Who is Dr Karl?
The stage persona of Karl Kruszelnicki who, thanks to growing up in an era when Education was seen as a Worthwhile Investment in the Future, has had 28 years of tax -payer funded education. He tries to pay this back by getting out and writing and talking Science to anyone and everyone he can, and doing two free Science Q&A sessions with schools around Australia and the world every week. He gets through about 1% of the schools in Australia each year. So in only a century, he will have done every school in Australia.
What would you do differently to what you do now?
I have reorganised my life plenty of times in my own head. With the benefit of hindsight, I have worked out how to win several Nobel Prizes and one Olympic Gold Medal (by turning the Fosbury Flop – for high-jumping – into the Kruszelnicki Krawl). And last but not least I’d be a multibillionaire, so I could use my power and wealth for good to become the first President of Australia, to make Australia the First Country on Earth to get its electricity entirely on Renewable Energy, to Protect the Great Barrier Reef, run a high-speed Rail 2,500 kilometres along the East Coast, and to use a Scandinavian Model to provide high quality health, education and welfare. Not much to change really!
Who inspires you and why?
Anybody who is a deep thinker and sticks to the facts – Richard Feynman, Steven Pinker, Hans Rosling, Bertha Benz and Marie Curie.
What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Well, if I couldn’t do everything above in Question Two, I’d try to spread information, as hard as I can. I prefer facts to opinions. I want people to know how to find useful, valid information. I want reputable sources of information freely available – so we can believe in truth again!!
Favourite holiday destination and why?
Anywhere I haven’t been!!
When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
Abdul’s Lebanese Restaurant in Surry Hills, Sydney because it has great, fresh food, lots of vegetarian choices and I’ve been going there for a very long time. After that, a walk on the beach because the ocean is so vast and maybe we might be lucky and see a whale.
What are you currently reading?
Science magazines (I spend $10,000 each year on science journals) and The Edge of Memory by Patrick Nunn.
What are you currently listening to?
Blues and Roots with a heavy Mark Knopfler guitar bent. I trawl through Spotify!
Health, work and family.
What does the future hold for you?
Same, same but different… Come on – it’s very hard to make predictions, especially about the future – to paraphrase a Nobel Prize winner! When I look back at my life, I can barely recognise myself, so I don’t think I’ve got a hope in hell of predicting the future!
Dr Karl Kruszelnicki is the Julius Sumner Miller Fellow at the University of Sydney. He is a qualified medical doctor, engineer, physicist and mathematician. Dr Karl brings science to the airwaves every Thursday on the popular Science segment on the triple j Mornings show, and is gaining even more popularity with his newest podcast Shirtloads of Science. His latest book, Vital Science is published by Pan Macmillan Australia and is available from all leading book sellers including Booktopia.
Image: Dr Karl Kruszelnicki: Vital Science – courtesy of Pan Macmillan Australia