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Rank #182 in History category

History
Science
Natural Sciences

The Constant: A History of Getting Things Wrong

Updated 12 days ago

Rank #182 in History category

History
Science
Natural Sciences
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Did you know that Europeans used to believe that sheep grew from Mongolian trees? Have you heard about the misbegotten discovery of a new form of water in the 1960s that set off a cold war arms race? Ever seen the gleaming Las Vegas hotel that accidentally shoots heat rays at poolside guests? The Constant is an audio history of getting things wrong. From ancient science to contemporary blunders, we take you on journeys of misadventure and misapprehension, filling your brain with juicy nuggets of the sometimes comical, sometimes tragical and always fascinating ways people mess things up.

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Did you know that Europeans used to believe that sheep grew from Mongolian trees? Have you heard about the misbegotten discovery of a new form of water in the 1960s that set off a cold war arms race? Ever seen the gleaming Las Vegas hotel that accidentally shoots heat rays at poolside guests? The Constant is an audio history of getting things wrong. From ancient science to contemporary blunders, we take you on journeys of misadventure and misapprehension, filling your brain with juicy nuggets of the sometimes comical, sometimes tragical and always fascinating ways people mess things up.

iTunes Ratings

301 Ratings
Average Ratings
286
5
4
3
3

Well done

By Jidhat - Apr 26 2020
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So good. Voice and subject matter perfect

Lovely

By mr manboi - Mar 04 2020
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It’s really awesome boi so ya

iTunes Ratings

301 Ratings
Average Ratings
286
5
4
3
3

Well done

By Jidhat - Apr 26 2020
Read more
So good. Voice and subject matter perfect

Lovely

By mr manboi - Mar 04 2020
Read more
It’s really awesome boi so ya
Cover image of The Constant: A History of Getting Things Wrong

The Constant: A History of Getting Things Wrong

Latest release on May 19, 2020

The Best Episodes Ranked Using User Listens

Updated by OwlTail 12 days ago

Rank #1: A Dreamcast Deferred

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On 9/9/99 The Sega Dreamcast had the most successful product launch of literally any commercial product in history. It quickly came to dominate the market, outperforming all its competition. Less than a year and a half later, it was dead, and Sega was cut down to a shell of its former self. This week, we're looking at why, and at the long storied history of failure and missteps that came along with building an entirely new creative medium like nothing the world had ever seen before: video games.

Visit our Patreon here.
Get 10% off your first month of online counseling by visiting:
http://betterhelp.com/theconstant and entering discount code "theconstant".

And check out your two free ebooks at The Whatever Happened to Series Here.

Sep 10 2019

1hr 32mins

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Rank #2: Diabolical Devices of The Demon of Darkness

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It was a dark and stormy night. A dark and stormy year, really. And it gave birth to a monster, a New Prometheus which descended upon the panicked world, leaving death and destruction in its wake. For this, our season finale, we give you the most frightening and dangerous invention of the 19th century. The bicycle.

Aug 07 2018

36mins

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Rank #3: Let's Talk About Sex, Babies

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Did you ever wonder where babies come from? So did all these guys! But only one of them managed to figure it out. This week, for our season finale, the remarkable story of how we came to know the most fundamental and critical of human questions, and all the bumps along the way.

Apr 17 2018

50mins

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Rank #4: The Foolkiller Pt 1: Tears Falling from The Sky

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In November of 1915, a submarine was found at the bottom of The Chicago River. It had been there for at least ten years, was 40 feet long, and contained the remains of a man and his dog. To this day, no one knows who built it, where it came from, or who was inside. This is the first in a five part series looking into the mystery of The Foolkiller. With luck, we might even be able to solve it. But before we get into the meat of the question, we need to learn the context. We need to learn about the darkest day in Chicago history, the day of The Eastland Disaster.

Get a free trial of The Great Courses Plus and three months of unlimited access for just $30 dollars by going to https://www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/theconstant

Get 10% off your first month of online counseling by visiting:
http://betterhelp.com/theconstant and entering discount code "theconstant".

