Science Talk

Science Talk Podcast

Science Talk is a weekly science audio show covering the latest in the world of science and technology. Join Steve Mirsky each week as he explores cutting-edge breakthroughs and controversial issues with leading scientists and journalists. He is also an articles editor and columnist at Scientific American magazine. His column, "Antigravity," is one of science writing's great humor venues. Also check our daily podcast from Scientific American : "60-Second Science." To view all of our archived podcasts please go to www.scientificamerican.com/podcast

Bread Science: A Yeasty Conversation
“Baking is applied microbiology,” according to the book Modernist Bread . During pandemic lockdowns, many people started baking their own bread. Scientific American contributing editor W. Wayt Gibbs talks about Modernist Bread, for which he was a writer and editor....

The Coming or Possibly Nearly Here Storm
Former Scientific American editor Mark Alpert talks about his latest sci-fi thriller The Coming Storm, which warns about the consequences of unethical scientific research and of ignoring the scientific findings you don’t like....


COVID-19 Vaccine Ethics: Who Gets It First and Other Issues
Contributing editor W. Wayt Gibbs spoke with Arthur Caplan , head of the NYU Grossman School of Medicine’s division of medical ethics, about some of the ethical issues that researchers have to consider in testing and distributing vaccines against COVID-19....

How Your Homes and Buildings Affect You
Journalist and author Emily Anthes talks about her book The Great Indoors: The Surprising Science of How Buildings Shape Our Behavior, Health, and Happiness ....

African-Americans, Nature and Environmental Justice
Journalist Bob Hirshon reports from the Taking Nature Black conference, reporter Shahla Farzan talks about tracking copperhead snakes, and nanoscientist Ondrej Krivanek discusses microscopes with subangstrom resolution....


How Nature Helps Body and Soul
Journalist and author Florence Williams talks about her book The Nature Fix: Why Nature Makes Us Happier, Healthier and More Creative ....

The Messenger Is the Message
Behavioral scientist Stephen Martin and psychologist Joseph Marks talk about their book Messengers: Who We Listen To, Who We Don’t, and Why ....


Science on the Hill: Calculating Climate
For the fourth Science on the Hill event, Future Climate: What We Know, What We Don’t, experts talked with Scientific American senior editor Mark Fischetti about what goes into modeling our climate—and how such models are used in addition to long-term climate prediction....

Your Brain, Free Will and the Law
Stanford University neuroscientist Robert Sapolsky talks about human behavior, the penal system and the question of free will....

No, No Nobel: How to Lose the Prize
Physicist Brian Keating talks about his book Losing the Nobel Prize: A Story of Cosmology, Ambition, and the Perils of Science’s Highest Honor ....


Galileo's Fight against Science Denial
Astrophysicist and author Mario Livio talks about his latest book, Galileo: And the Science Deniers, and how the legendary scientist’s battles are still relevant today....

Where Is Everybody Else in the Universe?
Guest host W. Wayt Gibbs talks with Jason Wright, a professor of astronomy and astrophysics at Pennsylvania State University’s Center for Exoplanets and Habitable Worlds, about what’s known as the Fermi paradox: In a universe of trillions of planets, where is everybody?...

Why Exercise Is So Good For You
Health journalist Judy Foreman talks about her new book Exercise Is Medicine: How Physical Activity Boosts Health and Slows Aging ....


COVID-19: What the Autopsies Reveal
Pathologists are starting to get a closer look at the damage that COVID-19 does to the body by carefully examining the internal organs of people who have died from the novel coronavirus....

COVID-19: The Need for Secure Labs--and Their Risks
Coronavirus research requires high-containment labs. Journalist Elisabeth Eaves talks with Scientific American contributing editor W. Wayt Gibbs about her article “The Risks of Building Too Many Bio Labs,” a joint project of the New Yorker and the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists ....

Flat Earthers: What They Believe and Why
Michael Marshall, project director of the Good Thinking Society in the U.K., talks about flat earth belief and its relationship to conspiracy theories and other antiscience activities....


COVID-19: Predicting the Path and Analyzing Immunity
Scientific American contributing editor W. Wayt Gibbs continues to report on the coronavirus outbreak from his home in Kirkland, Wash., site of the first U.S. cases. In this installment, he talks with researchers about what their models show for the future of the pandemic and on research to create tests to see who has developed immunity....

COVID-19: How and Why the Virus Spreads Quickly
Scientific American contributing editor W. Wayt Gibbs reports from the original U.S. epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak: Kirkland, Wash. In this installment of our ongoing series, he talks with researchers about the properties of the virus and why it spreads so quickly....

COVID-19: The Wildlife Trade and Human Disease
Christian Walzer, executive director of global health at the Wildlife Conservation Society, talks about how the wildlife trade, especially for human consumption, can lead to disease outbreaks....


COVID-19: Dealing with Social Distancing
Judy Moskowitz, a professor of medical social sciences at Northwestern University, talks about ways to cope during this time of missing out on our usual diet of social interactions....

Coronavirus Hot Zone: Research and Responses in the U.S. Epicenter
Scientific American contributing editor W. Wayt Gibbs reports from the U.S. epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak: Kirkland, Wash. In this installment of our ongoing series, he talks with researchers about the efforts to create vaccines and treatments and the challenges the outbreak poses to cancer patients and others who are immunocompromised....


Coronavirus Hot Zone: The View from the U.S. Epicenter
Scientific American contributing editor W. Wayt Gibbs reports from the U.S. epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak: Kirkland, Wash. In this first installment of an ongoing series, he looks at why children seem to weather this disease better than adults and the complicated issue of shuttering schools....

Coronavirus Hot Zone: The View from the U.S. Epicenter
Scientific American contributing editor Wayt Gibbs reports from the U.S. epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, Kirkland, Washington. In this first of an ongoing series, he looks at why children seem to weather this disease better than adults and the complicated issue of shuttering schools....


Advancing Efforts in Disease Interception
Ben Wiegand, global head of the World without Disease Accelerator at Janssen, the Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson, talks about efforts to prevent a disease or to identify it in its earliest stages for more effective treatments....

Kirk, Spock and Darwin
Duke University evolutionary biologist Mohamed A. F. Noor talks about his book Live Long and Evolve: What Star Trek Can Teach Us about Evolution, Genetics, and Life on Other Worlds ....

How to Make a Mass Extinction
Journalist and author Peter Brannen talks about his book The Ends of the World: Volcanic Apocalypses, Lethal Oceans, and Our Quest to Understand Earth’s Past Mass Extinctions ....


Air Pollution: An Unclear and Present Danger
Journalist and author Beth Gardiner talks about her new book Choked: Life and Breath in the Age of Air Pollution . And CRISPR pioneer Jennifer Doudna talks about gene editing....

150 Years of the Journal Nature
Nature is arguably the world’s most prestigious scientific journal. Editor in chief Magdalena Skipper spoke with Scientific American ’s acting editor in chief Curtis Brainard about her journal as it celebrates its 150th anniversary....

Lithium-Ion Battery Creators Win Chemistry Nobel Prize
John B. Goodenough, M. Stanley Whittingham and Akira Yoshino share the 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry “for the development of lithium-ion batteries” that have led to portable electronic devices that are rechargeable virtually anywhere on the planet....


How Cells Sense Oxygen Levels: Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
William Kaelin, Jr., Peter Ratcliffe and Gregg Semenza share the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine “for their discoveries of how cells sense and adapt to oxygen availability.” New therapies for cancer and conditions such as anemia are in the pipeline, based on these discoveries....

Talking Health and Energy at U.N. Climate Action Summit
Scientific American senior editor Jen Schwartz talks with WHO officials Maria Neira and Agnès Soucat about climate and health and with Rachel Kyte, special representative to the U.N. secretary-general for, and CEO of, Sustainable Energy for All....


The Mathematical Language of Nature
Physics historian Graham Farmelo talks about his latest book, The Universe Speaks in Numbers: How Modern Math Reveals Nature's Deepest Secrets....


It's Melting: Science on Ice
Glaciologist Elizabeth Case of the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University’s Earth Institute takes us out near Juneau, Alaska, to study and live on the shifting ice....

Joseph Lange's Campaign against HIV
Seema Yasmin, director of research and education at the Stanford Health Communication Initiative, talks about her book The Impatient Dr. Lange: One Man’s Fight to End the Global HIV Epidemic. Lange was killed five years ago today when flight MH17 was shot down....

Bone Up on What's Inside You
Author and self-described fossil fanatic Brian Switek talks about his new book Skeleton Keys: The Secret Life of Bone....


Solving Our Plastic Problem
At Scientific American 's third Science on the Hill event, experts from academia and the private sector met at the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill to talk with Scientific American editor-in-chief Mariette DiChristina about solutions to our plethora-of-plastics problem....

Secrets of the Universe Revealed!
Cornell University applied mathematics professor Steven Strogatz talks about his new book Infinite Powers: How Calculus Reveals the Secrets of the Universe....

How the Black Hole Said Cheese
Scientific American 's chief features editor Seth Fletcher talks about his book Einstein's Shadow, an account of the long effort to image a black hole that recently came to fruition....


A Tree and Its People in a Warming Landscape
Conservation scientist Lauren Oakes discusses her book about Alaska ecology and sociology, In Search of the Canary Tree: The Story of a Scientist, a Cypress, and a Changing World....

Science Couple Phages Out Superbug
Medical researcher Steffanie Strathdee needed to save the life of her husband, researcher Tom Patterson, when he contracted one of the world's worst infections. She turned to phage therapy: using a virus to kill the bacteria....


On the Origin of Darwin
On this 210th anniversary of Darwin's birth we hear evolution writer and historian Richard Milner perform a brief monologue as Charles Darwin, and former Scientific American editor in chief John Rennie and Darwin's great-great-grandson Matthew Chapman read excerpts from The Origin of Species ....

Warming Arctic on Thin Ice
Scientific American collections editor Andrea Gawrylewski talks to managing editor Curtis Brainard about how warming in the Arctic affects us all. And glaciologist Elizabeth Case takes us out near Juneau to study and live on the shifting ice....

Fake Whiskeys and Octo-Ecstasy
Scientific American assistant news editor, Tanya Lewis, and collections editor, Andrea Gawrylewski, take a deeper look at two short articles from the Advances news section of the December issue, on counterfeit whiskeys and the effect of real ecstasy...on octopuses....


Ultima Thule and the Apes of Earth
As the New Horizons mission approached Ultima Thule, Rowan University paleontologist Kenneth Lacovara put our close-up study of the Kuiper Belt object into a deep-time perspective....

Meet the Real Ravenmaster
Christopher Skaife talks about his new book The Ravenmaster: My Life with the Ravens at the Tower of London, in front of a live audience at Caveat, “the speakeasy bar for intelligent nightlife" in Lower Manhattan....

The Crusade against Dangerous Food, Part 2
Pulitzer Priz​e–winning journalist Deborah Blum talks about her book The Poison Squad: One Chemist’s Single-Minded Crusade for Food Safety at the Turn of the 20th Century, Part 2....


The Crusade against Dangerous Food, Part 1
Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Deborah Blum talks about her book The Poison Squad: One Chemist’s Single-Minded Crusade for Food Safety at the Turn of the 20th Century, Part 1....

Tinder for Cheetahs; and an Unusual Blindness
Scientific American assistant news editor, Tanya Lewis, and collections editor, Andrea Gawrylewski, host a new podcast that takes a deeper look at short articles from the Advances news section of the magazine....



More People, but Less Hardship?
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation CEO Sue Desmond-Hellmann talks about the just-issued Goalkeepers Report, tracking progress against poverty and disease even as the population keeps rising....

Here's Looking at Humanity, Kid
Senior Editor Gary Stix talks about the September special issue of Scientific American , devoted to the science of being human. And Brown University evolutionary biologist Ken Miller discusses human chromosome 2 and what it tells us about us....


Out with the Bad Science
NPR science journalist Richard Harris talks about his book, Rigor Mortis: How Sloppy Science Creates Worthless Cures, Crushes Hope and Wastes Billions ....

AI, Robotics and Your Health
At the second Science on the Hill event, AI, Robotics and Your Health, experts from academia and the private sector talked with Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina about the future of AI and robotics in medicine....


Dinosaurs: From Humble Beginnings to Global Dominance
Edinburgh University paleontologist Steve Brusatte talks about his May 2018 Scientific American article, "The Unlikely Triumph of the Dinosaurs," and his new book, The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs: A New History of a Lost World ....

Humans Evolved but Are Still Special
Brown University biologist and author Ken Miller talks about his new book The Human Instinct: How We Evolved to Have Reason, Consciousness and Free Will ....

A Brain Deprived of Memory
Michael Lemonick, opinion editor at Scientific American , talks about his most recent book, The Perpetual Now: A Story of Amnesia, Memory and Love , about Lonni Sue Johnson, who suffered a specific kind of brain damage that robbed her of much of her memory and her ability to form new memories, and what she has revealed to neuroscientists about memory and the brain....


Blockchain beyond Bitcoin: The Energy Sector
Freelance science journalist Kevin Begos reports from the U.S. Power and Renewable Summit in Austin, Texas, on the use of blockchain technology to make more efficient energy markets and distribution....

