The Amaz!ng Meeting
|The Amaz!ng Meeting|
|Genre||science and skepticism|
|Location(s)||Las Vegas, Nevada|
|Attendance||1,650 in 2011|
|Organized by||James Randi Educational Foundation|
The Amaz!ng Meeting (TAM) is an annual conference that focuses on science, skepticism, and critical thinking. The conference started in 2003 and is sponsored by the James Randi Educational Foundation or (JREF). Perennial speakers include Penn & Teller, Phil Plait, Michael Shermer and James 'The Amazing' Randi. Outside the plenary sessions the conference includes workshops, additional panel discussions, music and magic performances and a live taping of The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe.
Speakers at TAM are selected from a variety of disciplines including scientific educators, magicians, and community activists. The organizer of TAM London, Tracy King, said "People come to TAM because they want to learn and hear from leading speakers on subjects which interest them, but they want to have a good time doing it. Our mix of academics, comedians and writers ensures an incredible event where the public can meet like-minded people without feeling like being into science or geek stuff makes them a minority."
Beginning in 2009, the Amaz!ng Meeting has also hosted a public test of The One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge for the performance of any paranormal, occult or supernatural event, under proper observing conditions. At The Amaz!ng Meeting 7, it was announced that the $1 Million Challenge prize would not expire in 2010 as previously announced.
The James Randi Education Foundation has presented special awards at the Amazing Meeting to people who they label champions of skepticism. Robert S. Lancaster received the 2009 Citizen Skeptic award for his work on the website Stop Sylvia which critically examines the claims of self-proclaimed psychic Sylvia Browne. At that year's TAM London the award for Outstanding Contribution to Skepticism went to Simon Singh in recognition for his successful appeal against a libel charge by the British Chiropractic Association. In 2010 at TAM London then 15-year-old Rhys Morgan received a special grassroots skepticism award from Randi.
Locations and dates
In addition to the Las Vegas-based conferences the JREF also sponsors international TAM conferences, with the first TAM London taking place in 2009 and TAM Australia, co-sponsored by Australian Skeptics, in 2010. A related series of events titled The Amazing Adventure has been held featuring trips to the Bermuda Triangle (2007), an Alaskan cruise (2007), the Galapagos Islands (2008), Mexico (2009), and the Caribbean (2010).
|Dates||Location||Attendance||Speakers making a first appearance||Notes|
|January 31 - February 2, 2003||Ft Lauderdale, FL||150||Lt. Col. Hal Bidlack, Star Gazer Jack Horkheimer, Jose Alvarez, Phil Plait, Center for Inquiry's James Underdown and Skeptic's Dictionary author Robert Todd Carroll|
|January 15–18, 2004||Tuscany Casino in Paradise, NV||250||Magicians Banachek, Lance Burton, and Jamy Ian Swiss, comedian Julia Sweeney, writer Ian Rowland, Quackwatch webmaster Stephen Barrett, National Center for Science Education's Eugenie Scott, American Physical Society's Robert L. Park, and editor of Skeptic magazine Michael Shermer||The Amaz!ng Meeting 2|
|January 13–16, 2005||Stardust Resort & Casino, Paradise, NV||500||Evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, journalist Christopher Hitchens, psychologist Richard Wiseman, magicians Andrew Mayne and Jerry Andrus, actor Dean Cameron and paranormal investigator Joe Nickell||TAM 3 From Eve to Newton The Apple of Knowledge|
|January 26–29, 2006||Stardust Resort & Casino, Paradise, NV||800||ACLU president Nadine Strossen, planetary scientist with the Voyager program Carolyn Porco, MythBusters Jamie Hyneman, Adam Savage and Kari Byron, Nobel laureate Murray Gell-Mann, astrophysicist Ed Lu, Magicians Mac King and Todd Robbins, activist Ellen Johnson, psychologist Stanley Krippner, philosopher Daniel Dennett, political analysts Lawrence O'Donnell and Karen Russell, and comedian Paul Provenza||TAM 4 Science in Politics and the Politics of Science|
|January 18–21, 2007||Riviera Casino, Winchester, NV||800||Magicians Penn & Teller, National Public Radio host Peter Sagal, computer scientist Neil Gershenfeld, editor of Reason magazine Nick Gillespie, editor of Scientific American magazine John Rennie, Children's author Diane Swanson, politician Lori Lipman Brown, activist Margaret Downey, South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, journalist Anderson Cooper, singer Jill Sobule and editor of The Onion Scott Dikkers||TAM 5 Skepticism and the Media|
