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 Skeptic Check: OMG, GMO?

You are what you eat. But what does that mean if your food is genetically engineered? Chances are it has been if you’ve ever munched down on corn or soybean. The prospect of eating GM food makes some folks afraid, but is their fear warranted?

Discover what experts say about the safety of genetically engineered foods … whether the technology delivers on the promised increase in yield … and the argument for and against labeling.

Also, why some say the issue is not food safety, but the unethical business practices of multinationals. A filmmaker reports from the fields of India.

Plus, GM crops off this planet: the role of synthetic biology in terraforming Mars.

It’s Skeptic Check … but don’t take our word for it.

Guests:

06/18/12



 
 Mass Transits

On June 5, our sister planet Venus will slowly slide across the face of the sun. This will be the last transit of Venus until 2117, so there’s no subsequent chance to observe this celestial spectacular for anyone alive today.

Join us for a special episode devoted to this rare event. Two centuries ago, nations were locked in a race to be the first to measure the Venus transit. From the first observation by the “father” of British astronomy to Captain Cook’s Tahitian expedition in the 18th century, meet the pioneers who were trying to nail down the scale of the cosmos

Plus, tips for observing the 2012 transit … how the Kepler spacecraft uses transits to detect Earth-like worlds … and could there be life floating in Venusian clouds?

Guests:

05/28/12



 
 To Earth and Back

We are all Martians … or could be, if, billions of years ago, Red Plant microbes fell to Earth and eventually evolved to us. Okay, that one’s a big “if.” But microbes can survive space travel. Meet the NASA officer whose task is to keep Earth, Mars – and the entire solar system –safe from hitchhiking bacteria.

And, even if we’re not Martians (darn!), did life once thrive on the Red Planet … and does it still today?

Plus, why meteorites may be happy habitats for life.

Guests:

05/21/12



 
 That's So Random!

ENCORE Random is as random does… makes sense doesn’t even that anyway in tune hear to randomness how lives rules.

Brain chaos the drives, restoration role of help insight ecology may into randomness the, numbers sense of make statistics can’t why we or, ants not seem of erratic behavior why the may but is.

Guests:

First released January 10, 2011

05/14/12



 
 Second That Emotion

So you weep at sappy commercials and give drivers the bird. Have no regrets: emotion is what makes us human! Discover the survival value in feeling disgust … why humans are terrible liars … and how despair fuels creativity.

Also, mis-firing emotions and the emotional consequences of facial paralysis. And why E.T. will need to feel fear and joy to survive.

Guests:

04/09/12



 
 Seth's Cabinet of Wonders

It’s always a surprise to sort through Seth’s cabinet of wonders – who knows what we’ll find!

In this cramped cupboard, tucked between shelves of worm gears and used clarinet reeds, we discover a forgotten U.S. sea floor laboratory … copies of the new Cosmos TV series … evidence of science fiction’s predictive powers … software that may replace scientists … and tips on surviving a deadly poison (hint: it helps to be a snake).

Tune in, find out and grab a duster, will you?

Guests:

03/12/12



 
 Skeptic Check: Prog-Not-Stication

The future is no mystery… according to psychics who say they have special access to tomorrow's events. For example, adherents to the Mayan doomsday prophecy warn that when 2012 ends, so will the world.

Discover what's behind claims of prognostication, and why – if it really works – no one is making a killing in Las Vegas.

Also, could science divine the future? Programmers with the Living Earth Simulator say that with sufficient data, their billion-dollar computer project can predict world events.

It's Skeptic Check… but don't take our word for it!

Guests:

Descripción en español

03/05/12



 
 Skeptic Check: Saucer's Apprentice

ENCORE They’re here! About one-third of all Americans believe we’re being visited by extraterrestrial spacecraft. But wait, you want evidence?

UFO sighting are as prevalent as flies at a picnic. But proof of visitation – well, that’s really alien.

Hear why belief in extraterrestrial UFOs persists … and why military sightings that “can’t be explained” don’t warrant rolling out a welcome mat for ET.

Plus, the most fab UFOs in the movies!

It’s Skeptic Check… but don’t take our word for it!

Guests:

FIrst aired November 15, 2010.

Descripción en español

02/20/12



 
 Skeptic Check: Energy Vortex

“I feel your vibe!” Well, that describes a number of fabled locales that claim to pulse with mysterious energy – perhaps prompting books to fly across the room or airplanes to vanish into thin air. But what’s the science behind it?

We examine spots marked with an X, for “extraordinary” – from a haunted house to the Bermuda Triangle – to sort out natural from supernatural phenomena.

Plus, what causes the aurora borealis… a haywire Russian space probe… and just what the heck is an “energy vortex,” anyway?

Guests:

01/23/12



 
 Wired for Thought

A cup of coffee can leave you wired for the day. But a chip in your brain could wire you to a machine forever. Imagine manipulating a mouse without moving a muscle, and doing a Google search with your mind. Welcome to the future of the brain-machine interface.

Don your EEG thinking-cap, and discover a high-tech thought game that may be the harbinger of machine relationships to come.

Plus, the ultimate mapping project: the Human Connectdome Project aims to identify all the neural pathways in the human brain. It may help us understand what makes us human, but could it also point the way to making us smarter?

And, what all this brain research reveals about the mind and free will – who, or what, is really in charge?

Guests:

01/16/12


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