The Skinny on Fat
Biochemist Sylvia Tara talks about her book The Secret Life of Fat: The Science behind the Body's Least-Understood Organ and What It Means for You ....

Your Brain Is So Easily Fooled
Journalist Erik Vance talks about his first book, Suggestible You: The Curious Science of Your Brain’s Ability to Deceive, Transform and Heal ....


Come On and Zoom (through the Universe)
Caleb Scharf, director of Columbia University’s Astrobiology Center talks about his latest book, The Zoomable Universe: An Epic Tour through Cosmic Scale, from Almost Everything to Almost Nothing, and the OSIRIS-REx space mission....

Monsters: Not Just for Halloween
Stephen Asma, professor of philosophy at Columbia College Chicago and author of On Monsters: An Unnatural History of Our Worst Fears, talks about our enduring fascination with monsters....

Maryn McKenna's Big Chicken, Part 2
Award-winning journalist Maryn McKenna talks about her latest book, Big Chicken: The Incredible Story of How Antibiotics Created Modern Agriculture and Changed the Way the World Eats . (Part 2 of 2)...


Maryn McKenna's Big Chicken, Part 1
Award-winning journalist Maryn McKenna talks about her latest book, Big Chicken: The Incredible Story of How Antibiotics Created Modern Agriculture and Changed the Way the World Eats . (Part 1 of 2)...

Nobel Prize Explainer: Catching Proteins in the Act
The 2017 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded jointly to Jacques Dubochet, Joachim Frank and Richard Henderson for developing cryo-electron microscopy that can determine high-resolution structures of biomolecules in solution....


Does Evolution Repeat Itself?
Jonathan Losos, biology professor at Harvard and curator of herpetology at the university’s Museum of Comparative Zoology, talks about his latest book, Improbable Destinies: Fate, Chance and the Future of Evolution ....

The Great American Eclipse
In advance of the big solar eclipse on August 21, author and journalist David Baron talks about his new book American Eclipse: A Nation's Epic Race to Catch the Shadow of the Moon and Win the Glory of the World ....


Curiouser and Curiouser
Astrophysicist and author Mario Livio ventures deep into the human mind in his new book, Why? What Makes Us Curious ....

The Shark That Conquered the Whorl
Journalist and author Susan Ewing talks about her new book Resurrecting the Shark: A Scientific Obsession and the Mavericks Who Solved the Mystery of a 270-Million-Year-Old Fossil . (And we'll discuss how Helicoprion is not technically a shark, but it's really close!)...

Undersea National Monument Could Be Left High and Dry
Scott Kraus, vice president and senior science advisor at the Anderson Cabot Center for Ocean Life at the New England Aquarium in Boston, talks about the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument, created last year and already under threat....


Wacky Florida's Weird Science
Journalist Craig Pittman of the Tampa Bay Times talks about his book, Oh, Florida! How America’s Weirdest State Influences the Rest of the Country ....

The Gestation Equation: Testing Babies' Genes
Journalist Bonnie Rochman talks about her new Scientific American /Farrar, Straus and Giroux book, The Gene Machine: How Genetic Technologies Are Changing the Way We Have Kids—and the Kids We Have ....

5G Wiz: What's on the Horizon for Mobile
Verizon’s director of network planning, Sanyogita Shamsunder, talks with Scientific American 's Larry Greenemeier about the coming 5G and EM-spectrum-based communications in general....


Take the Tube: Underground as a Way of Life
Emory University paleontologist, geologist and ichnologist Anthony J. Martin talks about his new book, The Evolution Underground: Burrows, Bunkers and the Marvelous Subterranean World beneath Our Feet ....

Killer Cats Bash Biodiversity
Conservation biologist Peter Marra talks with journalist Rene Ebersole about the threat of outdoor cats to wild animals and to human health. Marra is the co-author, with writer Chris Santella, of the book Cat Wars: The Devastating Consequences of a Cuddly Killer ....

Dogging It: Turning Wild Foxes into Man's Second-Best Friend
Evolutionary biologist and science historian Lee Dugatkin talks about the legendary six-decade Siberian experiment in fox domestication run by Lyudmila Trut, his co-author of a new book and Scientific American article about the research....


What's Driving the Self-Driving Cars Rush
Scientific American technology editor Larry Greenemeier talks with Ken Washington, vice president of Research and Advanced Engineering at Ford, about self-driving cars....

Biology's Lessons for Business
Martin K. Reeves and Simon Levin talk about their Scientific American essay "Building a Resilient Business Inspired by Biology."...

Churchill's Extraterrestrials
Astrophysicist and author Mario Livio writes in the journal Nature and talks to Scientific American about the recently rediscovered essay by Winston Churchill that analyzed with impressive scientific accuracy the conditions under which extraterrestrial life might exist....


Rapid-Response Vaccines for Epidemic Outbreaks
Trevor Mundel, president of global health at the Gates Foundation, talks to Scientific American editor-in-chief Mariette DiChristina about the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the efforts to create vaccine platforms for rapid responses to epidemics....

We're Taking You to Bellevue
Pulitzer Prize–winning N.Y.U. historian David Oshinsky, director of the Division of Medical Humanities at the N.Y.U. Langone Medical Center, talks about his latest book, Bellevue: Three Centuries of Medicine and Mayhem at America’s Most Storied Hospital ....


Best Science Books of 2016
Barbara Kiser, books and arts editor at Nature , talks about her favorite science books of 2016, especially three works about the little-known history of women mathematicians....

Getting Robots to Say No
Gordon Briggs, a postdoc at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory, talks about the article he and Matthias Scheutz, director of the Human Robot Interaction Laboratory at Tufts University, wrote in the January Scientific American titled "The Case for Robot Disobedience."...

How Myths Evolve over Time and Migrations
Julien d’Huy, of the Pantheon–Sorbonne University in Paris, talks about the use of evolutionary theory and computer modeling in the comparative analysis of myths and folktales, the subject of his article in the December 2016 Scientific American ....


Attack On the Internet: Weak-Link Nanny Cams
Paul Rosenzweig, former deputy assistant secretary for policy in the Department of Homeland Security and founder of Red Branch Consulting, PLLC, talks about the October 21 attack on internet service in the U.S. that left millions without connectivity for hours....

internet cybersecurity computing technology

Flint's Water and Environmental Justice
The University of Michigan's Paul Mohai, a leading researcher of issues related to environmental justice, talked about the Flint water crisis at a workshop sponsored by the Institute for Journalism and Natural Resources, attended by Scientific American contributing editor Robin Lloyd....


Nobel Prize Explainer: Autophagy
The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded today to Yoshinori Ohsumi of Japan for his discoveries concerning autophagy. Following the announcement, journalist Lotta Fredholm spoke to Juleen Zierath, chair of the Nobel Committee for Physiology or Medicine, about the research....


Grand Canyon Rapids Ride for Evolution Education
Each summer, the National Center for Science Education organizes a boat trip down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon to bring visitors face to wall-face with striking examples of geologic and evolutionary processes....


Electric Eels versus Horses: Shocking but True
Kenneth Catania of Vanderbilt University talks to Cynthia Graber about electric eel research that led him to accept 19th-century naturalist Alexander von Humboldt's account of electric eels attacking horses....

Tiger, Tiger, Being Tracked
Wildlife Conservation Society researcher Ullas Karanth talks about his July, 2016, Scientific American article on state-of-the-art techniques for tracking tigers and estimating their populations and habitat health....

Gravitational Wave Scientists Astounded--by Your Interest
Caltech’s Kip Thorne and Ronald Drever and MIT’s Rainer Weiss were the founders of the LIGO experiment that detected gravitational waves. They were just awarded the Kavli Prize in Astrophysics and two of them spoke with Scientific American 's Clara Moskowitz about LIGO and the public's reaction....


Sean M. Carroll Looks at The Big Picture
Caltech theoretical physicist Sean M. Carroll talks about his new book The Big Picture: On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself . (Dutton, 2016)...

The Bowling Ball That Invaded Earth
Former Scientific American editor Mark Alpert talks about his latest science fiction thriller, The Orion Plan, featuring the method whereby aliens most likely really would colonize our planet....


Gorilla's Hum Is a Do-Not-Disturb Sign
If a socially prominent gorilla is in the midst of a meal, it may hum or sing to tell others nearby that it's busy at the moment and will get back to you later....

Bill Gates Wants a Miracle
Scientific American 's energy and environment editor, David Biello, met with Bill Gates on February 22 to discuss tackling carbon emissions while at the same time making necessary energy available to ever more of the globe’s growing population....


From AI to Zika: AAAS Conference Highlights
Scientific American editors Mark Fischetti, Dina Maron and Seth Fletcher talk about the info they picked up at the just-concluded annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington, D.C. Subjects covered include gravitational waves, whether there's really a war on science, the growing concern over Zika virus, sea level rise and advances in artificial intelligence....

Gravitational Waves Found: Kip Thorne Explains
Scientific American 's Josh Fischman talks with renowned astrophysicist and general relativity expert Kip Thorne about the discovery of gravitational waves by the LIGO Project, co-founded by Thorne....

The Big Gath Dig: Goliath's Hometown
Freelance journalist Kevin Begos talks with archaeologist Aren Maeir, from Bar Ilan University in Israel, at his dig site in Gath, thought to be Goliath's hometown and a major city of the Philistine civilization....


Roman Sanitation Didn't Stop Roaming Parasites
The University of Cambridge's Piers Mitchell, author of the 2015 book Sanitation, Latrines and Intestinal Parasites in Past Populations, talks about the counterintuitive findings in his recent paper in the journal Parasitology titled "Human parasites in the Roman World: health consequences of conquering an empire."...

Evolution Still on Trial 10 Years after Dover
Evolutionary biologist Nicholas Matzke talks about the Kitzmiller v. Dover evolution trial on the 10th anniversary of the decision. He advised the plaintiffs while working for the National Center for Science Education. He also discusses the continuing post- Dover attempts to get creationist narratives taught in public school science classrooms....

Lifting the Visor on Virtual Reality
Ken Perlin, a New York University computer science professor and virtual reality pioneer, talks with Scientific American tech editor Larry Greenemeier about the state of virtual reality , its history and where it's heading...


The Epic History of the Horse
Science journalist and equestrian Wendy Williams talks about her new book The Horse: The Epic History of Our Noble Companion...

Math Can Equal Fun
Harvey Mudd College math professor Arthur Benjamin talks about his new book The Magic of Math: Solving for x and Figuring Out Why...

Teaching Machines to Learn on Their Own
Stephen Hoover, CEO of Xerox’s Palo Alto Research Center, talks with Scientific American tech editor Larry Greenemeier about the revolution underway in machine learning, in which the machine eventually programs itself...


Chemistry Nobel: Keeping DNA in Good Repair
The 2015 Nobel Prize in Chemistry goes to Tomas Lindahl, Paul Modrich and Aziz Sancar for discoveries of the mechanisms by which cells maintain the integrity of their DNA sequences...

Physics Nobel: Neutrinos Do Have Mass
The 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics goes to Takaaki Kajita and Arthur B. McDonald for the discovery of neutrino oscillations, which shows that neutrinos have mass...

Medicine Nobel: Sifting Nature for Antiparasite Drugs
The 2015 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine goes to William C. Campbell and Satoshi Ōmura for their discoveries of a medication against roundworm parasites and to Youyou Tu for her discoveries concerning a novel therapy against malaria. Some 3.4 billion people are at risk for the diseases these drugs treat...


The Hunt for the Fat Gene
Medical researcher Richard Johnson, of the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, talks about his October Scientific American article "The Fat Gene," co-authored by anthropologist Peter Andrews of University College London and the Natural History Museum in London. Their piece is about how a genetic mutation in prehistoric apes may underlie today’s pandemic of obesity and diabetes...

The Errors of Albert
Physicist and cosmologist Lawrence Krauss, director of the Origins Project at Arizona State University, talks about his article "What Einstein Got Wrong," in Scientific American ’s September issue, devoted to the 100th anniversary of Einstein’s publication of general relativity...

Public Health Hero Jimmy Carter; SA Turns 170
Jimmy Carter talks about his public health efforts to eradicate guinea worm and improve global mental health and women's health. Plus, magazine collector Steven Lomazow brings part of his collection to the Scientific American 170th birthday party...


Olympics Loser Boston Wins Big Economically
Smith College sports economist Andrew Zimbalist talks about why the Olympics is almost always a big financial hardship for the host city, a subject he treats at length in his book Circus Maximus: The Economic Gamble behind Hosting the Olympics and the World Cup . Recorded at the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse in New York City...


Pluto Mission Finally Calls Home
At 8:52 P.M. Eastern time, July 14, 2015, an all's-well signal from the New Horizons spacecraft finished its 4.5-hour, three-billion-mile trip from near Pluto through the solar system to alert mission control on Earth that it was in working order and had succeeded in gathering data...

Pluto, Ready for Your Close-Up!
At just before 7:50 A.M. today, July 14, 2015, the New Horizons spacecraft made its closest approach to Pluto. After a 9.5-year, three-billion-mile voyage, the ship got within about 7,750 miles from the surface...

Restore Research to Preserve the American Dream
Norman Augustine, former CEO of Lockheed Martin and former undersecretary of the Army talks about the report he co-chaired for the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, "Restoring the Foundation: The Vital Role of Research in Preserving the American Dream"...


