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Plan of a Hack

From Big Picture Science - Long before cyber criminals were stealing ATM passwords, phone phreaks were tapping into the telephone system. Their motivation was not monetary, but the thrill of defeating a complex, invisible network. Today "hacking" can apply to cyberwarfare, biological tinkering, or even geoengineering.  Often it has negative connotations, but the original definition of "hacking" was something else. In this first of two episodes on hacking, we look at the original practitioners - the teenagers and mavericks who hacked Ma Bell for thrills - and the difference between hacking for fun and for profit.  Guests: Phil Lapsley- Author of "Exploding the Phone: The Untold Story of the Teenagers and Outlaws Who Hacked Ma Bell" 


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Plan of a Hack
2017-09-11 07:37:45
Long before cyber criminals were stealing ATM passwords, phone phreaks were tapping into the telephone system. Their motivation was not monetary, but the thrill of defeating a complex, invisible network. Today "hacking" can apply to cyberwarfare, biological tinkering, or even geoengineering.  Often it has negative connotations, but the original definition of "hacking" was something else. In this first of two episodes on hacking, we look at the original practitioners - the teenagers and mavericks who hacked Ma Bell for thrills - and the difference between hacking for fun and for profit.  Guests: Phil Lapsley- Author of "Exploding the Phone: The Untold Story of the Teenagers and Outlaws Who Hacked Ma Bell" 
51 minutes, 48 seconds


Bacteria to the Future
2018-02-12 06:47:31
Why did the chicken take antibiotics?  To fatten it up and prevent bacterial infection. As a result, industrial farms have become superbug factories, threatening our life-saving antibiotics. Find out how our wonder drugs became bird feed, and how antibiotic resistant bugs bred on the farm end up on your dinner plate.  A journalist tells the story of the 1950s fad of "acronizing" poultry; the act of dipping it in an antibiotic bath so it can sit longer on a refrigerator shelf. Plus, some ways we can avoid a post-antibiotic era. The steps one farm took to make their chickens antibiotic free... and resurrecting an old therapy: enlisting viruses to target and destroy multi-drug resistant bacteria.  Set your "phages" to stun.  Guests: Maryn McKenna - Investigative journalist who specializes in public health and food policy. Author of "Big Chicken: The Incredible Story of How Antibiotics Created Modern Agriculture and Changed the Way the World Eats." Ryland Young - Biochemist, head of the Center for Phage Technology at Texas A&M University.


Creative Brains
2018-02-05 08:20:10
Your cat is smart, but its ability to choreograph a ballet or write computer code isn't great.  A lot of animals are industrious and clever, but humans are the only animal that is uniquely ingenious and creative.  Neuroscientist David Eagleman and composer Anthony Brandt discuss how human creativity has reshaped the world. Find out what is going on in your brain when you write a novel, paint a watercolor, or build a whatchamacallit in your garage. But is Homo sapiens' claim on creativity destined to be short-lived?  Why both Eagleman and Brandt are prepared to step aside when artificial intelligence can do their jobs. Guests: Anthony Brandt - Professor of Composition and Theory, Rice University, and co-author of "The Runaway Species: How Human Creativity Remakes the World" David Eagleman - Neuroscientist, Stanford University, and co-author, "The Runaway Species: How Human Creativity Remakes the World"


Skeptic Check: New UFO Evidence
2018-01-29 07:32:38
It was a shocker of a story, splashed across the New York Times front page: The existence of a five-year long, hidden Pentagon investigation of UFOs.  With one-third of the American public convinced that aliens are visiting Earth, could this study finally provide the proof? We consider how this story came to light and what the $22 million program has produced.  Does the existence of a secret study mean there's now decent proof of extraterrestrial craft in our skies?  We take a look at the evidence made public so far. And why, six years after the study ended, are we learning about it now? Guests: James Oberg - Space journalist, historian and former NASA employee James McGaha - Retired Air Force pilot, astronomer and director of the Grasslands Observatory Ben Radford - Deputy editor of Skeptical Inquirer magazine and a Research Fellow with the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry 


