Small Ideas, Big Science

14 May 2019

Several years ago I was out having a beer with a friend of mine, Mark Gillespie, and we were talking about a trip I had taken to several observatories in Chile. One of the really interesting aspects of visiting a working observatory is that you get to see what it takes to really keep things up and running. All the men and women who do the heavy lifting behind the scenes. This led to a discussion about how documenting these workers would make for a neat science show. It turns out my friend knew a director in Canada, Steven Mitchell, who has worked on several TV shows. A few minutes later Mark and Steven had exchanged a few emails, and Steven agreed to hear our pitch for a TV series.

I went into the pitch thinking Steven would say no, but I’d have an interesting story about that time I tried to pitch a television show. He said yes. He pitched the idea to other TV folks, who also said yes. Over the next few years we’ve done planning, location shoots, meetings, and a Kickstarter, so that now we are finalizing a pitch to networks.

We’re now at the point where we can start releasing some things to the public. This is the first teaser for Big Science. This particular episode is at Green Bank Observatory, and there are lots of other locations to follow. Thanks to many of you readers for financial support, and to all the folks who have put in long hours to bring it this far.