Our Dynamic Earth is near the former home of Edinburgh-born James Hutton, the father of geology. It's anyone's guess what he'd make of its modern, tent-like exterior, but he'd surely approve of its educational aims: to take visitors back to the creation of the universe 14 billion years ago, then bring them forward to the present day. Aimed primarily at school-age children, it's a science museum that takes a gee-whizz approach to the Big Bang, the formation of the planet, tectonics and vulcanism, weather, evolution, ecology, climate and more.
There's only one way through the galleries, stuffed with interactive displays, so it's worth taking your time. Staff enter into the spirit of things; while kids squeal during an earthquake simulation, they can touch a real mini-iceberg, and gaze quizzically at bubbling primordial 'soup'. The accompanying scientific explanations are simplistic without being patronising. A major addition in 2009 was the We Are Astronomers movie in the FutureDome planetarium space; narrated by David Tennant, it explains why astronomy is a good thing with the aid of cute graphics and impressive 360° film projection.