Science & Medicine Podcast
Geneticist Steve McCarroll wants to make an atlas of all the cells in the human body so that we can understand in precise detail how specific genes work, especially in the brain. In this fascinating talk, he shares his team's progress -- including their invention of "Drop-seq," a technology that allows scientists to analyze individual cells at a scale that was never before possible -- and describes how this research could lead to new ways of treating mental illnesses like schizophrenia.
China is the world's biggest polluter -- and now one of its largest producers of clean energy. Which way will China go in the future, and how will it affect the global environment? Data scientist Angel Hsu describes how the most populous country on earth is creating a future based on alternative energy -- and facing up to the environmental catastrophe it created as it rapidly industrialized.
What's it like to discover a galaxy -- and have it named after you? Astrophysicist and TED Fellow Burçin Mutlu-Pakdil lets us know in this quick talk about her team's surprising discovery of a mysterious new galaxy type.
In case you missed this episode on the Playing with Science channel… Hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice dive into the deep end as we explore swimming science and Ultra Short Race Pace Training alongside some of the sport’s insiders – Dr. John Mullen, Dr. Brent Rushall, and coach Peter Andrew. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/swimming-science-and-usrpt/ Photo Credit: Ben Ratner.
The universe is incredibly old, astoundingly vast and populated by trillions of planets -- so where are all the aliens? Astronomer Stephen Webb has an explanation: we're alone in the universe. In a mind-expanding talk, he spells out the remarkable barriers a planet would need to clear in order to host an extraterrestrial civilization -- and makes a case for the beauty of our potential cosmic loneliness. "The silence of the universe is shouting, 'We're the creatures who got lucky,'" Webb says.
Have you ever had a “scigasm?” Find out from Neil deGrasse Tyson, Chuck Nice and Chuck Liu in this StarTalk SoundBite. And for the rest of this episode, visit: https://soundcloud.com/startalk/the-geekiverse-with-kevin-smith
“In fact, it is the geek that shall inherit the Earth.” Explore the geekiverse with Neil deGrasse Tyson, filmmaker and superfan Kevin Smith, comic co-host Chuck Nice, astrophysicist Charles Liu, and physicist James Kakalios, author of The Physics of Superheroes. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/the-geekiverse-with-kevin-smith/ Photo Credit: Brandon Royal.
In case you missed this episode on the Playing with Science channel… Scrums, lineouts, and spin passes – Hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice take to the turf as we explore the science and grit of rugby alongside Todd Clever, former USA Rugby captain, and Trevor Lipscombe, author of “The Physics of Rugby.” NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/rugby-physics-and-grit-with-todd-clever/ Photo Credit: Hamish McConnochie via Wikimedia Commons.
At MIT, Dina Katabi and her team are working on a bold new way to monitor patients' vital signs in a hospital (or even at home), without wearables or bulky, beeping devices. Bonus: it can see through walls. In a mind-blowing talk and demo, Katabi previews a system that captures the reflections of signals like Wi-Fi as they bounce off people, creating a reliable record of vitals for healthcare workers and patients. And in a brief Q&A with TED curator Helen Walters, Katabi discusses safeguards being put in place to prevent people from using this tech to monitor somebody without their consent.
Biologist Dan Gibson edits and programs DNA, just like coders program a computer. But his "code" creates life, giving scientists the power to convert digital information into biological material like proteins and vaccines. Now he's on to a new project: "biological transportation," which holds the promise of beaming new medicines across the globe over the internet. Learn more about how this technology could change the way we respond to disease outbreaks and enable us to download personalized prescriptions in our homes.
There are about a hundred trillion microbes living inside your gut -- protecting you from infection, aiding digestion and regulating your immune system. As our bodies have adapted to life in modern society, we've started to lose some of our normal microbes; at the same time, diseases linked to a loss of diversity in microbiome are skyrocketing in developed nations. Computational microbiologist Dan Knights shares some intriguing discoveries about the differences in the microbiomes of people in developing countries compared to the US, and how they might affect our health. Learn more about the world of microbes living inside you -- and the work being done to create tools to restore and replenish them.