Migratory Birds: What a Long-Range Trip It's Been
Ornithologist Eduardo Inigo-Elias, senior research associate with the conservation science program at the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, talks about the challenges of studying migratory birds and how improved relations between the U.S. and Cuba will help his field...

Take a Bite out of the Math of Math
Mathematician Eugenia Cheng, tenured in the School of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Sheffield in the U.K. and currently Scientist in Residence at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago talks about her new book How to Bake Pi: An Edible Exploration of the Mathematics of Mathematics...

Animals Don't Use Facebook but They Have Social Networks, Too
Lee Dugatkin, evolutionary biologist and behavioral ecologist at the University of Louisville, talks about his article in the June Scientific American called "The Networked Animal," about how social networks in disparate animals species affect the lives of the entire group and its individual members. His co-author is Matthew Hasenjager, a doctoral candidate in his lab...


Mississippi Mound Builders Meet the 33rd Legion
Astronomer Alan Smale spends his days at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center exploring celestial objects, but he's also the author of Clash of Eagles, an alternate-history novel in which a Roman Legion invades North America...

The Ebola Outbreak: Past, Present and Future
Scientific American ’s Dina Maron talks with Keiji Fukuda, assistant director general for health security at the World Health Organization, about the current Ebola outbreak, the threat of sexual transmission and the hope for a vaccine. They were both at an Institute of Medicine Forum on Microbial Threats held at the Pan American Health Organization in Washington, D.C., concentrating on Ebola in west Africa...

Humans and the Amazon: A 13,000-Year Coexistence
University of Exeter archaeologist  José  Iriarte talks to freelance journalist Cynthia Graber about his efforts to understand human activity in and influence on the Amazon region for the last 13 millennia...


Science Goes to the Movies: A New TV Program
Heather Berlin, assistant professor of psychiatry and of neuroscience at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, is the co-host of the new CUNY TV program Science Goes to the Movies...



Doctors Without Borders Fight on Ebola's Front Lines
Scientific American health and medicine correspondent Dina Fine Maron talks with Armand Sprecher of Doctors Without Borders, who has fought Ebola in Guinea and Liberia. And Steve talks Ebola with Stanford's David Relman, chair of the Forum on Microbial Threats of the Institute of Medicine...

Ebola Expert Update
Scientific American health and medicine correspondent Dina Fine Maron talks about Ebola with tropical medicine and infectious disease expert Daniel Bausch of Tulane University at the annual meeting of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene...

Let's Get Small: A Panel on Nanoscience
Scientific American senior editor Josh Fischman joins nanoscience researchers Shana Kelly, Yamuna Krishnan, Benjamin Bratton, along with moderator Bridget Kendall from the BBC World Service program The Forum...


Building a Better Microscope: 2014 Nobel Prize in Chemistry
The 2014 Nobel Prize in Chemistry is awarded to Eric Betzig, Stefan W. Hell and William E. Moerner for the development of super-resolved fluorescence microscopy. The winning work is explained by chemistry Nobel Committee members Sven Lidin and Måns Ehrenberg...

Blue Light Special: 2014 Nobel Prize in Physics
The 2014 Nobel Prize in Physics goes to Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano and Shuji Nakamura for the invention of efficient blue light–emitting diodes, which has enabled bright and energy-saving white light sources. The winning work is explained by physics Nobel Committee members Per Delsing and Olle Inganäs...

The Map in Your Mind: 2014 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
The 2014 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine goes to John O'Keefe, May-Britt Moser and Edvard I. Moser for their discoveries of cells that constitute a positioning system in the brain—an inner GPS. The winning work is explained by Karolinska Institute faculty and Nobel Committee members Göran Hansson, Ole Kiehn, Hans Forssberg and Juleen Zierath...




Under the Dome: Scientific American Editor in Chief Talks to the Senate
Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina testifies before the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation about the value of scientific research and development. Also testifying is Vint Cerf , one of the fathers of the Internet and Google’s vice president and "chief Internet evangelist." The hearings took place July 17, 2014...

Wild Sex: Beyond the Birds and the Bees
Joy Reidenberg , comparative anatomist at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, talks about her new PBS series Sex in the Wild , about the sex lives of elephants, orangutans, kangaroos and dolphins. The series debuts July 16, 2014...


Hunting the Wild Neutrino
Astrophysicist Ray Jayawardhana , of the University of Toronto, talks about his new book Neutrino Hunters: The Thrilling Chase for a Ghostly Particle to Unlock the Secrets of the Universe...

Sometimes the Hoofprints Are from Zebras
David J. Hand , emeritus professor of mathematics at Imperial College London, talks about his new book The Improbability Principle: Why Coincidences, Miracles and Rare Events Happen Every Day...


Take Me Out to the Run Expectancy Matrix Analysis
Smith College economics professor Andrew Zimbalist talks about his latest book, The Sabermetric Revolution: Assessing the Growth of Analytics in Baseball (co-authored with Benjamin Baumer), at the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse, with proprietor Jay Goldberg...


Found in Space, Part 2
Journalist Lee Billings Talks about his book Five Billion Years of Solitude: The Search For Life Among the Stars , Part 2 of 2...

Found in Space, Part 1
Journalist Lee Billings Talks about his book Five Billion Years of Solitude: The Search For Life Among the Stars , Part 1 of 2...

From Gadgets to Galaxies: Conference Reports
Scientific American technology editor Seth Fletcher talks about the recent Consumer Electronics Show and astronomy editor Clara Moskowitz discusses last month's American Astronomical Society conference...


Fighting Cancer with Physics
Rakesh K. Jain, director of the Edwin L. Steele Laboratory for Tumor Biology in the radiation oncology department of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, talks about his article in the February issue of Scientific American about interfering with extracellular matrix as a way to increase the efficacy of cancer therapy...


The 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry: Karplus, Levitt and Warshel
The 2013 Nobel Prize in Chemistry goes to Martin Karplus, Michael Levitt and Arieh Warshel for applying both quantum and classical physics to develop computer models of chemical systems that show details of chemical reactions...

MartinKarplus MichaelLevitt AriehWarshel 2013NobelPrizeinChemistry

The 2013 Nobel Prize in Physics: Englert and Higgs
The 2013 Nobel Prize in Physics goes to François Englert and Peter Higgs for the theory of how particles acquire mass, requiring the existence of the Higgs Boson, experimentally confirmed to exist in 2012...

Higgsparticle Higgsboson PeterHiggs FrançoisEnglert 2013NobelPrizeinPhysics Godparticle


Alan Alda Communicates Science
At the Learning in the Digital Age summit at Google's New York City offices, Scientific American editor in chief Mariette DiChristina talked with Alan Alda about communicating science to the general public....

AlanAlda LearningintheDigitalAge

Ira Flatow and the Teachable Moment
At the Learning in the Digital Age summit at Google's New York City offices, Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina talked with Science Friday host Ira Flatow about the "teachable moment in science and culture"...

IraFlatow LearningintheDigitalAge

Adam Rutherford's Creation Science (The Real Kind) Part 2
Science journalist, author and Nature editor Adam Rutherford talks about new book Creation: How Science Is Reinventing Life Itself , which looks at the science of the origin of life and at the emerging science of synthetic biology....

AdamRutherford originoflife evolution syntheticbiology


Adam Rutherford's Creation Science (the Real Kind), Part 1
Science journalist, author and Nature editor Adam Rutherford talks about new book Creation: How Science Is Reinventing Life Itself, which looks at the science of the origin of life and at the emerging science of synthetic biology...

AdamRutherford originoflife evolution syntheticbiology

Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto: The Threatened Enlightenment
Nobel laureate Harry Kroto, who shared the 1996 chemistry prize, talks with Scientific American Executive Editor Fred Guterl at the recent Lindau Nobel Laureates meeting, about the role of science in society...

HarryKroto scienceinsociety


Penis Enlightenment: Bering Straight Talk
Jesse Bering discusses his 2012 book Why Is the Penis Shaped Like That? (And Other Reflections on Being Human)...

JesseBering humananatomy evolutionarypsychology sex

Is There a Doctor in the Spaceship?
NASA astronaut and medical doctor Michael Barratt spoke to schoolkids at the Family Science Days event at this year's meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Boston...

MichaelBarratt long-durationspaceflight


Mary Roach Cruises the Alimentary Canal
Mary Roach talks about her new book Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal, which traces what she calls "the whole food chute"...

MaryRoach Gulp:AdventuresontheAlimentaryCanal

Start Talking: Synthetic Biology and Conservation Biology Meet, Part 2
Conservation biologist Kent Redford talks about the issues facing the intersection of synthetic biology and conservation biology and a conference that starts April 9th called "How will synthetic biology and conservation shape the future of nature?"...

Syntheticbiology conservationbiology KentRedford

Start Talking: Synthetic Biology and Conservation Biology Meet, Part 1
Conservation biologist Kent Redford talks about the issues facing the intersection of synthetic biology and conservation biology and a conference that starts April 9th called "How will synthetic biology and conservation shape the future of nature?"...

Syntheticbiology conservationbiology KentRedford


Imagine All the People Turning Blue and Green
Science writer Dennis Meredith talks about his new science fiction book The Rainbow Virus, in which a bioterror plot turns people all the colors of the rainbow...

DennisMeredith RainbowVirus chromophore

Biotech's Brave New Beasts, Part 2
Journalist and author Emily Anthes talks about her new book, Frankenstein's Cat: Cuddling Up to Biotech's Brave New Beasts...

EmilyAnthes Frankenstein'sCat Biotech Transgenics

Biotech's Brave New Beasts, Part 1
Journalist and author Emily Anthes talks about her new book, Frankenstein's Cat: Cuddling Up to Biotech's Brave New Beasts...

EmilyAnthes Frankenstein'sCat Biotech Transgenics


CSI: 19th-Century France and the Birth of Forensic Science
Reporter and storyteller Steven Berkowitz talks to science journalist and author Douglas Starr about his book The Killer of Little Shepherds: A True Crime Story and the Birth of Forensic Science...

DouglasStarr TheKillerofLittleShepherds JosephVacher AlexandreLacassagne

John Rennie Hacks the Planet
Former Scientific American editor in chief John Rennie talks about his new six-episode Weather Channel TV Show, Hacking the Planet, which debuts February 28...

WeatherChannel HackingthePlanet JohnRennie

Inside Isaac: A Discussion of Newton, Part 2
A panel of physicists, science historians and playwright Lucas Hnath discuss Newton following a performance of Hnath's play about Newton, called Isaac's Eye, at the Ensemble Studio Theater in New York City on February 20th. The play runs through March 10, 2013...

Isaac'sEye EnsembleStudioTheater LucasHnath GabrielCwilich MatthewJones MatthewStanley historyofscience


Inside Isaac: A Discussion of Newton, Part 1
A panel of physicists, science historians and playwright Lucas Hnath discuss Newton following a performance of Hnath's play about Newton, called Isaac's Eye, at the Ensemble Studio Theater in New York City on February 20th. The play runs through March 10, 2013...

Isaac'sEye EnsembleStudioTheater LucasHnath GabrielCwilich MatthewJones MatthewStanley historyofscience

Extinction: New Sci-Fi from Mark Alpert
Mark Alpert is a former editor at Scientific American who has gone on to become a best-selling science fiction writer. We talk about his latest book, Extinction , an apocalyptic tale hinging on brain-machine interfaces....

MarkAlpert Extinction brain-machineinterfaces

Science and Tech in President Obama's SOTU
In his 2013 State of the Union address, Pres. Obama talked about climate change, energy and manufacturing technology innovation, and STEM education—that is, science, technology, engineering and math...

PresidentBarackObama STEM alternativeenergy SOTU


Michael C. Hall Analyzes His Dexter's Mind, Part 2
Actor Michael C. Hall , TV's Dexter , talks with psychologist Kevin Dutton , author of The Wisdom of Psychopaths , at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City...

KevinDutton Psychopathy TheWisdomofPsychopaths Dexter MichaelC.Hall

Michael C. Hall Analyzes His Dexter's Mind, Part 1
Actor Michael C. Hall , TV's Dexter , talks with psychologist Kevin Dutton , author of The Wisdom of Psychopaths , at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City...

KevinDutton Psychopathy TheWisdomofPsychopaths Dexter MichaelC.Hall


Darwin in Space: How Multigenerational Missions Could Shape Human Evolution
Portland State University anthropologist Cameron Smith talks with Scientific American 's John Matson about how multigenerational space exploration missions and colonization might change the human genome and thus shape human evolution...

CameronSmith HumanEvolution MultigenerationalSpace-ExplorationMissions


David Quammen: The Spillover of Animal Infections to Humans
David Quammen talks about his latest book, Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic . From his Web site : "The next big and murderous human pandemic, the one that kills us in millions, will be caused by a new disease--new to humans, anyway. The bug that's responsible will be strange, unfamiliar, but it won't come from outer space. Odds are that the killer pathogen--most likely a virus--will spill over into humans from a nonhuman animal"...

DavidQuammen Spillover zoonoticdiseases zoonosis

Scientific American after Sandy
Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina brings us up to date on the state of our New York City-based operation after Sandy. Recorded October 31 at 2:30 P.M Eastern time...