Visit our Patreon here.

For more information and photos of The Foolkiller and The Eastland, go to www.constantpodcast.com

Music by:
Blue Dot Sessions
Lee Rosevere
Kevin MacLeod

Jan 14 2020

42mins

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Rank #5: Art is Dead

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You don't know this story. You don't know the killer. You don't know the victims. You don't know the artist and you don't know the artworks. But in 1998 Yugoslavia, a series of mutilated corpses shocked the public, rocked the art world and, maybe, changed politics forever. 

Jan 02 2018

18mins

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Rank #6: Necessity

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In the first century BC, The Greek philosopher Carneades asked a question: is it moral to kill an innocent person to preserve your own life? Two thousand years later, a court in England settled the matter, once and for all. This is a story about sailors, shipwrecks, murder, cannibalism and, ultimately, who owes what to whom.

Visit our Patreon here.
Get 10% off your first month of online counseling by visiting:
http://betterhelp.com/theconstant and entering discount code "theconstant".

Music by:
Blue Dot Sessions
Lee Rosevere
Kevin MacLeod
Short Tailed Snails

Nov 05 2019

50mins

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Rank #7: Mesmerizing

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What is this? Are you some kind of hypnotist? We're doing a deep dive into one of the single most fascinating mistaken ideas and the fascinating man who thought it up. This story has got it all: demonic possession, mysterious seductions, beheadings, public shamings, miracle cures and The Avengers of 18th Century Science.

Jan 22 2019

57mins

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Rank #8: 1% Inspiration

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In the 1960's, scientists discovered a new form of water, kicking off millions of dollars of research, Nobel Prize consideration and a new Cold War arms race between the USA and USSR. This episode we investigate the history of the miraculous discovery that almost changed the world, and the unbelievable story of why it didn't.

Dec 19 2017

10mins

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Rank #9: Shocking

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This is the story of the greatest jailbreak ever attempted. Well, maybe not "greatest", but certainly "weirdest." It's also, somehow, the story of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. And one of science's great rivalries. And of a number of murderers, mobsters and maniacs. But more than any of that, it's the story of a whole lot of very unfortunate froggies. 

Checkout Our Fake History Here

The Whatever Happened to Series Here

And Industrial Artifacts Here

And while you're at it, clinking links so well, why not check out our Patreon page?

Jun 04 2019

1hr 20mins

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Rank #10: Shipwreckless

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In 1867, The Eliza set out to sea with a fresh crew, a full hold and fair weather. Yet no one expected her to ever make land again. This episode we look at why, and why, throughout the 19th century, hundreds of ships sank every year in entirely preventable circumstances. It's a story of high seas adventure, murder for profit and... a London coffee shop? It also happens to bear a more than passing resemblance to the gun debate happening in America today.

Feb 27 2018

27mins

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Rank #11: The Idea that Broke America

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Mesmerism didn't stop with Mesmer. This week, we pick up where we left off, tracing the idea of animal magnetism to America, where it went through some... changes. Get ready for a whirlwind tour of American enterprise, religion and entertainment that leads us right through the door of this dark timeline we're living in. This one's a doozy.

Jan 29 2019

1hr

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Rank #12: The Reflex

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In the 1840's, a mysterious disease was running roughshod through a Viennese hospital, killing new mothers in terrifying numbers. On this, our season 3 premiere, we're looking at one of the greatest medical mysteries of all time, the tragic story of the genius who solved it, and why no one listened to him.

Jun 19 2018

28mins

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Rank #13: The Foolkiller Pt 2: Infinite Distress

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A proper story has three acts, but the story of The Foolkiller submarine is missing two of them. Today, we're looking at act 2: the brief window of time during which we know where this giant steel craft was. We're also examining the three initial theories that people at the time held about where the thing came from, and who built it. To do that, we're going from The North Pole to The Center of The Earth and even all the way to the deep jungle depths of Ottawa Illinois. 

