbol for nanotechnology. The entries will be judged by the ETC, a group interested in sustainable development of new technologies. You can see some of the initial entries in their hazard symbol gallery.

I don't want to get stuck on talking only about the potential negatives about nanotech. Whether we proceed safely or not there will be hazards that need to be addressed. I thought this was a fun way of thinking about involving the public.

Digital photography reveals nature's works of art. You can view winning photos of the 2006 Olympus BioScapes Digital Imaging Competition.


Sneaky videos
Sneaky videos

Cy Tymony, author of the great book, Sneaky Uses for Everyday Things, is sponsoring a contest for science fair projects on conservation. Just make a how-to video about your project on alternative energy or conservation, upload it to You-Tube, and you can be entered to win a DVD player, a portable MP3 Player with thumb drive and a USB WiFi adapter. If you post your videos make sure to add them to the Recycle Reuse Rethink Energy Usage group.

I'm excited for this project because it not only inspires kids to hunt out alternative energy and conservation ideas but also encourages them to document their work. This will help support the idea that science is a process involving research as well as communication.

To get inspired check out the videos that Cy has already posted. My favorite is the cool hidden pocket how-to. I know its not energy focused, but it's still a great example.