Podcast: 31 March 2013

From robot jellyfish to zombie ants, today’s show had its fair share of quirkiness! But we also dealt with some more hard-hitting stories, such as three-person IVF and the possibility that wastewater injection from oil-drilling could be increasing the risk of earthquakes! Regular guest, Charles Malpas joined us to discuss a couple of topics: perception bias and mind-controlling parasites!

Sila discussed the pro’s of digging into chocolate this Easter weekend – just make sure it’s dark chocolate!

Cathy shared new research which shows that a damaging earthquake in Oklahoma in 2011 can be directly attributed to oil drilling works in the area, specifically, the injection of wastewater generated by the operations.

Charles started off by showing us a video resource commonly shown in first-year, where concentrating on counting passes between basketball players causes you to ignore the fact that a person in a gorilla costume walks into the middle of the circle of players! Our listeners joined in, watching the movie and telling us whether or not they noticed the gorilla. Interestingly, 50% of our listeners DID notice the gorilla, although we suspect some of them had seen the film before. Later in the show, Charles spoke about how zombies exist!!!

… Well not really, but parasites which takeover the minds of their host do exist! These parasites are able to take control of their host and direct them to put them in situations that benefit the parasite, even taking care of the parasite in some cases!

Cathy found a piece of news about a new robot that looks and acts like a jellyfish, which could be used for naval surveillance and left on its own in the sea for months at a time.

Sila shared an exciting story about three-person IVF, which can help women with mitochondrial diseases to bear healthy children, free of the disease!

Thanks for listening in, we appreciate all our listeners and your feedback! Tune in next week at 3pm on 90.7 SYN FM for more!

The Science Hour SYNFM Sun 31 Mar 2013 03;00 pm

‘Til then,

The Science Hour Team

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