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Science Friday

Science Friday and WNYC Studios

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Science Friday
Science Friday

Science Friday

Science Friday and WNYC Studios

966
Followers
1.9K
Plays
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Brain fun for curious people.

Latest Episodes

SciFri Extra: Bringing Environmental Justice To The Classroom

Laura Diaz, a Bay Area science teacher, grew up in Pittsburg, California near chemical plants and refineries. That experience, combined with watching her mother’s home go up in flames in last year’s Camp Fire, transformed her into an “environmental justice activist.” Now, she’s bringing those experiences into the classroom to inspire young people to solve the world’s injustices through science. Diaz joined Ira onstage at San Francisco’s Sydney Goldstein Theater, alongside a few former students, to talk about the connections between science education and environmental activism.

16 MIN5 d ago
Comments
SciFri Extra: Bringing Environmental Justice To The Classroom

Science Awards Of The Sillier Sort. Nov 29, 2019, Part 2

The 2019 Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony is a tribute to offbeat and quirky scientific studies. Here's some examples:Does pizza have a protective effect against cancer? What’s the physics behind the wombat’s unusual cubic-shaped droppings? And can dog-training clickers be used to help the medical education of orthopedic surgeons? These projects were among 10 that were recognized at this year’s29th first annual Ig Nobel Prize ceremonies. The prizes, selected by the editors of theAnnals of Improbable Research, were awarded in September at Harvard’s Sanders Theatre. They salute work that “first makes you laugh, and then, makes you think.”

46 MIN6 d ago
Comments
Science Awards Of The Sillier Sort. Nov 29, 2019, Part 2

Imagining The Future Of AI / Face Mites. Nov 29, 2019, Part 1

What can science fiction and social science contribute to how we think about our algorithmic present and future? Science fiction writers and Hugo-winning podcast hosts Annalee Newitz (author of The Future Of Another Timeline) and Charlie Jane Anders (author of The City In The Middle Of The Night) talk about their work imagining future worlds and new kinds of technology—plus how all of this fiction traces back to the present.Then, AI ethicist Rumman Chowdhury joins to discuss how social science can help the tech industry slow down and think more responsibly about the future they’re helping to build. Plus, everyone has face mites—including you. But they have a fascinating evolutionary story to tell. In this interview recorded live at the Sydney Goldstein Theater in San Francisco, Ira talks with entomologist Michelle Trautwein of the California Academy of Sciences about why face mites live in our skin, where we get them (spoiler: thank your parents!), and how mite lineages can help ...

47 MIN6 d ago
Comments
Imagining The Future Of AI / Face Mites. Nov 29, 2019, Part 1

Undiscovered Presents: Planet Of The Killer Apes

In Apartheid-era South Africa, a scientist uncovered a cracked, proto-human jawbone. That humble fossil would go on to inspire one of the most blood-spattered theories in all of paleontology: the “Killer Ape” theory. According to the Killer Ape theory, humans are killers—unique among the apes for our capacity for bloodthirsty murder and violence. And at a particularly violent moment in U.S. history, the idea stuck! It even made its way into one of the most iconic scenes in film history. Until a female chimp named Passion showed the world that we might not be so special after all.

24 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Undiscovered Presents: Planet Of The Killer Apes

Degrees of Change: Coral Restoration. Nov 22 2019, Part 1

A quarter of the world’s corals are now dead, victims of warming waters, changing ocean chemistry, sediment runoff, and disease. Many spectacular, heavily-touristed reefs have simply been loved to death. But there are reasons for hope. Scientists around the world working on the front lines of the coral crisis have been inventing creative solutions that might buy the world’s reefs a little time. Crawford Drury and his colleagues at the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology are working to engineer more resilient corals, using a coral library for selective breeding experiments, and subjecting corals to different water conditions to see how they’ll adapt. Some resilient corals are still in the wild, waiting to be found. Narrissa Spiers of the Kewalo Marine Laboratory in Honolulu found one such specimen hiding out in the polluted Honolulu Harbor. Other scientists, like Danielle Dixson of the University of Delaware, are experimenting with corals that aren’t alive at all—3D-printed coral...

