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Town Hall Seattle Science Series

Science Podcasts >

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Location:

United States

Twitter:

@THSEA

Language:

English

Contact:

2066524255


Episodes

Jaron Lanier

12/18/2017
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Virtual Reality is at once a revolutionary tool for entertainment and a technology raising fundamental questions about the experience of being inside the human body. Jaron Lanier―interdisciplinary scientist and father of the term “virtual reality”―takes a look at what it means to be human at a moment of unprecedented technological possibility. His book Dawn of the New Everything: Encounters with Reality and Virtual Reality exposed VR’s ability to illuminate and amplify our understanding of...

Duration: 01:17:55


Dr. John Vidale

12/11/2017
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As residents of the Pacific Northwest, we are all familiar with stories of Seattle’s vulnerability to seismic activity. And we certainly recall the haunting 2015 New Yorker article asserting that our region is long-overdue for “the big one.” To help contextualize these fears and delve into the science beneath the threat of earthquakes, Town Hall presents Dr. John Vidale—seismologist at UW’s College of the Environment and leader for several years of UW’s M9 Project. Dr. Vidale’s works lends...

Duration: 01:13:39


Dan Ariely with Jeff Kreisler

12/4/2017
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Why does spending money sometimes feel almost physically painful? Why are we comfortable overpaying for something again just because we’ve overpaid for it once before? Dan Ariely, professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics at Duke University, steps forward to answer these intriguing questions about our spending psychology. He shares the stage with his co-author Jeff Kreisler—Princeton educated lawyer turned award-winning comedian—to share their book Dollars and Sense: How We Misthink...

Duration: 01:06:20


Oliver Uberti with Melinda Holland

11/27/2017
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How do baboons make decisions? Why do storks like garbage dumps? What are sonic vibrations to a warbler, anyway? For thousands of years, answering questions like these meant tracking animals by following their footprints. Thanks to award-winning visual journalist and former National Geographic Senior Editor Oliver Uberti, things are no longer so rudimentary. Uberti took our stage to share how the natural world is being revealed like never before with the help of satellites, drones, camera...

Duration: 01:12:28


Theo Gray

10/30/2017
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Are you aware that oxidation is beautiful? Yes, oxidation, particularly when it’s under the gaze of Theodore Gray. Photosynthesis is beautiful, too. And fermentation. With Reactions, Gray continues an exciting journey through our molecular and chemical world like no one ever has. In his new photographic masterwork, Reactions, following his bestselling books The Elements and Molecules, Gray demonstrates how molecules interact in ways that are essential to our very existence. With Gray, a...

Duration: 00:50:23


Peter Wadhams with Brady Piñero Walkinshaw

10/16/2017
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Peter Wadhams, one of the world’s most experienced sea ice scientists, brings a report from the frontline of planetary change in his new book A Farewell to Ice. Wadhams shows how sea ice is the ‘canary in the mine’ of planetary climate change. He describes how it forms and the vital role it plays in reflecting solar heat back into space and providing an ‘air conditioning’ system for the planet. He shows how a series of rapid feedbacks in the Arctic region are accelerating change there more...

Duration: 01:03:25


Tali Sharot

10/9/2017
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In The Influential Mind, neuroscientist Tali Sharot takes us on a thrilling exploration of the nature of influence. We affect others just by moving through the world―from the classroom to the boardroom to social media. But how skilled are we at this role, and can we become better? Sharot reveals that many of our instincts―from relying on facts and figures to shape opinions, to insisting others are wrong or attempting to exert control―are ineffective, because they are incompatible with how...

Duration: 00:59:41


Max Tegmark

10/2/2017
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What does is it mean to be human in a world where A.I. is transforming war, crime, justice, and jobs? We stand at the beginning of a new era. What was once science fiction is fast becoming reality. Max Tegmark, a professor of physics at MIT and president of the Future of Life Institute, takes readers to the heart of thinking about A.I. and the human condition in his new book Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence. How can we grow our prosperity through automation,...

Duration: 01:10:14


Jonathan White

9/18/2017
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Many of us in the Pacific Northwest feel a profound connection to the water, and Seattle-based author Jonathan White is no exception. In his book Tides: The Science and Spirit of the Ocean, White uses his surfing and sailing adventures across the globe to take us on a journey of scientific inquiry. As a water enthusiast, he’s traveled to five continents to experience the largest, fastest, scariest and most amazing tides in the world. As a conservationist, White is the founder and former...

Duration: 01:01:34


Sam Kean

9/11/2017
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What’s invisible, ubiquitous, and has an epic story to tell? New York Times bestselling author Sam Kean provides us with a curious history of the air we breathe. In a tale as artful as it is scientific, Kean’s Caesar’s Last Breath: Decoding the Secrets of the Air Around Us, places air center stage in the tale of Earth’s and humanity’s existence. Join Kean to trace the origins and ingredients of our atmosphere–how the alchemy of air reshaped our continents, steered human progress, powered...

