Happy birthday Brian Cox, born March 3, 1968.
Brian Edward Cox is an English physicist, and Professor of particle physics in the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Manchester. He is best known to the public as the presenter of science programs, especially the Wonders of… series and for popular science books, such as Why Does E=mc²? and The Quantum Universe. He has been the author or co-author of over 950 scientific publications.
Cox has been described as the natural successor for BBC’s scientific programming by both David Attenborough and the late Patrick Moore. Before his academic career, Cox was a keyboard player for the bands D:Ream and Dare.
Cox has appeared in many science programs for BBC radio and television, including In Einstein’s Shadow, the BBC Horizon series, (“The Six Billion Dollar Experiment”, “What on Earth is Wrong with Gravity?”, “Do You Know What Time It Is?”, and “Can we Make a Star on Earth?”) and as a voice-over for the BBC’s Bitesize revision programmes. He presented the five-part BBC Two television series Wonders of the Solar System in early 2010 and a follow up four-part series, Wonders of the Universe, which began on 6 March 2011. Wonders of Life, which he describes as “a physicist’s take on life/natural history”, was broadcast in 2013.
He co-presents Space Hoppers and has also featured in Dani’s House on CBBC.
Cox also presented a three-part BBC series called ‘Science Britannica’ which sees him explore the contribution of British scientists over the last 350 years, as well as the relationship between British science and the public perception thereof.
BBC Two commissioned Cox to copresent Stargazing Live, a three-day live astronomy series in January 2011 – co-presented with physicist-turned-comedian Dara Ó Briain and featuring chat show host Jonathan Ross – linked to events across the United Kingdom. A second and a third series featuring a variety of guests ran in January 2012 and January 2013.
Since November 2009 Cox has co-presented a BBC Radio 4 “comedy science magazine programme”, The Infinite Monkey Cage with comedian Robin Ince. Cox also appeared in Ince’s Nine Lessons and Carols for Godless People. He is a regular contributor to the BBC 6 Music Breakfast Show with Shaun Keaveny, with a weekly feature.
Cox has also appeared numerous times at TED, giving talks on the LHC and particle physics. In 2009 he appeared in People magazine’s Sexiest Men Alive. In 2010 he was featured in The Case for Mars by Symphony of Science. In November 2010 he made a promotional appearance in the Covent Garden Apple Store, talking about his new e-book set to accompany his new television series as well as answering audience questions.
Cox was the science advisor for the science fiction film Sunshine. On the DVD release, he provides an audio commentary where he discusses scientific accuracies (and inaccuracies) depicted in the film. He also was featured on the Discovery Channel special Megaworld: Switzerland. In 2013, he presented another series of “Wonders of Life”.
On 14 November 2013, BBC Two broadcast The Science of Doctor Who in celebration of Doctor Who’s 50th anniversary, in which Cox tackles the mysteries of time travel. The lecture was recorded at the Royal Institution Faraday Lecture Theatre. The BBC subsequently broadcast Human Universe and Forces of Nature also presented by Cox.
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