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Manifold

Science Podcasts

man·i·fold /ˈmanəˌfōld/ many and various.

man·i·fold /ˈmanəˌfōld/ many and various.

Location:

United States

Description:

man·i·fold /ˈmanəˌfōld/ many and various.

Language:

English


Episodes

Michael Kauffman on Cancer, Drug Development and Market Capitalism – #48

5/28/2020
Steve and Corey speak with Dr. Michael Kauffman, co-founder and CEO of Karyopharm Therapeutics, about cancer and biotech innovation. Michael explains how he and Dr. Sharon Schacham tested her idea regarding nuclear-transport using simulation software on a home laptop, and went on to beat 1000:1 odds to create a billion dollar company. They discuss the relationship between high proprietary drug costs and economic incentives for drug discovery. They also discuss the unique US biotech...

Duration:01:23:21

Scott Adams on Trump, and his book Loserthink – #47

5/21/2020
Corey and Steve talk to Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert and author of Loserthink. Steve reviews some of Scott's predictions, including of Trump’s 2016 victory. Scott (who once semi-humorously described himself as “left of Bernie”) describes what he describes as Trump's unique "skill stack". Scott highlights Trump's grasp of the role of psychology in economics, and maintains that honesty requires admitting that we do not know whether many of Trump’s policies are good or bad. Scott explains...

Duration:01:17:47

James Oakes on What’s Wrong with The 1619 Project – #46

5/14/2020
Steve and Corey talk to James Oakes, Distinguished Professor of History and Graduate School Humanities Professor at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, about "The 1619 Project" developed by The New York Times Magazine. The project argues that slavery was the defining event of US history. Jim argues that slavery was actually the least exceptional feature of the US and that what makes the US exceptional is that it is where abolition first begins. Steve wonders about the...

Duration:01:20:39

Robert Atkinson on US-China Competition and Industrial Policy – #45

5/7/2020
Steve and Corey talk with Robert Atkinson, President of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation about his philosophy of National Developmentalism. They discuss the history of industrial policy and mercantilism in the US and China. Why did the US lose 1/3 of its manufacturing jobs in the 2000s? How much was due to automation and how much to Chinese competition? Atkinson discusses US R&D and recommends policies that will help the US compete with China.

Duration:01:20:52

Raman Sundrum: Physics and the Universe – #44

4/30/2020
Steve and Corey talk with theoretical physicist Raman Sundrum. They discuss the last 30 years in fundamental physics, and look toward the next. Raman argues that Physics is a marketplace of ideas. While many theories did not stand the test of time, they represented avenues that needed to be explored. Corey expresses skepticism about the possibility of answering questions such as why the laws of physics have the form they do. Raman and Steve argue that attempts to answer such questions have...

Duration:01:18:50

Vineer Bhansali: Physics, Tail Risk Hedging, and 900% Coronavirus Returns – #43

4/23/2020
Steve and Corey talk with theoretical physicist turned hedge fund investor Vineer Bhansali. Bhansali describes his transition from physics to finance, his firm LongTail Alpha, and his recent outsize returns from the coronavirus financial crisis. Also discussed: derivatives pricing, random walks, helicopter money, and Modern Monetary Theory.

Duration:01:21:37

Jaan Tallinn: Coronavirus, Existential Risk, and AI – #42

4/16/2020
Steve talks with Skype founder and global tech investor Jaan Tallinn. Will the coronavirus pandemic lead to better planning for future global risks? Jaan gives his list of top existential risks and describes his efforts to call attention to AI risk. They discuss AGI, the Simulation Question, the Fermi Paradox and how these are all connected. Do we live in a simulation of a quantum multiverse?

Duration:01:02:44

Dan Gable: Legendary NCAA and Olympic Wrestler & Coach – #41

4/9/2020
Steve and Corey talk to legendary NCAA and Olympic wrestler and coach Dan Gable. Gable describes the final match of his collegiate career, an NCAA championship upset which spoiled his undefeated high school and college record. The Coach explains how the loss led him to take a more scientific approach to training and was critical for his later success. They discuss the tragic murder of Gable's sister, and the steps 15-year old Gable took try to save his parents’ marriage. Gable describes...

Duration:01:10:12

Klaus Lackner on Carbon Capture, Climate Change, and Physics – #40

4/2/2020
Steve and Corey talk to Klaus Lackner, director of the Center for Negative Carbon Emissions (CNCE) at Arizona State University and the first person to suggest removing CO2 from air to address climate change. Steve asks whether Klaus’ research was motivated by a tail risk of catastrophic outcomes due to CO2 build up. Klaus explains that he sees atmospheric CO2 as a waste management problem. Calculations show that removing human-produced carbon is energetically and economically viable. Klaus...

Duration:01:15:40

COVID-19, Blockchain, and the Global Startup Scene – #39

3/26/2020
Steve and Corey talk to Kieren James-Lubin and Victor Wong of the blockchain technology startup, BlockApps. They begin with a discussion of the COVID-19 epidemic (~25m): lockdown, predictions of ICU overload, and helicopter money. Will personal contact tracking become the new normal? Transitioning to blockchain, a technology many view as viable even in times of widespread societal disruption, they give a basic explanation of the underlying cryptographic and consensus algorithms. Kieren and...

