Podcast

Stuff To Blow Your Mind

Deep in the back of your mind, you’ve always had the feeling that there’s something strange about reality. There is. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they examine neurological quandaries, cosmic mysteries, evolutionary marvels and our transhuman future.

Episodes

  • From the Vault: Euphemisms

    Sep 21 2019

    Sure, euphemisms allow us to talk about something unpleasant or taboo without actually invoking the dreaded word or words -- but what else is going on? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe explore the linguistic power of euphemisms to alter and transform the tone or meaning of everyday communication. (Originally published Dec. 13, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The One Ring

    Sep 19 2019

    One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss the most powerful artifact in J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic fantasy series and how it relates to real-life metallurgy.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Flares from Infinity: Sagittarius A* Part 2

    Sep 17 2019

    A super massive black hole broods at the center of our galaxy. In this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter, Robert and Joe discuss just what that means -- and doesn’t mean -- for humanity, our solar system and our future.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: John Dee, Part 2

    Sep 14 2019

    Elizabethan scholar Dr. John Dee was one of the most learned men of the 16th century, applying his intense mathematical intellect to matters scientific, political, alchemical and occult. He advised Queen Elizabeth, sought communion with angelic beings, advocated British expansion and plunged the depths of human knowledge in age of great change. In this second of two episodes on the topic, Robert and Christian discuss Dr. Dee’s involvement in science, statecraft, cryptography and espionage. (Orig...more

  • Flares from Infinity: Sagittarius A* Part 1

    Sep 12 2019

    A super massive black hole broods at the center of our galaxy. In this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter, Robert and Joe discuss just what that means -- and doesn’t mean -- for humanity, our solar system and our future.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Summer Reading 2019

    Sep 10 2019

    It's never too late for Summer Reading! In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe welcome back former co-host Christian Sager, host of the podcast Supercontext for a discussion of recent reads. Jump on it before summer ends!  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: John Dee, Part 1

    Sep 07 2019

    Elizabethan scholar Dr. John Dee was one of the most learned men of the 16th century, applying his intense mathematical intellect to matters scientific, political, alchemical and occult. He advised Queen Elizabeth, sought communion with angelic beings, advocated British expansion and plunged the depths of human knowledge in age of great change. In this first of two episodes on the topic, Robert and Christian discuss the world, life and magic of the enigmatic Dr. Dee. (Originally published Dec. 6...more

  • The Voynich Manuscript, Part 2

    Sep 05 2019

    Browse the libraries of the world and you’ll find nothing stranger and perplexing than the so-called Voynich Manuscript, a 15th century tome that has perplexed linguists and codebreakers for hundreds of years -- and remains a mystery. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss just why we can't stop looking to its weird pages. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Voynich Manuscript, Part 1

    Sep 03 2019

    Browse the libraries of the world and you’ll find nothing stranger and perplexing than the so-called Voynich Manuscript, a 15th century tome that has perplexed linguists and codebreakers for hundreds of years -- and remains a mystery. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss just why we can't stop looking to its weird pages.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Illusory Truth Effect, Part 2

    Aug 31 2019

    If a lie is repeated often enough, are we more likely to believe it? Sadly, the answer is yes. Psychologists call it the illusory truth effect and it influences both our daily lives and the larger movements of politics and culture. Join Robert and Joe  for a two-part discussion of untruths, the human mind and just what you can do to fight the big lies at work in your world. (Originally published July 12, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: That's a Bummer

    Aug 29 2019

    Yes, it's listener mail time once more, this time with e-mails about B.U.M.M.E.R. social media platforms, planetary defense, the Tingler, psychedelics and more.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Surfing Neanderthals

    Aug 27 2019

    What do recent studies about surfer’s ear and neanderthals reveal about their relationship with the ocean? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss the condition and some recent findings regarding the neanderthals. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Illusory Truth Effect, Part 1

    Aug 24 2019

    If a lie is repeated often enough, are we more likely to believe it? Sadly, the answer is yes. Psychologists call it the illusory truth effect and it influences both our daily lives and the larger movements of politics and culture. Join Robert  and Joe for a two-part discussion of untruths, the human mind and just what you can do to fight the big lies at work in your world. (Originally published July 10, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • School Dreams

