Bill Nye the Science Guy on 'Dancing With the Stars': What he's been up to for the past 15 years

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When Bill Nye was announced as a new contestant for "Dancing With the Stars" in Season 17, many people hadn't heard of the scientist since his PBS show "Bill Nye the Science Guy" went off the air in 1998. But though he's never had quite as catchy a show title since, Nye has remained active in our pop culture for the past 15 years.

The "Dancing With the Stars" connection shouldn't have come out of left field, as Nye has a history of appearing on Hollywood reality competitions. He appeared on "Hollywood Squares" in 1999, "America's Most Smartest Model" in 2007 and was a guest expert on "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" in 2008 and 2009. In addition, he returned to his television scientist roots several times in the shows "The Eyes of Nye," "The Climate Code" and "Stuff Happens." Nye even made appearances on fictional television shows like "Numb3rs" and "Stargate Atlantis."

Of course, he's also been busy being a scientist as well. Nye was a part of the development of a sundial used in the Mars Exploration Rover missions, and also recently launched a Kickstarter for an educational Aerodynamics game called AERO 3D. In his personal life, Nye is an avid swing dancer, which also explains his interest -- and qualifications for -- "Dancing With the Stars."

Many people were recently reintroduced to Nye when he appeared alongside Chris Hardwick on a Nerdist segment in which he taught the host how to tie a bowtie.

Hardwick later announced that Nye will be creating a webshow on the Nerdist YouTube channel, but it's yet to be revealed how that will be affected by Nye's involvement in "Dancing With the Stars."

Photo/Video credit: ABC