Rerouting... Rerouting
2017-12-18 08:02:50
Lost your sense of direction?  Blame your GPS. Scientists say that our reliance on dashboard devices is eroding our ability to create cognitive maps and is messing with our minds in general. We don't even look at landmarks or the landscape anymore.  We've become no more than interfaces between our GPS and our steering wheels. But in other ways, GPS can spark a new appreciation of the physical world. A real-time flyover app reveals the stunning geological features otherwise invisible from our window seat.  And sensitive electronic sensors let us see where the wild things are and where they go.  Learn how scientists put belts on jellyfish and produce maps that reveal the surprising routes taken by various species - from a single wolf, a group of phytoplankton, or a float of crocodiles. Plus, one man is not ready to say goodbye to the traditional map.  Find out why this cartographer insists on paper maps, not digital apps.  Guests: Julia Frankenstein- Cognitive scientist, Darmstadt Technical University, Germany Greg Milner- Journalist, author of "Pinpoint: How GPS is Changing Technology, Culture, and our Minds"  Amy Myrbo- Earth scientist, University of Minnesota Oliver Uberti- Graphic artist and former senior design editor at National Geographic   James Cheshire- Geographer, University College London.  Co-author, along with Oliver Uberti, of "Where The Animals Go: Tracking Wildlife with Technology in 50 Maps and Graphics." Tom Hedberg- Mapmaker and publisher at Hedberg Maps in Minneapolis, Minnesota 


Air Apparent
2017-12-04 08:54:33
Whether you yawn, gasp, sniff, snore, or sigh, you're availing yourself of our very special atmosphere.   It's easy to take this invisible chemical cocktail for granted, but it's not only essential to your existence: it unites you and every other life form on the planet, dead or alive.  The next breath you take likely includes molecules exhaled by Julius Caesar or Eleanor Roosevelt. And for some animals, air is an information superhighway.  Dogs navigate with their noses.  Their sniffing snouts help them to identify their owners, detect trace amounts of drugs, and even sense some diseases.  Find out what a dog's nose knows, and why no amount of bathing and dousing in perfume can mask your personal smelliness. Plus, why your own schnoz is key to not only enjoying a fine Bordeaux, but to survival of our species. Guests: Sam Kean - Science writer, author of "Caesar's Last Breath: Decoding the Secrets of the Air Around Us"  Alexandra Horowitz - Dog cognition researcher, Barnard College, author of "Being A Dog: Following the Dog Into a World of Smell"  Rachel Herz - Cognitive neuroscientist, Brown University, author of "Why You Eat What You Eat," and "The Scent of Desire: Discovering Our Enigmatic Sense of Smell"  Ken Givich - Microbiologist, Guittard Chocolate company


Wonder Women
2017-11-17 20:18:20
We're hearing about harassment of, and barriers to, women seeking careers in politics and entertainment. But what about science? Science is supposed to be uniquely merit-based and objective. And yet the data say otherwise. A new study reveals widespread harassment of women of color in space science.  We look at the role that a hostile work environment plays in keeping women from pursuing scientific careers. While more women than ever are holding jobs in science, the percentage in tech and computer science has flattened out or even dropped.  A memo from a software engineer at an Internet giant claims it's because female brains aren't suited for tech. Find out what the science says. Plus, women staring down discrimination. One woman's reaction to her guidance counselor's suggestion that she skip calculus and have babies. And SACNAS, the organization changing the face of science for Latina and Native American women.   Guests: Jill Tarter - Astronomer, founding member of the SETI Institute, and member of the SETI Institute Board of Trustees.  She is the subject of a biography by writer Sarah Scoles: "Making Contact: Jill Tarter and the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence."  Angela Saini - Journalist and author of "Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong" Kathryn Clancy - Associate professor of anthropology, University of Illinois Antonia Franco - Executive director, Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS)


Skeptic Check: Nibiru! (Again!)
2017-11-13 08:46:35
Will your calendar entry for November 19th  be your last? Some people say yes, predicting a catastrophic collision between Earth and planet Nibiru on that date and the end of the world.  But it won't happen, because this hypothesized rogue world doesn't exist. Nibiru's malevolent disruptions have been foretold many times, most dramatically in 2012 and three times so far in 2017.  But this year NASA issued a rare public assurance that doomsday was not in the offing. Find out why the agency decided to speak out. Meanwhile, hoaxes and alarmist stories from the 19th century demonstrate that we have a long history of being susceptible to hooey.  Also, an astronomer who doesn't believe that Nibiru is hiding in the outer Solar System, but that Planet X is.   Guests: David Morrison - Astronomer and space scientist, NASA Ames Research Center Robert E. Bartholomew - Medical sociologist at Botany College, Auckland, New Zealand, and author of "A Colorful History of Popular Delusions" Michael Brown - Astronomer at the California Institute of Technology