    Aug 22 2019

    Have you ever experienced dreams of forgotten classes, impossible exams and other examples of school-age anxiety? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the pervasive nature of the school dream.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Lot's Wife: Flesh into Salt

    Aug 20 2019

    You’ve probably heard the Biblical tale of Lot’s wife, in which a trio of angels destroy a couple of ancient cities and the resulting blast turns a woman into a pillar of salt. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe set aside most of the theology to ponder if and how a human body could become a big old chunk of salt.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Dark Side of Neuroplasticity

    Aug 17 2019

    When you hear the word “neuroplasticity,” you probably think of it in terms of a young brain’s ability to learn or an older brain’s struggles to rebound from injury. The possibility of a neuroplasticity-boosting drug remains one of medicine's true holy grails, but is there a dark side? Robert and Joe  discuss the balance of plasticity and stability in the human mind. (Originally published July 5, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How to Survive a Great Fall

    Aug 15 2019

    Anticipating a fall from 10,000 feet or more? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss your chances of survival. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Weird World of Prehistoric Transylvania

    Aug 14 2019

    This episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind takes listeners to Transylvania, where a rogue baron made important early strides in the field of paleobiology and where, during the Late Cretaceous period, giant pterosaur dubbed “Dracula” feasted on pony-sized dwarf sauropods. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Chariots of the Gods

    Aug 10 2019

    Chances are, you’re already quite familiar with the notion the ancient astronauts visited the earth and gave humans the tech support they needed to climb the ladder of civilization. There's no true proof to back it up, yet ancient astronaut speculation is a 20th century invention -- and one tied closely to a single bestselling author. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss Erich von Däniken and Carl Sagan's thoughts on ancient aliens. (Originally published June 28, 20...more

  • Asteroid 2019 OK: The Little Doomsday

    Aug 08 2019

    The near-Earth object (NEO) known as Asteroid 2019 OK just made an unexpected close pass, raising the hair on the back of humanity’s collective neck. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe weigh the risks posed by other NEOs and discuss what we’re doing to track them and even stop an incoming doomsday rock.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Bonus Episode: Ephemeral's Alex Williams

    Aug 07 2019

    Former Stuff to Blow Your Mind producer and host of the podcast Ephemeral drops in for a chat about the media of yesteryear and related topics. Listen in and learn more at www.ephemeral.show  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Social Media Is a B.U.M.M.E.R.

    Aug 06 2019

    How will you feel the day you finally delete all your social media accounts? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss some of the arguments for doing just that in Jaron Lanier’s book “Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now.” Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Gods Must Be Counterintuitive

    Aug 03 2019

    What’s the key to a lasting myth, a captivating religion or a sensational film pitch? Some cognitive scientists and anthropologists argue that the key is a minimally counterintuitive narrative: the right balance of the mundane with just a dash of the unreasonable and unexpected. Join Robert and Joe as they discuss the minimal counterintuitiveness effect. (Originally published August 2, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Tingler

    Aug 01 2019

    It’s time for another movie episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind and you might be surprised to discover all the weird and wonderful themes at work in the often-dismissed 1959 Vincent Price film “The Tingler.” Not only does it dwell on fear and symbiosis, but it also features the first reference to LSD in a major motion picture. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Introducing Sleepwalkers

    Jul 31 2019

    If there's one thing that sets people apart from machines, it's creativity, right? Automation may take over certain jobs, but what happens when algorithms start to learn from our work to create their own? This episode, we speak with people using AI to generate films, poetry, music, and even recipes. And the founder of Google X, Sebastian Thrun, explains what's powering this new wave of AI. All episode of Sleepwalkers are available to binge now! Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.ih...more

  • Listener Mail: The Psychedelic Experience

    Jul 30 2019

    It’s listener mail time again, this time devoted entirely to feedback on Stuff to Blow Your Mind’s five-part series on psychedelics. Join Robert and Joe as they read everyone’s submitted thoughts and experiences.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: MDMA, Part 2

    Jul 27 2019

    Some of you have tried the ecstasy. Others have merely heard about the drug on a TV sitcom, or heard about it in a news report. Either way, MDMA's power resonates through our culture -- and sometimes it's hard to distinguish the truth form the misinformation. But what exactly is this psychoactive agent? Where does it come from and what sort of effect does it have on the human experience? Join Robert and Christian as they explore the origins and properties of MDMA. (Originally published Dec. 17, ...more

