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Science & Medicine
Social Sciences

Inquiring Minds

Updated 10 days ago

Science & Medicine
Social Sciences
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Each week Inquiring Minds brings you a new, in-depth exploration of the space where science, politics, and society collide.We’re committed to the idea that making an effort to understand the world around you though science and critical thinking can benefit everyone—and lead to better decisions. We endeavor to find out what’s true, what’s left to discover, and why it all matters with weekly coverage of the latest headlines and probing discussions with leading scientists and thinkers.

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Each week Inquiring Minds brings you a new, in-depth exploration of the space where science, politics, and society collide.We’re committed to the idea that making an effort to understand the world around you though science and critical thinking can benefit everyone—and lead to better decisions. We endeavor to find out what’s true, what’s left to discover, and why it all matters with weekly coverage of the latest headlines and probing discussions with leading scientists and thinkers.

iTunes Ratings

737 Ratings
Average Ratings
385
306
13
16
17

Highly recommended

By DellingDog - Mar 17 2018
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Great hosts and guests, interesting and insightful interviews. Highly recommended.

Great!

By clint wolf - Jun 20 2017
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A terrific, very interesting podcast.

iTunes Ratings

737 Ratings
Average Ratings
385
306
13
16
17

Highly recommended

By DellingDog - Mar 17 2018
Read more
Great hosts and guests, interesting and insightful interviews. Highly recommended.

Great!

By clint wolf - Jun 20 2017
Read more
A terrific, very interesting podcast.
Cover image of Inquiring Minds

Inquiring Minds

Updated 10 days ago

Read more

Each week Inquiring Minds brings you a new, in-depth exploration of the space where science, politics, and society collide.We’re committed to the idea that making an effort to understand the world around you though science and critical thinking can benefit everyone—and lead to better decisions. We endeavor to find out what’s true, what’s left to discover, and why it all matters with weekly coverage of the latest headlines and probing discussions with leading scientists and thinkers.

Rank #1: Sharks: The Ocean's Most Mysterious, Most Misunderstood, and Most Important Guardians

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We talk to ocean conservationist William McKeever about his new book Emperors of the Deep: Sharks--The Ocean's Most Mysterious, Most Misunderstood, and Most Important Guardians.

Aug 07 2019
44 mins
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Rank #2: A Brief Guide to the Fundamental Mystery of the Mind

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We talk to author Annaka Harris about her new book Conscious: A Brief Guide to the Fundamental Mystery of the Mind.

Jul 30 2019
33 mins
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Rank #3: 17 Michael Pollan - The Science of Eating Well (And Not Falling For Diet Fads)

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The Paleo diet is hot. Those who follow it are attempting, they say, to mimic our ancient ancestors—minus the animal-skin fashions and the total lack of technology, of course. The adherents eschew what they believe comes from modern agriculture (wheat, dairy, legumes, for instance) and rely instead on meals full of meat, nuts, and vegetables—foods they claim are closer to what hunter-gatherers ate.
The trouble with that view, however, is that what they’re eating is probably nothing like the diet of hunter-gatherers, says Michael Pollan, author of a number of best-selling books on food and agriculture, including Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation. "I don't think we really understand well the proportions in the ancient diet," argues Pollan on this week’s episode. "Most people who tell you with great confidence that this is what our ancestors ate—I think they're kind of blowing smoke."
This week on the show, guest host Cynthia Graber has a wide-ranging conversation with Pollan that covers the science and history of cooking, the importance of microbes—tiny organisms such as bacteria—in our diet, and surprising new research on the intelligence of plants.
This episode also features a discussion of the new popular physics book Trespassing on Einstein's Lawn, by Amanda Gefter, and new research suggesting that the purpose of sleep is to clean cellular waste substances out of your brain.
Subscribe:
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Jan 16 2014
57 mins
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Rank #4: 34 John Oliver - This World Will Be a Ball of Fire Before It Stops Being Funny

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In late April, former Daily Show correspondent John Oliver kicked off his HBO news-satire program, Last Week Tonight. Oliver, who spent nearly eight years at The Daily Show and has a solid background in political satire, is off to a good start. His weekly series—which offers biting commentary on the past week's biggest news stories, both national and international—is barely into its inaugural season, and it seems to be hitting the right notes. The premiere episode, for example, featured an exclusive televised interview with Gen. Keith Alexander (Ret.), his first since stepping down as director of the National Security Agency.
In another recent episode, Oliver expressed his frustration with the so-called climate "debate" in America by staging a more representative debate between a few climate skeptics and nearly a hundred scientists. One of the guys on the correct side of the "debate" was Bill Nye, who was booked for the show basically at the last minute.
"We just wanted to really play with that idea that the very fact that the climate debate is framed as a debate at all is problematic," Oliver says. On Inquiring Minds this week, guest host Asawin Suebsaeng talked to John Oliver about Last Week Tonight, politics, climate change, and how he went about finding a, um, very specific kind of model for the show.
This episode also features a discussion of surprising new scientific findings about why we don't remember much from our childhoods—because we were so busy growing new brain cells.
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/inquiring-minds/id711675943
RSS: feeds.feedburner.com/inquiring-minds
Stitcher: stitcher.com/podcast/inquiring-minds
May 15 2014
46 mins
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Rank #5: 113 Robert Sapolsky - Being Human

