Piggy and the Brain

US-based researchers have successfully kept alive the brain cells of decapitated pigs for 36 hours, sparking concerns over the ethics involved in such frontline research. The researchers said they had succeeded in delivering oxygen to the cells via a system of pumps and blood maintained at body temperature. The key question being that if a brain is revived in this way, would a human being involved have any memories, an identity and rights? Jeff and Anthony request that you please just let them die.  More Details/Download MP3 →

The Odds in Your Flavor

893.35 quadrillion to one. That’s the likelihood of what’s happened to 20-year-old Dylan McWilliams. He was bitten by a shark, attacked by a bear, and bitten by a rattlesnake—all in just over three years. .He’s one of the unluckiest guys on the planet. How unlucky? Since each event is independent the odds of each are multiplied together, he said, making the odds of this happening 893.35 quadrillion to one. Jeff and Anthony are going to politely decline your camping invitation.  More Details/Download MP3 →

Sleep Depredation

A study by University of Manchester researchers has shown for the first time that a bad night’s sleep is associated with suicidal thoughts the next day in people with depression. That data revealed that poor sleep quality and short sleep duration were both associated with higher feelings of suicidal thoughts the next day. In hopefully unrelated news, Jeff just had his second child.  More Details/Download MP3 →

Trouble Stuffed

Judges of the prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year have disqualified a winning contestant after the anteater in his prize-winning photograph was judged “highly likely” to be a taxidermy specimen. Called “The Night Raider,” the image was taken by photographer Marcio Cabral and depicts an anteater underneath starry skies next to a termite mound dotted with glowing bioluminescence. Jeff and Anthony knew it was Photoshopped as they could see the pixels.  More Details/Download MP3 →

How the Sausage is Maid

A Canadian man finally got the chance to clear his name after 17 years in exile from a hotel in British Columbia. His ordeal began in 2001, involving a flock of seagulls (the animals, not the band) and a suitcase full of pepperoni. Jeff and Anthony discuss the value of a good apology.  More Details/Download MP3 →

Doggie Data Care

What can artificial intelligence learn from dogs? Quite a lot, say researchers from the University of Washington and Allen Institute for AI. They recently trained neural networks to interpret and predict the behavior of canines. Their results, they say, show that animals could provide a new source of training data for AI systems — including those used to control robots. Jeff and Anthony learn that you can teach a new bot an old dog’s tricks.  More Details/Download MP3 →

Sight off the Bat

While hunting for dinner, the big brown bat must hone in on flitting insects and keep track of its surroundings to avoid crashing into them. Now, scientists have taken a peek at what’s going on in these bats’ brains while they swoop and dive. They identified a brain region that helps the animals map where objects are in relation to their own bodies, and saw that individual brain cells changed their behavior while the bats focused their attention on a particular object. The findings could help us understand certain aspects of attention issues in people as well as how bats and animals navigate while on the move.  More Details/Download MP3 →

Apparent Teacher Conflicts

John Corcoran grew up in New Mexico in the US during the 1940s and 50s. He graduated from high school, went on to university, and became a teacher in the 1960s – a job he held for 17 years. But, he hid an extraordinary secret. He had never learned to read. In this episode we learn that Jeff and Anthony thought illiterate meant a dog couldn’t have puppies.  More Details/Download MP3 →

Crash Ear

Crash safety technology has come a long way in the past decade or so, with cars that now sense an impending crash and can prepare the driver for impact or even attempt to avoid a collision entirely. Current Mercedes cars even go so far as to provide your ears with an extra layer of audio protection. It’s called “pink noise” and it’s designed to keep your hearing intact after being bombarded by the extremely loud sounds typically associated with a vehicle crash. Jeff and Anthony wonder what this show is doing to their listeners’ hearing.  More Details/Download MP3 →

Magnet Eyes

Birds can sense Earth’s magnetic field, and this uncanny ability may help them fly home from unfamiliar places or navigate migrations that span tens of thousands of kilometers. Scientists have now pinpointed a possible protein behind this “sixth sense.” Jeff and Anthony consider the bird prankz possibilities.  More Details/Download MP3 →