  • Electric Microbe Land

    Jul 25 2019

    It’s easy to think of electricity as the domain of Thomas Edison, Nikola Tesla and Street Fighter’s Blanka. But as Robert and Joe explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, it’s also the domain of microbes -- and it will change the shape of future technology.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • TEETH: Dental Evolution and Marching Molars

    Jul 23 2019

    Where do teeth come from and how do different dental variations in the animal world force us to rethink our glorious chompers? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore dental evolution and the wondrous marching molars of elephants and manatees.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: MDMA, Part 1

    Jul 20 2019

    Some of you have tried the ecstasy. Others have merely heard about the drug on a TV sitcom, or heard about it in a news report. Either way, MDMA's power resonates through our culture -- and sometimes it's hard to distinguish the truth form the misinformation. But what exactly is this psychoactive agent? Where does it come from and what sort of effect does it have on the human experience? Join Robert and Christian as they explore the origins and properties of MDMA. (Originally published Dec. 15, ...more

  • TEETH (with Katie Goldin)

    Jul 18 2019

    Katie Goldin is back with a new season of Creature Feature, so she joins Robert and Joe on Stuff to Blow Your Mind for a chat about strange and amazing teeth in the animal kingdom.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Psychedelics: The Manifested Mind, Part 5

    Jul 16 2019

    What are psychedelics? How have these substances influenced human minds and culture? What exactly do they invoke in the brain and how could a renaissance of scientific study into their properties improve our lives? In this series of Stuff to Blow Your Mind episodes, Robert and Joe explore the world of entheogens.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Timothy Leary, Part 2

    Jul 13 2019

    Idolized by some and reviled by others, Timothy Leary remains an icon of 1960s counterculture and psychedelic self-exploration. But who was this rebel, psychologist and celebrity? What did he reveal about LSD’s power and potential? Join Robert and Christian for a special two-part look at the man, the time and the drug he championed. Turn on, tune in, drop out... (originally published Sep 21, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Psychedelics: The Manifested Mind, Part 4

    Jul 11 2019

    What are psychedelics? How have these substances influenced human minds and culture? What exactly do they invoke in the brain and how could a renaissance of scientific study into their properties improve our lives? In this series of Stuff to Blow Your Mind episodes, Robert and Joe explore the world of entheogens.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Psychedelics: The Manifested Mind, Part 3

    Jul 09 2019

    What are psychedelics? How have these substances influenced human minds and culture? What exactly do they invoke in the brain and how could a renaissance of scientific study into their properties improve our lives? In this series of Stuff to Blow Your Mind episodes, Robert and Joe explore the world of entheogens.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Timothy Leary, Part 1

    Jul 06 2019

    Idolized by some and reviled by others, Timothy Leary remains an icon of 1960s counterculture and psychedelic self-exploration. But who was this rebel, psychologist and celebrity? What did he reveal about LSD’s power and potential? Join Robert and Christian for a special two-part look at the man, the time and the drug he championed. Turn on, tune in, drop out... (originally published Sep 19, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Psychedelics: The Manifested Mind, Part 2

    Jul 04 2019

    What are psychedelics? How have these substances influenced human minds and culture? What exactly do they invoke in the brain and how could a renaissance of scientific study into their properties improve our lives? In this series of Stuff to Blow Your Mind episodes, Robert and Joe explore the world of entheogens.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Psychedelics: The Manifested Mind, Part 1

    Jul 02 2019

    What are psychedelics? How have these substances influenced human minds and culture? What exactly do they invoke in the brain and how could a renaissance of scientific study into their properties improve our lives? In this series of Stuff to Blow Your Mind episodes, Robert and Joe explore the world of entheogens.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Science of Holy Butter

    Jun 29 2019

    There's more to butter than meets the eye. Each yellow pat of fatty goodness is nothing short of processed solar energy, and its long history entails many a magical and sacred rite. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian consider the curious nature of butter. (Originally published Jan 10, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Roman Extinctions