Gorillas, bonobos, monkeys, and more – Neil deGrasse Tyson, comic co-host Chuck Nice, and primatologist Natalia Reagan answer fan-submitted questions about primatology. Now extended with Cosmic Queries about cloning featuring Natalia, Chuck, and biological anthropologist Ryan Raaum. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/extended-classic-cosmic-queries-primatology/ Photo Credit: Natalia Reagan
Hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice find out more about the new Trout 5 baseball cleats, data-driven baseball, and how to be baseball’s best player from MLB superstar Mike Trout and Mike Ekstrom, former MLB player and Nike Product Line Manager for Cleated Footwear. Don’t miss an episode of Playing with Science. Please subscribe to our channels on: Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/playing-with-science/id1198280360 TuneIn: tunein.com/playingwithscience GooglePlay Music: https://play.google.com/music/listen?u=0#/ps/Iimke5bwpoh2nb25swchmw6kzjq SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/startalk_playing-with-science Stitcher: http://www.stitcher.com/podcast/startalk/playing-with-science NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/mlb-greatness-and-trout-5-design-with-mike-trout/ Photo Credit: D. Benjamin Miller [Public domain or CC0], from Wikimedia Commons.
Our planet has a carbon problem -- if we don't start removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, we'll grow hotter, faster. Chemical engineer Jennifer Wilcox previews some amazing technology to scrub carbon from the air, using chemical reactions that capture and reuse CO2 in much the same way trees do but at a vast scale. This detailed talk reviews both the promise and the pitfalls.
Navigating territorial hippos and active minefields, TED Fellow Steve Boyes and a team of scientists have been traveling through the Okavango Delta, Africa's largest remaining wetland wilderness, to explore and protect this near-pristine habitat against the rising threat of development. In this awe-inspiring talk packed with images, he shares his work doing detailed scientific surveys in the hopes of protecting this enormous, fragile wilderness.
Oceanographer Penny Chisholm introduces us to an amazing little being: Prochlorococcus, the most abundant photosynthetic species on the planet. A marine microbe that has existed for millions of years, Prochlorococcus wasn't discovered until the mid-1980s -- but its ancient genetic code may hold clues to how we can reduce our dependence on fossil fuels.
In Part 2, rejoin host Heather Berlin, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Chuck Nice, and theoretical physicist Brain Greene to finish off our segment of StarTalk All-Stars. Then, we cap off our night at BAM with a presentation of Playing with Science featuring Olympic figure skater silver medalist Sasha Cohen. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/startalk-at-bam-science-is-everywhere-part-2/ Photo Credit: Elliot Severn
Have you caught the World Cup fever? We’ve got it bad! Hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice sit down with physics professor John Eric Goff and answer your fan-submitted Cosmic Queries on the 2018 FIFA World Cup and the football world. Don’t miss an episode of Playing with Science. Please subscribe to our channels on: Stitcher: http://www.stitcher.com/podcast/startalk/playing-with-science Apple Podcasts: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/playing-with-science/id1198280360 TuneIn: tunein.com/playingwithscience GooglePlay Music: https://play.google.com/music/listen?u=0#/ps/Iimke5bwpoh2nb25swchmw6kzjq SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/startalk_playing-with-science NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/cosmic-queries-fifa-world-cup-edition/ Photo Credit: Adidas.
Science really is everywhere. From the Big Bang to quantum mechanics to free will, we explore it all featuring Neil deGrasse Tyson, comic co-host Chuck Nice, physicist Brian Greene, neuroscientist Heather Berlin, and rapper Baba Brinkman. Recorded live at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/startalk-at-bam-science-is-everywhere-part-1/ Photo Credit: Elliot Severn.
