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Robot Dick Rising

Roboticists have created an automaton with the appearance and behavior of legendary science fiction author, Phillip K. Dick.  Quotes from actual interviews are augmented with an AI system that actually learns as it communicates.  And recently, it told one interviewer it would eventually put humans in a “People Zoo”,  Anthony and Jeff find this information alarming, but oddly exciting.  At least the robot uprising will start with fantastic authors.  More Details/Download MP3 →

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Mist Dirt Clean (w/Allie Goertz)

David Whitlock is a chemist who hasn’t showered in 12 years, but reportedly does not stink.  Instead of bathing, he has been spraying himself with a concoction of his own devising that he claims breaks down ammonia, which is what causes body odor.  Anthony and special guest Allie Goertz are ready to give the shower-free lifestyle a try, while Jeff mourns the loss of this favorite daily activity.  More Details/Download MP3 →

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Cloudy with a Chance of Lampreys

One day in June, the Value Village in Fairbanks, Alaska was alerted to a 15 foot long bloodsucking fish in their parking lot..  What could possibly cause a lamprey to materialize so far from water?  Even crazier, fish were discovered all over the city, as if they fell from the sky.  Anthony and Jeff are perplexed by these phenomena, but that doesn’t stop them from offering some theories on how they might be happening.  More Details/Download MP3 →

dumbest-counterfeiters

Conclusion Delusion

Jeff and Anthony have often discussed the brain’s annoying propensity to latch on to erroneous conclusions by relating two disparate pieces of data, and a new article in FiveThirtyEight Science breaks down the “illusion of causality” and other problematic human tendencies even clearer.  Why is the brain so determined to mislead itself?  And what can we do to be less dumb?  More Details/Download MP3 →

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Double Dog Pair

When Phillip and Paula Dupont learned their dog Melvin was going to die, they decided to spend $100,000 at a South Korean lab to have him cloned.  The process and results are both questionable, and lead Jeff and Anthony to label these people as the absolute worst. But, like, would YOU clone your dog if you could?  More Details/Download MP3 →

Russian to Try It

A Russian scientist admits injecting himself with 3.5 million year old ‘eternal life’ bacteria, and reports working harder, with reviewed energy.  Anthony and Jeff have serious reservations about this scientist’s methodology, but are excited that there are still people in the world crazy enough to experiment on themselves.  More Details/Download MP3 →

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Choice Words

Anthony has become fascinated by British psychologist Elizabeth Stokoe’s studies into how simple, subtle phrasing changes can have a huge impact on behavior.  Just by substituting a single word here or there, people show a much different response.  Jeff is fascinated by language, too, but worries Anthony will not use his newfound semantic powers for good.  More Details/Download MP3 →

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Short Ape-ttention Span Theater

A new study using eye-tracking software finds that chimps enjoy watching movies featuring humans dressed in ape costumes.  Even more surprising, the primates are able to anticipate story turns based on previous viewings.  Jeff and Anthony wonder if the eventual planet of the apes is going to look much like this one, with lazy monkeys binge-watching trashy television.  More Details/Download MP3 →

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Stupid Human Tricks

A Shaolin monk in China recently ran 125 meters across 200 thin planks of wood floating on the water, an incredibly difficult and unprecedented feat some have dubbed “running on water”.  He trained for 10 years to accomplish this task, which, let’s be honest, doesn’t even look particularly impressive on video.  This gives Jeff and Anthony a chance to consider the application of one’s life in pursuit of perfection – even obscure, meaningless perfection.  Is it worth it?  More Details/Download MP3 →

Bucket Up

While many people derided the ice bucket challenge that spread over social media in 2014 as “slacker activism”, the truth is that the huge surge in funds from the campaign has been credited for a major new breakthrough in fighting ALS.  Anthony and Jeff discuss the topic of social media campaigns, generosity, and the sad need for online communities to destroy nice things.  More Details/Download MP3 →