47 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Degrees of Change: Coral Restoration. Nov 22 2019, Part 1

Astronaut Kathryn Sullivan, Marie Curie Play. Nov 22, 2019, Part 2

For most Americans, the story of the Hubble Space Telescope began on April 24th, 1990, the launch date of the now 30 year-old observatory. But for astronaut Kathryn Sullivan, Hubble’s journey began on a wintery day in early 1985 at a meeting at NASA headquarters, where she was assigned to the mission that would take Hubble into space. For the next five years, Sullivan, a former oceanographer and first female spacewalker, got to know Hubble intimately, training and preparing for its deployment. If Hubble’s automatic processes failed as it was detaching and unfolding from the spacecraft, Sullivan would be the one to step in and help. And she almost had to.Sullivan joins Ira to share the untold stories of Hubble’s launch and her time at NASA as told in her new bookHandprints on Hubble. Physicist Marie Curie is remembered as the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, and the first person—of two ever in history—to win two Nobel Prizes. With her role in discovering radium and polonium, an...

47 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Astronaut Kathryn Sullivan, Marie Curie Play. Nov 22, 2019, Part 2

Undiscovered Presents: Like Jerry Springer For Bluebirds

“Do men need to cheat on their women?” a Playboy headline asked in the summer of 1978. Their not-so-surprising conclusion: Yes! Science says so! The idea that men are promiscuous by nature, while women are chaste and monogamous, is an old and tenacious one. As far back as Darwin, scientists were churning out theory and evidence that backed this up. In this episode, Annie and Elah go back to the 1970s and 1980s, when feminism and science come face to face, and it becomes clear that a lot of animals—humans and bluebirds included—are not playing by the rules. GUESTS Angela Saini, author ofInferior: How Science Got Women Wrong Patricia Adair Gowaty, professor emeritus at UCLA, editor ofFeminism and Evolutionary Biology. FOOTNOTES Sarah B. Hrdyis an anthropologist, feminist, and a major figure in this chapter of science history. Inthis book chaptershe addresses the myth of the “coy female” and reviews the relevant scientific happenings of the 1970s and 80s, especially in the primat...

26 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Undiscovered Presents: Like Jerry Springer For Bluebirds

Volume Control, Dermatology In Skin Of Color, Kelp Decline. Nov 15, 2019, Part 2

Dermatologists presented with a new patient have a number of symptoms to look at in order to diagnose. Does the patient have a rash, bumps, or scaling skin? Is there redness, inflammation, or ulceration? For rare conditions a doctor may have never seen in person before, it’s likely that they were trained on photos of the conditions—or can turn to colleagues who may themselves have photos. But in people with darker, melanin-rich skin, the same skin conditions can look drastically different, or be harder to spot at all—and historically, there have been fewer photos of these conditions on darker-skinned patients. And for these patients, detection and diagnosis can be life-saving: people of color get less melanoma, for example, but are also less likely to survive it. Dr. Jenna Lester, who started one of the few clinics in the country to focus on such patients, explains the need for more dermatologists trained to diagnose and treat people with darker skin tones—and why the difference...

46 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Volume Control, Dermatology In Skin Of Color, Kelp Decline. Nov 15, 2019, Part 2

EPA Transparency Proposal, Tick Milking. Nov 15, 2019, Part 1

This week, a House Committee held a hearing to review an Environmental Protection Agency proposal called‘Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science.’ The proposal would require researchers to disclose underlying data—which could include private medical and health information—for any scientific studies that the agency would use in determining environmental regulations. Science reporter Lisa Friedman from theNew York Timesdiscusses how this proposal could be used to weaken regulations and discount certain scientific studies. Plus, epidemiologist Joshua Wallach talks about how the proposal could affect researchers who conduct long-term epidemiological studies. We reached out to the EPA for comment and they provided a statement that says: “Science transparency does not weaken science, quite the contrary. By requiring transparency, scientists will be required to publish hypothesis and experimental data for other scientists to review and discuss, requiring the science to withst...

46 MIN2 w ago
Comments
EPA Transparency Proposal, Tick Milking. Nov 15, 2019, Part 1

SciFri Extra: Add A Dash Of Science To Your Thanksgiving Recipes

This Thanksgiving, put your cooking skills to the test. Looking for tips to avoid singed sweet potatoes, acrid apple pies, and a burned bird? In this 2016conversation from the SciFri archive, Molly Birnbaum and Dan Souza fromCook’s Sciencehelp us understand the science behind favorite Thanksgiving recipes so you can avoid food failures, and get the most out of your roast and side dishes.