In case you missed this episode on the Playing with Science channel… The U.S. Open may be over but we’re still on course. Hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice chat with Dr. Craig Davies and golf coach Sean Foley about taking the hole-istic approach to golf and the secrets that make the best players great. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/hole-istic-golf-with-craig-davies-and-sean-foley/ Photo Credit: Keith Allison from Hanover, MD, USA [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Hey StarTalk Fans. Today we have an opportunity to introduce you to a new podcast that we’re very excited about. No, it’s not another StarTalk spinoff – although we may have some interesting news for you on that front in a couple of months, so stay tuned. No, this is a new podcast called Akimbo, and it’s hosted by our favorite evidence-based-marketing thought leader, Seth Godin. Seth is one of the most successful and influential business writers of all time, and some of us here at StarTalk are big fans. Akimbo is a podcast about our culture and about how we can change it. About seeing what's happening and choosing to do something. You can subscribe to Akimbo in Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, or at Akimbo.me, and right now, you can listen to the first two episodes exclusively on StarTalk. So, without further ado, we happily present, Akimbo.
In this fascinating look at the "alpha male," primatologist Frans de Waal explores the privileges and costs of power while drawing surprising parallels between how humans and primates choose their leaders. His research reveals some of the unexpected capacities of alpha males -- generosity, empathy, even peacekeeping -- and sheds light on the power struggles of human politicians. "Someone who is big and strong and intimidates and insults everyone is not necessarily an alpha male," de Waal says.
In case you missed this episode on the Playing with Science channel… Re-visit Planet Soccer as we gear up for the 2018 FIFA World Cup with Chuck Nice, Gary O’Reilly, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and former NY Cosmos assistant coach and MLS All-Star Alecko Eskandarian. Now extended with physicist John Eric Goff telling us all about the new Telstar 18. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/extended-classic-planet-soccer-with-neil-degrasse-tyson Photo Credit: XiXinXing/iStock
Neil deGrasse Tyson and Chuck Nice tackle an eclectic mix of your questions that take us from the boiling surface of the Sun to the dark side of the moon. Now extended with more questions on aliens, Isaac Newton as a dinner guest, Panspermia, and the James Webb Space Telescope. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/extended-classic-cosmic-queries-a-powerful-potpourri/ Image Credit & Copyright: Bob Franke.
Did humans evolve from monkeys or from fish? In this enlightening talk, ichthyologist and TED Fellow Prosanta Chakrabarty dispels some hardwired myths about evolution, encouraging us to remember that we're a small part of a complex, four-billion-year process -- and not the end of the line. "We're not the goal of evolution," Chakrabarty says. "Think of us all as young leaves on this ancient and gigantic tree of life -- connected by invisible branches not just to each other, but to our extinct relatives and our evolutionary ancestors."
In this imaginative talk, neuroengineer Sam Rodriques takes us on a thrilling tour of the next 100 years in brain science. He envisions strange (and sometimes frightening) innovations that may be the key to understanding and treating brain disease -- like lasers that drill tiny holes in our skulls and allow probes to study the electrical activity of our neurons.
In her brutally honest, ironically funny and widely read meditation on death, "You May Want to Marry My Husband," the late author and filmmaker Amy Krouse Rosenthal gave her husband Jason very public permission to move on and find happiness. A year after her death, Jason offers candid insights on the often excruciating process of moving through and with loss -- as well as some quiet wisdom for anyone else experiencing life-changing grief.
To celebrate the life of Anthony Bourdain, Neil deGrasse Tyson is revisiting his two-part interview with him from 2013, as a single, commercial-free episode with new thoughts and recollections by Neil. Featuring comic co-host Eugene Mirman and NYU Professor of Nutrition Marion Nestle. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/remembering-anthony-a-seat-at-the-table-with-anthony-bourdain-parts-1-2/ Photo Credit: Brandon Royal.