Duration:01:38:20

Claude Steele on the Challenges of Multi-Cultural Societies – #38

3/19/2020
Corey and Steve talk to Claude Steele of Stanford about his article “Why Campuses are So Tense”. The essay explores stereotype threats across racial lines. Colorblindness is a standard of fairness, but what are the costs of ignoring our differences? Claude describes his research on minority underperformance and why single sex colleges may contribute to women’s success. Corey describes why he believes his daughter's experience is a counterexample to the findings of the experiments that led...

Duration:01:17:52

A.J. Robison on the Neural Basis of Sex Differences in Depression – #37

3/12/2020
Corey and Steve talk with MSU Neuroscientist A.J. Robison about why females may be more likely to suffer from depression than males. A.J. reviews past findings that low testosterone and having a smaller hippocampus may predict depression risk. He explains how a serendipitous observation opened up his current line of research and describes tools he uses to study neural circuits. Steve asks about the politics of studying sex differences and tells of a start up using CRISPR to attack heart...

Duration:01:11:53

Kaja Perina on the Dark Triad: Narcissism, Machiavellianism, and Psychopathy – #36

3/5/2020
Kaja Perina is the Editor in Chief of Psychology Today. Kaja, Steve, and Corey discuss so-called Dark Triad personality traits: Narcissism, Machiavellianism, and Psychopathy. Do these traits manifest more often in super successful people? What is the difference between Sociopathy and Psychopathy? Are CEOs often "warm sociopaths"? Can too much empathy be a liability? Corey laments Sociopathy in academic Philosophy. Kaja explains the operation of Psychology Today. Steve reveals his Hypomania...

Duration:01:10:41

Adam Dynes on Noisy Retrospection: The Effect of Party Control on Policy Outcomes – #35

2/27/2020
Steve and Corey talk to Adam Dynes of Brigham Young University about whether voting has an effect on policy outcomes. Adam’s work finds that control of state legislatures or governorships does not have an observable effect on macroscopic variables such as crime rates, the economy, etc. Possible explanations: parties push essentially the same policies, politicians don't keep promises, monied interest control everything. Are voting decisions just noisy mood affiliation? Perhaps time is...

Duration:01:02:02

Yang Wang on Science and Technology in China, Hong Kong Protests, and Coronavirus – #34

2/20/2020
Yang Wang is Dean of Science at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. Professor Wang received his BS degree in mathematics from University of Science and Technology of China in 1983, and his PhD degree from Harvard University in 1990 under the supervision of Fields medalist David Mumford. He served as Chair of the Mathematics department at Michigan State University before joining HKUST.

Duration:01:20:24

Elizabeth Kolbert on Climate Change: Impacts and Mitigation Technologies – #33

2/13/2020
Steve and Corey talk to Elizabeth Kolbert, author of the Sixth Extinction, about the current state of the climate debate. All three are pessimistic about the possibility that emissions will be substantively reduced in the near term, and they discuss technologies for removing carbon from the atmosphere. They explore uncertainty in the models regarding temperatures rise and precipitation, and contemplate a billion people are on the move in response to climate change and population increase....

Duration:01:03:08

Meghan Daum on the New Culture Wars – #32

2/6/2020
Corey and Steve talk to Meghan Daum about her new book "The Problem With Everything: My Journey Through The New Culture Wars". Meghan describes how she became aware of the "Red Pill" through what she calls "free speech YouTube" videos. The three ask whether their feeling of alienation from Gen-Z wokeness is just a sign of getting old or reflects principles of free speech and open debate. Megan argues that Gen-Z's focus on fairness leads to difficult compromises. They discuss social...

Duration:01:13:57

Steven Broglio on Concussions, Football and Informed Choice – #31

1/30/2020
Steve and Corey talk with Steven Broglio, Director of the Michigan Concussion Center, about concussion risk, prevention and treatment. Broglio describes how the NCAA emerged from the deaths that almost led Theodore Roosevelt to outlaw college football. He also explains recent findings on CTE, why females may be at greater concussion risk, and why sleep is critical to avoiding long-term brain injury. They discuss how new rules probably make football safer and debate why New England is so...

Duration:01:00:29

Barbara O’Brien on Race, Reform and Wrongful Conviction Rate Estimates- #30

1/22/2020
Our guest, Barbara O’Brien, explains why we don’t know much about conviction error outside of murder cases, making error rates for the vast majority of crimes: misdemeanors, sexual assaults, armed robbery, etc. a “dark ocean”. She explains factors that contribute to wrongful convictions including mistaken cross-racial identification in sexual assault cases. Barbara also talks about the surprising frequency of “rain damage” to evidence rooms and why Texas leads the way in both executions...

Duration:01:07:47

Sebastian Junger: Meaning from War and Technological Isolation in America – #29

1/16/2020
This conversation occurred just after President Trump withdrew US forces from Northern Syria. Steve, Corey and Sebastian debate ISIS and the Kurds. Sebastian argues that men who went to war after 9/11 wanted to experience communal masculinity, as their fathers and grandfathers had in Vietnam and WWII, a tradition dating back millennia. When they came home, they faced the isolation of affluent contemporary American society, leading to high rates of addiction, depression, and suicide. War...

Duration:00:44:18