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Robert Sapolsky is a MacArthur “Genius” Fellow, a professor of biology and neurology at Stanford University, and a research associate with the Institute of Primate Research at the National Museum of Kenya.

We talked to Sapolsky about what it means to be human, what we humans can learn from other species, and why he—despite being a self-described pessimist—feels optimistic about our prospects as a species.

This week’s episode was recorded live in San Francisco for the 2015 Bay Area Science Festival and was produced in collaboration with The Leakey Foundation and their podcast Origin Stories.

http://leakeyfoundation.org/ http://leakeyfoundation.org/originstories http://patreon.com/inquiringminds
Dec 04 2015
1 hour 7 mins
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Rank #6: 105 Brad Voytek - We Neuroscientists Don't Really Know What Your Brain Is Doing

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The website for neuroscientist Brad Voytek’s lab begins like this: “Do not buy into the false belief that neuroscientists actually know what the brain is doing.” On the show this week we talked to Voytek to find out what he actually means by that.

Brad Voytek is an Assistant Professor of Computational Cognitive Science and Neuroscience at UC San Diego.
Oct 09 2015
59 mins
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Rank #7: How We Evolved to Have Free Will

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We talk to biologist Kenneth R. Miller about his new book The Human Instinct: How We Evolved to Have Reason, Consciousness, and Free Will.

Apr 23 2018
42 mins
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Rank #8: Why Buddhism is True

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We talk to journalist, scholar, and prize-winning author Robert Wright about his latest book Why Buddhism is True: The Science and Philosophy of Meditation and Enlightenment.

Sep 18 2017
45 mins
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Rank #9: 172 Dan Ariely - The Surprising Science of What Motivates Us

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We talk to Dan Ariely, the James B Duke Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics at Duke University about what actually motivates us to get things done—to finish that novel, to stick to a diet, or even to want to get up and go to work every day.
Mar 27 2017
34 mins
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Rank #10: 114 Mark Schatzker - The Dorito Effect

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On the show this week we talk to Mark Schatzker, author of The Dorito Effect: The Surprising New Truth About Food and Flavor, “a lively and important argument from an award-winning journalist proving that the key to reversing America’s health crisis lies in the overlooked link between nutrition and flavor.”

http://patreon.com/inquiringminds
Dec 11 2015
55 mins
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Rank #11: 134 Anders Ericsson - How to Do Everything Better

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Does it take 10,000 hours to become an expert at something? Probably not, says our guest this week—who happens to be the author of the paper which was the basis for Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000 hour rule in the first place.

We talk to psychologist Anders Ericsson about his new book Peak: Secrets from the New Science of Expertise.
May 20 2016
55 mins
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Rank #12: 67 Gabriele Oettingen - Rethinking Positive Thinking

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On the show this week we talk to Professor of Psychology Gabriele Oettingen about her new book Rethinking Positive Thinking: Inside the New Science of Motivation. Oettingen has over twenty years of research on the science of motivation under her belt and in this book she outlines her main findings—and turns the conventional wisdom that focusing on fulfilling our goals will help us realize them on its head.
We also welcome back guest host Kishore Hari, who is Director of the Bay Area Science Festival. You can follow him on Twittter @sciencequiche.
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/inquiring-minds/id711675943
RSS: feeds.feedburner.com/inquiring-minds
Stitcher: stitcher.com/podcast/inquiring-minds
Jan 02 2015
1 hour 8 mins
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Rank #13: Aroused: The History of Hormones

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We talk to Randi Hutter Epstein, M.D, lecturer at Yale university, writer in residence at Yale Medical School, and author of the new book Aroused: The History of Hormones and How They Control Just About Everything.

Jul 03 2018
38 mins
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Rank #14: 182 Ty Tashiro - The Science of Being Awkward

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We talk to psychologist Ty Tashiro about his new book “Awkward: The Science of Why We're Socially Awkward & Why That's Awesome.”
Jun 06 2017
52 mins
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Rank #15: 99 Marc Lewis - Why Addiction Is Not a Disease

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Marc Lewis is a neuroscientist, professor of developmental psychology, and author of the new book The Biology of Desire: Why Addiction Is Not a Disease. On the show this week we talk to Lewis about the biology of addiction—and what it does to our brains.
Aug 21 2015
52 mins
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Rank #16: 80 Norman Doidge - How Plastic Is Your Brain?

