Science And Technology Guests On Late Night, Week of June 4

It seems (and I’m probably projecting or thinking wishfully) that this week shows are trying to make up for a lackluster May.  Even the repeats have good stuff, with Dr. Sanjay Gupta on tonight’s Carson Daly episode.  We’ll see later in June if this bears out.

On to what’s new this week.  We have an animal expert, David Mizejewski, returning to Conan Monday (tonight).  Another guest who sort of fits the bill will be the latest Indy 500 winner Dario Franchitti, who sits down with Dave Letterman (who owns part of an Indy Racing team).  Tuesday night Napster co-founders Sean Parker and Shawn Fanning visit Jimmy Fallon to discuss their latest technology venture, which seems to involves adding live video to social networking.

Finally, in what arguably deserves its own post, we have a rare appearance from The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.  Skydivers Felix Baumgartner and Joe Kittinger will be on Friday night.  They are notable because Kittinger holds the current parachute distance record – 102,800 feet, set in 1960.  Baumgartner has been training to shatter it, by jumping from 122,000 feet sometime this year.  Baumgartner would likely exceed Kittinger’s top speed of 614 miles per hour (roughly 988 kilometers per hour) before deploying his chute.  The project is sponsored, perhaps unsurprisingly, by Red Bull.  Much as Kittinger’s jumps over 50 years ago included a lot of scientific observations and equipment innovations, so will Baumgartner’s work.

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