DNA: Nature's Hard Drive
2017-11-06 07:18:16
The biotech tool CRISPR lets us do more than shuffle genes.  Researchers have embedded an animated GIF into a living organism's DNA, proving that the molecule is a great repository for information.  This has encouraged speculation that DNA could be used by aliens to send messages.  Meanwhile, nature has seized on this powerful storage system in surprising ways.  Scientists have learned that the 98% of our genome - once dismissed as "junk" - contains valuable genetic treasure. Find out what project ENCODE is learning about the "dark genome." Plus, how viruses became the original stealth coders, inserting their DNA into ancient bacteria and eventually leading to the development of CRISPR technology.  Discover the potential of this powerful tool, from curing disease to making pig organs transplant-friendly, and the possible dark side of quick-and-easy gene editing.   Guests: Paul Davies- Director of the Beyond Center for Fundamental Concepts in Science at Arizona State University Yin Shen- Assistant professor, Department of Neurology, Institute for Human Genetics, University of California - San Francisco, member of ENCODE team  Sam Sternberg- Assistant professor, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, Columbia University, and co-author of "A Crack in Creation: Gene Editing and the Unthinkable Power to Control Evolution"   Hank Greely- Director, Center for Law and the Biosciences; Chair of the Steering Committee of the Center for Biomedical Ethics; and Director, Stanford Program in Neuroscience and Society


Too Big To Prove
2017-10-16 04:29:46
Celebrations are in order for the physicists who won the 2017 Nobel Prize, for the detection of gravitational waves.  But the road to Stockholm was not easy.  Unfolding over a century, it went from doubtful theory to daring experiments and even disrepute.  100 years is a major lag between a theory and its confirmation, and new ideas in physics may take even longer to prove. Why it may be your great, great grandchildren who witness the confirmation of string theory.  Plus, the exciting insights that gravitational waves provide into the phenomena of our universe, beginning with black holes. And, physics has evolved - shouldn't its rewards?  A case for why the Nobel committee should honor collaborative groups rather than individuals, and the scientific breakthroughs it's missed.  Guests:  Janna Levin- Physicist and astronomer at Barnard College at Columbia University, and the author of the story of LIGO, "Black Hole Blues and Other Songs from Outer Space." Roland Pease- BBC reporter, producer, and host of "Science in Action."  David Gross- Theoretical physicist, string theorist, University of California, Santa Barbara, Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, winner, 2004 Nobel Prize in Physics. 


It's In Material
2017-10-02 07:56:12
Astronauts are made of the "right stuff," but what about their spacesuits?   NASA's pressurized and helmeted onesies are remarkable, but they need updating if we're to boldly go into deep space.   Suiting up on Mars requires more manual flexibility, for example.  Find out what innovative materials might be used to reboot the suit. Meanwhile, strange new materials are in the pipeline for use on terra firma: spider silk is kicking off the development of biological materials that are inspiring ultra-strong, economical, and entirely new fabrics.  And, while flesh-eating bacteria may seem like an unlikely ally in materials science, your doctor might reach for them one day.  The bacterium's proteins are the inspiration for a medical molecular superglue. Plus, an overview of more innovative materials to come, from those that are 3D printed to self-healing concrete.   Guests: Nicole Stott- Retired NASA astronaut, artist  Dava Newman- Professor of Astronautics and Engineering Systems, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Andrew Dent- Vice President of Library and Materials Research, Material ConneXion Mark Howarth- Biochemist, Oxford University Mark Miodownik- Materials scientist, University College London, author of "Stuff Matters; Exploring the Marvelous Materials that Shape Our Man-Made World" 


Angles of a Hack
2017-09-18 07:23:12
Changed your computer password recently?  We all try to stay one step ahead of the hackers, but the fear factor is increasing.  The risks can range from stolen social security numbers to sabotaging a national power grid.  Sixty years ago, when hacking meant nosing around the telephone network, it seemed innocent enough.  And not all modern hacking has criminal intent.  Today, there are biohackers who experiment with implanted electronic devices to improve themselves, and geoengineers who propose to hack the climate.  But in our efforts to cool an overheated planet, might we be going down a dangerous path? In this second of two episodes on hacking, the modern variations of "hacking," and their consequences. Plus: when does hacking a system improve it?  


