Kyle Eric Hill is an American retired professional basketball player. He was picked by the Dallas Mavericks in the 2001 NBA Draft with the 44th overall draft pick.
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Hi, reddit, I'm Kyle Hill, science communicator, Nerdist's science guy (http://nerdist.com/author/kyle-hill/), and the host of the upcoming MythBusters: The Search on Science Channel! I went into my career as a science communicator partly because I’ve loved MythBusters for literally more than half my life, so it's crazy that I'm now hosting the reboot. Ask me about that, my YouTube show Because Science (https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLl4T6p7km9da1BKEAGzloOQqDVw3ZB7SF), being a geek, anything you want.
This is my first AMA, but I've been on a redditor since high school (although with a less professional user name). Looking forward to it!
How are you going to make sure you aren't going to soil myth busters name ?
I'm taking the job very seriously. When MB first aired, I was at that point in my life where I had to decide what kind of career I wanted. Obsessing over the show, I went straight into engineering, and then into science communication. I'm not exaggerating when I say that MB is a big reason why I do what I do, so coming on to this show was simultaneously a huge opportunity and hugely important to me. So before I started filming I went to Adam Savage for advice, during filming I worked directly with the showrunner of MB, as well as the original directors, producers, and camera men. It was a ton a work, but I think we made something worthy of the name MythBusters. And remember, this show exists to introduce these people to the fans and give you time to like them (or not).
Are you afraid of any fan backlash over the reboot not including the build team trio? I know that some fandoms can be very harsh on new iterations and want to know how you'd handle that if presented with unruly fans.
Yeah, I am. There's already been a lot of it.
But I understand. I get it because I'm a MythBusters fan myself -- probably why I was brought in. We grew up with Adam, Jamie, Kari, Grant and Tory. I grew up with them. And now some network comes along and says there's another show without them? I get it. But I'm hopeful.
We're doing it this way because finding another Adam or Jamie (I think the MB legacy is worth continuing given its impact) is an impossible task. So we didn't want to simply throw new people at you, we wanted to give you some time to get to know them and what they can do, like a compressed MB series.
My hope is that if/when the next full MythBusters series happens, it will be seen like Star Trek: TNG. Everyone loves TOS, Kirk and Spock, but TNG shares the same values with new characters and people learned to love it to. Maybe the next generation of MythBusters can be something we still love, because (can confirm) it looks and feels like MythBusters, and shares its values.
And then maybe someone will grow a beard in S2 and it will suddenly be the best thing ever.
So it's basically like The Next Food Network Star for the Science Channel? I swear to God, if you unleash another Guy Fieri on the world, there will be hell to pay.
Can confirm no hair gel was harmed in the making of this show.
But to clarify, yeah, by the end of this show, there will be a number of contestants left who will ostensibly feature in the next full MB series. A lot of this though, I imagine, is up to how fans actually receive it.
Username checks out
Hey Kyle! I don't know that much about the new reboot of Mythbusters, but I absolutely loved the old one, so I'm really looking forward to it. Will you have any "assistants" like Tory, Kari, and Grant?
Thank you so much! It's nice to seem the open-mindedness, but I totally understand why we fans would have so many questions.
To clarify: I am not the new host of a new MythBusters series, I am simply hosting this stepping stone show because it was a really good fit. By the end of MythBusters: The Search, we will have contestants who have (hopefully) proved to you that they can carry on the next generation of great science TV.
Hi there, Kyle. I'll be majoring in Physics this year, and my main interest is actually becoming a science communicator instead of a researcher (or just a researcher). My final work (I don't know the exact expression in English) is actually on communication theory applied to science popularizing.
My question is: would you have any tips on how to actually become a science communicator? What would be good first steps?
Thanks in advance
That's awesome! As long as you're passionate and believe that you're doing what you're "supposed" to be doing, don't let anyone tell you you're pursuing something frivolous.
I started as a freelance science writer, pitching articles to Scientific American (they have a highly read, non-paying blog you can submit to), WIRED, Pop Sci, and the like. But I got to that point after writing for my friends, family, and following on a personal blog almost once a day for 2 years. With that experience plus reading great writers, taking online courses, and practice writing helped me branch out.
But I think what really helped me was finding my "niche." I discovered pretty quickly that I like and people responded to the science in pop-culture angle. That probably set me apart, and gave me a singular focus. So find your beat and hit it hard! Be the person who defines that beat.
What does Dan Casey smell like?
I'm the only one who knows, because Dan actually lacks a sense of smell.
He smells fine.
Hi Kyle! Congrats on the Mythbusters gig. Loved the show growing up and super excited about a reboot. My question is simple. Would you rather fight 1 horse sized Duck or 100 duck sized horses? And why?
So I've thought about this question ever since I knew what an AMA was.