20 MIN3 w ago
Comments
SciFri Extra: Add A Dash Of Science To Your Thanksgiving Recipes

Latest Episodes

SciFri Extra: Bringing Environmental Justice To The Classroom

Laura Diaz, a Bay Area science teacher, grew up in Pittsburg, California near chemical plants and refineries. That experience, combined with watching her mother’s home go up in flames in last year’s Camp Fire, transformed her into an “environmental justice activist.” Now, she’s bringing those experiences into the classroom to inspire young people to solve the world’s injustices through science. Diaz joined Ira onstage at San Francisco’s Sydney Goldstein Theater, alongside a few former students, to talk about the connections between science education and environmental activism.

16 MIN5 d ago
Comments
SciFri Extra: Bringing Environmental Justice To The Classroom

Science Awards Of The Sillier Sort. Nov 29, 2019, Part 2

The 2019 Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony is a tribute to offbeat and quirky scientific studies. Here's some examples:Does pizza have a protective effect against cancer? What’s the physics behind the wombat’s unusual cubic-shaped droppings? And can dog-training clickers be used to help the medical education of orthopedic surgeons? These projects were among 10 that were recognized at this year’s29th first annual Ig Nobel Prize ceremonies. The prizes, selected by the editors of theAnnals of Improbable Research, were awarded in September at Harvard’s Sanders Theatre. They salute work that “first makes you laugh, and then, makes you think.”

46 MIN6 d ago
Comments
Science Awards Of The Sillier Sort. Nov 29, 2019, Part 2

Imagining The Future Of AI / Face Mites. Nov 29, 2019, Part 1

What can science fiction and social science contribute to how we think about our algorithmic present and future? Science fiction writers and Hugo-winning podcast hosts Annalee Newitz (author of The Future Of Another Timeline) and Charlie Jane Anders (author of The City In The Middle Of The Night) talk about their work imagining future worlds and new kinds of technology—plus how all of this fiction traces back to the present.Then, AI ethicist Rumman Chowdhury joins to discuss how social science can help the tech industry slow down and think more responsibly about the future they’re helping to build. Plus, everyone has face mites—including you. But they have a fascinating evolutionary story to tell. In this interview recorded live at the Sydney Goldstein Theater in San Francisco, Ira talks with entomologist Michelle Trautwein of the California Academy of Sciences about why face mites live in our skin, where we get them (spoiler: thank your parents!), and how mite lineages can help ...

47 MIN6 d ago
Comments
Imagining The Future Of AI / Face Mites. Nov 29, 2019, Part 1

Undiscovered Presents: Planet Of The Killer Apes

In Apartheid-era South Africa, a scientist uncovered a cracked, proto-human jawbone. That humble fossil would go on to inspire one of the most blood-spattered theories in all of paleontology: the “Killer Ape” theory. According to the Killer Ape theory, humans are killers—unique among the apes for our capacity for bloodthirsty murder and violence. And at a particularly violent moment in U.S. history, the idea stuck! It even made its way into one of the most iconic scenes in film history. Until a female chimp named Passion showed the world that we might not be so special after all.

24 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Undiscovered Presents: Planet Of The Killer Apes

Degrees of Change: Coral Restoration. Nov 22 2019, Part 1

A quarter of the world’s corals are now dead, victims of warming waters, changing ocean chemistry, sediment runoff, and disease. Many spectacular, heavily-touristed reefs have simply been loved to death. But there are reasons for hope. Scientists around the world working on the front lines of the coral crisis have been inventing creative solutions that might buy the world’s reefs a little time. Crawford Drury and his colleagues at the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology are working to engineer more resilient corals, using a coral library for selective breeding experiments, and subjecting corals to different water conditions to see how they’ll adapt. Some resilient corals are still in the wild, waiting to be found. Narrissa Spiers of the Kewalo Marine Laboratory in Honolulu found one such specimen hiding out in the polluted Honolulu Harbor. Other scientists, like Danielle Dixson of the University of Delaware, are experimenting with corals that aren’t alive at all—3D-printed coral...

