Big Picture Science – Hidden History

by Gary Niederhoff on March 28, 2015


Big Picture Science – Hidden History

Archaeologists continue to hunt for the city of Atlantis, even though it may never have existed. But, what if it did? Its discovery would change ancient history. Sometimes when we dig around in the past, we can change our understanding of how we got to where we are.

We thought we had wrapped up the death of the dinosaurs: blame it on an asteroid. But evidence unearthed in Antarctica and elsewhere suggests the rock from space wasn’t the sole culprit.

Also, digging into our genetic past can turn up surprising – and sometimes uncomfortable truths – from ancestral origins to genes that code for disease. But do we always want to know?

Listen to individual segments here:
Part 1: Mark Adams / Atlantis
Part 2: Dinosaurs Unleashed
Part 3: David Morrison / Impact Extinction
Part 4: Peter Ward / Slow Motion Extinction
Part 5: Christine Kenneally / Deep DNA

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Big Picture Science – Power to the People

by Gary Niederhoff on March 23, 2015


Big Picture Science – Power to the People

Let there be light! Well, it’s easy to do: just flip a switch. But it took more than the invention of the light bulb to make that possible. It required new technology for the distribution of electricity. And that came, not so much from Thomas Edison, but from a Serbian genius named Nikola Tesla.

Hear his story plus ideas on what might be the breakthrough energy innovations of the future. Perhaps hydrogen-fueled cars, nuclear fusion electrical generators or even orbiting solar cells?

Plus, a reminder of cutting-edge technology back in Napoleon’s day: lighthouses.

Listen to individual segments here:
Part 1: Bernard Carlson / Nikola Tesla
Part 2: Michael Dunne / Fusion Energy
Part 3: Tom Baker / Hydrogen Cars
Part 4: Paul Young / Power Sats
Part 5: Theresa Levitt / Lighthouses

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Big Picture Science – Microbes: Resistance is Futile

March 15, 2015

Big Picture Science – Microbes: Resistance is Futile You are what you eat. Whether you dine on kimchi, carnitas, or corn dogs determines which microbes live in your stomach. And gut microbes make up only part of your total microbiome. Find out how your microbes are the brains-without-brains that affect your health and even your […]

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Big Picture Science – Mars Struck

March 6, 2015

Big Picture Science – Mars-Struck You love to travel. But would you if doing so meant never coming home? The private company Mars One says it will land humans on the Red Planet by 2026, but is only offering passengers one-way tickets. Hundreds of thousands of people volunteered to go. Meet a young woman who […]

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Big Picture Science – Skeptic Check: The Me in Measles

March 1, 2015

Big Picture Science – Skeptic Check: The Me in Measles Wondering whether to vaccinate your children? The decision can feel like a shot in the dark if you don’t know how to evaluate risk. Find out why all of us succumb to the reasoning pitfalls of cognitive and omission bias, whether we’re saying no to […]

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Big Picture Science – Surviving the Anthropocene

February 22, 2015

Big Picture Science – Surviving the Anthropocene The world is hot, and getting hotter. But higher temperatures aren’t the only impact our species is having on mother Earth. Urbanization, deforestation, and dumping millions of tons of plastic into the oceans … these are all ways in which humans are leaving their mark. So are we […]

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Big Picture Science – Sesquicentennial Science

February 15, 2015

Big Picture Science – Sesquicentennial Science Today, scientists are familiar to us, but they weren’t always. Even the word “scientist” is relatively modern, dating from the Victorian Era. And it is to that era we turn as we travel to the University of Notre Dame to celebrate the 150th anniversary of its College of Science […]

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Big Picture Science – Skeptic Check: Your Inner Lab Coat

February 9, 2015

Big Picture Science – Skeptic Check: Your Inner Lab Coat Sherlock Holmes doesn’t have a science degree, yet he thinks rationally – like a scientist. You can too! Learn the secrets of being irritatingly logical from the most famous sleuth on Baker Street. Plus, discover why animal trackers 100,000 years ago may have been the […]

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Big Picture Science – Digging Our Past

February 1, 2015

Big Picture Science – Digging Our Past What’s past is prologue. For centuries, researchers have studied buried evidence – bones, teeth, or artifacts – to learn about murky human history, or even to investigate vanished species. But today’s hi-tech forensics allows us to analyze samples dug from the ground faster and at a far more […]

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Big Picture Science – Skeptic Check: Mummy Dearest

January 25, 2015

Big Picture Science – Skeptic Check: Mummy Dearestclick to listen Shh …mummy’s the word! We don’t want to provoke the curse of King Tut. Except that there are many curses associated with this fossilized pharaoh – from evil spirits to alien malevolence. So it’s hard to keep know which one we’d face. We’ll unravel secrets […]

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