This week an auction of a 70% complete dinosaur skeleton took place in Paris. The Therapod species, dating from the late Jurassic period about 155m years ago is scientifically very interesting. It’s an unknown predator which, argues the Society of Vertebrate Palaeontologists, is why it should not be owned by the highest bidder, but made available to palaeontologists for more scientific study. Roland Pease reports. Cancer Test If a doctor suspects cancer is behind a patient’s symptoms, blood tests and scans can help to detect tumours. Tiny bits of tissue can also be extracted in biopsies to see how advanced the disease is. Detecting cancer early offers a better chance of a cure. So news of a potential blood test to detect ten different types has been welcomed this week. Claudia Hammond spoke to Jacqui Shaw, Professor of Translational Cancer Genetics at Leicester University in the UK. Atlantic Hurricanes The 1st of June marks the start of the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season. Leading climate scientists debate whether we will see fewer or more tropical cyclones in the Atlantic as a consequence of anthropogenic climate change. There is a mounting consensus, however, that we will see more intense hurricanes. So do we need to add a more severe Category 6 to the Saffir-Simpson hurricane intensity scale? Roland Pease put this to climate scientist Michael Mann from Penn State University. Cancer Immunotherapy Treatment Immunotherapies for cancer have been in the news in the last week. Adam Rutherford talks to cancer researchers Sophie Papa of Kings College, London and Samra Turaljik of the Royal Marsden Hospital about the principles behind immunotherapy about the different approaches in the clinic and under clinical trials. Kenya Food App Getting access to loans in Kenya for small retailers can be tricky, but now cryptocurrency could solve this problem. Twiga Foods already provides marketplaces via an online platform for farmers and urban retailers. Now it is branching out to provide micro-loans secured via blockchain technology. CEO of Twiga Grant Brooke explains more to Gareth Mitchell. The Science Of Disgust Encouraging people to be healthier can involve gentle persuasion or giving some kind of incentive. Harnessing the most visceral of emotions – disgust – might not seem an obvious approach. Professor Val Curtis from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine has carried out an online survey in order to categorise the commonest types of disgust in order to harness its effects to fight against the spread of disease. She spoke to Claudia Hammond. The Science Hour was presented by Marnie Chesterton with comments from Kerri Smith, Nature features editor. Producer: Katy Takatsuki (Image caption: A skeleton of an undeterminate carnivorous dinosaur on display at the first floor of the Eiffel Tower in Paris which went on auction © AFP / Getty Images)
Neil deGrasse Tyson investigates the search for the truth, the devaluation of facts, staying fair and balanced, debunking “fake news”, and the evolution of modern journalism with Katie Couric, co-host Eugene Mirman, Buzz Machine’s Jeff Jarvis, and data journalist Mona Chalabi. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can listen to this entire episode commercial-free. Photo Credit: Brandon Royal.
In case you missed this episode on the Playing with Science channel… Chuck Nice and Gary O’Reilly race down the track, hairpin through the corner, and kick it into high gear as we explore the science-filled spectacle of auto racing with F1 journalist Will Buxton, physics professor Richard Bower, adventure journalist Jim Clash, and legendary driver Mario Andretti. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/motorsports-physics-technology-with-will-buxton-and-mario-andretti/
What if we could save the fishing industry and protect the ocean at the same time? Marine ecologist Enric Sala shares his bold plan to safeguard the high seas -- some of the last wild places on earth, which fall outside the jurisdiction of any single country -- by creating a giant marine reserve that covers two-thirds of the world's ocean. By protecting the high seas, Sala believes we will restore the ecological, economic and social benefits of the ocean. "When we can align economic needs with conservation, miracles can happen," Sala says.