Plan of a Hack
2017-09-11 07:37:45
Long before cyber criminals were stealing ATM passwords, phone phreaks were tapping into the telephone system. Their motivation was not monetary, but the thrill of defeating a complex, invisible network. Today "hacking" can apply to cyberwarfare, biological tinkering, or even geoengineering.  Often it has negative connotations, but the original definition of "hacking" was something else. In this first of two episodes on hacking, we look at the original practitioners - the teenagers and mavericks who hacked Ma Bell for thrills - and the difference between hacking for fun and for profit.  Guests: Phil Lapsley- Author of "Exploding the Phone: The Untold Story of the Teenagers and Outlaws Who Hacked Ma Bell" 


On Thin Ice
2017-08-14 07:33:42
Water is essential for life - that we know.  But the honeycomb lattice that forms when you chill it to zero degrees Celsius is also inexorably intertwined with life. Ice is more than a repository for water that would otherwise raise sea levels.  It's part of Earth's cooling system, a barrier preventing decaying organic matter from releasing methane gas, and a vault entombing ancient bacteria and other microbes.  From the Arctic to the Antarctic, global ice is disappearing.  Find out what's at stake as atmospheric CO2 threatens frozen H2O.  Guests: Peter Wadhams- Emeritus Professor of Ocean Physics at Cambridge University in the U.K. and the author of A Farewell to Ice: A Report from the Arctic Eric Rignot- Earth systems scientist, University of California, Irvine, senior research scientist, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Åsmund Asdal- Biologist, Nordic Genetic Resource Center, coordinator for operations and management of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, Svalbard, Norway John Priscu- Polar biologist, Montana State University


What Goes Around
2017-07-24 07:47:45
It's not just tin cans and newspapers.  One man says that, from a technical standpoint, everything can be recycled - cigarette butts, yoga mats, dirty diapers.  Even radioactive waste.  You name it, we can recycle it.  But we choose not to.  Find out why we don't, and how we could do more.  Plus, a solar-powered device that pulls water from the air - even desert air.  And, something upon which life depends that seems dirt cheap, but can't be replenished: soil.  What happens when we pave over this living resource? 


Eclipsing All Other Shows
2017-07-17 08:35:14
They say that the experience of watching a total eclipse is so profound, you're not the same afterward.  If life-changing events are your thing and you're in the lower 48 states on August 21st, let us help you make the most of viewing the Great American Solar Eclipse. Learn the basics of where to be and what to bring, even on short notice. No eclipse glasses?  Find out why a kitchen colander is an excellent Plan B. Also, the strange behavior of animals and private jet pilots during an eclipse.  The latter is making the FAA sweat. Plus, how 1878 eclipse fever inspired Thomas Edison and astronomer Maria Mitchell, and what was at stake for them scientifically.  And today, with astronauts able to view the Sun from space, what new science can we still learn by eclipse expeditions on Earth? And, NASA turns up the heat on solar studies with a probe to within a hair's breadth of the Sun.  Guests: David Baron - Author of "American Eclipse: A Nation's Epic Race to Catch the Shadow of the Moon and Win the Glory of the World."   Andrew Fraknoi - Chair of the Astronomy Department, Foothill College.  His latest book, for children:  "When the Sun Goes Dark."  Jay Pasachoff - Professor of Astronomy, Williams College, chair of the International Astronomical Union Working Group on Solar Eclipses.  Madhulika Guhathakurta - Astrophysicist, NASA Heliophysics Science Division and Program Scientist for the Solar Probe Plus mission.


Frogs' Pants
2017-07-10 08:26:21
It's one of the most bizarre biological experiments ever. In the 18th century, a scientist fitted a pair of tailor-made briefs on a male frog to determine the animal's contribution to reproduction.  The process of gestation was a mystery and scientists had some odd-ball theories.   Today, a 5th grader can tell you how babies are made, but we still don't know exactly what life is.  In our quest to understand, we're still at the frogs' pants stage. Find out why conception took centuries to figure out.  Also, why the 1970s Viking experiments, specifically designed to detect life on Mars, couldn't give us a definitive answer.  Plus, can knowing where life isn't help define what it is?  Take a tour of the world's barren places.  Guests: Jay Gallentine - Author of books about space and space history. Edward Dolnick - Author and former science writer at the Boston Globe.  His book is The Seeds of Life: From Aristotle to Da Vinci, from Shark's Teeth to Frogs' Pants. Chris McKay - Planetary scientist, NASA Ames Research Center. 