    Jun 27 2019

    Humans are capable of amazing technological and societal feats, but we’ve also brought much misery, death and destruction to our world. We are currently in the midst of the sixth great extinction event -- the Holocene extinction -- and the ravages of human activity extend back throughout our history as a dominator species. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe focus in on some of the key extinctions that occurred during the Roman Empire.  Learn more about your ad-choice...more

  • Listener Mail: Fatberg City

    Jun 25 2019

    It's time for another listener mail and this time we have field reports from the war on fatbergs in the world's sewers -- plus various other e-mails related to recent episodes.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Fartonomicon

    Jun 22 2019

    What is a fart? From what foul bodily depths does it arise? Join Stuff to Blow Your Mind hosts Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they crack open the Fartomicon. Explore the fascinating chemistry of flatus, recoil in horror at the thought of medieval fart demons and consider the curious creatures that enjoy a flatulence-free existence. (Originally published April 17, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Facial Feedback Hypothesis

    Jun 20 2019

    To what extent does the act of smiling generate happiness in the mind of the smiler? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss the Facial Feedback Hypothesis and what it means for our complex human emotions.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Silent Running

    Jun 18 2019

    It’s time for another movie episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind and this time Robert and Joe are talking about 1972’s “Silent Running,” in which Bruce Dern and his robot pals are caught in an endless chase. It’s a discussion of sci-fi, space botany, environmentalism and the relationship between humans and the forest.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Life on Venus

    Jun 15 2019

    The planet Venus might seem a hellish destination and an unlikely place to find extraterrestrial life. And yet, many experts agree that life may have existed in the planet's ancient oceans -- and may thrive yet within the upper atmosphere. Join Robert and Joe in a quest for Venusian aliens. (Originally published May 17, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Against ‘Survival of the Fittest’

    Jun 13 2019

    Is natural selection REALLY survival of the fittest? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss where the phrase comes from and how well it actually matches up with our understanding of evolution. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Brain Soup and Liquid Brains

    Jun 11 2019

    Is there ever a good scientific reason to turn brains into soup? What does all of this have to do with the concept of “liquid brains?” Robert and Joe explore on Stuff to Blow Your Mind.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Finite and Infinite Games

    Jun 08 2019

    How do you play the game of life? Do you play it as a finite game or an infinite one? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss the 1986 philosophy book “Finite and Infinite Games: A Vision of Life as Play and Possibility” by American scholar James P. Carse. (Originally published May 31, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Q2: Bones of the Plumed Serpent

    Jun 06 2019

    In the Stuff to Blow Your Mind episode “Quetzalcoatl: The Winged Serpent,” Robert and Joe discussed the feathered snake god of pre-Columbian Mesoamerica -- as well as the giant pterosaur named after it. In this episode, fossils and myth come together in a discussion of Adrienne Mayor’s geomythology take on the plumed serpent.   Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Soap Dragon

    Jun 04 2019

    What monsters of fatty flesh lie slumbering in the sewer guts of our great cities? Join Robert and Joe as they venture into the dark to discover the beast we all made together. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Neurosecurity: Dawn of the Brain Hackers

    Jun 01 2019

    While hackers and malware can certainly cause a great deal of damage and misery, these dangers can’t hurt us physically, right? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe are sorry to say you’re wrong -- and as more biotechnology and brain-computer interface creeps into our lives, the risk will only go up. Tune in for a discussion on inherent vulnerability, looming technology and what needs to happen to protect us. (Originally published June 1, 2017) Learn more about ...more

  • The Great Wave

    May 30 2019

    For centuries, sailors have told stories of mountainous killer waves that rise out of the ocean without warning. Join Robert and Joe for a discussion of the history and science of rogue waves. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Doppelganger Network

    May 28 2019

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss Doppelgangers, fairy imposters, the brain basis for the feeling of familiarity, and a unique way of understanding the impact of social media and modern communications technology. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Beyond the Uncanny Valley

    May 25 2019

    From bad CGI characters to creepy humanoid robots, everyone knows the uncanny valley effect when they see it. But where did this idea come from and to what extent is it actually a thing? Join Robert and Joe as they descend into the uncanny valley and explore just what's going on in our minds when we lock eyes with less-than-human simulacrums. (Originally published April 6, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: Sacred Squirrels and More