Sandy ScientificAmerican

The 2012 Nobel Prize in Chemistry
The 2012 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded jointly to Robert J. Lefkowitz and Brian Kobilka for studies of G-protein-coupled receptors, which are the portals by which information about the environment reaches the interior of cells and leads to their responses. About half of all drugs work by interacting with G-protein-coupled receptors...

RobertJ.Lefkowitz BrianKobilka G-protein-coupledreceptors


The 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics
The 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded jointly to Serge Haroche and David J. Wineland for experimental methods that enable measuring and manipulation of individual quantum systems...

SergeHaroche DavidJ.Wineland quantumcomputer atomicclock quantumstate

The 2012 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
The 2012 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded jointly to John B. Gurdon and Shinya Yamanaka for the discovery that mature cells can be reprogrammed to become pluripotent...

IPS inducedpluripotentstemcells JohnGurdon ShinyaYamanaka

The Climate of Climate Science
James McCarthy , Alexander Agassiz professor of biological oceanography at Harvard, talks about climate science and testifying before Congress, and the collaborations between climate scientists and the national security community as well as with evangelicals. And the Union of Concerned Scientists releases a report about the misleading coverage of climate science at Fox News and The Wall Street Journal...

Climatescience climatedenial FoxNews JamesMcCarthy JoeBastardi


The Flynn Effect: Modernity Made Us Smarter
James Flynn studies intelligence at the University of Otago in New Zealand. And he features prominently in an article called “Can We Keep Getting Smarter?” in the September issue of Scientific American magazine. Back on July 10, Flynn visited the SA offices, where he chatted with a group of editors...

IQ intelligence JamesFlynn FlynnEffect

What's Next for Curiosity on Mars
Scientific American contributor David Appell talks with Mars Science Lab Project leader John Grotzinger, professor of geology at Caltech, about the plans for the rover on the Martian surface...

Mars Curiosityrover JohnGrotzinger MarsScienceLaboratory

Curiosity Lands on Mars
Less than an hour after NASA received confirmation that the Curiosity rover was safely on the Martian surface , some principal members of the mission briefed the press. This is an edited presentation of that briefing, which started at about 11:20 P.M, Pacific time on August 5th....

Mars Curiosityrover


Plants Know Stuff
Daniel Chamovitz , director of the Manna Center for Plant Biosciences at Tel Aviv University, talks about his new book What a Plant Knows ....

DanielChamovitz botany arabidopsis

Super-Earths: Bigger, and Maybe Better
Dimitar Sasselov, professor of astronomy at Harvard University and the founder and director of the Harvard Origins of Life Initiative, talks about his new book The Life of Super-Earths: How the Hunt for Alien Worlds and Artificial Cells Will Revolutionize Life on Our Planet...

DimitarSasselov exoplanets Super-Earths

The Transit of Venus, Part 2
Mark Anderson, author of the book The Day The World Discovered the Sun , talks about the transit of Venus coming up on June 5th or 6th in different parts of the world and how it will be of use to astronomers searching for exoplanets...

MarkAnderson Venustransit exoplanets


The Transit of Venus, Part 1
With a transit of Venus coming up on June 5th or 6th in different parts of the world, Mark Anderson, author of the book The Day The World Discovered the Sun, talks about the great efforts to track the transits of Venus in the 1760s and the science they would produce...

MarkAnderson Venustransit Halley CaptainCook Jean-BaptistChappe

Virus Victors: People Who Control HIV
Bruce Walker, professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and director of the Ragon Institute of Massachusetts General Hospital, M.I.T. and Harvard, talks about his article in the July issue of Scientific American magazine called "Controlling HIV," about rare individuals who never develop AIDS after being infected by the virus...

BruceWalker HIV eliteHIVcontrollers

The Football Concussion Crisis
NFL Hall of Famer Harry Carson joins former NBC anchor Stone Phillips and pathologist Bennet Omalu for a discussion of chronic traumatic encephalopathy among football players. Recorded May 12th at the Ensemblestudiotheatre.org, site of the new play Headstrong about the brain injury issue...

CTE HarryCarson BennetOmalu chronictraumaticencephalopathy concussion


Killer Chimps and Funny Feet: Report from the AAPA Conference
Scientific American editor Kate Wong talks about the recent conference of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists in Portland, Ore., where subjects included killer chimps, unprecedented fossil sharing among researchers and divergent hominid foot forms...

Fossilfeet killerchimps AmericanAssociationofPhysicalAnthropologists

Getting Guinea Worm Gone: Report from the AHCJ Conference
Scientific American editor Christine Gorman talks about the recent conference of the Association of Health Care Journalists, including Jimmy Carter's efforts against guinea worm and trachoma, and Rosalynn Carter's mental health initiatives...

JimmyCarter RosalynnCarter guineaworm trachoma mentalhealth

Food Poisoning's Lasting Legacy
Scientific American Science of Health columnist Maryn McKenna talks about the new understanding that food poisoning can have long-lasting negative health effects...

Foodpoisoning infectiousdisease


Fukushima Anniversary: We Listen Back
Scientific American editor David Biello takes us through newly released audio from the first week of the nuclear meltdown crisis at Fukushima Daiichi...

FukushimaDaiichi NRC

AAAS Report: Fracking, Whale Rights, Higgs Evidence and Twitter Truthiness
Scientific American editors Mark Fischetti and Michael Moyer discuss some of the sessions they attended at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Subjects covered include fracking, cetacean rights, the Higgs boson and Twitter 's truthiness...

Fracking cetaceanrights Higgs Twitter AAAS

If You're Happy, How You Know It
Social scientist Roly Russell, of the Sandhill Institute in British Columbia, talked with Scientific American 's Mark Fischetti at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science about potentially better measures than GDP of a nation's well-being...

RolandRussell GDP SandhillInstitute AAAS


The Coming Entanglement: Bill Joy and Danny Hillis
Digital innovators Bill Joy, co-founder of Sun Microsystems, and Danny Hillis, co-founder of the Long Now Foundation, talk with Scientific American Executive Editor Fred Guterl about the technological "Entanglement" and the attempts to build the other, hardier Internet...

Technology digitalentanglement BillJoy DannyHillis

More with Maryn: McKenna on Antibiotic Resistance
In part 2 of our conversation with journalist and author Maryn McKenna, she talks about antibiotic resistance in agriculture and human health, MRSA, and offers a brief coda on the subject of fecal transplants...

Superbug MRSA TB antibioticresistance MarynMcKenna

Fecal Transplants: The Straight Poop
Journalist and author Maryn McKenna talks about fecal transplants, which have proved to be exceptionally effective at restoring a healthy intestinal microbiome and curing C. diff infections, yet remain in regulatory limbo...

Fecaltransplants C.diff MarynMcKenna


A Second Science Front: Evolution Champions Rise to Climate Science Defense
Eugenie Scott, executive director of the National Center for Science Education, long the nation's leading defender of evolution education, discusses the NCSE's new initiative to help climate science education...

NationalCenterforScienceEducation NCSE EugenieScott climatechange climatescience globalwarming evolution creationism intelligentdesign scienceeducation

Anna Deavere Smith: Let Me Down Easy
Actor, playwright and journalist Anna Deavere Smith talks about the health care crisis and her play about people dealing with illness, health and the health care system, Let Me Down Easy...

AnnaDeavereSmith LetMeDownEasy


The YouTube SpaceLab Competition
If you're 14 to 18 years old, you still have until December 14th to prepare a two-minute video of a suggestion for an experiment to be performed at the International Space Station and upload it to youtube.com/spacelab. Winners will see their experiment performed in space...

YouTube.com/spacelab InternationalSpaceStation

Large Hadron Collider Backgrounder
Thomas LeCompte of Argonne National Lab was the physics coordinator for the ATLAS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider. He talks about the instrument and its future, as we await the December 13th announcement as to whether the LHC has found the Higgs particle...

LHC ThomasLeCompte ATLASexperiment LargeHadronCollider


Out of Our Depth: Sea Level on the Rise
Ocean and climate scientist Eelco Rohling talks with Scientific American senior editor Mark Fischetti about updated calculations of sea-level rise as a function of climate change...

EelcoRohling climatechange sealevel

Brian Greene Talks Faster-Than-Light Neutrinos
Physicist Brian Greene, host of the NOVA series The Fabric of the Cosmos, addresses the question of faster-than-light neutrinos at a Q&A session after the debut of the PBS series...

BrianGreene FabricoftheCosmos

The Mind's Hidden Switches
Eric J. Nestler, director of the Friedman Brain Institute at the Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City, talks about his article in the December issue of Scientific American magazine on epigenetics and human behavior, called "Hidden Switches in the Mind"...

EricNestler epigenetics addiction depression


The Discovery of Quasicrystals: The 2011 Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Listen to the announcement of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, to Daniel Shechtman of the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. Then hear comments from the president of the American Chemical Society, Nancy Jackson, of Sandia National Laboratories...

DanielShechtman quasicrystals NobelPrize

An Accelerating Universe: The 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics
Listen to the announcement of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics, to Saul Perlmutter, Brian Schmidt and Adam Riess, from the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. Following the formal announcement comes an explanation of the research, which tracked type Ia supernovae to discover that the expansion of the universe was accelerating, and a phone conversation with new Nobel laureate Brian Schmidt...

SaulPerlmutter BrianSchmidt AdamReiss acceleratinguniverse NobelPrize type1asupernova

Cancer Vaccines
Eric von Hofe, cancer researcher and president of the biotech company Antigen Express talks about his article in the October issue of Scientific American called "A New Ally against Cancer," about cancer vaccines...

AntigenExpress cancervaccines EricvonHofe


Science Legend Christian de Duve
Christian de Duve, 1974 Nobel laureate for physiology or medicine, talks about going from a cell biologist to a theorist on evolution and the origin of life...

ChristiandeDuve originoflife

Carl Zimmer on Rats, Cats, Viruses and Tattoos
In part 2 of our interview, award-winning author Carl Zimmer talks about his latest books, and a new study that shows how Toxoplasma influences the behavior of rats--and maybe of us...

CarlZimmer Toxoplasma viruses

Carl Zimmer on Evolution in the Big City
The annual Scientific American September single-topic issue is all about cities. And award-winning author Carl Zimmer recently penned a piece on evolution research in the urban environment for The New York Times . In part 1 of this interview, he talks about urban evolution...

CarlZimmer urbanevolution


Nobel Laureate Avram Hershko: The Orchestra in the Cell
Nobel laureate Avram Hershko, who determined cellular mechanisms for breaking down proteins, talks about his research in a conversation recorded at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting in Lindau, Germany. And Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina discusses the recent inaugural Google Science Fair...

AvramHershko LindauNobelLaureatemeeting proteasome proteindegradation GoogleScienceFair

Nobel Laureate Peter Agre: From Aquaporins to Lutefisk
Peter Agre, 2003 Chemistry Nobel laureate for his work on aquaporins, the proteins that allow water into and out of cells, talks about his research, his upbringing and why he almost ran for the Senate, in a conversation recorded at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting in Lindau, Germany...

PeterAgre aquaporins LindauNobelLaureateMeeting lutefisk


How Physics Limits Intelligence
Award-winning author Douglas Fox talks about his cover story in the July issue of Scientific American on The Limits of Intelligence, placed there by the laws of physics...

Intelligence DouglasFox brainstructure


Skirting Steak: The Case for Artificial Meat
Journalist Jeffrey Bartholet talks about his June Scientific American magazine article on the attempts to grow meat in the lab, and Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina talks about the cover piece in the May issue on radical energy solutions...

Livestock laboratorymeat alternativeenergy greenhousegases

Astronaut Love: An Interview with Spacewalker Stanley Love
On the eve of the launch of the penultimate space shuttle mission, STS-134, Scientific American astronomy editor George Musser talks to veteran astronaut Stanley Love about being in space and the future of spaceflight...

STS-122 STS-134 StanleyLove spaceshuttle

Editors' Roundtable: Science Conference Reports
Scientific American editors Christine Gorman, Robin Lloyd, Michael Moyer and Kate Wong talk about their recent trips to different science conferences: the meetings of the Association for Health Care Journalists, the Paleoanthropology Society, the American Association of Physical Anthropologists and an M.I.T. 150th-anniversary conference called Computation and the Transformation of Practically Everything...

Healthcare anthropology paleontology humanevolution medicine computation bioinformatics


Can It Be Bad to Be Too Clean?: The Hygiene Hypothesis
Johns Hopkins School of Medicine researcher Kathleen Barnes talks about the hygiene hypothesis, which raises the possibility that our modern sterile environment may contribute to conditions such as asthma and eczema...

Hygienehypothesis asthma KathleenBarnes

Self-Aware Robots?
Journalist Charles Choi talks about work being done to make robots self-aware. Plus, we test your knowledge about some recent science in the news...

Robotics NataliePortman

The Cornucopia Conference: Roundtable on the AAAS Meeting
Podcast host Steve Mirsky talks with Scientific American magazine Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina, news editor Anna Kuchment, feature editor Mark Fischetti and online news editor Robin Lloyd about various sessions at the recently completed annual conference of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington, DC....

AAAS AmericanAssociationfortheAdvancementofScience RushHolt desalination scienceeducation GDP happinessindex


The Spirit of Innovation: From High School to the Moon
Nancy Conrad, chair of the Conrad Foundation, talks about the Spirit of Innovation competition for high school students, and about her late husband, Pete Conrad, the third man to walk on the moon...

