November 2013 Science Newsletter

We hope all of our American readers had a great Thanksgiving.  Its also an extremely rare Hanukkah which coincided with Thanksgiving this year (won’t happen for another 77,798 years) which is pretty cool.  So to those that celebrate Hanukkah, we wish you a Happy Hanukkah as well!

With the best wishes out of the way, for the November season anyway :-),  let’s move onto the science!

Science Behind the Sci-Fi Panel Overview

This Month’s “Random Science News”

This month I have one awesome piece of Random Science News, which was actually submitted by one of your fellow fans (and a volunteer army member of the Escaping Titan development team), C. Garig:
  • Dr. Frankenstein in real-life?  OK, not really.  ABC likes to exaggerate, but still an amazing scientific advancement by the researchers at Yale and Harvard.
  • Have you heard of some cool science news that you think we should share?  Reach out via the comments section below and let us know!

That does it for this month’s newsletter – short and sweet.  We here at Broken Crown Games want to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season this upcoming December month!

Best wishes,
-Tyler

October 2013 Science Newsletter (WITH SPECIAL COMPANY UPDATE!)

Happy Halloween everyone!

This month went by incredibly fast for us.  For those of you that might not have already heard, our sister company, Broken Crayon Games (notice the family relation), released their very first game, Wizardous: An Apprentice’s Betrayal.  It’s an incredibly fun (although at times frustrating – by design) mobile game.  You can pick it up for all of the major mobile devices.

The game is FREE until Nov. 1st (NO ads, NO in-app purchases… just free) in order to give those who show us early support something in return!  The version in stores currently is only a Promo version and is missing the final levels, however if you download it now while it’s FREE, you’ll be updated to the final complete version on Nov. 14th!

Here are links to the game in stores:

iOS: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/wizardous-apprentices-betrayal/id719287441?ls=1&mt=8

Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.botfgames.wizardous

NOOK: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wizardous-broken-crayon-games/1117075416

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Broken-Crown-Games-LLC-Wizardous/dp/B00FP23JJ2

Though there are a lot of great things I could talk about with this game, it’s a bit off-topic for this newsletter.  If you’d like to learn more, feel free to check out the Wizardous website.

Alright, so enough about Broken Crayon Games and Wizardous — you’re all here because you support Broken CROWN Games and Escaping Titan, which is all about getting the science behind our sci-fi right.  So onto the science!

Science Behind the Sci-Fi Panel Overview

FEATURED GUEST PANEL:
  • Science Focus: Physics
  • Author: David S. Latchman – David holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad & Tobago with specialization in Environmental & Medical Physics. David is a freelance science writer whose work has appeared in Next Door Magazine. His blog, The Quantum Tunnel, focuses on the science featured in popular movies and TV shows. He can be found on Google+ and on Twitter.

This Month’s “Random Science News”

We’ve got a range of topics for this week, including Saturn and Titan updates, Mars news, and a cancer-related “vaccine” (cell therapy really).
That about does it for this week’s Broken Crown Games science newsletter.  Hope you enjoyed it.  Have a safe and Happy Halloween, but before you go out on that candy grab, don’t forget to check us out on social media, like Facebook and Twitter, for the latest in Broken Crown Games’ news!
 -Tyler

June 2013 Newsletter

Welcome back to another edition of our Science Behind the Sci-Fi newsletter!

With 6 month’s now behind us, we wanted to thank all of you for your support over as we got the Science Behind the Sci-Fi section of the company off the ground!  Our mission of making science accurate games is important to us, and we really want to share the science behind them with our fans.  So it really wouldn’t mean anything without people like you. Our audience group continues to grow due to all of your efforts to share us with your friends.  Please help continue this by tweeting about us and sharing news from us on Facebook.

To all the first time readers out there, the goal of this newsletter is simply to highlight the science related activity behind the creation of the Science Fiction video games being developed by Broken Crown Games.  We really appreciate everyone taking the time to read our stuff, and encourage everyone to jump on our forums and help in the effort of making science accurate games by simply chatting in our general discussion section.  So without further delay, lets get this newsletter started!