Skeptic Check: Rational Lampoon
2017-07-03 09:04:43
Two heads may be better than one.  But what about three or more?  A new study shows that chimpanzees excel at complex tasks when they work in groups, and their accumulated knowledge can even be passed from one generation to the next.  But group-think also can be maladaptive.  When humans rely on knowledge that they assume other people possess, they can become less than rational. Find out why one cognitive scientist says that individual thinking is a myth.  Most of your decisions are made in groups, and most derive from emotion, not rationality. Also, why we know far less than we think we do.  For example, most people will say they understand how an everyday object like a zipper works, but draw a blank when asked to explain it.  Plus, why we have a biological drive to categorize people as "us" or "them," and how we can override it.    Guests:  Steven Sloman - Professor of cognitive linguistics and psychological sciences at Brown University and editor-in-chief of the journal, Cognition Robert Sapolsky - Professor of neuroscience at Stanford University and author of Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst Laurance Doyle - Scientist at the SETI Institute


Skeptic Check: How Low Can You Go?
2017-06-26 08:48:54
ENCORE  Baby, it's cold outside... but you still might want to be there.  Some people claim that chilly temperatures are good for your health, and proponents of cryotherapy suggest you have a blast - of sub-zero air - to stave off wrinkles and perhaps halt aging altogether.  Meanwhile the field of cryonics offers the ultimate benefit by suggesting that you put future plans - and your body - on ice when you die.  That way you might be revived when the technology to do so is developed. So, will a chill wind blow you some good?  Possibly, as scientists are discovering that the body can endure colder temperatures than previously thought.  We examine the science of extreme cold and claims of its salubrious benefits. It's our monthly look at critical thinking, Skeptic Check ... but don't take our word for it!  Guests:  Seth Abramovitch - Senior writer at the Hollywood Reporter Gordon Giesbrecht - Professor of thermal physiology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada Grant Shoffstall - Sociologist, Williams College


PEM4_Picard2
2017-06-19 10:26:12



Perpetual Emotion Machine
2017-06-19 08:47:37
Get ready for compassionate computers that feel your pain, share your joy, and generally get where you're coming from.  Computers that can tell by your voice whether you're pumped up or feeling down, or sense changes in heart rate, skin, or muscle tension to determine your mood.  Empathetic electronics that you can relate to. But wait a minute - we don't always relate to other humans.  Our behavior can be impulsive and even self-sabotaging - our emotions are often conflicted and irrational.   We cry when we're happy.  Frown when we're pensive.  A suite of factors, much of them out of our control, govern how we behave, from genes to hormones to childhood experience.  One study says that all it takes for a defendant to receive a harsher sentence is a reduction in the presiding judge's blood sugar. So grab a cookie, and find out how the heck we can build computers that understand us anyway.  Guests: Rosalind Picard - Professor at the MIT Media Lab and co-founder of the companies Affectiva and Empatica.  Robert Sapolsky - Professor of neuroscience at Stanford University, and author of Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst. 


Science Fiction
2017-06-12 07:48:42
ENCORE  No one knows what the future will bring, but science fiction authors are willing to take a stab at imagining it.  We take our own stab at imagining them imagining it.  Find out why the genre of science fiction is more than a trippy ride through a bizarre, hi-tech world, but a way to assess and vote on our possible shared future.  Also, an astronomer learns how many rejection slips it takes before becoming a published science fiction author .... what author Bruce Sterling wants to get off his chest ... and what the joke about the neutron walking into a bar to ask the price of beer has in common with H.G. Wells, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Ridley Scott. Oh, and the price of beer?  Bartender: "For you, no charge." Guests: Ed Finn - Director of the Center for Science and the Imagination at Arizona State University Andrew Fraknoi - Chair of the astronomy department at Foothill College.  His story, "The Cave in Arsia Mons", is in "Building Red", here.  His list of astronomically correct science fiction is here. Bruce Sterling - Science fiction author, journalist, and editor
 Brian Malow - Science comedian, science communication officer, North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, Raleigh