    May 23 2019

    It’s time for another bag of Stuff to Blow Your Mind listener mail, plus a minor update on sacred squirrels. Join Robert, Joe and your friendly neighborhood mailbot dig into your thoughts on recent episodes.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Introducing Ephemeral

    May 22 2019

    Lost materials, dropped threads, forgotten stories. Ephemera in the way that it’s intertwined in our lives. All those things, tangible and intangible, that you wish you could take just one more look at before they vanish into the past. Listen wherever podcasts are found and learn more at www.ephemeral.show Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Deep Sea Ecology with Diva Amon

    May 21 2019

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe chat with deep sea marine biologist Diva Amon about life in the deep ocean -- from the wonderous organisms that thrive there to the human activities that threaten their future. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Into the Uncanny Valley

    May 18 2019

    The far side of the uncanny valley rises steeply, assaulting our psyche as our artificial human likenesses creep ever closer toward perfection. But what happens when we actually emerge on the other side? What happens to human society when video footage is no longer the gold standard? Robert and Joe investigate. (Originally published April 4, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Thulsa Doom, Part 2

    May 16 2019

    It’s time for another movie-themed Stuff to Blow Your Mind episode. In fact, it's TWO episodes. This time Robert and Joe discuss the 1982 sword and sorcery picture “Conan the Barbarian.” Join them as they gush over the film’s charismatic villain Thulsa Doom (James Earl Jones) and explore the real world of giant snakes, Set, snake arrows and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Thulsa Doom

    May 14 2019

    It’s time for another movie-themed episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind -- and this time Robert and Joe are discussing the 1982 sword and sorcery picture “Conan the Barbarian.” Join them as they gush over the film’s charismatic villain Thulsa Doom (James Earl Jones) and explore the real world of giant snakes, Set, snake arrows and more.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Carl Zimmer on Heredity's Power

    May 11 2019

    Why does heredity hold such power over us? How did the ancients contemplate it and how is genetic technology changing the shape of future heredity? In this classic episode, Robert and Joe chat with acclaimed science writer Carl Zimmer about the topics explored in his  book “She Has Her Mother's Laugh: The Powers, Perversions, and Potential of Heredity.” (Originally published June 14, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Send an Owl/Raven/Pigeon!

    May 09 2019

    Harry Potter sends messages by owl. The characters of ‘Game of Thrones’ employ ravens. Meanwhile, real-life messenger pigeons have carried messages for thousands of years. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe consider just why the homing pigeon is perfect for this job -- and why owls and ravens are not.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Almost Cannibals

    May 07 2019

    What’s the line between cannibalism and mere predation? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe consider some thought-provoking cases of predation and cannibalism in the animal world.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Coral Sex in the Sea

    May 04 2019

    Sure coral reefs are rich, vibrant ecosystems, but did you know they also have a kinky side? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, "Sex in the Sea" author Dr. Marah J. Hardt returns to chat about coral reproduction and the role this vital, threatened organism plays in our world. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Fallacy of Alignment: Fundamental Attribution Error, Part 2

    May 02 2019

    How do we consider and predict the actions and intentions of others? How much do we lean on an individual’s presumed internal disposition versus the particulars of their situation? In this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter, Robert and Joe consider the fundamental attribution error, which breaks down the errors and even dangers of causal cognition.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Fallacy of Alignment: Fundamental Attribution Error, Part 1

    Apr 30 2019

    How do we consider and predict the actions and intentions of others? How much do we lean on an individual’s presumed internal disposition versus the particulars of their situation? In this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter, Robert and Joe consider the fundamental attribution error, which breaks down the errors and even dangers of causal cognition.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Invention: Toilets, Part 1

    Apr 27 2019

    Have you subscribed to Robert and Joe's other podcast INVENTION yet? If not, here's a taste of what they're up to in part 1 of their look at toilet technology, from the oldest latrine pit to the modern flushing commode.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Sacred Mountain, Part 2

    Apr 25 2019

    Why do sacred mountains exist in so many cultures and myths? To what extent could high altitude conditions contribute to the way our mind processes these breathtaking environments? In this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter, Robert and Joe explore the wonder and science of sacred mountains. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Sacred Mountain, Part 1