Continuing with the trend from the last two newsletters, lets start with some special news:

  • First off, let me name drop a little, and say I had the chance to have drinks with Buzz Aldrin this month!  The unique opportunity came about during a black tie event in Washington, DC, which was put on by the Federation of Galaxy Explorers.  And let me say, Buzz has some style!  Sporting a maroon suit with a bow tie made of twisted metal – very cool.
  • Also, our Astrobiology panelist, Jacob Haqq-Misra, has been working closely on the Lone Signal project, which after much effort has finally launched this month.  So congratulations to all that contributed to that project, and for those of you that haven’t heard what it is, go check it out.  The project gives anyone and everyone the chance to create a customized message that gets sent into space!
  • Another cool update is that Robert Hampson, our Neuroscience panelist, is at it again!  This month he was interviewed by podcast The Future and You.  Take a listen!

‘Science Behind the Sci-Fi’ Panel Overview

  • Science Focus: Paleobotany
  • Author: Jamie Boyer
  • Overview: Jamie takes a look at the root systems of early plant life on Earth in order to explain the important role root systems will play when attempting to grow plants on other planets.
  • Up Next Month: How Plants Survive, Part 1: Leaves & Stems
  • Science Focus: Neuroscience
  • Author: Robert Hampson
  • Overview: Robert continues to the second of three posts on the hypothalamus.  This month, he breaks down the hypothalamus into its different regions and their respective functions.
  • Up Next Month: Hypothalamus SSI: The Self-Healing Ability
  • Science Focus: Astrobiology
  • Author: Jacob Haqq-Misra
  • Overview: In our sci-fi story, Saturn’s moon of Titan has become a habitable planet.  So this month, Jacob focuses in on what is necessary to make that possible.
  • Up Next Month: Titan’s Subsurface Oceans
  • Science Focus: Astrophysics
  • Author: Amitai Bin-Nun
  • Overview: In the Broken Crown universe, human civilization decided to spread out across numerous worlds to prevent a species extinction due to a single cosmic event.  This month, Amitai continues his ‘Dangers of Space’ posts with a focus on the potential dangers of asteroids and other near-Earth-objects (NEOs).
  • Up Next Month: Dangers of Space: Stellar Life Cycles
GUEST PANEL:
Life on Mars (on Earth)

  • Science Focus: Physics and Science Journalism
  • Author: Kate Greene
  • Overview: Join Kate as she describes her experiences from inside the HI-SEAS, after 2 months in seclusion with only her 5 other crew members.  Listen to her story as she tells you what its like inside a Mars simulation experiment.
  • Up Next Month: Scott Viguie, also know as Dr. Geek, uses his PhD in Archeology and applies it to the science behind our game’s science-fiction!

This Month in Science

Just like last month, there are a ton of great things to showcase, and so few spots to highlight it all.  Here are our selections for this week’s featured science news:

  • After Amitai’s post above, I thought it was worth showcasing this article, which talks about NASA’s new mission to find ways to prevent asteroids from killing live on Earth, and their asking for your help.  Help NASA stop killer asteroids!
  • Just 22 light-years away (fairly close), scientists discovered 3 new planets in a stars habitable zone!
  • One cool bit of news from our friends over at Astronaut.com is a video of flight engineer Karen Nyberg (currently on the International Space Station) talks about here work, as well as how her work effects her family.
  • As a biomedical engineer with a degree in nanofabrication as well, this last bit of news is something I’m extremely excited about!  All that ‘hypothetical’ organic chemistry has finally been proven correct after scientists uncover a way to see atomic structures!

That’s all for now!

As always, thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoy some of this month’s content.  If you want to hear more from us, follow this newsletter, Like us on Facebook, and Follow us on Twitter.
Cheers,
-Tyler

April 2013 Newsletter

For those of you who didn’t read the previous post yet, we just wanted to quickly say sorry for the delay in getting this month’s updated out. There were some technical difficulties – but in the end, we feel the newsletter is now better than ever and on track for bigger and better things!