Gene-y in a Bottle
2017-06-05 07:35:16
ENCORE  You can't pick your parents.  But soon you may be able to change the DNA they gave you.  CRISPR technology is poised to take DNA editing to new levels of precision and speed.  Imagine deleting genes from your body that you don't like and inserting the ones you want.  The swap might not even require a fancy lab.  Biohackers are already tinkering with genes in their homes.   Find out how CRISPR technology might change everything when the genetic lottery is no longer destiny.  Plus, a cardiologist identifies the troublesome genes that once gave us evolutionary advantages but today are fueling obesity, depression and other modern illness. Guests: Lee Goldman - Cardiologist, dean of Columbia University Medical Center, author of "Too Much of a Good Thing; How Four Key Survival Traits Are Now Killing Us"  Jacob Corn - Scientific director, Innovative Genomics Initiative, University of California, Berkeley Katelynn Kazane - Research assistant, Innovative Genomics Initiative,  University of California, Berkeley Josiah Zayner - Biohacker, former NASA synthetic biologist.  His biohacking store.


The Crater Good
2017-05-29 08:38:33
ENCORE  It was "one giant leap for mankind," but the next step forward may require going back.  Yes, back to the moon.  Only this time the hardware may come from China.  Or perhaps Europe.  In fact, it seems that the only developed nation not going lunar is the U.S. Find out why our pockmarked satellite is such hot real estate, and whether it has the raw materials we'd need to colonize it.  A new theory of how the moon formed may tell us what's below its dusty surface. But - before packing your bags - you'll want to skim Article IX of the U.N. treaty on planetary protection.  We can't go contaminating any old planetary body, can we?   Guests: James Oberg - Former Space Shuttle Mission Control engineer and space policy expert Clive Neal - Geologist, University of Notre Dame Edward Young - Cosmochemist, geochemist, UCLA Margaret Race - Biologist and research scientist at the SETI Institute


Skeptic Check: Science Breaking Bad
2017-05-22 07:52:46
The scientific method is tried and true. It has led us to a reliable understanding of things from basic physics to biomedicine.  So yes, we can rely on the scientific method.  The fallible humans behind the research, not so much.  And politicians?  Don't get us started.  Remember when one brought a snowball to the Senate floor to "prove" that global warming was a hoax?  Oy vey. We talk to authors about new books that seem to cast a skeptical eye on the scientific method... but that are really throwing shade on the ambitious labcoat-draped humans who heat the beakers and publish the papers ... as well as the pinstriped politicians who twist science to win votes. Find out why the hyper-competitive pursuit of results that are "amazing" and "incredible" is undermining medical science ... how a scientific breakthrough can turn into a societal scourge (heroin as miracle cure) ... and what happens when civil servants play the role of citizen scientists on CSPAN. Guests: Richard Harris - NPR science correspondent, author of Rigor Mortis: How Sloppy Science Creates Worthless Cures, Crushes Hope, and Wastes Billions.  Paul Offit - Professor of pediatrics, attending physician, Division of Infectious Diseases, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, author of Pandora's Lab: Seven Stories of Science Gone Wrong. Dave Levitan - Science journalist, author of Not a Scientist; How Politicians Mistake, Misrepresent and Utterly Mangle Science.  


100% Invisible
2017-05-15 08:23:40
ENCORE  In astronomy, the rule of thumb was simple: If you can't see it with a telescope, it's not real.  Seeing is believing.  Well, tell that to the astronomers who discovered dark energy, or dark matter ... or, more recently, Planet 9.   And yet we have evidence that all these things exist (although skepticism about the ninth - or is it tenth? - planet still lingers). Find out how we know what we know about the latest cosmic discoveries - even if we can't see them directly.  The astronomer who found Planet 9 - and killed Pluto - offers his evidence.  And, a speculative scenario suggests that dark matter helped do away with the dinosaurs.  Plus, the winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics explains why neutrinos that are zipping through your body right now may hold clues to the origin of the universe.  Guests: Michael Brown - Astronomer, California Institute of Technology Michael Lemonick - science writer and an editor at Scientific American magazine Lisa Randall - Theoretical physicist, Harvard University, author of Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs: The Astounding Interconnectedness of the Universe Arthur McDonald - Astrophysicist emeritus, Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, and winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics


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