Horses nip, bite, and kick, but at a duck size, that's effectively harmless, even with 100 of them.
Now imagine this a horse-sized this: https://vimeo.com/8342946
Yeah, explosively inflating corkscrew penis. I'll take on the horses.
How the heck to you write backwards AND left handed so well? I'm stumped.
YouTube maaaaaagggiiiicccccc! Nah it's science but I like keeping the dumb mystique my show has alive.
Hi! I'm really troubled by "jumper" movie. If I 'jump' to a different location with its own height, pressure, and other environmental variables shouldn't I be killed if these variables are too extreme? e.g If I jump from Everest to the Caribbean sea. xoxo and happy new year.
What I'm more concerned about are the sonic booms. Every time someone teleported, there would be a literal vacuum where they once stood. Air would rush in at hundreds of miles per hour and create a noticeable shock wave. (Nightcrawler gets around this by canonically back-filling his "holes" with Hell-gas from another dimension.)
First of all, I see all the "because science" episode, they are amazing, I love the calculations in particular.
How did you get to host the "because science" series?
Thank you! Very kind.
I was brought in as the science editor at Nerdist almost 3 years ago, and shortly after I started they asked if I could do a video series. The rest was me. I write every script, joke, and camera move myself.
Hi Kyle! I didn't know there was a new host of Mythbusters so this is a shock but my question is what myths are there left to really be tested? I feel like all the good ones have been done already.
As long as we create information, there will be misinformation, and therefore myths ripe for busting.
I had an idea on set: Smoke and Mirrors. Are smoke and mirrors really that obscuring? Put MythBusters inside a maze, a mirror maze, and then a smoke-filled mirror maze. I'm already laughing about all the smooshed faces.
So you could put a trout in his back pocket and he'd be none the wiser.
I farted in his car once to actually test whether or not he had a sense of smell. Zero reaction. It's true.
Can you share your EDC (every day carry)? It would be interesting to see what you carry in your pockets. :)
I have a weird thing with this. I am abnormally sensitive to some sounds and physical feelings, and so I try to carry absolutely nothing in my pockets if I can. When something is there, I can feel its every contour and it drives me insane. When I have to carry something, it has to be just so or else I can't walk with it.
Now that I've written it down publicly, sounds pretty weird.
Hi Kyle! Did you learn anything about hosting this version of Mythbusters from watching Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage (/u/mistersavage)? Also will this version of the show still have large explosions?
Yes! I loved watching MB growing up, but it wasn't until I started doing science communication and TV specifically that I realized how damn good Adam is at doing "stand-ups" or pieces to camera. That guy is a master of the interesting science stand-up, and I absolutely try to glean whatever I can for him watching old episodes now. I'm fortunately to call /u/mistersavage a friend now, and he's been incredibly generous with his time and advice. A definite hero of mine.
And yes, there are explosions in the new show! We tackle some old myths and new, but what I'm most excited to show you are the drone shots we got from...exploding water heaters. You've never seen what we got them to do!
Hi Kyle. i found the Nerdist channel and subscribed to the Nerdist channel because well.. Science. I'm really happy that you're getting bigger in life but i have to ask. what will happen to your segments on Nerdist? will we expect less episodes?
Any plans on how your hosting on Mythbusters might be? would it be similar to how you do Because science? i know you cant reveal much so sorry.
Also for real congratulations man. I know you'll be great
Yeah, I guess this is an open question. Right now, Because Science is continuing. And I want it to for as long as it can -- I carved out time each week to work on it while filming MythBusters because I love the show so much. However, depending on how this show goes, my availability might become limited. Still I want to continue the show if possible. Right now I'm working on making it its own channel, and expanding programming. That way I can do both! (Kinda like Adam and Tested now that I think of it.)
Howdy hey! What was your "science trigger" that got you interested in science in general?
For myself it was all about space. Star Wars was huge in my young formative years (I was born in 1975), spending time watching original Star Trek episodes with my dad in tv syndication, and being interested in the Space Shuttle program through the 80s.
Hard to say. I think I was always just a nerdy kid. My days were dinosaur CD-ROM followed by LEGOs followed by catching bugs in the backyard followed by DBZ. OK, that last one isn't a science trigger but still.
That mindset combined with Bill Nye, Sagan, and of course MythBusters was a perfect storm I guess.
Hair routine, Kyle? Spill the beans.
Also, who inspires you the most in life?
Shower-Garnier Fructis shampoo and conditioner-pat dry-apply bit of argan oil-air dry (no brushing). But before all that, good genes I guess. Thanks mom.
how long have you been rockclimbing?
Aside from science communication, video gaming, and Magic: The Gathering, this is my other major passion.
