Bill Nye

Engineer / TV Personality
Date Of Birth:
27 November 1955
Place Of Birth:
Washington, D.C.
Best Known As:
TV's "Bill Nye the Science Guy"

Bill Nye's public television show introduced a generation of viewers to the fun of science. Bill Nye the Science Guy first ran from 1992 to 1998 and featured Nye, a trained mechanical engineer, enthusiastically demonstrating science experiments with flashy video effects and wacky comedy. Nye is a 1977 graduate of New York's Cornell University who went to work as an aeronautics engineer for Boeing in the Seattle area. His part-time occupation as a stand-up comedian eventually gave way to a full-time career as an entertainer, and by the end of the 1980s Nye was a regular on Almost Live, a sketch comedy show on Seattle television. He took the "Bill Nye the Science Guy" persona -- lab coat, bow tie and corny jokes -- and developed it into his successful educational show for kids. Since the show ended its run Nye has published books for kids, lectured, taught at Cornell and hosted other TV programs, including a 13-episode run of The Eyes of Nye (produced in 2002-03 but aired in 2005). He also serves as an all-purpose science expert on news programs and is the Director of the Planetary Society, "the world's largest non-governmental space interest organization."

Extra Credit

Nye is also an inventor — he is given credit for the sundials (or “marsdials”) put on the Mars Exploration Rovers launched by NASA in 2003… Nye married oboist and author Blair Tindall on the spur of the moment in February of 2006. Shortly afterward it was determined they had no valid marriage license; the relationship ended seven weeks later… Regarding his work at Boeing, Nye has quipped, “There’s a hydraulic resonance suppressor tube on the 747 horizontal stabilizer drive system that I like to think of as my tube”…. Nye’s advice to young scientists: “Try things, then clean up after yourself. Then try some more things, and clean that up too.”

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