    Apr 23 2019

    Why do sacred mountains exist in so many cultures and myths? To what extent could high altitude conditions contribute to the way our mind processes these breathtaking environments? In this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter, Robert and Joe explore the wonder and science of sacred mountains.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Humanity's THC Odyssey

    Apr 20 2019

    Humans have known about cannabis for thousands of years, crafting hemp textiles and consuming its psychoactive THC. In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Christian Sager examine the cannabis plant, its travels through human populations and its famed sensory and psychological effects. (Originally published May 3, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Imp of the Perverse

    Apr 18 2019

    In 1845, Edgar Allan Poe wrote a tale about a man overcome by the compulsion to confess to the heinous crime he sought to keep secret. The conundrum pops up in other Poe tales as well, but the so called “Imp of the Perverse” also invades the human mind with alarming regularity. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe attempt to understand just why, considering Freud, neuroscience, Ironic Process Theory and more.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com...more

  • The Pressure

    Apr 16 2019

    Atmospheric pressure. Water pressure. Geologic pressure. What exactly IS pressure and how do humans interact with it? Join Robert and Joe for a look at examples on and within planet Earth -- as well as beyond.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Bicameralism, Part 2

    Apr 13 2019

    In 1976, psychologist Julian Jaynes presented the world with a stunning new take on the history of human consciousness. His book “The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind” hypothesized that ancient humans heard hallucinated voices in place of conscious thought, and presented archaeological, literary, historical and religious evidence to support this highly controversial view. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they dissect bicameralism and discuss the evidence, the c...more

  • Against Narrative: Are stories bad for us? Part 2

    Apr 11 2019

    It’s hard to imagine human beings without storytelling and literature. Surely, these are some of the very things that define us. Narratives give our lives and our world meaning, but what if there’s a dark side to their sorcerous power? In this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the storyteller’s potent spell. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Against Narrative: Are stories bad for us? Part 1

    Apr 09 2019

    It’s hard to imagine human beings without storytelling and literature. Surely, these are some of the very things that define us. Narratives give our lives and our world meaning, but what if there’s a dark side to their sorcerous power? In this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the storyteller’s potent spell.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Bicameralism, Part 1

    Apr 06 2019

    In 1976, psychologist Julian Jaynes presented the world with a stunning new take on the history of human consciousness. His book “The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind” hypothesized that ancient humans heard hallucinated voices in place of conscious thought, and presented archaeological, literary, historical and religious evidence to support this highly controversial view. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they dissect bicameralism and discuss the evidence, the c...more

  • The Dark Crystal

    Apr 04 2019

    It’s time for another movie-themed episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind and this time Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick are bound for the world of Thra in Jim Henson’s 1982 masterpiece “The Dark Crystal.” What are we to make of these complex creatures, mythological themes and cosmological alignment?  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: The Quickening

    Apr 02 2019

    Once more, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick bust out some listener mail -- with the aid of their mailboy Karny, who was accidently infected by the recent “Highlander 2” episode and is now displaying symptoms of multiple Highlander personality disorder.   Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Eternal Youth, Part 2

    Mar 30 2019

    Throughout history, humans have faced the inexorable process of aging and death. We’ve dreamt up countless myths to explain why we age and what comes of seeking immortality, but what does science tell us about the process? Why do we age? What purpose does it serve in natural selection? Indeed, what can science offer us in the way of eternal youth? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick seek to find out in this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration. (Originally published Jan. 9, 2018) Learn more ab...more

  • Flatus Ex Machina, Part 2

    Mar 28 2019

    Why is it so hilarious when robots and artificial intelligence fail? What does it reveal about comedy itself and our technological anxiety? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore in this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter. In this second episode, the joke's on us.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Flatus Ex Machina, Part 1

    Mar 26 2019

    Why is it so hilarious when robots and artificial intelligence fail? What does it reveal about comedy itself and our technological anxiety? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore in this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-parter.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Eternal Youth, Part 1

    Mar 23 2019

    Throughout history, humans have faced the inexorable process of aging and death. We’ve dreamt up countless myths to explain why we age and what comes of seeking immortality, but what does science tell us about the process? Why do we age? What purpose does it serve in natural selection? Indeed, what can science offer us in the way of eternal youth? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick seek to find out in this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration. (Originally published Jan. 4, 2018) Learn more ab...more

  • M.I.B. or N.I.B. ?