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Norman Doidge, M.D., is a psychiatrist, psychoanalyst, researcher, author, essayist and poet. He is on faculty at the University of Toronto’s Department of Psychiatry, and Research Faculty at Columbia University’s Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research, in New York.
On the show this week we talk to Doidge about neuroplasticity—once you reach adulthood, is your brain in a kind of fixed state, or does it keep changing? And can you do things to make it change?
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/inquiring-minds/id711675943
RSS: feeds.feedburner.com/inquiring-minds
Stitcher: stitcher.com/podcast/inquiring-minds
Tumblr: inquiringshow.tumblr.com
Apr 03 2015
57 mins
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Rank #17: 68 Matt Walker - Why Did We Evolve to Sleep?

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On the show this week we talk to Matt Walker, Principal Investigator at UC Berkeley’s Sleep and Neuroimaging Lab. Walker opens our eyes to exactly how important (and bizarre) sleep is—from the insane effects not sleeping enough can have on you both physically and cognitively, to the fact that, after having fought through ages of natural selection, it’s amazing our brains still need it at all.
Once again we welcome back guest host Kishore Hari, Director of the Bay Area Science Festival. You can follow him on Twittter @sciencequiche.
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/inquiring-minds/id711675943
RSS: feeds.feedburner.com/inquiring-minds
Stitcher: stitcher.com/podcast/inquiring-minds
Jan 09 2015
1 hour 2 mins
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Rank #18: 54 Steven Pinker - The Science Behind Writing Well

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San Francisco! Come see us interview Adam Savage live on Oct. 28!
http://www.bayareascience.org/event/im-story-collider/
On the show this week we talk to celebrated Harvard cognitive scientist and psycholinguist Steven Pinker about his new book The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person's Guide to Writing in the 21st Century.
Pinker explains how to write in clear, "classic" prose that shares valuable information with clarity (but never condescension). He also tells us why so many of the tut-tutting grammar "rules" that we all think we're supposed to follow—don't split infinitives, don't use the passive voice, don't end a sentence with a preposition—are just nonsense.
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/inquiring-minds/id711675943
RSS: feeds.feedburner.com/inquiring-minds
Stitcher: stitcher.com/podcast/inquiring-minds
Oct 02 2014
48 mins
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Rank #19: 55 Daniel Levitin - The Organized Mind

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On the show this week we talk to cognitive psychologist, neuroscientist, musician, and writer Daniel Levitin about his new book The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload.
We also talk to microbiologist Siouxsie Wiles about the Ebola virus—what the risks really are, and why many people might be overreacting.
Also, Chris has a huge announcement.
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/inquiring-minds/id711675943
RSS: feeds.feedburner.com/inquiring-minds
Stitcher: stitcher.com/podcast/inquiring-minds
Oct 10 2014
1 hour 9 mins
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Rank #20: 20 Maria Konnikova - How to Make Your Brain Work Better

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You're a busy person. Keeping up with your job, plus your life, is the very definition of multitasking. It doesn't help that when working, you're distracted not only by your mobile devices, but also by your computer. You average 10 tabs open in your browser at any one time, which you compulsively click amongst. One's your email, which never stops flowing in. At the end of the day, you sleep less than you know you probably should, but as you tell yourself, there's just never enough time.
If this is how you live, then Maria Konnikova has a simple message for you: Pause, step back, and recognize the actual costs of your habits. A psychology Ph.D. and popular writer for The New Yorker, Konnikova circles back, again and again, to a common theme: How we thwart our own happiness, and even sometimes harm our brains, in our quest for a simply unattainable level of productivity. "The way that we've evolved, the way our minds work, the way we work at our most optimal selves, is really not the way we have to operate today," Konnikova explains on this week's episode. "I feel like I'm fighting a losing battle, but I hope that if there are enough voices out there, someone will finally hear that, 'Hey, this attempt at hyper productivity is making us much less productive.'"
This episode also features a report by Climate Desk's Tim McDonnell on how climate change is threatening winter sports, and a special guest appearance by science communicator Dr. Kiki Sanford, who helps us break down what happened in the widely watched Bill Nye vs. Ken Ham creationism debate earlier this week.
iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/inquiring-minds/id711675943
RSS: feeds.feedburner.com/inquiring-minds
Stitcher: stitcher.com/podcast/inquiring-minds
Feb 07 2014
54 mins
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