Get a free trial of The Great Courses Plus and three months of unlimited access for just $30 dollars by going to https://www.thegreatcoursesplus.com/theconstant

Get 10% off your first month of online counseling by visiting:

http://betterhelp.com/theconstant and entering discount code "theconstant".

Visit our Patreon here.

For more information, photos and video of the various Foolkillers, go to constantpodcast.com

Music by:

Blue Dot Sessions
Lee Rosevere
Kevin MacLeod

Jan 28 2020

59mins

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Rank #14: What's So Funny 'Bout Peace Ship and Understanding?

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War! Good God, y'all. What is it good for? According to Henry Ford: Absolutely nothing. So in 1915 he launched a ship, bound for Europe, with a simple if outlandish mission: to end World War I. On this episode we look at the ill-fated voyage of The Oscar II, better known as The Peace Ship.

Feb 19 2019

59mins

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Rank #15: Suck and Blow

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Everything you've ever learned about physics, chemistry, astronomy, and even biology, is wrong. That was the conclusion reached by Alfred Lawson, major league pitcher, avionics pioneer, populist political leader and the founder of the stupidest university ever: The University of Lawsonomy. Come with us for a journey through the life and confounding works of Lawson, the rise of his new science and its rapid, farcical fall.

Visit our Patreon here.
Get 10% off your first month of online counseling by visiting:
http://betterhelp.com/theconstant and entering discount code "theconstant".

Nov 19 2019

33mins

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Rank #16: Make It Rain

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In the late 19th century, Americans moved into the western states because of one simple phrase. But despite what you learned in junior high, it wasn't "manifest destiny." Today we're talking about the real maxim responsible for westward expansion, a maxim that centered a bizarre bit of pseudo-science that shaped America and then nearly destroyed it.

Jul 31 2018

33mins

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Rank #17: Way to Go, Einstein!

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We could've called this show "Whoopsie!" or "Oops!" or "People Believe The Strangest Things." But instead, we called it "The Constant." On this, the season finale, we finally explain why. That means it's time to fawn about Einstein, and the thing he called "the biggest blunder of his life." It also means it's time for Mark to get a tattoo. Which... Look: let's not talk about it, okay?

Jan 30 2018

25mins

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Rank #18: Snap, Crackle, Boom!

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The Apocalypse fails to appear. A doctor goes to disturbing lengths to end masturbation. A millionaire spends his fortune dynamiting the sky. Breakfast is changed forever. The Constant is back. Check out our new Patreon, to help fund the show and get all kinds of neat bonus stuff: https://www.patreon.com/theconstant. And be sure to visit our newest sponsor, HelloFresh, via this link here: https://www.hellofresh.com/landing/theconstant80 and enter promo code "theconstant80" for $80 off your first month of delicious meals. Seriously, it's really very good.

Apr 23 2019

36mins

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Rank #19: Do Good Carefully

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Here's something you don't see everyday: parachuting cats. It did happen, though. In the 1950s, The Royal Air Force airdropped parakitties onto the Island of Borneo. Why would they do such a thing? Stick around and find out.

Mar 27 2018

23mins

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Rank #20: Seeing is Believing

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1903 was a year of boundless possibilities: the airplane, open heart surgery, Ford Motor Company, and--most importantly--n-rays. This new form of radiation could be gathered from The Sun and stored in ordinary salt water. It could diagnose illness and grant superhuman abilities. It was the greatest scientific discovery of the century. The only problem was, it wasn't real.

Check out our Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/theconstant.
Look at all the deals we've got for you! Go to https://www.hellofresh.com/landing/theconstant80 and enter promo code "theconstant80" for $80 off your first month of delicious meals, check out www.betterhelp.com/theconstant and enter discount code "theconstant" for 10% off your first month of online counseling. Finally, there's www.industrialartifacts.net where you can entered coupon code "theconstant" for 15% off your first order.

Jun 18 2019

34mins

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