P. Bryan Heidorn

 Bryan Heidorn, School of Information, Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Academic Affairs, Director, Center for Digital Society and Data Studies

Wednesday, December 13, 2023,


ASA Koffler Great Room and Zoom


Misinformation has been a way of life since the first predators evolved. People have fine-tuned the ability to bamboozle as civilization grows. The internet, social media, blogs, propaganda news, and other recent developments have supercharged the opportunities for communication and deception.

Thirty years ago, Carl Sagan popularized the Baloney Detection Tool Kit as a means to think critically and get closer to the truth. In this talk, we will update that toolkit and add a few new cognitive tools to deal better with today’s fractured information landscape. We’ll also look at how AI and other algorithms are helping to spread untruth and how the same methods are being used in baloney detection.

  1. Bryan Heidorn’s areas of research include natural language processing, text mining for metadata and information retrieval, particularly in biodiversity literature, and museum informatics. Heidorn became the Director of the School of Information when the School of Information Resources and Library Science (SIRLS) merged with the School of Information Science, Technology and Arts (SISTA) in July 2015 forming the School of Information. From 2009 to 2015 he was the Director of that school. Dr. Heidorn stepped down as Director in January 2019 and now serves as the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Affairs. Prior to coming to the UA, Heidorn was a faculty member of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Before arriving in Arizona he served two years as a program manager of the Division of Biological Infrastructure at the National Science Foundation. He has served for several years on the Organization for Tropical Studies Science and Informatics Committees. He is currently the Chair of the Informatics Committee and on the OTS Board of Directors.

Compiled and Edited by Rosemary Brown, Academy Village Volunteer

You can connect to Zoom either by using the following URL: https://zoom.us/j/95456511620?pwd=OC9GcnJRNmJpMTdXdXFhaUpCUkx4QT09 or by opening a browser to zoom.com/join and typing in Meeting ID: 954 5651 1620 and Passcode: 85747 

Wed. Dec 13: “Misinformation: Carl Sagan’s Baloney Detection Tool Kit for 2023-2024”