Camie provides our crowd different interpretations of ‘Alien’, a word that comes up often in conversations at Chabot Space Center. She explains various references of the word… from the bible, victorian times, early sci-fi, the current dictionary, academia, and last but not least what little kids think of it. Through her talk, she lets us know that we should be cognizant of what a word has been and what it is now, and to be mindful of it’s complete creative potential.

Video shot by Christie Goshe and Steve Kaye, edited by Nathaniel Kohfield.

About the speaker

Camie Bontaites, PhD is Creative Content Producer at the Chabot Space & Science Center, and Lead Researcher in their OpenScienceLab, from which she runs their 10,000 Story Flying Machine (10FM) projects.

The latest 10FM venture hints at how the language we use affects the way we see and act in the world. It follows the history of one word, watching how it’s use and impact changed over time, and exploring how we might use it in the future.  As we follow it’s story, we find evidence of how we humans see ourselves in terms of being part of nature, or dominant over nature; we uncover ideas of “home” and what draws us to find new places or planets to anchor ourselves to; and we explore how we have meticulously, cinematically, often hilariously, constructed our assumptions about what we’ll see when we finally encounter life outside of our own planet…

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