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Last weekend for Geek is Good!

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Photo credit: Rona Black

Ooopsy. Well, better late than never. I visited the Museum of the History of Science in Oxford a couple of months back now to review the Geek is Good exhibition for the Ali Jones radio show, and then promptly forgot to put it on the blog. Now it’s the last weekend of the exhibition so you’d better read this quick!

I did put Geek is Good my Muddy Guide a couple of times, but it does deserve its own post really because it’s one of those small museums that does great things (the Oxford University Bate Collection of musical instruments is another) that somehow gets overlooked for the more obvious bony charms of the dinosaurs in the Pitt Rivers Museum down the road.

Yet it’s in its own elegant building, below (the original home of the Ashmolean as it happens, and the world’s oldest surviving purpose-built museum building), and even for someone like me, without a shred of scientific nouse, it’s very cool inside – all kinds of early telecscopes, globes, early cameras, compasses and other stuff I didn’t even recognise but looked amazing.

The stunning MHS building, next to the Sheldonian

The stunning MHS building, next to the Sheldonian

The museum goes over three floors, and down in the basement, where they used to conduct the experiments, sits an equation on a blackboard written by a certain Mr Einstein.

Einstein's equation.

Einstein in action. Nope, I’ve idea what it means!


The Geek is Good exhibition is quite fun and a great marketing tool, though actually for me the least interesting part of the museum. It’s amusing to see the old clunky beige computers with their flicky cursors, and the Geek confession booth is a laugh (below) but for me the star attraction is the museum itself, so if you don’t make it in before this weekend, don’t strike it off the must-do list.

geek is good
Timewise, you won’t spend more than two hours here – slightly less probably – so it’s the sort of thing you can do incidentally while you’re in central Oxford. You’re just around the corner from Cornmarket for high street shopping, and a couple of minutes from Turl St Kitchen for coffee, or a lovely meander under the Bridge of Sighs to pop you out on the High St. Take your pick, or do them all!

Admission free, museum closed on Monday.

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