Radiolab

Radiolab is a show about curiosity. Where sound illuminates ideas, and the boundaries blur between science, philosophy, and human experience.

Radiolab is heard around the country on more than 450 NPR member stations.

Schedule:

Sunday 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM on WUSF 89.7

Contact Info:

Contact the Show

Host:
Jad Abumrad

The son of a scientist and a doctor, Jad Abumrad did most of his growing up in Tennessee, before studying creative writing and music composition at Oberlin College in Ohio. Following graduation, Abumrad wrote music for films, and reported and produced documentaries for a variety of local and national public radio programs, including On The Media,Studio 360 with Kurt Andersen, Morning Edition, All Things Considered and WNYC's "24 Hours at the Edge of Ground Zero."

Host:
Robert Krulwich

Robert Krulwich is co-host of Radiolab, WNYC's Peabody Award-winning program that examines big questions in science, philosophy and the human experience through compelling storytelling.  Today, Radiolab is one of public radio's most popular shows.  Its podcasts are downloaded over 4 million times each month and the program is carried on 437 stations across the nation. In addition to Radiolab, Krulwich reports for National Public Radio. “Krulwich Wonders” is his NPR blog featuring drawings, cartoons and videos that illustrate hard-to-see concepts in science.

From Radiolab

  • Bliss
    <p>This week Jad and Radiolab alum Tim Howard revisit a favorite episode from 2012.</p> <p>Because moments of total, world-shaking bliss are not easy to come by. Maybe that's what makes them feel so life-altering when they strike. And so worth chasing. This hour: stories of striving, grasping, tripping, and falling for happiness, perfection, and ideals.  </p> <p>With <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vC8gJ0_9o4M">Alexander Gamme</a>, <a href="https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1587890.Arika_Okrent">Arika Okrent</a>, <a href="https://rws.xoba.com/">Richard Sproat</a>, and <a href="http://www.snowcrystals.com/">Ken Libbrecht</a>.</p> <p><em>This update was produced with help from Audrey Quinn.</em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/?utm_source=podcast&amp;utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank">Radiolab.org/donate</a>. </em></p>
  • Asking for Another Friend
    <p>Part 2: Last year, we ran a pair of episodes that explored the greatest mysteries in our listeners’ lives - the big ones, little ones, and the ones in between. This year, we’re back on the hunt, tracking down answers to the big little questions swirling around our own heads.</p> <p>Today, we take a look at a strange human emotion, and investigate the mysteries lurking behind the trees, sounds, and furry friends in our lives. </p> <p><em>This episode was reported by Tracie Hunte, Pat Walters, Molly Webster, Arianne Wack, Carter Hodge, Sarah Qari and Annie McEwen, and was produced by Matt Kielty, </em><em>Tracie Hunte, Pat Walters, Molly Webster, Arianne Wack, Sarah Qari, Annie McEwen, and Simon Adler. </em></p> <p><em>Special thanks to Yiyun Huang, lab manager at Yale's Canine Cognition Center. Check out Code Switch's <a href="https://www.npr.org/templates/transcript/transcript.php?storyId=671354988">"Dog Show!"</a> </em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/?utm_source=podcast&amp;utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank">Radiolab.org/donate</a>. </em></p>
  • Asking for a Friend
    <p>Last year, we ran a pair of episodes that explored the greatest mysteries in our listeners’ lives - the big ones, little ones, and the ones in between. This year, we’re back on the hunt, tracking down answers to the big little questions swirling around our own heads.</p> <p>We reached out to some of our favorite people and asked them to come along with us as we journeyed back in time, to outer space, and inside our very own bodies.</p> <p><em>This episode was reported by Rachael Cusick, Simon Adler, Becca Bressler, and Annie McEwen and was produced by </em><em>Rachael Cusick, Simon Adler, Matt Kielty, Becca Bressler, and Annie McEwen.</em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/?utm_source=podcast&amp;utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank">Radiolab.org/donate</a>. </em></p> <p> </p>
  • Loops