SpiritofInnovationAwards NancyConrad PeteConrad Apollo12

What's New with Science News
Former Scientific American editor in chief and current Gleaming Retort blogger John Rennie, blogger and Scientific American blogs network director Bora Zivkovic, and Scientific American online news editor Robin Lloyd talk about the future of science news...

Scienceblogging RobinLloyd JohnRennie BoraZ BoraZivkovic GleamingRetort ABlogAroundTheClock

Jefferson's Moose: Thomas's Fauna Fight against European Naturalists
Biologist and author Lee Dugatkin talks about his article "Jefferson's Moose" in the February issue of Scientific American, the story of Jefferson's battle against the European theory of American biological degeneracy. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

ThomasJefferson LeeDugatkin theoryofAmericanbiologicaldegeneracy


What Is the Watson Jeopardy-Playing Supercomputer, Alex?
Scientific American editor Michael Moyer talks about the sneak preview he caught of IBM's Watson Jeopardy! -playing computer. And ScientificAmerican.com 's Larry Greenemeier spoke with Ford's Brad Probert about the new all-electric Focus at the Consumer Electronics Show last week in Las Vegas...

FordFocus WatsonSupercomputer electricvehicles EV

Vinod Khosla: Searching for the Radical Solution
Clean technology investor Vinod Khosla, co-founder of Sun Microsystems, talks with Scientific American editor Mark Fischetti about the energy payoffs to be had by reinventing mainstream technologies...

VinodKhosla cleantechnology

How You Gonna Keep Flu Down on the Farm?: Pig Farms and Public Health
Journalist Helen Branswell discusses her January Scientific American article, "Flu Factories," about the attempts to monitor new strains of flu that can originate on pig farms and the difficulties of balancing economic and public health constituencies...

Flu influenza pigfarms CDC


Anna Deavere Smith: Let Me Down Easy
Actor, playwright and journalist Anna Deavere Smith talks about the health care crisis and her play about people dealing with illness, health and the health care system, Let Me Down Easy...

AnnaDeavereSmith HealthCare LetMeDownEasy

The Spewings of Titan (and More from the AGU Meeting)
Scientific American editor Davide Castelvecchi joins us from San Francisco to talk about some of the highlights of the meeting of the American Geophysical Union, including volcanoes on Titan, x-rays from lightning, the biota of the Sulawesi Sea, and the connection between light pollution and air pollution. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

AGU AmericanGeophysicalUnion Titan

Let's Talk Stuffing--Your Face
Cornell University's Brian Wansink talks about eating behavior and how mindless eating has us consuming way more calories than we suspect...

MindlessEating obesity BrianWansink


Let's Talk Turkey!
Turkey scientist Rich Buchholz talks about the turkey on your plate and his own turkey research...

Turkey poultry avianscience

Why Do Women Live Longer Than Men?
Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina and podcast host Steve Mirsky talk about longevity differences in the sexes, the importance of music education, the pros and cons of the Kindle, and other content from the November issue. Plus, we test your knowledge about some recent science in the news...

Longevity Kindle musiceducation

Physics Nobel Laureate Steven Weinberg
Nobel physicist Steven Weinberg spoke to an audience of science journalists, and then to podcast host Steve Mirsky...

StevenWeinberg LHC HiggsBoson StandardModel supersymmetry


Photograph 51: Rosalind Franklin and the Race For The Double Helix of DNA (Part 2 of 2)
Photograph 51 is a new play about Rosalind Franklin, Watson and Crick, and the race to determine the structure of DNA, at the Ensemble Studio Theatre in New York City, running through November 21st. A panel discussion about the play on November 2nd featured crystallography expert Helen Berman, biologist and Franklin scholar Lynne Osman Elkin, science journalist Nicholas Wade, playwright Anna Ziegler and moderator Stuart Firestein...

JamesWatson FrancisCrick RosalindFranklin Photograph51 AnnaZiegler LynneOsmanElkin HelenBerman

Photograph 51: Rosalind Franklin and the Race for the Double Helix of DNA, Part 1 of 2
Photograph 51 is a new play about Rosalind Franklin, Watson and Crick, and the race to determine the structure of DNA, at the Ensemble Studio Theatre in New York City, running through November 21st. This November 2nd, a panel discussion about the play and the issues it raises featured crystallography expert Helen Berman; biologist and Franklin scholar Lynne Osman Elkin; science journalist Nicholas Wade; playwright Anna Ziegler; and moderator Stuart Firestein...

JamesWatson FrancisCrick RosalindFranklin Photograph51 AnnaZiegler LynneOsmanElkin HelenBerman

The Quest for the Giant Pumpkin
Susan Warren, author of the book Backyard Giants, talks about "the passionate, heartbreaking and glorious quest to grow the biggest pumpkin ever." Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news...

GiantPumpkins SusanWarren BackyardGiants


Not Your Grandfather's Scientific American
Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina talks about the new look and new outlook of Scientific American magazine and of ScientificAmerican.com Plus, we discuss the results of a poll of the readers of Scientific American and Nature...

ScientificAmerican Nature scienceinthepublicinterest

The Harlem Science Renaissance
Molecular geneticist Sat Bhattacharya talks about his creation, the Harlem Children Society, which gets underprivileged kids involved in scientific research. And 13-year-olds Mitchell Haverty and Angus Fung talk about their research on algae as alternative fuel. Plus, we test your knowledge about some recent science in the news...

Scienceeducation minorityscientists algaefuel


Exactly When Is a Person Dead?
Award-winning science journalist Robin Marantz Henig and podcast host Steve Mirsky discuss Robin's article in the September issue about organ donation and definitions of death. Plus, we test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include http://bit.ly/ctIDsx; http://bit.ly/9Us1lE...

Organdonation timeofdeath braindeath

Could Time End?
Scientific American staff editor George Musser joins podcast host Steve Mirsky to discuss his article in the September issue about the possibility of time itself coming to an end...

Time entropy BigBang

The End: Death, Endings and Things That Should End
Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina and issue editor Michael Moyer talk with podcast host Steve Mirsky about the September single-topic issue of Scientific American --endings in science. Plus, we test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

Decomposition bunkerfuel


Cooking for Geeks: Jeff Potter on Experimenting in the Kitchen
Jeff Potter, author of Cooking for Geeks: Real Science, Great Hacks and Good Food, talks with daily podcast correspondent Cynthia Graber, and podcast host Steve Mirsky tests your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to content of this podcast include www.cookingforgeeks.com...

JeffPotter CookingForGeeks FoodScience

Mary Roach Is Packing for Mars, Part 2
Podcast host Steve Mirsky talks with author Mary Roach about her new book "Packing For Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void." Part 2 of 2. (Part 1 is at http://www.scientificamerican.com/podcast/episode.cfm?id=mary-roach-is-packing-for-mars-10-08-20). Web sites related to content of this podcast include www.maryroach.net....

MaryRoach PackingForMars space astronauts spaceflight

Mary Roach Is Packing for Mars, Part 1
Podcast host Steve Mirsky recently attended a talk by author Mary Roach about her new book Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void . In part 1 of this two-part episode, we'll hear that talk. Web sites related to content of this podcast include www.maryroach.net...

MaryRoach PackingForMars space astronauts spaceflight


When Humans Almost Died Out; Earthy Exoplanets; And Scientific American's 165th Birthday
Podcast host Steve Mirsky talks with human evolution expert Kate Wong about the small group of humans who survived tough times beginning about 195,000 years ago and gave rise to all of us, a story told in the cover article of the August issue of Scientific American, our 165th anniversary edition. And Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina talks about the rest of the contents of the issue, including our coverage of the search for rocky exoplanets. Plus, we test your knowledge about some recent science in the n...

Humanevolution exoplanets

Arguing with Non-Skeptics, Part 2 of 2
A panel discussion on arguing with non-skeptics at the recent Northeast Conference on Science and Skepticism in New York City featured James Randi, George Hrab, D. J. Grothe and podcast host Steve Mirsky. Julia Galef moderated. Part 2 of 2. Web sites related to content of this podcast include www.necsscon.org...

NECSS NortheastConferenceOnScienceAndSkepticism GeorgeHrab DJGrothe JamesRandi JuliaGalef

Arguing with Non-Skeptics, Part 1 of 2
A panel discussion on arguing with non-skeptics at the recent Northeast Conference on Science and Skepticism in New York City featured James Randi, George Hrab, D. J. Grothe and podcast host Steve Mirsky. Julia Galef moderated. Part 1 of 2. Web sites related to content of this podcast include www.nature.com/nature/podcast and www.necsscon.org...

NECSS NortheastConferenceOnScienceAndSkepticism GeorgeHrab DJGrothe JamesRandi JuliaGalef


Whiz Kids: Intel Science Talent Search Documentary
The new documentary film Whiz Kids follows three high school student-scientists as they attempt to get their projects accepted into the prestigious Intel Science Talent Search. Scientific American podcast host Steve Mirsky talks with the film's writer and editor, Jane Wagner, and with two of the stars of the documentary, Ana Cisneros and Hermain Khan. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to content of this podcast include www.nature.com/nature/podcast and ...

WhizKidsMovie IntelScienceTalentSearch

Will Your Plug-In Car Actually Be Coal-Powered? And Other July Stories
Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina and staff editor Michael Moyer join podcast host Steve Mirsky to talk about articles in the July issue, including: "The Dirty Truth about Plug-In Hybrids"; "How Babies Think"; and "Birds That Lived with Dinosaurs". Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to content of this podcast include www.scientificamerican.com/sciammag; http://bit.ly/cwcTtR...

Hybrid plug-inhybrid automotivetechnology birdevolution childdevelopment AllisonGopnik

Paul Dirac: "The Strangest Man" of Science, Part 2
Award-winning writer and physicist Graham Farmelo talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about The Strangest Man, Farmelo's biography of Nobel Prize-winning theoretical physicist Paul Dirac. Part 2 of 2. Web sites related to this episode include www.thestrangestman.com and http://bit.ly/dirac1963...

PaulDirac GrahamFarmelo StrangestMan quantummechanics


"The Strangest Man" of Science, Part 1
Award-winning writer and physicist Graham Farmelo talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about The Strangest Man, Farmelo's biography of Nobel Prize-winning theoretical physicist Paul Dirac. Part 1 of 2. Web sites related to this episode include www.thestrangestman.com and http://bit.ly/dirac1963...

GrahamFarmelo PaulDirac antimatter theoreticalphysics

Physics Now and Then: From Neutrinos to Galileo
Theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss, director of the Origins Initiative at Arizona State University, talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about neutrinos and gravity waves. And Cynthia Graber talks with Paolo Galluzzi, director of the newly reopened Museo Galileo, the science museum in Florence, Italy. Plus, we test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to content of this podcast include http://www.museogalileo.it...

LawrenceKrauss MuseoGalileo PauloGalluzzi neutrinos gravitywaves

The Big Dozen: 12 Events That Will Change Everything
Scientific American magazine Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina and news editor Philip Yam join podcast host Steve Mirsky to talk about the cover story of the June issue of the magazine, "12 Events That Will Change Everything". How things like the first human clone, an asteroid impact or the discovery of extra dimensions will change the world and our view of our place in the universe...

MarietteDiChristina PhilipYam SETI flu cloning LHC pandemic artificialintelligence


Remembering Martin Gardner, with Douglas Hofstadter
Martin Gardner died May 22nd at 95. He wrote the Mathematical Games column for Scientific American magazine for 25 years and published more than 70 books. Podcast host Steve Mirsky talks with Gardner's friend Douglas Hofstadter, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid, about Martin Gardner...

MartinGardner DouglasHofstadter MathematicalGames

More from MacMania: Kindle v. iPad, Mac v. PC and App Development
MacWorld editorial director Jason Snell and app developer Peter Watling talk with podcast host Steve Mirsky about the iPad, computer culture and apps, aboard a cruise ship in the Atlantic during MacMania, produced by insightcruises.com...

MacWorld MacMania JasonSnell PeterWatling iPad iPhone Apple Mac computers apps

David Pogue on Tech, Twitter and Transgenic Goats
The ubiquitous David Pogue, author of the Missing Manual series and tech columnist for The New York Times, talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky aboard a cruise ship in the Atlantic during MacMania, produced by insightcruises.com. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

DavidPogue InsightCruises MissingManuals


Your Inner Healers: Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells and More
Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about the contents of the May issue, including articles on induced pluripotent stem cells, high-speed and maglev trains, and blindsight. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

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Bill McKibben's Eaarth, Part 2
Writer and activist Bill McKibben talks to Scientific American 's Mark Fischetti about his new book Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet . Part 2 of 2. Edited and produced by podcast host Steve Mirsky...

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Bill McKibben's Eaarth, Part 1
Writer and activist Bill McKibben talks to Scientific American 's Mark Fischetti about his new book Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet Part 1 of 2. Edited and produced by podcast host Steve Mirsky...

BillMcKibben Eaarth 350.org


Invisible Ink and More: The Science of Spying in the Revolutionary War
John Nagy, author of Invisible Ink: Spycraft of the American Revolution, discusses the codes, ciphers, chemistry and psychology of spying in the American Revolution, in a talk recorded by podcast host Steve Mirsky at the historic Fraunces Tavern in New York City. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include http://snipurl.com/vnhy8...

