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Science Friday

Friday 12:00 - 1:00pm


Science Friday is a weekly science talk show, broadcast live over public radio stations nationwide. Each week, we focus on science topics that are in the news and try to bring an educated, balanced discussion to bear on the scientific issues at hand. Panels of expert guests join Science Friday’s host, Ira Flatow, a veteran science journalist, to discuss science – and to take questions from listeners during the call-in portion of the program.

Would You Trust a Robot to Schedule Your Life?

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Given access to your Google calendar, a personal assistant named Amy will happily schedule all your appointments. The catch? She's a machine—a digital personal assistant.

Food Failures: The Science of Sides

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Find out how to avoid Turkey Day trip-ups in the latest episode of our “Food Failures” series.

‘Hot’ for Turkey

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Female wild turkeys parse the courtship performances of males to determine their genetic potential.

Ghosts of Early Language May Linger in the Brain

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Chinese adoptees living in Canada, who now speak only French, still process Chinese sounds as native speakers do, even if they have no conscious recall of word meaning.

Into the Wormhole: The Science of 'Interstellar'

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It’s a sci-fi epic set among black holes, wormholes, and tesseracts. But director Christopher Nolan and physicist Kip Thorne say Interstellar doesn’t break the laws of physics.

Meet The Brain Scoop’s Emily Graslie

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YouTube science star Emily Graslie takes viewers behind the scenes of natural history museums with “The Brain Scoop.”

The First Touchdown on a Comet

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The European Space Agency’s Philae lander is the first probe to touch down on a comet.

Lacking Funding, Some Scientists Turn to the Crowd

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Scientists frustrated by a lack of research dollars are turning to crowdfunding.

Horns, Claws, and Teeth: The Animal Weapons Arms Race

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Doug Emlen, author of “Animal Weapons,” unpacks the evolutionary arms race that pushes horns, claws, teeth and other animal defenses to the extreme.

Here Kitty, Kitty: The Genetics of Tame Animals

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Researchers discuss the possible genetic underpinnings that make certain cats and rats tame.

Mining Wikipedia Data to Track Disease

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By analyzing access to specific health-related pages on Wikipedia, researchers may be able to identify—or even forecast—potential disease outbreaks.

‘New Environmentalism’ Moves Beyond Pollution and Climate Change

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Gus Speth, a longtime Washington insider, says it’s time to consider consumerism, economic instability, and a functional democracy as core environmental issues.

U.S. High-Speed Internet Lags Behind on Price, Cost

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For less than $40 a month, residents of Seoul, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Bucharest, and Paris can enjoy lightning-fast Internet download and upload speeds of 1,000 Mbps.

Apple Science, From American Beauty to Zestar

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Between new crosses and old heritage varieties, there’s a world of apples beyond the Red Delicious.

Piecing Together the Puzzle of Insect Evolution

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One hundred researchers studied 144 insect species to fill in the blanks of insects’ evolutionary history.

Opening Up the Synthetic Biology Toolkit

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Synthetic biologist Christopher Voigt and biotechnologist Stephen Streatfield discuss current trends in synthetic biology.

Spilling Our Guts: Decreased Diversity in the Human Microbiome

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How can hospital stays and the evolution from apes to humans change the diversity of our microbiome?

George Washington Carver: Renaissance Man

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Carver was a painter, singer, and piano teacher, taught farmers the virtues of crop rotation, and developed hundreds of recipes for peanuts, sweet potatoes, soybeans and pecans.

Ebola Vaccines Fast-Tracked As Outbreak Slows

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Jon Cohen, a staff writer covering the outbreak for Science magazine, says that despite the vaccines’ success in monkeys, their efficacy in humans is far from guaranteed.

Could This 3-D Printer Print Itself?

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This week, HP announced its new 3-D printer, which it claims can print materials strong enough to lift up a car—and do it 10 times faster than anything on the market today.