    <p class="p1">Our lives are filled with loops that hurt us, heal us, make us laugh, and, sometimes, leave us wanting more. This hour, Radiolab revisits the strange things that emerge when something happens, then happens again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and… well, again.</p> <p class="p1">In this episode of Radiolab, Jad and Robert try to explain an inexplicable comedy act, listen to a loop that literally dies in your ear, and they learn about a loop that sent a shudder up the collective spine of mathematicians everywhere. Finally, they talk to a woman who got to watch herself think the thought that she was watching herself think the thought that she was watching herself think the thought that ... you get the point.</p> <p class="p1">With <a href="https://twitter.com/kristenschaaled?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Kristen Schaal</a> and <a href="https://www.kurtbraunohler.com/">Kurt Braunohler</a>,  <a href="http://www.alexbellos.com/">Alex Bellos</a>, <a href="http://www.stevenstrogatz.com/">Steven Strogatz</a>, <a href="http://jannalevin.com/">Janna Levin</a>, and <a href="http://melaniethernstrom.com/">Melanie Thernstrom</a>. Plus mind-bending musical accompaniment from <a href="https://www.laguardiahs.org/">Laguardia Arts High School</a> singers Nathaniel Sabat, Julian Soto, Eli Greenhoe, Kelly Efthimiu, Julia Egan, and Ruby Froom.</p> <p class="p1">You can find the video Christine Campbell made of her mom Mary Sue <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3fA5uzWDU8">here</a>.</p> <p class="p2"><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/?utm_source=podcast&amp;utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank">Radiolab.org/donate</a>. </em></p>
  • The Beauty Puzzle
    <p class="p1">When a female animal is checking out her prospects, natural selection would dictate that she pay attention to how healthy, or strong, or fit he is. But when it comes to finding a mate, some animals seem to be engaged in a very different game. What if a female were looking for something else - something that has nothing to do with fitness? Something...beautiful? Today we explore a different way of looking at evolution and what it may mean for the course of science.</p> <p class="p2"><em>This episode was reported by Robert Krulwich and Bethel Habte and was produced by Bethel Habte.</em></p> <p class="p2"><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/?utm_source=podcast&amp;utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank">Radiolab.org/donate</a>. </em></p>
  • More Perfect: Sex Appeal
    <p>With Ruth Bader Ginsburg in the news and on the big screen recently, we decided to play the <a href="https://www.wnycstudios.org/shows/radiolabmoreperfect/season-two" target="_blank"><em>More Perfect</em></a> show about her from back in November of 2017. This is the story of how Ginsburg, as a young lawyer at the ACLU, convinced an all-male Supreme Court to take discrimination against women seriously - using a case on discrimination against men. </p> <p><em>This episode was reported by Julia Longoria.</em></p> <p><em>Special thanks to Stephen Wiesenfeld, Alison Keith, and Bob Darcy.</em></p> <p><em>Supreme Court archival audio comes from </em><a href="https://www.oyez.org/"><em>Oyez®</em></a><em>, a free law project in collaboration with the Legal Information Institute at Cornell.</em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/?utm_source=podcast&amp;utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank">Radiolab.org/donate</a>. </em></p>
  • The Punchline
    <p>John Scott was the professional hockey player that every fan loved to hate.  A tough guy. A brawler. A goon. But when an impish pundit named Puck Daddy called on fans to vote for Scott to play alongside the world’s greatest players in the NHL All-Star Game, Scott found himself facing off against fans, commentators, and the powers that be.  Was this the realization of Scott’s childhood dreams? Or a nightmarish prank gone too far? Today on Radiolab, a goof on a goon turns into a parable of the agony and the ecstasy of the internet, and democracy in the age of Boaty McBoatface.</p> <p><em>This episode was reported by Latif Nasser and was produced by Matt Kielty.</em></p> <p><em>Special thanks to Larry Lynch. Check out John Scott's "Dropping the Gloves" <a href="https://www.johnscottallstar.com/podcast/">podcast</a> and his <a href="https://www.johnscottallstar.com/book/">book</a> "A Guy Like Me".</em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/?utm_source=podcast&amp;utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank">Radiolab.org/donate</a>. </em></p> <p> </p>