RevolutionaryWar InvisibleInk JohnNagy Spying Spycraft FrauncesTavern

The Science of Staying in Love; and Scientists as Communicators--and Heroes
Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina and psychology researcher Robert Epstein, a contributing editor to Scientific American MIND magazine, talk about falling in love and staying that way. And science communicator Dennis Meredith discusses his book Explaining Research, and the importance for scientists of reaching the public. Web sites related to this episode include www.explainingresearch.com...

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From Eternity to Here: Sean M. Carroll's Quest to Understand Time
Sean M. Carroll, theoretical physicist at the California Institute of Technology talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about his new book From Eternity to Here: The Quest for the Ultimate Theory of Time . Plus, we test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include preposterousuniverse.com...

Time SeanM.Carroll SeanCarroll entropy thermodynamics arrowoftime FromEternityToHere


Are We Pushing Earth's Environmental Tipping Points?
Jon Foley, director of the University of Minnesota's Institute on the Environment, talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about his article in the April issue of Scientific American, "Boundaries for a Healthy Planet". Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include snipurl.com/foleyplanet...

Planetaryboundaries tippingpoints environment JonathanFoley

The Science Talk Quiz: "Totally Bogus"
Here are four science stories, but only three are true. See if you know which story is TOTALLY BOGUS...

Google smartphone electricbicycles NewYorkCitysubway denguefever

Where's My Fusion Reactor?
Scientific American staff editor Michael Moyer talks about his article "Fusion's False Dawn" in the March issue, and Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina discusses the rest of the issue. Web sites related to this episode include www.sciamdigital.com; www.snipurl.com/mikefusion...

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Algae, Art and Attitudes: A Roundtable about the AAAS Conference
Scientific American staffers Mark Fischetti and Robin Lloyd talk with podcast host Steve Mirsky about sessions they attended--including those about algae for energy, dissecting the astronomy in art, and attitudes about climate change--at the recent meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.aaas.org, www.aven.com...

AAASconference AmericanAssociationfortheAdvancementofScience algae VanGogh JamesKakalios DonaldOlson

The Poisoner's Handbook: The Sinister Side of Chemistry
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Deborah Blum talks about her new work, The Poisoner's Handbook, a look at how easy it used to be to kill someone with poison and the researchers who made poisoning much harder to get away with. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include blog.deborahblum.com...

DeborahBlum ThePoisoner'sHandbook chemistry forensictoxicology forensics poison arsenic cyanide carbonmonoxide

Ice, Ice, Baby: The Physics of Curling
Mark Shegelski of the University of Northern British Columbia talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about the physics of curling, currently taking its turn on the world stage at the Vancouver Olympics. (Shegelski is also the author of the new sci-fi collection "Remembering the Future.") Plus, we test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

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Whaddaya Do with a Dead Whale?
Scientific American magazine Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about some of the articles in the February issue, including one on the ecosystems that arise around the carcasses of whales that die and fall to the ocean floor; the warfare between our cells, our allied microbes and disease-causing organisms; and ways to improve the internal combustion engine...

Whalefalls internalcombustionengine bacteria immunity successioncommunities

Cleopatra's Alexandria Treasures
Renowned archaeologist Franck Goddio talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about his efforts to recover artifacts from the ancient cities of Alexandria, Heracleion and Canopus, with special attention to discoveries related to Cleopatra and her reign. The exhibit Cleopatra: The Search for the Last Queen of Egypt opens at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia on June 5th. Web sites related to this episode include www.underwaterdiscovery.org...

FranckGoddio Cleopatra FranklinInstitute MarkLach Alexandria Canopus Heracleion AboukirBay

The Science Talk Quiz: "Totally Bogus"
Here are four science stories, but only three are true. See if you know which story is TOTALLY BOGUS...

Haggis spongiformencephalopathy echolocation slimemold llamaantibodies


Creating Darwin's Biopic; and Consumer Electronics
Science Talk correspondent John Pavlus talks with Jon Amiel, director of the new Darwin biography movie Creation, and with Randal Keynes, Darwin's great-great-grandson and one of the film's scriptwriters. Then we'll hear from a few of the exhibitors who spoke to ScientificAmerican.com 's Larry Greenemeier at the recent Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas...

Darwin RandalKeynes PaulBettany JonAmiel CES

The Science Talk Quiz: "Totally Bogus"
Here are four science stories, but only three are true. See if you know which story is TOTALLY BOGUS....

Football panic hysteria botany horticulture Alzheimer's dementia angiotensin bloodpressuredrugs

Mining for Online Game Gold and Other Amazing Stories
Scientific American magazine Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina talks about the January issue, including articles on the chances of conditions conducive to life elsewhere in the multiverse and the growing practice of virtual gold farming, in which legions of online game players in developing countries acquire currency in the game that they sell to other players for real money. Web sites related to this episode include www.snipurl.com/nobelfrank; www.redcross.org; www.pih.org...

Virtualgoldfarming multiverse neglectedtropicaldiseases automotivetechnology


Alan Alda's Human Spark, Part 2
Alan Alda, host of the new PBS science series The Human Spark, talks to podcast host Steve Mirsky about his experiences as a fictional physican, a real patient and an amateur scientist. Web sites related to this episode include www.pbs.org/humanspark...

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Alan Alda's Human Spark
Alan Alda, star of stage, screen and science, talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about his new PBS science series The Human Spark as well as his strong interest in science and long association with Scientific American...

AlanAlda PBS TheHumanSpark humanevolution anthropology archaeology

The Science Talk Quiz: "Totally Bogus"
Here are four science stories, but only three are true. See if you know which story is TOTALLY BOGUS....

Clamshellpackaging DARPA mathematics Kepler PhilipGlass


Christmas Season Science
Scientific American daily podcast contributor Karen Hopkin talks about a few recent studies related to the science of the Christmas season...

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Copenhagen and Everywhere Else
ScientificAmerican.com 's David Biello is in Copenhagen at the climate conference, and he'll tell us what's going on there. And the Wildlife Conservation Society's Steven Sanderson discusses his Foreign Affairs article, "Where the Wild Things Were," worldwide conservation and the Everglades. Web sites related to this episode include www.snipurl.com/sanderson; www.twitter.com/dbiello...

IPCC Copenhagen globalclimatechange StevenSanderson WCS WildlifeConservationSociety Everlglades


World Changing Ideas: December's Scientific American
Scientific American magazine Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina and editor Michael Moyer talk about the "World Changing Ideas" feature as well as other contents of the December issue. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news...

MarietteDichristina Energy Transportation Environment Electronics Robotics Medicine

Bogus Brainteaser
The Totally Bogus Quiz for this week...

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John Rennie's 7 Answers to Climate Contrarian Nonsense
On the eve of the United Nations Global Warming Conference in Copenhagen and in the wake of the hacked climate researchers' e-mails, former Scientific American Editor in Chief John Rennie discusses his ScientificAmerican.com article "7 Answers to Climate Contrarian Nonsense," available at http://bit.ly/8bg9Fx...

Climatechange globalwarming JohnRennie


Darwin's Influence on Modern Thought
On the 150th anniversary of the publication of Charles Darwin's Origin of Species, we review Darwin's influence on the the modern world, as analyzed by Ernst Mayr, one of the 20th century's most prolific evolutionary theorists. We review Mayr's July 2000 Scientific American article, "Darwin's Influence on Modern Thought". The original, complete essay is temporarily available free of charge at http://snipurl.com/darwinsciam...

CharlesDarwin ErnstMayr OriginofSpecies philosophyofscience evolution

Tree Ring Science and Tomorrow's Water
Tree ring expert Kevin Anchukaitis, of the tree ring lab at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, part of Columbia University's Earth Institute, talks about the information available in tree rings. And Colin Chartres, the director general of the International Water Management Institute, talks to Lynne Peeples about water issues. Plus, we test your knowledge of some recent science in the news, specifically the November issue of Scientific American magazine. Web sites related to this episode include http://sn...

ColinChartres KevinAnchukaitis treerings Lamont-DohertyEarthObservatory InternationalWaterManagementInstitute

Human Evolution II: Recent Evolution; and "Becoming Human" NOVA Preview
Anthropologist John Hawks of the University of Wisconsin - Madison talks about recent human evolution, especially of our ability to digest lactose. And producer Graham Townsley discusses his three-part PBS NOVA premiering on November 3rd called "Becoming Human". Plus, we test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.snipurl.com/t1ivr...

JohnHawks GrahamTownsley NOVA humanevolution lactase lactose


Human Evolution: Lucy and Neandertals
Anthropologist Chris Stringer of the Natural History Museum in London talks about Neandertals. And Scientific American 's Kate Wong, co-author with Donald Johanson of Lucy's Legacy, talks about the discovery and impact of the famous Lucy fossil. Plus, we test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.snipurl.com/lucyfinder; http://bit.ly/bntu0...

ChrisStringer DonaldJohanson KateWong Lucy'sLegacy Neanderthal Australopithecus

Brain Enhancement: October Issue of Scientific American
In this episode Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina discusses the contents of the October issue of Scientific American, including articles on brain enhancement, lost cities of the Amazon and a century-old plan to make subway rides more entertaining...

Neurology brain Amazon anthropology

New Nobel Laureate Jack Szostak and Surrogates Film Director Jonathan Mostow
Jack Szostak, who just shared the 2009 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, talks about his latest research on the origin of life. And Scientific American editor George Musser talks to Jonathan Mostow, director of the new Bruce Willis sci-fi thriller Surrogates . Web sites related to this episode include www.snipurl.com/surrogates; www.snipurl.com/telomere; www.snipurl.com/origin...

JackSzostak Surrogates JonathanMostow originoflife


Clean Energy Contest; and Counting Crickets and Katydids
Scientific American podcast correspondent Cynthia Graber talks about the M.I.T. Clean Energy Prize Competition. And we take part in the recent Cricket Crawl, an effort to take a census of crickets and katydids in the New York metropolitan area. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.amnh.org and www.discoverlife.org/cricket...

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Where There Was Smoke, There's Science
Wake Forest University School of Medicine neuroscientist Dwayne Godwin talks about the the Winston-Salem area's adoption of biomedical research as well as meetings with Congress about science funding and his comic strip contributions to Scientific American Mind . Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

DwayneGodwin WakeForestUniversitySchoolofMedicine NIHfunding

Origins of Everything: The September Scientific American Magazine
Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina discusses the September special single-topic issue of Scientific American magazine, which covers origins, from the universe to the horse stirrup. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.thelongtail.com...

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Colony Collapse and Ruptured Ribosomes; Minding Darwin's Beeswax
John Williams, the beekeeper at Down House in England, talks about Darwin's bees. And May Berenbaum, entomologist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, talks about the latest publication related to colony collapse disorder and ribosome damage in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences . Web sites related to this episode include www.bee-craft.com...

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To Bee or Not to Bee
In part 2 of our bee podcast, we talk with May Berenbaum, entomologist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and inspiration for the X Files fictional entomologist Bambi Berenbaum, about bees, other insects and how life history analysis can make us rest easy during scary sci-fi invasion movies. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news...

MayBerenbaum bees entomology sciencefiction

Bee Afraid, Bee Very Afraid
May Berenbaum, entomologist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and inspiration for the X Files fictional entomologist Bambi Berenbaum, talks about colony collapse disorder and disappearing bees as well as the importance of honeybees in agriculture...

Bees colonycollapsedisorder CCD MayBerenbaum entomology


Swimming In Spacetime and Other Stories
Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina and staff editor Kate Wong talk about the contents of the August issue, including articles on some of the odd consequences of general relativity, life as a Neandertal, and the latest research on celiac disease. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

Neanderthal curvedspacetime generalrelativity celiac sharks

Nuts, Bolts, Photons and Electrons of Solar Energy
Jeff Wolfe, the CEO and co-founder of groSolar, talks about solar energy's present and future. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.grosolar.com...

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Movie Magic (Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs), Part 3
In this series of episodes, we talk to many of the scientists at Blue Sky Studios, which created the Ice Age series of animated features, including the recently released Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs . In episode 3, we hear from co-director Mike Thurmeier, art director Mike Knapp and head of lighting Andew Beddini. Special thanks to Hugo Ayala. Web sites related to this episode include www.blueskystudios.com and www.iceagemovie.com...

IceAge:DawnoftheDinosaurs BlueSkyStudios radiosity paleobotany


Movie Magic (Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs), Part 2
In this series of episodes, we talk to many of the scientists at Blue Sky Studios, which created the Ice Age series of animated features, including the recently released Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs . In episode 2, we hear from the research and development team about their backgrounds, the kinds of technical challenges they face and the ways they use math and computers to solve those problems. Web sites related to this episode include www.blueskystudios.com; www.iceagemovie.com; www.scientificamerican.com...

IceAge:DawnoftheDinosaurs BlueSkyStudios raytracing

Movie Magic (Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs), Part 1
In this series of episodes, we talk to many of the scientists at Blue Sky Studios, which created the Ice Age series of animated features, including the recently released Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs . In episode 1, we hear from company founders Carl Ludwig and Eugene Troubetzkoy and senior research associate Hugo Ayala. Web sites related to this episode include www.blueskystudios.com and www.iceagemovie.com...