Two small creatures are at the heart of today’s questions, sent in to email@example.com. The Tiniest Dinosaur "What is the tiniest dinosaur?" asks young listener Ellie Cook, aged 11. Our hunt takes us from the discovery of dinosaurs right up to the present day, which is being hailed as a 'golden age' for palaeontology. Currently, one new species of dinosaur is unearthed on average every single week. But what's the smallest dino? And what can size reveal about the life of extinct animals? Hannah Fry goes underground at the Natural History Museum in London to look through their vaults in search of the tiniest dinosaur with palaeontologist Susie Maidment. Meanwhile Adam Rutherford chats to dinosaur expert Steve Brusatte from Edinburgh University about why size really does matter, especially when it comes to fossils. The Baffled Bat "Why don't thousands of bats in a cave get confused? How do they differentiate their own location echoes from those of other bats?" This puzzling problem was sent in by Tim Beard from Hamburg in Germany. Since eco-location was first discovered, this question has perplexed biologists. Hannah turns bat detective to try and track down these elusive creatures at The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in East London. This is where zoologist Kate Jones from University College London is using a network of smart sensors to find, identify and track wild bats. Bat researcher and impressionist John Ratcliffe from Toronto University explains how bats use sonar to find their way around, and the clever tricks they’ve developed along the way. It's an unlikely tale involving gruesome early experiments, cunning electric fish and some surprising bat maths. (Image: Dinosaurs and a meteor falling from the sky in back background. Credit: ugurhan/Getty Images) Producer: Michelle Martin
When the New Horizons space probe flew past Pluto three years ago, it revealed an expectedly exotic little world. The latest revelation from the data is that dunes creep across its surface. But as John Spencer of the South West Research Institute explains, these dunes are not made of sand grain, but tiny particles of frozen methane. Then again, it is minus 240 degrees Celsius on Pluto. Plenty, a Silicon Valley company plans to revolutionize farming by bringing it indoors and dramatically reducing water use. It has ambitious plans to replicate its warehouse farms in Japan, China and across Europe. Alison van Diggelen explores: the veracity of its technology; its environmental claims; its use of AI and automation; and how it plans to disrupt the agricultural industry. India is tackling an outbreak of the deadly Nipah virus. It has claimed at least 13 lives so far in the southern state, Kerala. The WHO has Nipah on its list as one of eight diseases that could cause a global epidemic. 40% of adults report that they have trouble falling asleep at least a couple of times a month. Common worries about the day’s events and what lies ahead can result in restlessness and low sleep quality. A new study shows that writing a to-do list before bed may help you to nod off faster A 10 kilometre wide asteroid wiped out 75% of life (including the dinosaurs) 66 million years ago. So it’s been a shock to discover this week that life rapidly returned, flourished and diversified at very place where the asteroid crashed into the Earth. Sean Gulick and Chris Lowery of the University of Texas in Austin talks about their discoveries and how they relate to today’s mass extinction crisis. Is Fasting Healthy? Marnie Chestherton cuts down on cookies and investigates the science behind low-calorie or time-restricted eating. She hears how some cells regenerate when we're deprived of food, which one researcher says could reduce breast cancer rates. The coldest place in the universe will be created shortly on the International Space Station. This will be in a box called the Cold Atom Lab installed on the station earlier this week. Lasers and magnets will cool a strange cloud of atoms to within a few fractions of a billionth of a degree above absolute zero. The Lab’s creator is physicist Rob Thompson of Nasa’s JPL in Pasadena. Picture: Image of Pluto taken by the New Horizons space probe. Credit: Credit the picture (note, don't capitalise names)
Neil deGrasse Tyson explores the future of clean meat and animal agriculture with comic co-host Maeve Higgins, author and animal advocate Paul Shapiro, and Dr. Liz Specht, Senior Scientist at The Good Food Institute. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/clean-meat-with-paul-shapiro/ Photo Credit: World Economic Forum (File: The Meat Revolution Mark Post.webm (7:53)) [CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.
What if we could use the cold darkness of outer space to cool buildings on earth? In this mind-blowing talk, physicist Aaswath Raman details the technology he's developing to harness "night-sky cooling" -- a natural phenomenon where infrared light escapes earth and heads to space, carrying heat along with it -- which could dramatically reduce the energy used by our cooling systems (and the pollution they cause). Learn more about how this approach could lead us towards a future where we intelligently tap into the energy of the universe.
In case you missed this episode on the Playing with Science channel… We kick it into top gear as hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice explore the physics of motorcycle racing, riding, and assembly alongside adventure journalist Jim Clash and physics professor and motorcycle aficionado Charles Falco. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/motorcycle-racing-physics-on-2-wheels/ Photo Credit: SCrider (Flickr) via Wikimedia Commons.
Can a bird that symbolizes death help the living catch criminals? In this informative and accessible talk, forensic anthropologist Lauren Pharr shows us how vultures impact crime scenes -- and the assistance they can provide to detectives investigating murders. (This talk contains graphic images.)