With that said, this past month was crazy! While some of the team were out on the Insomnia Tour, our panelists continued to pump out great posts, and still others on the team helped us to a successful Kickstarter campaign.  Here’s just a peek at this month’s science-related events:

Kickstarter

  • For those of you who didn’t know, we had a Kickstarter to fund the creation of a sourcebook – this is basically a 5 volume booth that explores the science behind our game’s sci-fi, as well as containing a short story compilation volume that discusses the backstory that leads up to the in-development game, Escaping Titan
  • We managed to raise 336% of our goal, which is fantastic!  A huge thanks has to go out to all of our supporters!
  • Excess funds will go towards enriching the community experience for Broken Crown Games fans like you!

Insomnia Tour 2013

We had a great time on the tour, but here are just a few science-related snippets from the trip:

Inline image 1 (Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, AZ)

Inline image 1 (Bill Nye being awarded the Space Foundation’s Public Outreach Award at NSS29 in Colorado Springs, CO)

Inline image 2 (Chewie and I hang out at the local Cantina in the Broadmoor Hotel – all this happened moments after the photo was taken)

Science Behind the Sci-Fi Panel Overview
  • Science Focus: Paleobotany
  • Author: Jamie Boyer
  • Overview: Jamie gives readers a different view of how plants can aid in space colonization by exploring the incorporation of planets into structural design.
  • Up Next Month: The Varied Uses of Plants, Part 1
  • Science Focus: Neuroscience
  • Author: Robert Hampson
  • Overview: Robert continues his exploration of the Cortex from last month’s post, this time discussing the layout of the Cortex with respect to the rest of the brain.
  • Up Next Month: Hypothalamus: The Control Center
  • Science Focus: Astrobiology
  • Author: Jacob Haqq-Misra
  • Overview: Jacob details how the life-cycle of a star can effect a planet, explaining how light, brightness, and climate may be effected as a star ages; using examples of Earth and Titan.
  • Up Next Month: Terraforming 101
  • Science Focus: Astrophysics
  • Author: Amitai Bin-Nun
  • Overview: Amitai took this month to explain the mechanics behind the popular theoretical technology of space elevators, as well as the pros and cons of the tech.
  • Up Next Month: Dangers of Space: Radiation
  • Science Focus: Science History
  • Author:Nathan Nolte
  • Overview: Nathan steps in as our guest to give readers a closer look at fungi, and how future scientists and space explorers can benefit from fungal symbiosis.
  • Up Next Month: Still open! Know a professional scientist passionate about science-fiction as well as their field? Have them email us at admin@brokencrowngames.com.

This Month in Science

I’m beginning to get a love-hate relationship with this section of the newsletter because there are so many cool things each month that it’s hard to just pick a few to showcase.  Never the less, here are this week’s selections for featured science:

That’s all for now!
That’s it for this month. We hope you enjoyed reading. If you want to hear more about what Broken Crown Games is doing subscribe to our ‘Company’ Newsletter, which will be sent soon – not registered for it? Register here!
Thanks everyone,
-Tyler

 

Why the Delay?!

For those of you previously registered to our email based version of the newsletter, you may have been asking, “hey, where is my newsletter?”   Well, the answer is Gmail hates us.

Ok, not really.  But as you can see below, Gmail didn’t exactly want to cooperate in letting us send it out on time.

20130430_231205

So we decided, it was finally time for the newsletter overhaul we’ve been promising.  We wanted to get away from the text only newsletters and also wanted to make the newsletter more interactive so you could tweet it out, ‘Like’ it, etc.  That pretty much led us to putting it in blog format.

After a few days of tinkering, I now have an idea of how WordPress works (though I’d love to hear your suggestions too!)

March 2013 Newsletter

Greetings fellow science enthusiasts!