I've been climbing for 10 years, used to work at a gym, used to compete and coach kids. About 3 years ago, I was pulling on a crimp with two fingers and partially ruptured a pulley on my ring finger. That put me out of commission for a year, and now I'm forever with decreased strength. But I still climb twice a week in LA, and still thug through V8 if it's a good day (the setting at my gym is damn hard).
Hey Kyle, love Because Science, and I've got my 6 year old son into watching. He loves your SURPRISE LIGHTSABER!, and the science, (I hope)
If you were in the Star Wars Universe, would you gravitate toward the light or the dark? A character in particular?
Haha that's awesome! I'm surprised that little gag has stuck with people so much. Tell your son I say hi!
I'm definitely on the Dark Side. I would test my powers constantly on everything and I'd eventually crush someone and play it off as an experiment. Sounds pretty dark to me.
Is there a specific reason you grow out your hair?
Haha yeah, it's kinda dumb, but before I started doing videos a few years ago I was like: "The Winter Soldier looks pretty dope." And after I got there I was like: "Thor is pretty cool," so I kept growing it and dyed it before SDCC one year. I keep it because there are a lot of skinny white men talking about science on YouTube, and it's at the very least a noticeable difference.
As a life long Mythbuster fan, what is your earliest memory of the show? Keep up the awesome work! I can't wait for the show to start!
Hey I know you!
Damn, my earliest memory of the show is probably the first episode, where the editors didn't quite know what a MB show should look like, and so there was long shots of Jamie talking on the phone and urban legend experts talking slightly away from camera.
Can you recommend us any interesting science related books (or any other genres) that you enjoyed!? Cheers!!
My favorite of the last few years is "Spillover" by David Quammen. Incredibly well-written book about infectious diseases. Damn fascinating.
So what happens if you 'win' the search, do the winners host a new show or what?
Yes, the idea is that whoever makes it to the end of the show will go on to be a part of a new MythBusters series. But talking honestly to you, Reddit, I'm guessing that plan has a lot to do with how the fans receive the show and the contestants.
Hey! So why is Mythbusters being rebooted?
I'm all for more Mythbusters, but I don't feel like another group of people can really get the same feeling across. Without any of the original cast, I fear it'll just be fans living out a fantasy on camera and blowing shit up for fun.
The formula is easy to replicate, but the chemistry between the people on camera is what really made it work; how do you plan on addressing this?
I understand the hesitation. I really do.
I believe that Science Channel realizes that MythBusters has an amazing legacy, and that it can continue without the original hosts (like COSMOS without Carl Sagan, a new MB series would still ostensibly share the same look, feel, and values). And they want to make money. That's why shows get made.
But we're doing it this way because I think it would be disingenuous to the fans to just throw a group of people at you and say "love them!" So this show will hopefully give you an opportunity, albeit short, to get to know the people who may or may not go on to do good science TV.
That's my feeling anyway. I was brought in because I know MB inside and out, and I have the professional skillset, but I don't make any of the higher-up decisions.
Why are you doing this RIGHT when I have to go to work? Do you hate me Kyle?
Also, who is your favorite hero?
I don't hate you, I just like to annoy you, it's a fun game we have, you get it.
My favorite hero, that's hard. The communicator in me wants to say Iron Man, because he's proof that with science and engineering, you can become anything you want. But the nerd in me wants to say Joel from The Last of Us. Now that was a hero's journey that ended in a way that really impressed me.
Good morning! Are the Nerdist offices as zany to work in as the social media potrays them to be?
Any great office prank stories?
And who would win in a Nerf War. The Geek & Sundry or The Nerdist crew?
Yes, I had to step out because they are riffing too much about Smash Mouth and I couldn't focus.
Once, when a colleague was on a work trip, we trapped his desk inside Minions b-day decorations. He hated it.
G&S ain't got shit on us.
Hi Kyle! Big fan here of Because Science and Natural Selection.
How often do you workout? And aside from rock climbing, are there any other sports you do?
Thank you so much!
Working out sucks. So when I discovered rock climbing it was perfect -- a sport where you don't have to talk to anyone with a numerical way to judge your performance that also gets you cut real quick? Awesome. So I don't work out per say, I climb twice a week. That being said, I take climbing very seriously when I do it (I used to compete before some injuries), so it doubles as a good workout.
I don't do any other sports, climbing seems to be the only thing I'm built for, or at least the only sport where I was "good".
How can we be sure you don't just take the spot all for yourself at the end of the search? I've seen those Nerdist science videos, you've been training.
Well if anything I do think I was a good fit for the show given my background, but I honestly don't know what's going to happen after this show ends. I'd love to continue to be a part of MythBusters' legacy, but if not, I'll just keep up my nerdy day job.
Do you know any of the myths that you will be testing?
Oh yeah! I want to leave some for viewers, but in the first episode we are tasking the contestants with making an ejector seat that fires out the side of a car instead of straight up. The 2nd episode is all explosions.