Two astronomical questions today sent in to firstname.lastname@example.org for Drs Hannah Fry and Adam Rutherford to answer. The Cosmic Speed Limit "We often read that the fastest thing in the Universe is the speed of light. Why do we have this limitation and can anything possibly be faster?" asks Ali Alshareef from Qatif from Saudia Arabia. The team grapples with Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity, with help from cosmologist Andrew Pontzen and a British train, travelling somewhat slower than the speed of light. Plus physicist and presenter Jim Al-Khalili describes how he nearly lost his boxer shorts in a daring bet concerning the speed of subatomic particles. The Cosmic Egg "How do we measure the age of the Universe?" asks Simon Whitehead. A hundred years ago this wouldn't even have been considered a valid question, because we didn't think the Universe had a beginning at all. Even Einstein thought that space was eternal and unchanging. This is the tale of how we discovered that the Universe had a beginning, and why calculating its age has been one of the greatest challenges in modern astronomy. We also uncover the mysterious dark energy that pervades the cosmos and discover why it's been putting a scientific spanner in the works. Helping to unravel today's question are physicists Andrew Pontzen, Jo Dunkley and Jim Al-Khalili. Picture: Star sun supernova galaxy gold, Credit: Eastern Lightcraft/Getty Images Producer: Michelle Martin
Increased CO2 and Rice Nutrition New research suggests that rice will be depleted in important B vitamins and minerals by rising CO2 levels in the atmosphere. Adam Rutherford to talks to Kristie Ebi of the University of Washington, one of the scientists behind the finding, and Marco Springmann of the Future of Food project at the University of Oxford. GDPR Legislation to greater protect individuals’ data in the EU has come into force. What does it mean, and will there be unexpected consequences for the use of metadata? Gareth Mitchell talks to Claire Bury from the EU commission and Luukas Ilves, Deputy Director at The Lisbon Council. Polio Vaccination As vaccinations start in the Democratic Republic of Congo to try to contain the ebola outbreak, scientists in the United States have published research which they hope will help to simplify immunisations against diseases like polio. Eradication is tricky because the vaccine needs to be given in multiple doses. However, researchers at MIT say they have successfully vaccinated animals with just one injection. Claudia Hammond speaks to researcher Ana Jaklenec. Feel Good Garden Claudia Hammond visits the RHS Feel Good Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show. The garden is part of the 70th birthday celebrations for the NHS and was proposed by occupational therapist Andrew Kingston and designed by Matt Keightley to highlight the benefits of gardening for mental health. African Bee Parasites The presence of queen bees in a hive prevents them from being taking over by ‘parasite’ bees, a new study has found. Fiona Mumoki of the University of Pretoria explains to Roland Pease how the parasitic bees take over queenless hives, eventually causing hive collapse, and how the presence of a queen can enable hive fight back against the parasites. Drone Dog Rescue An engineer in India repurposed a drone to rescue a puppy that had fallen into a gully in New Delhi. Milind Raj constructed a giant claw that was attached to the drone. Raj says it took him six hours to assemble the improvised aerial vehicle. He says he attached an Artificial Intelligence-controlled robotic arm and giant drone together in his Lucknow lab which was then used to rescue the dog. Picture: A man holds a handful of rice grains at a market on July 17, 2008 in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images The Science Hour was presented by Gareth Mitchell with comments from BBC science reporter Helen Briggs. Producer: Katy Takatsuki
Bill Nye the Science Guy and comic co-host Chuck Nice answer fan-submitted Cosmic Queries about The Planetary Society and space exploration, climate change, the competitive nature of scientists, the EPA, NASA, extra-terrestrials, dark matter, and much more. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/cosmic-queries-the-science-around-us/ Photo Credit: Ben Ratner.
In case you missed this episode on the Playing with Science channel… Enter the wild, high-flying world of American Ninja Warrior with hosts Gary O’Reilly, Chuck Nice, ANW hosts Matt Iseman and Akbar Gbaja-Biamila, Ninjas Drew Drechsel, Najee Richardson, and Joe Moravsky, and executive producer Anthony Storm. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/american-ninja-warrior-science-skills-and-strategy/ Photo Credit: Ben Ratner
Research investigator Michael Hendryx studies mountaintop removal, an explosive type of surface coal mining used in Appalachia that comes with unexpected health hazards. In this data-packed talk, Hendryx presents his research and tells the story of the pushback he's received from the coal industry, advocating for the ethical obligation scientists have to speak the truth.