IceAge:DawnoftheDinosaurs BlueSkyStudios HugoAyala CarlLudwig EugeneTroubetzkoy raytracing

Atul Gawande Redux
While Steve's at the conference of the World Federation of Science Journalists in London, we look ahead to some of the programming coming your way in the coming weeks, and we replay our 2007 interview with surgeon Atul Gawande, whose recent research in The New England Journal of Medicine and writing in The New Yorker have caused a big stir in the medical and health care reform communities. Web sites related to this episode include http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/06/01/090601fa_fact_gawande?yrail and...

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Hello Moon, Good-Bye Rennie
We look at the contents of the July issue of Scientific American magazine, the last under outgoing Editor in Chief John Rennie, including an article by moon explorer Harrison Schmitt, a piece on the fight against superbugs, a report on the potential of biofuels such as grassoline, and a recollection of the pernicious effects of chess! Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

Moonlanding HarrisonSchmidt grassoline biofuel superbug MRSA chess

Panamania!: A Visit to the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
We take a walking tour of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute on Barro Colorado Island in Panama, with the STRI's Beth King and Harilaos Lessios. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web Sites related to this episode include www.stri.org...

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The Truth about Cats and Dogs
Scientific American magazine Editor in Chief John Rennie talks about the contents of the June issue, including articles on the evolution of cats and the physiology of sled dogs. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

Sleddogs catevolution SA10 ShaiAgassi


High Achievement High Schoolers
High school scientists Sruti Swaminathan, Maia ten Brink, Alyssa Bailey, Moyukh Chatterjee and Fedja Kadribasic, all winners of state competitions sponsored by the American Junior Academy of Sciences, talk about their research. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

Highschoolsciencefair AmericanJuniorAcademyofSciences

Beauty Is Truth (and Science)
Procter & Gamble scientists Greg Hillebrand and Jay Tiesman talk about scientific research related to beauty products and cosmetics. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.pg.com/science...

Beauty cosmetics rhinovirus racialskindifferences

People, Pan Troglodytes (Chimps) and Pigs
Scientific American editor Christine Soares discusses the swine flu situation and Editor in Chief John Rennie talks about the May issue--topics include the specific genetic differences between humans and chimps, side-channel hacking, food shortages, and our leaky atmosphere. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

SwineFlu H1N1 ChimpanzeeGenome SideChannelHacking LesterBrown


Sherwin Nuland's Tales from the Bedside
Surgeon and author Sherwin Nuland talks about his new book The Soul of Medicine: Tales from the Bedside, a Chaucerian take on doctors and their relationships with patients and each other. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

SherwinNuland TheSoulofMedicine

Life Goes on within You and without You: Health and the Environment
In this episode, we'll hear parts of three talks from the recent symposium, Exploring the Dynamic Relationship Between Health and the Environment, organized by the American Museum of Natural History's Center for Biodiversity and Conservation. Speakers include Penn State's Peter Hudson, who talks about disease transmission; Oxford's Oliver Pybus, on how genome analysis exonerated health care workers accused of infecting children with HIV; and N.Y.U.'s Martin Blaser on our disappearing stomach flora. Plus, we...

AMNH CenterforBiodiversityandConservation OliverPybus PeterHudson MartinBlaser Helicobactorpylori

Why People Believe What They Do
University of California, Berkeley, psychologist Tania Lombrozo talks about why people believe what they do, especially regarding evolution or creationism. Author Steve Miller discusses his new book The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Science of Everything . Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include psychology.berkeley.edu/faculty/profiles/tlombrozo.html...

TaniaLombrozo TheCompleteIdiot'sGuidetotheScienceofEverything SteveMiller evolution creationism belief


From Dark Energy to Lone Star Lunacy
Scientific American magazine Editor in Chief John Rennie talks about articles in the April issue, covering dark energy, bee colony collapse and post-traumatic stress. And Eugenie Scott, executive director of the National Center for Science Education, discusses anti-evolution-education efforts by the Texas School Board. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.ncseweb.org; www.youtube.com/NatCen4ScienceEd...

TexasSchoolBoard EugenieScott NationalCenterforScienceEducation DonMcLeroy darkenergy colonycollapsedisorder PTSD

What Shape Is Your Galaxy?
Yale astrophysicist Kevin Schawinski talks about Galaxy Zoo, a distributed computing project in which laypeople can help researchers characterize galaxies. And we tour Kroon Hall, the new green home of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Sciences. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.galaxyzoo.org; www.environment.yale.edu/kroon...

GalaxyZoo KevinSchawinski YaleUniversitySchoolofForestryandEnvironmentalSciences

In Search of Time
Journalist and writer Dan Falk talks about his new book In Search of Time, about the cultural, physical and psychological aspects of the mysterious ticking clocks all around us. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.danfalk.ca...

DanFalk time relativity Einstein Newton


Phrasing a Coyne: Jerry Coyne on Why Evolution Is True
During a Scientific American cruise in the Caribbean, University of Chicago evolutionary biologist Jerry Coyne talks about his new book Why Evolution Is True . And we hear a brief example of what it's like to attend science lectures at sea. Plus, we'll test your knowlege of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.insightcruises.com; www.whyevolutionistrue.com...

JerryCoyne WhyEvolutionIsTrue InsightCruises

From Spooky Action to Tiny Radios
Scientific American Editor in Chief John Rennie talks about the contents of the March issue of the magazine, including articles on quantum entanglement, nano radios, fresh brain cells and more. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

Quantumentanglement JohnBell Einstein nanoradio TB

Remarkable Creatures (and Getting Them Fixed)
University of Wisconsin evolutionary biologist Sean Carroll talks about his new book, Remarkable Creatures, which chronicles the derring-do of some of natural history's brightest stars. And FoundAnimals.org 's Katy Palfrey discusses the Michelson Prize, for the development of a nonsurgical pet-neutering technique. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include foundanimals.org; seanbcarroll.com...

CharlesDarwin AlfredRusselWallace CharlesWolcott SeanB.Carroll MichelsonPrize


Stars of Cosmology, Part 2
In part 2 of this podcast, cosmologists Alan Guth from M.I.T., Arizona State University's Lawrence Krauss, John Carlstrom from the University of Chicago, and Fermilab's Scott Dodelson take reporters' questions at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Chicago on February 16th...

Cosmology AlanGuth LawrenceKrauss JohnCarlstrom ScottDodelson InflationaryUniverse Multiverse StringTheory

Stars of Cosmology, Part 1
In part 1 of this podcast, cosmologists Alan Guth from M.I.T., Arizona State University's Lawrence Krauss, John Carlstrom from the University of Chicago, and Fermilab's Scott Dodelson discuss the state of cosmology--and the universe's possible dismal future--at a press conference at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Chicago on February 16th...

Cosmology AlanGuth LawrenceKrauss JohnCarlstrom ScottDodelson InflationaryUniverse Multiverse StringTheory


Darwin Day Special: Bicentennial of the Birth of Charles Darwin
In part 1 of this special Darwin Day podcast, celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Darwin on February 12th, Richard Milner performs part of his one-man show about Darwin; Scientific American Editor in Chief John Rennie and Darwin descendant Matthew Chapman read from The Origin of Species ; and Chapman talks about his book 40 Days and 40 Nights, about the Dover intelligent design trial as well as about his efforts to get presidential candidates to discuss science--a project called ScienceDebate...

Darwin OriginofSpecies MatthewChapman Dover Kitzmiller ScienceDebate

The Naked Singularity Meets Social Media
Scientific American Editor in Chief John Rennie talks about the content of the February issue, including naked singularities and the greenhouse hamburger. N.Y.U. journalism professor Jay Rosen discusses social media. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.SciAm.com/sciammag; journalism.nyu.edu/pubzone/weblogs/pressthink...

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CO2 Rising: Follow the Bouncing Carbon Atom
Scientist and author Tyler Volk talks about his new book CO 2 Rising: The World's Greatest Environmental Challenge . Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include http://pages.nyu.edu/~tv1/Volk.htm...

TylerVolk globalwarming climatechange carbondioxide CO2

Darwin: Ghostbuster, Muse and Magistrate
Darwin historian Richard Milner shares some of the lesser known aspects of Darwin's life. And Scientific American columnist Michael Shermer talks about the stock market, religion and other belief systems. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.darwinlive.com; www.michaelshermer.com...

Darwin RichardMilner MichaelShermer AlfredRusselWallace

From Astronomy to Zune
Scientific American astronomy expert George Musser discusses the recent meeting of the American Astronomical Society and SciAm.com 's Larry Greenemeier reports on the Consumer Electronics Show. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news...

Astronomy cosmology space AAS CES ConsumerElectronicsShow AmericanAstronomicalSociety


The Evolution of Evolution
Scientific American Editor in Chief John Rennie discusses the special January issue of the magazine, which focuses on evolution--2009 being the 200th anniversary of the birth of Darwin and the 150th anniversary of the publication of The Origin of Species . Subjects in the issue include the importance of natural selection, the sources of genetic variability, human evolution's past and future, pop evolutionary psychology, everyday applications of evolutionary theory, the science of the game Spore, and the ong...

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The Manhattan Project and the Met
The Metropolitan Opera's production of the new opera Doctor Atomic aired on PBS on December 29th. We'll hear from Manhattan Project veterans Roy Glauber (Nobel laureate), Murray Peshkin, Leonard Jossem, Al Bartlett, Hans Courant, Harold Agnew, Benjamin Bederson, who spoke at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. And we talk to the Metropolitan Opera's Patricia Steiner. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include tinyurl.c...

ManhattanProject RoyGlauber MurrayPeshkin LeonardJossem AlBartlett HansCourant HaroldAgnew BenjaminBederson PatriciaSteiner MetropolitanOpera DoctorAtomic

Christmas at the Moon; and Instant Egghead Guide: The Mind
Scientific American editor Michael Battaglia discusses the online In-Depth-Report on Apollo 8, which orbited the moon 40 years ago this week. And author Emily Anthes talks about her new book, Instant Egghead Guide: The Mind . Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.SciAm.com/report.cfm?id=apollo8; www.SciAm.com/report.cfm?id=science-movies; www.pbs.org/wnet/gperf/tag/doctor-atomic...


From Carbon to the Cretaceous: Report from the American Geophysical Union Meeting
Scientific American editor Davide Castelvecchi reports from the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) in San Francisco. Subjects include the extinction of the dinosaurs and the Orbiting Carbon Observatory. And CNET Senior Associate Editor Michelle Thatcher gives us the lowdown on netbooks and tablet PCs. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.agu.org; crave.cnet.com...

AGU AmericanGeophysicalUnion OrbitingCarbonObservatory DeccanTraps MichelleThatcher netbooks tabletPCs

Klaatu's Back and He's Not Happy
Scott Derrickson, director of the new version of The Day the Earth Stood Still, talks about his take on the iconic sci-fi movie. And Nobel laureate Richard Roberts discusses the importance of open-access science publishing. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news...

TheDayTheEarthStoodStill ScottDerrickson sciencefiction openaccesspublishing RichardRoberts

The Science of Pain
Stanford University pain expert Sean Mackey talks about the modern take on pain, how to treat it, why treatment is so important, and the relationship between pain and empathy. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include sciencegeekgirl.wordpress.com/2008/10; paincenter.stanford.edu...

Pain painmanagement empathy


Viruses against Disease; Going Batty for Bats
Scientific American editor in chief, John Rennie, talks about the contents of the December issue, including bat evolution and how magicians are helping neuroscience. And Boro Dropulic of Lentigen talks about converting viruses into disease fighters. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include http://www.sciam.com/report.cfm?id=bat-guide; http://www.sciam.com/report.cfm?id=thanksgiving...

Lentigen virus bats magic Enceladus

Approval of Seals: Wildlife Docs and Their Exotic Patients
Some veterinarians treat animals much more exotic than the family pet. Jeffrey Boehm, executive director of the Marine Mammal Center, talks about the challenges of caring for sick sea mammals. And Alisa "Harley" Newton, a pathologist with the Wildlife Conservation Society, discusses how vets figured out that a pathogen attacking humans was in fact West Nile Virus. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.tmmc.org; www.wcs.org...

Veterinarymedicine wildlifepathology MarineMammalCenter WildlifeConservationSociety

Kayaking Antarctica with Jon Bowermaster
How a warming climate leads to freezing penguins, with journalist and author Jon Bowermaster, who has kayaked the world's seas, most recently in Antarctica. And Cynthia Graber takes us on a tour with a new M.I.T. underwater autonomous vehicle. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Websites related to this episode include www.jonbowermaster.com...

Antarctica JonBowermaster AUV


The Day After: Science in the Obama Administration
Stanford University biologist Sharon Long, a science advisor to the Barack Obama campaign, talks about science in the upcoming administration. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.SciAm.com/report.cfm?id=election2008...

Obama Varmus SharonLong sciencepolicy fruitflies

Cemetery Science: The Geology of Mausoleums
For Halloween, we take a tour of Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, N.Y., with geologist Sidney Horenstein and Woodlawn expert Susan Olsen, concentrating on the geology of the rock used in the memorials. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include www.bigpumpkins.com; www.thewoodlawncemetery.org...

