science for the people

  • Science

    The Sugar Pill

    Many alternative medicines have attained their reputations because, even though there’s no evidence they work, people still feel better. By now, most of the know the placebo effect is hard at work. We might even give a skeptical eye to those who are a bit open to suggestion, whether it’s experiencing placebo effects or being easily hypnotized. But what is…

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  • Meta Stuff

    Gifts for Nerds

    Science for the People’s annual Christmas Best Science Books & Curated Nerd Gift Suggestion episode is back. Skepchick writer Mary Brock and science librarian John Dupuis return to share their top picks from 2016’s pop science books. They’ve got suggestions for both the science-loving adults and the kids on your shopping list. We’ve also brought back Skepchick and Mad Art…

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  • Science

    Trench to Bedside

    Reading a really good book will give you ideas. When Bethany Brookshire read Mary Roach’s “Grunt: The curious science of humans at war,” she ended up wanting to talk to some of the scientists behind chicken ballistics, submarine sleep schedules and fly curtains. And luckily, two were willing to talk! This week were talking about two weird medical methods that…

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  • Science

    Check Your Facts

    We all know that not everything you read on the internet is true. But how do you know what is true and what isn’t? How do you know if politicians and news organizations are getting their facts right? This is when you need a fact-checker. On this episode of Science for the People, Bethany Brookshire interviews three experienced fact-checkers this…

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  • Featured

    How To Move a (Robotic) Arm with Only Your Brain

    The merging of brains with computers and machines is a common trope in science fiction, and any time I read an article with a headline about mind-reading computers it hits both my “so cool” and “so creepy” buttons at the same time. Journalist Malcolm Gay’s first book “The Brain Electric: The Dramatic High-Tech Race to Merge Minds and Machines” takes…

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  • Science

    Fear (The Good Bits)

    Margee Kerr’s book “Scream: Chilling Adventures in the Science of Fear” is less a book about how fear works – the so-titled “science of fear” – and more about why we choose to be afraid. Because we do often choose it: the adrenaline rush of a roller coaster, the tension and chills of a scary movie, the scream-turned-laughter of a…

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  • Feminism

    The Contraception Tab

    This week I spoke with Beth Sundstrom and Andrea DeMaria, Co-Directors of the Women’s Health Research Team at the College of Charleston, about why the pill is still our go-to birth control choice when we have long acting reversible contraception methods like the IUD and the implant available for women. You can listen to the entire episode above, but researching…

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  • Science

    Fairies as Atoms & Speedaway Electric Boots: The Fantasy/Science Mashups of Victorian Britain

    We don’t think of science and fairy tales being particularly good bedfellows these days, but it was a popular trope in the Victorian era in Great Britain. In this week’s Science for the People episode, I spoke with Melanie Keene, a historian of science at the University of Cambridge, about her book “Science in Wonderland: The Scientific Fairy Tales of…

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