Adventures in Dreamland "Why do we dream and why do we repeat dreams?" asks Mila O'Dea, aged 9, from Panama. Hannah Fry and Adam Rutherford delve into the science of sleep. From a pioneering experiment on rapid eye movement sleep, to a brand new 'dream signature' found in the brain, they discover how scientists are investigating our hidden dreamworld. Featuring sociologist Bill Domhoff from the University of California Santa Cruz, sleep psychologist Mark Blagrove from the University of Swansea, and neurologist Francesca Siclari from the University of Lausanne. The Curious Face-Off "Are machines better than humans at identifying faces?" asks the excellently named Carl Vandal. Today’s Face Off leads our intrepid detectives to investigate why we see Jesus on toast, Hitler in houses and Kate Middleton on a jelly bean. Face perception psychologist Rob Jenkins from the University of York explains why we're so good at spotting familiar faces, like celebrities. Plus, Franziska Knolle from the University of Cambridge discusses her face recognition study involving Barack Obama and a group of highly-trained sheep. But are we outwitted by artificial intelligence when it comes to face ID? BBC technology correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones gives us the low-down on the pros and cons of current technology. Picture: Child sleeping, Credit: Quintanilla/Getty Images Producer: Michelle Martin
Threat to conservation A third of protected nature reserves around the world are under threat from intense human activities like road building, grazing of animals and urbanization, according to a new study. Professor James Watson from the World Conservation Society explains to Roland Pease how only 10% of lands were completely free of human activity. Drones reforesting Myanmar Irina Fedorenko, Co-Founder of BioCarbon Engineering in Oxford, has been using drone technology to reforest the coastal areas of Myanmar. She tells Gareth Mitchell how they can restore natural ecosystems in a fraction of the time it takes traditional methods. Bitcoin energy Alex de Vries from accountancy group PwC explains how Bitcoin works, and how there is a limit to Bitcoin production. He speaks to Roland Pease about how his calculations suggest that Bitcoin electricity usage will soon be almost the same as the consumption of Ireland. Ebola outbreak in DR Congo The Ebola outbreak in DR Congo has spread from the countryside into a city, prompting fears that the disease will be increasingly hard to control. Health Minister Oly Ilunga Kalenga confirmed a case in Mbandaka, a city of a million about 130km (80 miles) from where the first cases were confirmed. Earlier this week, Claudia Hammond spoke to Helen Branswell from the US health website STAT about the action needed to prevent the spread of the disease. Alzheimer's disease We hear about efforts in Italy to help diagnose dementia earlier using computer algorithms to rapidly analyse thousands of brain scans for markers of the disease before symptoms become apparent. Agnese Abrusci reports from Bari in Italy. Evolution of music How have the trends in music changed over recent years? Natalia Komarova has tapped into databases online to discover what characteristics make a song ‘successful’. Her study, which uses machine learning to try to predict the success of songs, shows that the ‘happiness’ of songs is slowly declining, while the ‘danceability’ has increased. Roland Pease spoke to Dr Natalia Komarova from the University of California, Irvine. Picture: Madidi National Park, Bolivia. Credit: Rob Wallace The Science Hour was presented by Marnie Chesterton with comments from BBC Science reporter Katie Silver. Producer: Katy Takatsuki
Explore the inner workings of the human mind, the mysteries of memory, The Matrix, deep learning, the ethics of driverless cars, ELIZA, and much more with Neil deGrasse Tyson, comic co-host Chuck Nice, and neuroscientist Dr. Gary Marcus. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/cosmic-queries-minds-and-machines/ Image Credit: metamorworks/iStock.
In case you missed this episode on the Playing with Science channel… Home runs, World Series winners, pitching physics, and more – enjoy our baseball mashup featuring hosts Chuck Nice and Gary O’Reilly, astrophysicists Neil deGrasse Tyson and Charles Liu, physicist Alan Nathan, Holden Kushner, and former MLB greats Ron Darling Jr., Geoff Blum, and J.P. Arencibia. Photo Credit: AlbertoChagas/iStock.