|January 25–27, 2008||Plantation Hotel & Conference Center, Plantation, FL||Stop Sylvia webmaster Robert S. Lancaster, Skepchick Rebecca Watson, sci-fi author Mike Stackpole, Skeptoid host Brian Dunning, activists Bart Farkas, Jeff Wagg, Mark Roberts and Kelly Jolkowski||TAM 5.5 Skepticism and Activism|
|June 19–22, 2008||The Flamingo in Paradise, NV||900||Keynote speaker Neil DeGrasse Tyson, biology professor PZ Myers, Australian skeptic Richard Saunders, screenwriter Matthew Chapman, mathematician Arthur T. Benjamin, medical blogger Steven Novella, Bad Science writer Ben Goldacre, What's The Harm?'s Tim Farley and journalist Sharon Begley||TAM 6 I, Skeptic - Modern Skepticism in the Internet Age|
|July 9–12, 2009||Southpoint Casino, Enterprise, NV||1100+||Keynote speaker and television producer Bill Prady, Center for Inquiry's DJ Grothe, science writer Jennifer Ouellette, Joseph A. Albietz III, Stephen Bauer, statistician Daniel W. "Chip" Denman, Skepdoc Harriet Hall, Ray Hall, musician George Hrab, CSICOP's Ray Hyman, Alison Smith and Fintan Steele||TAM 7|
|Oct 3-4, 2009||Mermaid Conference Centre, Blackfriars, London, UK||500||James Randi (by Skype), Adam Savage, writer Jon Ronson, particle physicist Brian Cox, Simon Singh, Ben Goldacre, Richard Wiseman, comedian Robin Ince, writer Glen Hill, musician Tim Minchin and journalist Ariane Sherine||TAM London. Tickets sold out within 24 hours|
|July 8–11, 2010||Southpoint Casino, Enterprise, NV||1300||Keynote speaker Richard Dawkins hosts of The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe, musical satirist Roy Zimmerman, author Simon Singh, evolutionary scientist and contrarian Massimo Pigliucci, social psychologist Carol Tavris, comedy writer David Javerbaum, Brain Science Podcast's Ginger Campbell, jazz musician Mike "Jonesy" Jones, author Jennifer Michael Hecht, Skeptical inquirer editor Kendrick Frazier and politician Sean Faircloth||TAM 8|
|October 16–17, 2010||Hilton London Metropole, London, UK||Richard Dawkins, Alan Moore, Andy Nyman, Adam Rutherford, Richard Wiseman, Susan Blackmore, Cory Doctorow, Marcus Chown, Melinda Gebbie, Tim Minchin and (by video) Stephen Fry||TAM London 2010|
|November 26–28, 2010||Sydney Masonic Centre, Sydney, Australia||Simon Singh, James Randi, Dr Paul Willis, Skeptoid magazine's Brian Dunning, Krissy Wilson, Kylie Sturgess, astronomers Pamela Gay and Fred Watson and Rachael Dunlop||TAM OZ|
|July 14–17, 2011||Southpoint Casino, Enterprise, NV||1650||Keynote speaker Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Science Guy Bill Nye, Astronomers Pamela Gay and Lawrence Krauss, Evolutionary Biologist Richard Dawkins, psychologist Elizabeth Loftus, Ben Radford and medical blogger David Gorski||TAM 9 From Outer Space|
|July 12–15, 2012||Southpoint Casino, Enterprise, NV||Psychologist Deirdre Barrett, SGU's Evan Bernstein, Bob Novella and Jay Novella; Eugenie Scott, Robert Blaskiewicz, paranormal investigators Bryan & Baxter, radio show host Kelly Carlin, theoretical physicist Sean Carroll, mezzo-soprano Hai-Ting Chinn, writer Miranda Celeste Hale, executive director of the Richard Dawkins Foundation Elisabeth Cornwell, Christopher DiCarlo, Rachael Dunlop, Stuart Firestein, Julia Galef, geologist Sharon A. Hill, experimental psychologist Bruce Hood, human rights activist Leo Igwe, Lyz Liddell, neurologists Stephen Macknik and Susana Martinez-Conde, illustrator Sara Mayhew, Carrie Poppy, artist Amy Davis Roth, Eve Siebert, linguist Karen Stollznow, JREF Field Coordinator Brian Thompson, and Michael Vassar||TAM 2012 Skepticism and the Future|
|July 11–14, 2013||Southpoint Casino, Enterprise, NV||Announced: Susan Jacoby (Keynote), Dan Ariely, Banachek, Joshie Berger, Evan Bernstein, Russell Blackford, Susan Blackmore, Bob Blaskiewicz, Peter Boghossian, Bryan & Baxter, Edward Clint, Mark Crislip, Elisabeth Cornwell, Jerry Coyne, Chip Denman, Barbara Drescher, Sanal Edamaruku, Mark Edward, Tim Farley, Faye Flam, Susan Gerbic, David Gorski, Shane Greenup, D. J. Grothe, Susan Haack, Miranda Celeste Hale, Harriet Hall, Kyle Hill, Sharon A. Hill, Ray Hyman, Leo Igwe, David Jones, Marty Klein, Reed Kuhn, Caleb Lack, John W. Loftus, Daniel Loxton, Michael E. Mann, Max Maven, Sara E. Mayhew, Maria Myrback, Bob Novella, Jay Novella, Steve Novella, Jennifer Ouellette, Penn & Teller, Massimo Pigliucci, Massimo Polidoro, Don Prothero, Paul Provenza, John Rennie, Stuart J. Robbins, Todd Robbins, Edwina Rogers, Jacques Rousseau, Cara Santa Maria, Richard Saunders, Joe Schwarcz, Robert Sheaffer, Nakul Shenoy, Michael Shermer, Eve Siebert, Karen Stollznow, Jamy Ian Swiss, Brian Thompson, and Brent Weedman||TAM 2013 Fighting the Fakers|
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