“When I get down [inside my head]… The marbles start turning and I start seeing shapes and getting a rhythm of things. That’s science to me.” – Steven Tyler
Imagine a science experiment where you get to take a bunch of monkeys who do sign language, give them marijuana and ask them to explain science.
It’s a pretty amazing scientific experiment. And Will.i.am is doing it, but for ethical reasons, he had to replace sign language monkeys with musicians. And he had to increase the amount of weed dispensed to each participant by at least 10 fold… to help ease the pain.
I assume his hypothesis was that this project would prove that Bono and Justin Bieber are intellecutally inspiring. And since Will.i.am is a brilliant researcher, he understands that any result is a result… even if that result is “train wreck horrifying”, and even if you couldn’t have predicted that Miley Cyrus and SnoopDogg are not great scientific thought leaders, even during the part of the experiment where you edited the film down to make it as inspiring (and coherent) as possible.
The Black Eyed Peas front man/ entrepreneur/ tech wizard, will.i.am pairs up with inventor/ FIRST® founder Dean Kamen for “i.am FIRST — Science is Rock and Roll,” a groundbreaking, one-hour special promoting education, science and technology. The first of its kind, the special takes an inside, up close look at the 20th Annual FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Championship, a worldwide science and robotics K-12 competition that celebrates technology and features live performances by The Black Eyed Peas and Willow Smith, as well as special appearances from a host of high profile celebrities speaking out to support STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education. “i.am FIRST — Science is Rock and Roll” airs SUNDAY, AUGUST 14 (7:00-8:00 p.m., ET) on The ABC Television Network.
“i.am FIRST – Science is Rock and Roll” is an electric hour of highlights from the 20th Annual FIRST® Robotics Championship. At the FIRST event, will.i.am, Aneesh Chopra, Assistant to the President and Chief Technology Officer of the U.S., along with 30,000 students, fans, families, educators and industry leaders came together at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis, MO to celebrate the engineering prowess of talented students from around the world. Featuring live musical performances by The Black Eyed Peas and Willow Smith before an enthusiastic crowd of 30,000, and special appearances by such celebrities as Justin Bieber, Jack Black, Bono, Miranda Cosgrove, Miley Cyrus, Josh Duhamel, Willow Smith, Britney Spears, Snoop Dogg, Justin Timberlake, Steven Tyler and Executive Producer will.i.am, the program documents the challenges that the country?s best and brightest students faced in the FIRST Regional Competitions leading up to and culminating in the international Championship.
“As families across America are preparing to send their kids back to school, “i.am FIRST – Science is Rock and Roll? will entertain as well as get viewers excited about robots. Find out just how cool technology can be as the top robot teams face off in competition,” said Executive Producer/star will.i.am and FIRST founder Dean Kamen.
And that’s pretty awesome… But I’m a little concerned about the PR for this event. Because, thus far, the most science can take from this is that scientists everywhere… everywhere at US First Robotics, anyway… received an affirmation from Justin Bieber that what they do is just as cool as what he does. We will call that Bieber’s Law of Thermodybigwords.
SnoopDogg wants you to know that “Science is a class that’s definitely needed to go back in the school system. Because it’ll, you know, give you a different subject and a different view on life. When you get out of school you’ll try to better understand what life is about.”
Science will give you a different subject. That was deep, Snoop.
So… it’s nice that Will.i.am and friends are trying to show how important science is. But I’m skeptical of the “we’re pretty much idiots and science gave us the technology to talk about how much we don’t know about science using nothing but the internet so you should totally teach science because, as Mylie said, you know, aliens and shit” approach. Hopefully they’ll brush up on things like “What is science” and “not sounding so fucking high.” Because really, it’s a kind of cool concept… as long as this doesn’t backfire and Britney Spears ends up ruining robots for everyone.
I guess we’ll find out Sunday.