Duration: 00:53:34


Suzanne O’Sullivan

9/4/2017
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Most of us don’t question a fluttery feeling in our chests when we’re excited or sweating armpits as we make a public speech. We accept these connections between our emotions and physical bodies. But according to neurologist Suzanne O’Sullivan, the human body’s reactions to emotions can be much more severe. Up to a third of people go to the doctor with symptoms that cannot be medically explained; and often doctors suspect an emotional cause. O’Sullivan believes that “psychosomatic...

Duration: 01:15:48


Alan Burdick

8/28/2017
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Are we born into time? Or is time born into us? Most people seem to agree that our experience of time changes depending on our mood or circumstance. “Time flies when you’re having fun” (as the saying goes), while in times of difficulty or boredom, each minute may seem to creep slowly by. In Why Time Flies: A Mostly Scientific Exploration, science writer Alan Burdick (The New Yorker) takes readers on a witty and meditative exploration of the human relationship with time. “This book blew my...

Duration: 01:05:16


Walter Murch and Lawrence Weschler

8/21/2017
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In the film world, Walter Murch is undeniably successful. The three-time Academy Award winner is world-renowned for his work on films like Apocalypse Now, The Godfather trilogy, and The English Patient. But this is only one aspect of his multifaceted interests. As an amateur astrophysicist, Murch has worked to rehabilitate a long-discredited 18th century theory called Titius Bode, which considers how planets and moons array themselves in gravitational systems across the universe. As an...

Duration: 01:25:48


Richard Yonck

8/14/2017
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Imagine a robotic stuffed animal that responds to a child’s emotional state or an electronic ad that changes based on the facial expression of the viewer. This event is the book launch for Heart of the Machine: Our Future in a World of Artificial Emotional Intelligence by local author and futurist Richard Yonck, in which he explores technological advancements that could give computers the ability to recognize, respond to, and influence emotions. Recent movies like Her and Ex Machina,...

Duration: 01:01:29


John All

8/7/2017
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In May 2014, mountaineer and scientist John All fell into a 70-foot crevasse near Everest. Though badly injured—fifteen broken bones, internal bleeding, and a severely dislocated shoulder—he took a series of videos as he struggled to climb out through the ice and snow. They went viral, appearing in newscasts all over the world and on media websites from People Magazine to National Geographic. NPR called him “a badass for science.” Yet this is only one of many adventures this Western...

Duration: 01:05:19


ISB Panel

7/31/2017
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Seattle’s Institute for Systems Biology (ISB) is revolutionizing science with a powerful approach to predict and prevent disease, and enable a sustainable environment. Explore the cross-disciplinary and collaborative approach of systems biology and how it is applied in the exploration of new frontiers in biology and medicine. This moderated forum will provide a focused discussion on the advances in major areas that affect human health, at both an individual and global level. Panelists...

Duration: 01:07:21


David Haskell

7/24/2017
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Of his writing, David Haskell says, “I’ve turned my ear to trees, listening to their ‘songs.’ I’m writing about what tree acoustics can teach us, with a particular focus on biological networks.” His award-winning The Forest Unseen won praise for eloquent writing and deep engagement with the natural world. Now, in The Songs of Trees, Haskell brings his powers of observation to the biological networks that surround all species, including humans. Selecting a dozen trees around the world, he...

Duration: 01:13:14


Eugenia Cheng

7/17/2017
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Eugenia Cheng is Scientist in Residence at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and an Honorary Fellow of the University of Sheffield. As one of few women in her field, Cheng aims to reach a wide audience about all things math and dispel the phobia that many people feel regarding the subject. Her popular Youtube videos explaining a variety of math topics have been viewed more than 700,000 times. In Beyond Infinity, Cheng takes readers on an entertaining journey from math at its most...

Duration: 00:44:04


Brian Christian and Tom Griffiths

7/10/2017
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Look before you leap. We’ve all heard this piece of advice. But is it helpful? Whether considering trivial matters, like trying to find a parking spot or weighing life-changing decisions like choosing a spouse, it’s difficult to find the balance between passing up a great opportunity or making a choice too quickly. Author Brian Christian and cognitive scientist Tom Griffiths have teamed up to bring you a statistically tested formula for decision-making. In Algorithms to Live By: The...

Duration: 01:11:55


Lawrence Krauss

7/3/2017
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Award-winning theoretical physicist and bestselling author Lawrence Krauss (The Physics of Star Trek, A Universe From Nothing) is not afraid to court controversy. In 2015, he made waves when he published an essay in The New Yorker with the headline: “All Scientists Should be Militant Atheists.” He also stormed out of a 2013 London debate entitled: “Islam or Atheism: Which Makes More Sense?” because the audience was segregated by gender in keeping with Muslim traditions. Krauss found this...

Duration: 01:22:52

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