Author Topic: Podcast Topic suggestions  (Read 33252 times)

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Offline User3point14159

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Re: Podcast Topic suggestions
« Reply #495 on: January 31, 2015, 03:43:21 PM »
GMO mosquito plan sparks outrage in Florida

A British company's plan to unleash hordes of genetically modified mosquitoes in Florida to reduce the threat of dengue fever and other diseases has sparked an outcry from fearful residents.

Offline fuzzyMarmot

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Re: Podcast Topic suggestions
« Reply #496 on: February 02, 2015, 10:49:49 PM »
The most popular podcast on iTunes right now is NPR's "Invisibilia". It "explores the intangible forces that shape human behavior – things like ideas, beliefs, assumptions and emotions".

So far, the show seems focused on taking concepts from neuroscience and psychology, and spinning them into "This American Life" type stories. It is well-produced, and highly entertaining.

My concern is that, in its attempts to connect science with personal narratives, it misrepresents science. For example, the latest episode "Entanglement" starts with a segment on quantum entanglement, and uses that to launch into stories about empathy. There is an implication that the physics stuff and emotional stuff is connected. The quote "our thoughts are actual matter" is emphasized. They also say "there could be one particle of you right now entangled with the person you just passed on the street".

I'd love to hear the SGU do a review of this podcast. It would be a good entry point for a conversation about science podcasting, promoting science to the general public, the competing demands of narrative and scientific accuracy, etc.

Offline AJ_Barbarito

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Addiction and Recovery
« Reply #497 on: February 08, 2015, 04:54:59 PM »
Hi guys. I love the podcast, and I'm incredibly thankful to you all for devoting your time to it.

I would love to hear you all do a segment on addiction and recovery. I am a recovering alcoholic, and I am very often confronted by pseudoscience in the rooms of AA. While I am thankful to AA for being there when I needed someone, it is difficult to dispute the fact that the people in those rooms can give out some very bad advice, and that the information we receive from the "Big Book" of AA is outdated, poorly sourced, largely anecdotal, sexist, and of course, involves a religious aspect that many of us in the rooms are uncomfortable with. I would like AA to come into the 21st century with regard to addiction science, and I would like those in the rooms to start understanding the often co-morbid afflictions of mental illness, and the fact that medicine is often needed to treat these afflictions.

I don't want a big hate party against AA, because it really is helpful, even for an atheist skeptic like me. It's good therapy, even if you have to hold your nose sometimes to deal with the rampant pseudoscience. What I want is for people to better understand addiction. I personally want to understand it better, and understand recovery better.

I'm also curious about the programs out there that claim not to use the disease model of addiction, and claim to "cure" addiction. These fairly reek of pseudoscience, but I have seen very few refutations or denunciations of these folks. My personal experience is that I must abstain from alcohol in order to maintain sobriety, and that I will never be able to drink normally. I have heard claims, though, from people who say they were alcoholics, and can now drink normally. I wonder if there is any credence to these claims. I don't ever want to drink again, but I'm curious if that's even been shown to be possible.

So anyway, I would love to hear something about addiction, if you guys can swing it. Thanks again for the podcast!

Offline Boßel

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Re: Podcast Topic suggestions
« Reply #498 on: February 14, 2015, 12:32:49 AM »
Not sure if this is the right place or if this thread is even visited by Steve and the rogues, but here's a suggestion.

You guys should mention Brian Brushwood's new skeptical show called Hacking the System on Nat Geo. Always important to promote a fellow skeptic.

Brain Games is another skeptical show on the same network.
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Offline JauntyAngle

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Re: Podcast Topic suggestions
« Reply #499 on: February 25, 2015, 11:55:35 AM »
I would like to see a good debunking of this

"How Crazy Am I to Think I Actually Know Where the Malaysia Airlines Plane is?" Uhm ... very. Yes, very crazy. He says Russian hackers took over the plane, caused it to emit fake satellite signals, evaded land radar and then landed at an abandoned airfield in Kazakhstan where the plane was buried by Vladimir Putin for some unexplained reason.