Domestic science is on the agenda today, with two culinary questions sent in by listeners to email@example.com The Curious Cake-Off Can chemistry help us bake the perfect cake? Listener Helena McGinty aged 69 from Malaga in Spain asks, "'I have always used my mother's sponge cake recipe. But is there a noticeable difference in the outcome if you vary some of the ingredients, or the method?" Hannah and Adam go head to head in a competition to create the perfect cake using the power of science. They are aided by materials scientist Mark Miodownik, from University College London, with tips on how to combine the ideal ingredients and trusted techniques to construct a structurally sound sponge. Food critic Jay Rayner is on hand to judge the results. But who will emerge victorious in this messy baking battle? The Atomic Blade "What makes things sharp? Why are thinner knives sharper? What happens on the molecular level when you cut something?" All these questions came from Joshua Schwartz in New York City. The ability to create sharp tools allowed us to fashion clothing, make shelters and hunt for food, all essential for the development of human civilisation. And, more importantly today they allow us to prepare dinner. So what makes kitchen knives sharp? We hear from IBM scientist Chris Lutz, who has used one of the sharpest blades in the world to slice up individual atoms. Plus palaeoarchaeologist Becky Wragg Sykes reveals the sharpest natural object in the world, a volcanic glass used by the Aztecs called ‘obsidian’. Picture: Colourful Cupcakes, Credit: RuthBlack/Getty Images Producer: Michelle Martin
On the remote island of South Georgia, Antarctica, the invasion of rats from passing ships has wreaked havoc on the local wildlife. But the South Georgia Heritage Trust announced this week that all rats have been eradicated, thanks to an extensive project. Adam Rutherford speaks to chairman Professor Mike Richardson about the achievement and how wildlife is already healing. Amphibian Deadly Fungus According to new research a deadly fungus which has infected more than 700 species of amphibians originated from the Korean Peninsula. The data provides a more complete picture of how the fungus spread from region to region, and emphasises that human trade of amphibian species over the past 100 years has accelerated the spread of the disease. Simon O’Hanlon, from Imperial College London’s Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, explains more to Roland Pease. The Health Risks of Burning Waste in Lebanon Since the closure of a landfill site near Beirut, residents have started to burn rubbish which was building up on the streets. The Mount Lebanon region saw a 500% rise of cases of open burning. Respiratory doctors say the toxic fumes from the fires can put people’s health at risk, as Hugo Goodridge reports. The Smear Test The smear test – or pap smear – is carried out to detect any changes in cells which might later on lead to cervical cancer. But for some women the test itself puts them off going – as it can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. In the UK the number of women going for screening is at its lowest rate for 19 years and for 30 in the US. The design of the vaginal speculum used today dates back to the Ancient Greeks – so could it do with a re-design, to make it more patient-friendly? Claudia Hammond talks to Kate Sanger from Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust and mechanical engineer, Fran Wong, from Frog Design in California. The Rise of the Dinosaurs We all know how dinosaurs became extinct, but how did they rise to prominence? Dr Steve Brusatte talks to Adam Rutherford about what the origins of dinosaurs and how they came to dominate the earth. Time in a Sauna Linked to Lower Stroke Risk For Finnish people there is nothing more relaxing than sitting inside a hot sauna. And now a new study suggests that taking frequent saunas could reduce the risk of having a stroke. The researchers believe that the intense heat helps to reduce blood pressure, cutting the risk. Claudia Hammond speaks to Dr Setor Kunutsor from the University of Bristol’s Musculoskeletal Research Unit. (Photo credit: A member of Team Rat filling a baiting bucket in South Georgia – credit: Oliver Prince/PA Wire) The Science Hour was presented by Claudia Hammond with comments from freelance writer and columnist for BBC Future, David Robson Producer: Katy Takatsuki
Slam dunks, skyhooks, three-pointers, bank shots and rebounds – Investigate the physics of basketball with host Neil deGrasse Tyson, NBA All-Time leading scorer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, comic co-host Chuck Nice, astrophysicist Charles Liu, and NBA analyst Jim Spanarkel. NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: https://www.startalkradio.net/all-access/basketball-physics-with-nba-legend-kareem-abdul-jabbar/ Photo Credit: Brandon Royal.