  • BONUS: Radiolab Scavenger Hunt
    <p>The question we get more than any other here at Radiolab is “where do all those stories come from?”  Today, for the first time ever, we divulge our secret recipe for story-finding.  Veteran Radiolab story scout Latif Nasser takes our newest producer Rachael Cusick along for what he calls “the world’s biggest scavenger hunt.”  Together, they’ll make you want to bake some cookies and find some true stories.  But we can’t find, much less tell, true stories without you. Find it in yourself to donate and help us make another year of this possible. It's a choice only you can make. <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer" data-auth="NotApplicable" title="Radiolab.org/Support" previewremoved="true" id="LPlnk819512" class="OWAAutoLink">Radiolab.org/support</a></p> <p> </p> <p>Here are story-finding resources mentioned in this episode:</p> <p><a href="https://transom.org/2018/latif-nasser/"><em>The World's Biggest Scavenger Hunt</em></a>: Latif's Transom post on story scouting</p> <p><a href="https://www.google.com/alerts">Google Alerts</a>: Set up your own!</p> <p><a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Page">Wikipedia Random Article</a>: Play wiki roulette by clicking "random article" in the far-left column</p> <p><a href="https://www.worldcat.org/">WorldCat</a>: to find where a book exists in a library near you</p> <p><a href="https://beta.worldcat.org/archivegrid/">ArchiveGrid</a>: to search libraries' special collections and oral histories</p> <p><a href="https://www.webwire.com/IndustryList.asp">Trade Publications</a>: Search for trade magazines by industry</p> <p><a href="https://www.wnycstudios.org/story/cusick-cookies">Cusick Cookies</a>: Rachael's cookie recipe...you're welcome.</p> <p> </p> <p> </p>
  • A Clockwork Miracle
    <p>As legend goes, in 1562, King Philip II needed a miracle. So he commissioned one from a highly-skilled clockmaker. In this short, a king's deal with God leads to an intricate mechanical creation, and Jad heads to the Smithsonian to investigate. </p> <p>When the 17-year-old crown prince of Spain, Don Carlos, fell down a set of stairs in 1562, he threw his whole country into a state of uncertainty about the future. Especially his father, King Philip II, who despite being the most powerful man in the world, was helpless in the face of his heir's terrible head wound. When none of the leading remedies of the day--bleeding, blistering, purging, or drilling--helped, the king enlisted the help of a relic...the corpse of a local holy man who had died 100 years earlier. Then, Philip II promised that if God saved his son, he'd repay him with a miracle of his own.</p> <p><a href="http://arts.vcu.edu/sculpture/portfolios/elizabeth-king/" target="_blank">Elizabeth King</a>, a professor at Virginia Commonwealth University, describes how--according to legend--Philip II held up his end of the bargain with the help of a renowned clockmaker and an intricate invention. Jad and Latif head to the Smithsonian to meet curator<span> <span>Carlene E. Stephens</span></span> who shows them the inner workings of a nearly 450-year-old monkbot. </p> <p><em>This episode was reported by Latif Nasser. </em></p> <p><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/?utm_source=podcast&amp;utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank">Radiolab.org/donate</a>. </em></p>
  • Apologetical
    <p class="p1">How do you fix a word that’s broken? A word we need when we bump into someone on the street, or break someone’s heart. In our increasingly disconnected secular world, “sorry” has been stretched and twisted, and in some cases weaponized. But it’s also one of the only ways we have to piece together a sense of shared values and beliefs. Through today's sea of sorry-not-sorries, empty apologies, and just straight up non-apologies, we wonder what it looks like to make amends.</p> <p class="p1"><em>This episode was reported by Annie McEwen and was produced by Annie McEwen and Simon Adler. </em></p> <p class="p1"><em>Special thanks to Mark Bressler, Nancy Kielty, and Patty Walters. </em></p> <p class="p1"><em>Support Radiolab today at <a href="https://pledge3.wnyc.org/donate/radiolab-it/onestep/?utm_source=podcast&amp;utm_medium=notes&amp;utm_campaign=membership&amp;utm_content=radiolab" target="_blank">Radiolab.org/donate</a>. </em></p>