Geology Egyptology WoodlawnCemetery

Today's Alternative Energy; and November Issue Topics, Including Computer-Brain Interfaces and DNA Computing
Scientific American magazine editor in chief, John Rennie, talks about the November issue's contents, including computer-brain interfaces, DNA computing, the ongoing attempts to find an HIV vaccine and getting closer to the Star Trek tricorder with portable NMR. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include snipurl.com/4LJ71; SciAm.com/sciammag...

Alternativeenergy bionicinterfaces DNAcomputing HIVvaccine


More Than Pickles and Ice Cream: The Link Between Diet and Fertility
Harvard School of Public Health epidemiologist Walter Willett talks to SciAm correspondent Cynthia Graber about his latest book, The Fertility Diet as well as about the links between nutrition and health generally. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

WalterWillett nutrition diet fertility

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about E. Coli, Part 2
Carl Zimmer continues his discussion of E. coli, the bacteria that are the subject of his new book Microcosm: E. Coli and the New Science of Life . Plus, we'll test your knowledge about the Nobel Prizes awarded this week. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.carlzimmer.com; improbable.com; nobelprize.org...

CarlZimmer E.coli 2008NobelPrizes

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about E. Coli, Part 1
Author and journalist Carl Zimmer talks about E. coli, the bacteria that are the subject of his new book Microcosm: E. Coli and the New Science of Life . Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.carlzimmer.com...

CarlZimmer E.coli


Searching for Intelligence
Author and journalist Carl Zimmer talks about the search for the physiological and biological basis of intelligence, the subject of his article in the October issue of Scientific American magazine. And Editor in Chief John Rennie discusses other articles in the issue, including the cover story on the possibility of a big bounce instead of the big bang and the science of the World Wide Web. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www....

Intelligence cosmology webscience

Earth 3.0
Scientific American editor Mark Fischetti talks about Earth 3.0, a new SciAm publication concerning energy, sustainability and the environment. And ScientificAmerican.com writer Larry Greenemeier discusses the interface between nanotech and biology. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.sciamearth3.com...

Energy sustainabledevelopment Earth3.0 environment

The Large Hadron Collider Goes to Work
Nobel Prize-winning physicist Frank Wilczek and Scientific American editor George Musser talk about the Large Hadron Collider, the most powerful particle accelerator ever built, which went online this week. Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.frankwilczek.com; www.youtube.com/watch?v=j50ZssEojtM; http://www.sciam.com/report.cfm?id=lhc-countdown...

FrankWilczek LHC LargeHadronCollider


Tom Friedman's New Book--Hot, Flat, and Crowded
Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist Tom Friedman discusses his new book, Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution--And How It Can Renew America . Plus, we'll test your knowledge about some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.thomaslfriedman.com...

TomFriedman energy

Who's Watching You: The Future of Privacy
Scientific American editor in chief, John Rennie, discusses the future of privacy and security, the subject of the September single-topic issue of Scientific American magazine. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.SciAm.com/sciammag; www.snipurl.com/sciamfootball...

Privacy security

Return of a Killer: Tuberculosis in Russia
Veteran journalist Merrill Goozner, director of the Integrity in Science project at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, discusses his series of articles for SciAm.com on the rise of tuberculosis in Russia. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.gooznews.com; www.snipurl.com/goozner...

TB tuberculosis drugresistance MDR-TB


What's the Buzz: A Conversation with Buzz Aldrin
Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon, talks about solar energy, buses between the planets, the Constellation program, his time on the moon and his new animated movie, Fly Me to the Moon . Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.snipurl.com/aldrin; www.sciamdigital.com; www.flymetothemoonthemovie.com...

BuzzAldrin moon

Superdove!: The Straight Poop on Pigeons
Courtney Humphries talks about her new book, Superdove: How the Pigeon Took Manhattan...And the World . Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned in this episode include www.birds.cornell.edu/pigeonwatch; chumphries.org...

Dove pigeon BFSkinner

Inside SciAm: The August Issue
In this special edition of Science Talk, Scientific American editor in chief, John Rennie, talks to Steve about the August issue of the magazine, which features articles on migraine, solar superstorms and self-cleaning materials...

Migraine solarstorm self-cleaningmaterials


Inside China: Science, Technology, Energy and the Environment
Former Washington Post Beijing bureau chief, Philip Pan, author of Out of Mao's Shadow: The Struggle for the Soul of a New China, discusses the science, technology, environment and culture of China with Scientific American 's David Biello, who recently spent almost a month reporting from the country. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news....

China internationalscience environment

Outsmarting Bombers; and A Warless Future?
IEEE Spectrum editor in chief, Glenn Zorpette, talks about high-tech attempts to battle improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in Iraq as well as the state of reconstruction of Iraq's electricity grid. And journalist John Horgan talks about the possibility of eliminating war. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include: www.saferoadmaps.org, www.thomaslfriedman.com; www.spectrum.ieee.org...

IED Iraq war

Visit to the Fair: Inside a Tech Expo
In this episode we feature five interviews conducted at the Digital Experience! computer and electronics expo that took place in New York City in June. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites related to this episode include: www.eye.fi; www.skype.net; www.synaptics.com; www.jakkspacific.com; www.m-audio.com...

Consumerelectronics digital


The Complete Idiot's Guide to String Theory
George Musser talks about his new book, The Complete Idiot's Guide to String Theory . Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news...

StringTheory physics

The Long and Winding Road: DNA Evidence for Human Migration; Plus July Issue Highlights
Gary Stix discusses his July Scientific American cover article on DNA evidence for the history of human migration. And editor in chief, John Rennie, talks about the neuroscience of dance, the quantum cosmos and Rubik's Cubes. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.sciam.com/sciammag...

Genetics humanevolution neuroscience physics grouptheory Rubik'scube

Gott Ya: Astrophysicist J. Richard Gott on Time Travel and Presidential Polling
Princeton astrophysicist J. Richard Gott discusses some of the realities and speculations of time travel (one human holds the record for time travel--1/48 of a second) as well as how best to evaluate presidential election polling data. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.colleyrankings.com, snipurl.com/2oorv...

Timetravel pollingdata median


One Singular Sensation: Will We Upload Our Brains, and Other Questions Related to "The Coming Singularity"
Glenn Zorpette, executive editor of IEEE Spectrum magazine, and journalist John Horgan discuss various ideas related to what some call "the coming singularity," a point where computers will allegedly attain consciousness and superintelligence. Or not. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.spectrum.ieee.org/singularity...

Singularity neuroscience computerscience

The Happening: A Conversation with Director M. Night Shyamalan
M. Night Shyamalan's new film, The Happening, involves an environmental backlash, the limits of reason and the beauty of math. SciAm editor George Musser discusses the film with the director. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.sciam.com/daily...

Shyamalan TheHappening

Fact and Fiction: James Randi's "Amaz!ng Meeting" and Mark Alpert's Physics Novel, Final Theory
James Randi, famous debunker of frauds, talks about the "Amaz!ng Meeting" coming up in Las Vegas, and SciAm editor Mark Alpert discusses his new physics novel, Final Theory . Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.sciam.com/daily, www.badscience.net, www.randi.org, www.youtube.com/watch?v=m4vgsZmleoE...

Physics Einstein JamesRandi AmazingMeeting Amaz!ng


The Feral Biologist: A Talk with George Schaller; A Look in the June SciAm
The Wildlife Conservation Society's George Schaller talks about his new book, "A Naturalist and Other Beasts," which covers his 50 years of documenting important large animal species in the field. And Scientific American editor in chief, John Rennie, offers a look at some articles in the June issue. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.SciAm.com/daily, www.wcs.org...

WildlifeConservationSociety gorilla panda lion

Little Brains, Big Brains: Latest Flores Hobbit News and the Intel Science Fair
Kate Wong brings us up to date on the ongoing research into fossils of the tiny human, called the Hobbit, found on the island of Flores. And Ivan Oransky reports from the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. Plus, Nobel laureate Gerald Edelman illustrates problems with reductionism and refrigerators. And we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.SciAm.com/daily, www.nybg.org/darwin/symposium.php, www.intel.com/education/ISEF...

IntelISEF Floreshobbit

China Quake Update; Fictional Scientists; What's New at SciAm.com
David Biello reports from China on the aftermath of the major earthquake that struck this week. Mark Alpert talks about the portrayal of scientists in fiction. And new online managing editor Ivan Oransky discusses what's up on the Web site. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.sciam.com/daily, www.snipurl.com/madsci, www.snipurl.com/hotpepper...

Earthquake Arrowsmith RoaldHoffmann


Evolution Enclaves: Darwin the Botanist and Origins of Life Research
David Kohn, curator of the Darwin's Garden exhibit at the New York Botanical Garden, discusses Darwin's botanical studies. And Harvard Medical School's Jack Szostak talks about research into the origins of life. Plus we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Websites mentioned on this episode include www.nybg.org/darwin; www.hhmi.org; www.sciam.com/daily...

Evolution botany originsoflife

Plasma Physics: From Black Holes to Radio Reception
Plasma plays a big role from the ionosphere to black holes. Stanford physicist Roger Blandford explains plasma and its connection to black holes in a conversation with Scientific American 's JR Minkel. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.snipurl.com/26dun-sciam1; www.snipurl.com/26dv2-sciam2; www.nybg.org/darwin...

Plasma blackholes

Can Science Save the Banana?
The banana is the world's most important fruit. But it's under threat from a disease spreading around the world. We'll hear from Dan Koeppel, author of the book "Banana: The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World." And we'll visit a Guatemala banana plantation with guide Julio Cordova. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.bananabook.org...

Banana agriculture


On The Shoulders of Giants: John Wheeler and Salome Waelsch
Physicist John Wheeler and geneticist Salome Waelsch both had incredibly long and fruitful careers, providing numerous fundamental insights in their respective fields. We'll hear from Kenneth Ford, former director of the American Institute of Physics, about Wheeler, who died April 13th at 96. And Princeton's Lee Silver talks about Waelsch, who died last fall at 100 and who was memorialized on April 14th at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. Plus we'll test your knowledge of some recen...

Physics genetics JohnWheeler SalomeWaelsch

Expelled Explained
A new movie, Expelled, claims that intelligent design is good science that is being censored by adherents to evolution, which is nothing but Darwinian dogma. Scientific American's editor-in-chief, John Rennie, and podcast host Steve Mirsky discuss the movie. And Eugenie Scott, director of the National Center for Science Education, talks about being interviewed for the film as well as her organization's efforts to provide correct information about the claims in Expelled. Plus we'll test your knowledge of som...

Evolution intelligentdesign darwin expelled

A Scientists' Bill of Rights?
Francesca Grifo from the Union of Concerned Scientists talks about the need for legislation to protect federal scientists. We'll also hear from the UCS's Kurt Gottfried and Anthony Robbins, who spoke at a press conference in Boston in February. And Scientific American's editor-in-chief, John Rennie, previews the April issue of the magazine. Plus we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Websites mentioned on this episode include www.ucsusa.org...

UnionofConcernedScientists federalscience


Baseball Science
Dan Gordon, editor of the new book "Your Brain On Cubs" from the Dana Foundation, talks about the neuroscience of baseball players and their fans. And statistician Shane Jensen of the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School discusses attempts to get a statistical handle on defense in baseball. Plus we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Websites mentioned on this episode include www.dana.org, www.snakejazz.com...

Baseball statistics neuroscience

For the Birds: A look at birds, habitat conservation and environmental economics
Ornithologist and conservation biologist Jeffrey Wells talks about birds and their roles as markers for environmental health. He also discusses the Boreal Forest, the Boreal Birdsong Initiative, the eBird research project (that you can assist) and his new book, The Birder's Conservation Handbook. We also have a brief tribute to the late Arthur C. Clarke. Plus we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Websites mentioned on this episode include www.ebird.org; www.borealbirds.org...

Birds ornithology Boreal

Science and America's Future
Argonne National Laboratory director Robert Rosner talks about the role of science in keeping America an economic leader. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.anl.gov...

ArgonneNationalLaboratory sciencefunding


A Mars Rovers Once-Over
We look at the state of the rovers currently on Mars, the big accidental discovery by the Spirit rover, and the next-generation device slated to join them in 2010, the Mars Science Laboratory Rover. Interviews with Cornell's Melissa Rice, the payload downlink lead for the rover cameras, and the Jet Propulsion Lab's Michelle Viotti, about the Mars Science Laboratory Rover. Also press conference clips featuring Cornell's Steve Squyres, principal investigator for the science instruments on the Mars Exploration...

Mars Rovers MarsScienceLaboratory

Arachnophilia! And War...What Was It Good for (in Human Evolution)?
Spider expert Greta Binford, from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon, and her student MG Weber talk about the fascinating world of spiders. And economist Samuel Bowles, from the Santa Fe Institute, discusses the co-evolution of war and altruism. Plus, we'll test your knowledge of some recent science in the news. Web sites mentioned on this episode include www.santafe.edu/~bowles...

Sociobiology spiders phylogeneticinference humanbehavior

Science, Science Everywhere: AAAS Conference Highlights
In this episode, we'll hear about the annual conference of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), which took place last week in Boston. Nobel Laureate and AAAS President David Baltimore talks about the ongoing challenges of HIV vaccine research; NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Director Charles Elachi discusses the lab's next batch of missions; and Scientific American editor Mark Fischetti summarizes a few sessions he went to covering the environment. Plus we'll test your knowledge of...

HIVvaccine JetPropulsionLaboratory Mars globalwarming economics