The Science Focus podcast is brought to you by the team behind BBC Focus magazine. In each episode we talk to the brightest minds in science, technology and health about the ideas and breakthroughs shaping our understanding of the world.
AI ethicist Dr Kate Devlin has done a deep dive into intimacy with machines for her new book Turned On: Science, Sex and Robots. She’s looked into society’s gradually changing attitudes towards sex tech and visited the companies making the world’s most advanced sex robots, and she’s here to tell us what it all means.
The latest Sir David Attenborough-narrated BBC Natural History Unit Landmark Series is called Dynasties, and it tracks power struggles within animal groups. We talk to Nick Lyon, the producer of an episode about Zimbabwe’s Painted Wolves, to see how he captured an incredible fight for dominance in the wild.
Comedians often take to the stage to talk about the quirks of the human race, and comedian Robin Ince has years of experience in that area. In his new book, he’s adding insights from neuroscientists and psychologists to talk about creativity, imagination, trauma and why people become comics in the first place.
Comedian Dara Ó Briain thinks the word nerd has been co-opted by too many people who don’t deserve it: Infinity Wars fans, for example. Studying maths and mathematical physics at university, he’s a true nerd, with a favourite science joke that backs that up. He’s released his second science book for kids, so we’re talking to him about his career, communicating science to children, and what really happened to the Brontosaurus.
Scientists Lucy Cooke and Sarah-Jayne Blakemore’s books have been shortlisted for the Royal Society Insight Investment Science Book Prize. They tell us the unexpected truth about animals and the secret life of the teenage brain.
How helpful would you be if you were stranded in the past? Ryan North imagined telling people how cool computers are, but if they asked him how to make one, he’d be stumped. So he did some research, and in his hilarious new book he’s teaching us how to invent everything.
Girls are not picking as many STEM A-levels as boys, while professional female scientists are dropping out of the field. Is it time for change? In this episode we talk to four women currently working in STEM about their experiences, the problems faced by women and girls, and how we can fix the issues.
Astronauts: Do You Have What It Takes?Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong
Five violent murders were committed by a man dubbed ‘Jack the Ripper’ between August and November 1888 in Whitechapel. Criminologist David Wilson and actor Emilia Fox, with the help of the country’s leading criminal investigators, apply the latest scientific techniques to the case in a new BBC Science documentary. We asked Wilson if they identified the killer.
Imogen Heap has pushed the creative boundaries in the creation of electronic music, but now she is using technology a different way that she hopes will create a fairer and more inclusive future for musicians. She talks to us about how blockchain could revolutionise the music industry, and how her innovative mi.mu gloves are changing the way we create and perform electronic music.
This summer has been one of the hottest on record, so we asked climate change researcher Dann Mitchell what has caused the summer heatwave, can we expect more, and is there anything we can do about it?