We’ve had quite a few new people register since last month, so welcome. Tyler is out on the ‘Insomnia Tour’ this month so I will be doing the newsletter. Since last month’s newsletter, we have seen some pretty impressive topics covered on our forums, and I hope you’ve been taking at least a little time out of your busy schedules to read them. If you haven’t, now is your chance! I’ll be going over what’s been going on and what you can expect throughout the upcoming month. As always, please let us know what you think and ask any questions you may have in each topic’s comments.
March’s Science Behind the Sci-Fi Panel Overview
  • Science Focus: Paleobotany
  • Author: Jamie Boyer
  • Overview: Jamie explores how settlers might set out establishing a renewable sustainable agriculture system on Titan.
  • Up Next Month: Better Building Through Plants
  • Science Focus: Neuroscience
  • Author: Robert Hampson
  • Overview: Robert explains how the premotor cortex and primary motor cortex factor in to the SSI implants that make the “Self Buff” possible in Escaping Titan.
  • Up Next Month: A Little Cortex here, A Little Cortex there…
  • Science Focus: Astrobiology
  • Author: Jacob Haqq-Misra
  • Overview: Jacob shares with us the make-up and potential usefulness of Iapetus, Saturn’s third largest moon.
  • Up Next Month: Titan Habitability and Solar Evolution
  • Science Focus: Astrophysics
  • Author: Amitai Bin-Nun
  • Overview: Amitai explores the water content of various moons in Saturn’s local system as well as orbiting nearby Jupiter.
  • Up Next Month: Getting out there: Space Elevators
  • Science Focus: Science History
  • Author:Amy Teitel
  • Overview: An exciting trip through history following the Huygens Lander as it pioneered the way to Titan.
  • Up Next Month: Nathan Nolte

This Month in Science

There were a lot of really great news articles about science this month. Here’s a few of our favorites:
That’s all for now!
 
That’s it for this month. We hope you enjoyed reading. If you want to hear more about what Broken Crown Games is doing subscribe to our ‘Company’ Newsletter, which will be sent soon – not registered for it?  Register here!
Thanks everyone,
-Chris

February 2013 Newsletter

Hi everyone,

I’m excited to see we’re continuing to get new registered members!

I still promise to get a ‘prettier’ format for these newsletters in the near future.  After speaking with a friend, Brian Rubin of the Space Game Junkie blog (highly suggest checking it out if you’re into our game, you’ll probably enjoy what he has to say), I’m strongly considering just turning each of our newsletters into a WordPress so you can easily check back on older content.  Anyway, for now, I’ve added a few tweaks to the newsletter, so if you’re actually reading these and not just auto-deleting, feel free to give us a shout as to what you think.

February’s ‘Science Behind the Sci-Fi’ Panel Overview


  • Science Focus: Paleobotany
  • Author: Jamie Boyer
  • Overview: Jamie gives a brief overview on the evolution of life on Earth, and how that information can be used to make a model for early life on Titan.
  • Up Next Month: Growing Edibles on Titan
  • Science Focus: Neuroscience
  • Author: Robert Hampson
  • Overview: Robert takes this month to discuss the possibility of using surgical implants to stimulate the brain to improve on the body’s natural abilities.
  • Up Next Month: Driving by the Seat of Your… Cortex?
  • Science Focus: Astrobiology
  • Author: Jacob Haqq-Misra
  • Overview: This month Jacob mixes things up for us by taking a peek at something other than Titan by giving us a quick overview of its nearby moon, Rhea.
  • Up Next Month: Iapetus: The Yin-Yang Planet
  • Science Focus: Astrophysics
  • Author: Amitai Bin-Nun
  • Overview: Amitai used this month’s post to take a look into the lighter side of the “heavy” (sorry, had to) topic of Black Holes.
  • Up Next Month: Enceladus, Europa, Callisto, and Ganymede – Water on Moons
  • Science Focus: Atmospheric Geology
  • Author: Sanjoy Som
  • Overview: In this month’s guest post, Sanjoy offers our readers a peek through the atmospheric haze on Titan so we can understand what the surface would actually look like.
  • Up Next Month: Amy Teitel

This Month in Science
I’ve decided to start each month’s newsletter with a “this month in science” link so even if you’re not a big science person, you can catch some cool science news.  I had one all lined up, but who could have expected such a monumental event like what happened in Russia?  So just in case you’ve been living under a rock, I’ve decided to note two science articles.

So first off, here is a cool little article I stumbled across covering science-fiction ideas which science has made come true during 2012!

And now for the crazy, but true, news that gives credence to our game’s core philosophy that the cosmos still has dangers we aren’t prepared for – the Russian Meteorite.

That’s all for now!
That’s it for this month.  I’ll be writing you from San Francisco as part of our Insomnia Tour to announce our Kickstarter!  More on that in our ‘Company’ Newsletter, which will be sent tomorrow – not registered for it?  Register here!

Thanks everyone,
-Tyler