Hosts: Marc Pelletier and Vincent Racaniello, Ph.D., host of This Week in Virology and This Week in Parasitism, Professor of Microbiology, Columbia University, New York, NY. Looking at one of the most powerful genetic model systems: Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Guest: Malcolm Whiteway, Ph.D...
In 1985, when high-tech computing meant a Commodore 128, Jerome Wiesner and Nicholas Negroponte formed the MIT Media Lab, the birthplace of innovations such as e-ink for digital readers and the technology behind the game Guitar Hero. Negroponte talks about the lab's past, present and future.
In May 1958, Popular Science published an article titled "The Car that Drives Itself: The Car in Your Future Will Be Run By Black Boxes While You Watch." Sound familiar? Harry McCracken, founder and editor of Technologizer.com, discusses Google's self-piloted car, and dreams that came before it.
Reporting in the journal Science, Paul Kubes and colleagues filmed immune cells called neutrophils finding their way to a mouse's wounded liver. The researchers wanted to understand how neutrophils locate sterile injuries when bacteria aren't around to signal the damage.
This week, investors including Google announced a $5 billion plan to build an underwater transmission line off the East Coast. The line will tie power from offshore wind farms to the Eastern power grid. Willett Kempton, of the University of Delaware, explains the project.
Next month, voters in four states will consider whether to change laws regulating marijuana use. But how much is known about marijuana's effects on the body? Ira Flatow talks with psychiatrist Julie Holland, editor of a new collection of essays titled The Pot Book, about the plant.
At the same time Greg Graffin was starting the legendary punk rock band Bad Religion, he was becoming fascinated by evolutionary biology. Both would become lifelong pursuits. He talks about the connection in his new book, Anarchy Evolution: Faith, Science, and Bad Religion in a World Without God.
A study comparing over 4,500 elephants revealed that zoo life may be harmful to elephant health. Georgia J. Mason, professor at University of Guelph in Ontario and lead researcher on the Science study, explains the findings and discusses what zoos can do to keep elephants healthy.
The much-observed brain of amnesiac "H.M." will be sectioned and preserved for scientists to study. Jacopo Annese, director of The Brain Observatory at University of California, San Diego and the neuroscientist in charge of the procedure, explains what researchers hope to learn.
Looking for ways to jazz up that holiday party? Patrick Buckley, co-author of The Hungry Scientist Handbook, demonstrates how to make carbonated fruit. Materials required: fruit (the firmer the better), a pressure cooker and a handful of dry ice cubes.
There may be a way of accounting for taste, after all. Tim Westergren, founder of Internet radio service Pandora, and Reed Hastings, founder and CEO of Netflix, explain how their companies are trying to develop algorithms that predict whether someone will like a song or film.
What makes a shopper spend at one store and not others? Paco Underhill, founder and CEO of Envirosell and author of Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping, explains how he sizes up a shop for its selling potential. Also: why spending may not slow even in a slumping economy.
What were the most important scientific discoveries this year? From the discovery of ice in Martian soil, to the creation of the first synthetic genome, to learning of new exoplanets, Ira Flatow and guests discuss the science stories that captured the headlines and why.
It's a question that many people have on their minds this season: Does spiking the homemade eggnog safeguard it against salmonella? Eggnog expert and microbiologist Vince Fischetti of The Rockefeller University in New York runs some tests to find out.
Astronomers using the Chandra X-Ray Observatory have corroborated the presence of dark energy — a mysterious force pushing the universe outward. William Forman, an astrophysicist with the project, says the findings help explain how the universe evolved — and how it may end.