47 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Degrees of Change: Coral Restoration. Nov 22 2019, Part 1

Astronaut Kathryn Sullivan, Marie Curie Play. Nov 22, 2019, Part 2

For most Americans, the story of the Hubble Space Telescope began on April 24th, 1990, the launch date of the now 30 year-old observatory. But for astronaut Kathryn Sullivan, Hubble’s journey began on a wintery day in early 1985 at a meeting at NASA headquarters, where she was assigned to the mission that would take Hubble into space. For the next five years, Sullivan, a former oceanographer and first female spacewalker, got to know Hubble intimately, training and preparing for its deployment. If Hubble’s automatic processes failed as it was detaching and unfolding from the spacecraft, Sullivan would be the one to step in and help. And she almost had to.Sullivan joins Ira to share the untold stories of Hubble’s launch and her time at NASA as told in her new bookHandprints on Hubble. Physicist Marie Curie is remembered as the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, and the first person—of two ever in history—to win two Nobel Prizes. With her role in discovering radium and polonium, an...

47 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Astronaut Kathryn Sullivan, Marie Curie Play. Nov 22, 2019, Part 2

Undiscovered Presents: Like Jerry Springer For Bluebirds

“Do men need to cheat on their women?” a Playboy headline asked in the summer of 1978. Their not-so-surprising conclusion: Yes! Science says so! The idea that men are promiscuous by nature, while women are chaste and monogamous, is an old and tenacious one. As far back as Darwin, scientists were churning out theory and evidence that backed this up. In this episode, Annie and Elah go back to the 1970s and 1980s, when feminism and science come face to face, and it becomes clear that a lot of animals—humans and bluebirds included—are not playing by the rules. GUESTS Angela Saini, author ofInferior: How Science Got Women Wrong Patricia Adair Gowaty, professor emeritus at UCLA, editor ofFeminism and Evolutionary Biology. FOOTNOTES Sarah B. Hrdyis an anthropologist, feminist, and a major figure in this chapter of science history. Inthis book chaptershe addresses the myth of the “coy female” and reviews the relevant scientific happenings of the 1970s and 80s, especially in the primat...

26 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Undiscovered Presents: Like Jerry Springer For Bluebirds

Volume Control, Dermatology In Skin Of Color, Kelp Decline. Nov 15, 2019, Part 2

Dermatologists presented with a new patient have a number of symptoms to look at in order to diagnose. Does the patient have a rash, bumps, or scaling skin? Is there redness, inflammation, or ulceration? For rare conditions a doctor may have never seen in person before, it’s likely that they were trained on photos of the conditions—or can turn to colleagues who may themselves have photos. But in people with darker, melanin-rich skin, the same skin conditions can look drastically different, or be harder to spot at all—and historically, there have been fewer photos of these conditions on darker-skinned patients. And for these patients, detection and diagnosis can be life-saving: people of color get less melanoma, for example, but are also less likely to survive it. Dr. Jenna Lester, who started one of the few clinics in the country to focus on such patients, explains the need for more dermatologists trained to diagnose and treat people with darker skin tones—and why the difference...

46 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Volume Control, Dermatology In Skin Of Color, Kelp Decline. Nov 15, 2019, Part 2

EPA Transparency Proposal, Tick Milking. Nov 15, 2019, Part 1

This week, a House Committee held a hearing to review an Environmental Protection Agency proposal called‘Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science.’ The proposal would require researchers to disclose underlying data—which could include private medical and health information—for any scientific studies that the agency would use in determining environmental regulations. Science reporter Lisa Friedman from theNew York Timesdiscusses how this proposal could be used to weaken regulations and discount certain scientific studies. Plus, epidemiologist Joshua Wallach talks about how the proposal could affect researchers who conduct long-term epidemiological studies. We reached out to the EPA for comment and they provided a statement that says: “Science transparency does not weaken science, quite the contrary. By requiring transparency, scientists will be required to publish hypothesis and experimental data for other scientists to review and discuss, requiring the science to withst...

46 MIN2 w ago
Comments
EPA Transparency Proposal, Tick Milking. Nov 15, 2019, Part 1

SciFri Extra: Add A Dash Of Science To Your Thanksgiving Recipes

This Thanksgiving, put your cooking skills to the test. Looking for tips to avoid singed sweet potatoes, acrid apple pies, and a burned bird? In this 2016conversation from the SciFri archive, Molly Birnbaum and Dan Souza fromCook’s Sciencehelp us understand the science behind favorite Thanksgiving recipes so you can avoid food failures, and get the most out of your roast and side dishes.

20 MIN3 w ago
Comments
SciFri Extra: Add A Dash Of Science To Your Thanksgiving Recipes

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