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The Most Powerful Nerd In The Universe Is A Scientific Anomaly

Neil deGrasse Tyson — astrophysicist, irreverent tweetervanquisher of Pluto,frequent Stephen Colbert foil — is America’s “It” Nerd.

A lot of people have held that title before, acting as evangelists for science and discovery. Ben Franklin. Our buddy George Washington Carver. Stephen Jay Gould. Carl Sagan. Tyson’s the latest standard-bearer, and two weeks ago he presided over an hourlong meditation on the birth and scope of the universe that was being broadcast on several networks at once.

"[The Big Bang] is as far back as we can see in time," he intoned on Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey. He paused for effect. “For now.”

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