Author Archives: Ted

This Insanely Hard, Self-Driving Robot Race Takes Place In A Parking Lot (Popular Science)

Sparkfun AVC - PopSci

Competitors present their self-driving bots for inspection at starting line of the 2015 Sparkfun Autonomous Vehicle Competition. Photo: Ted Burnham

In June 2015 I covered the Sparkfun Autonomous Vehicle Competition for Popular Science. This was a multimedia commission for which I contributed a 1,000-word article, dozens of high-res photos, and several from-the-field Instagram posts.

See the article at

Astronomy Through the Ages (KGNU: How On Earth)

How On Earth, the KGNU science showAs producer and co-host this week, I interview two astronomers about the way technology has changed the study of stars throughout history, and what new technologies and trends mean for astronomical research today and into the future. Dr. John Bally is a professor of astronomy at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and Dr. Seth Hornstein is the director of CU’s Sommers-Bausch Observatory.

Astronomy Through the Ages

Colorado’s Science Fair Stars / Rosetta Comet Mission (KGNU: How On Earth)

How On Earth, the KGNU science showI produced, engineered, and co-hosted this week’s episode of How On Earth. Co-host Susan Moran interviews two Colorado high school students who competed in a prestigious international science fair; then I speak with astrophysicist Joel Parker about his work on the Rosetta mission, which is en route to visit a comet later this year.

Colorado’s Science Fair Stars / Rosetta Comet Mission

Gold Lab / National Climate Assessment (KGNU: How On Earth)

How On Earth, the KGNU science showI’m co-host and sound engineer this week for How On Earth, the KGNU science show. Shelley Schlender brings us an interview with Larry Gold, founder of the annual Gold Lab Symposium taking place this week at the University of Colorado. Then co-host Susan Moran is joined in the studio by environmental scientist Kristen Averyt and environmental journalist Dan Glick, who both worked on the National Climate Assessment.

Gold Lab / National Climate Assessment

NASA Visit / IPCC Report (KGNU: How On Earth)

How On Earth, the KGNU science showAs co-host of How On Earth this week, I attended a talk by NASA’s top administrator, Charles Bolden, about the University of Colorado’s role in the past, present, and future of the space program. The live show also featured co-host Susan Moran’s interview with senior NCAR scientist Linda Mearns — but the recording was swallowed up by a computer glitch at the station, so my segment was all that survived for the podcast.

NASA Visit / IPCC Report

Newton’s Football / Strontium Clock (KGNU: How On Earth)

How On Earth, the KGNU science showThis week I’m a co-host on How On Earth, the KGNU science show. In honor of the Super Bowl, we feature my interview with the authors of “Newton’s Football: The Science Behind America’s Game.” And co-host Jim Pullen interviews some CU researchers who have developed an incredibly accurate atomic clock based on the element strontium.


Newton’s Football / Strontium Clock

Life in the Floodplain (BMoCA)


Debris from the September 2012 floods covered the landscape for months after the waters receded. Photo Credit: John Giez

In 2013, I was commissioned by the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art to write an essay to accompany an exhibition of works inspired by the massive floods that had swept through the region the year before. My contribution, Life in the Floodplain, reflected on the flooding and its aftermath from an ecological perspective. Through research and interviews with Boulder County ecologists and wildlife specialists, my essay examines the role that periodic floods play in shaping the land and how the plants and animals of the region adapt and even thrive when the waters recede.

Read Life in the Floodplain on pages 22-23 of the Flood Project exhibition catalog (pdf).