    Mar 21 2019

    Belief in UFOs is very much like a religion. It can fulfill the same purpose in an individual's life, give them a community of believers and provide grander framework for mundane life. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick consider the similarities between the so-called “men in black” and the devil.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Bugs Under The Skin

    Mar 19 2019

    Ever feel like there are bugs crawling around in your body? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore alleged incidents, medical publications and the reality of delusional parasitosis.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Don't Drink the Salt Water

    Mar 16 2019

    Whether you draw your wisdom from 18th century poems or experience in the surf, you probably know that drinking seawater is a terrible idea. But exactly why shouldn’t you drink saltwater? What happens if you do? Can it really drive you mad with hallucinations? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick look to the world of biology for answers. (Originally published Jan. 16, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Let's Make a List

    Mar 14 2019

    Why are humans so fascinated by lists? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the reason we can’t pass a top 10 clickbait headline and are forever haunted by incomplete lists.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Tunnelers

    Mar 12 2019

    How deep into the Earth have humans traveled? How far have we drilled? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore some interesting lows from the history of mining, geologic exploration and good old fashioned subterranean living.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Jade Immortality

    Mar 09 2019

    Chinese aristocracy of the Western Han Dynasty embarked on their journey into the afterlife within garments of stone -- luxurious suits of jade armor entailing thousands of individual plates sewn together with gold, silver or silk. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Christian Sager explore this ancient funeral custom and both the scientific and superstitious qualities of jade. (Originally published May 9, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/...more

  • Highlander 2: The Sciencing

    Mar 07 2019

    Yes, the time of the Quickening is at hand! In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick finally make good on their threat to devote an entire episode to the 1991 film "Highlander II: The Quickening" and whatever science might be rendered from its plot. They wanted this to be a six-part series, but our boss tells us... there can be only one. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Lost Daughters of Aten: Planet 9

    Mar 05 2019

    Pluto may not be a planet, but it definitely exists. Not every case is so clear. The history of near-Earth astronomy contains many cases of bodies that may or may not have ever existed in the solar system we call home. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick continue their journey through space to survey once-hypothetical bodies that took work to prove, once-imagined bodies that are now confirmed phantoms, and the unsolved mysteries where questions remain. This ...more

  • From the Vault: Talos

    Mar 02 2019

    Among the many humanoid gods and bestial monsters of Greek mythology, one finds a peculiar outlier: Talos the bronze automaton. Said to stalk the shores of Crete, Talos pelted suspicious ships with rocks and immolated enemy soldiers with its smoldering embrace. Does this myth reveal Greek attitudes toward technology? What existing technologies can we decode in its description? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore in this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. (Originally published Jan. 2, ...more

  • The Lost Daughters of Aten, Part 1

    Feb 28 2019

    Pluto may not be a planet, but it definitely exists. Not every case is so clear. The history of near-Earth astronomy contains many cases of bodies that may or may not have ever existed in the solar system we call home. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick take a journey through space to survey once-hypothetical bodies that took work to prove, once-imagined bodies that are now confirmed phantoms, and the unsolved mysteries where questions remain. Learn more ab...more

  • Mystery of the Sea Circles

    Feb 26 2019

    We’ve all heard about crop circles, and the entirely terrestrial reason they pop up in the occasional wheat field. But what about strange circles on the bottom of the sea? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the mystery of these ephemeral patterns and what scientists discovered about their origin.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Winter People, Part 2

    Feb 23 2019

    Do you feel like a different person during the winter? In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick examine the extent to which winter affects human health and culture. From the winter transformations of the Kwakwa̱ka̱ʼwakw people to the latest studies on seasonal genetic changes, prepare to contemplate the icy dark. (Originally published Dec. 28, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Gáe Bulg: The Spear of Death

    Feb 21 2019

    Irish myth tells of a spear so deadly, that its deployment is certain death. Forged from the bones of sea monsters, the Gáe Bulg would send barbs through its victim’s every vein -- but only if the hero threw it with their foot. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick unravel the myth, history and science of this impractical Irish wonder weapon.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ideophones: How does this word feel?

    Feb 19 2019

    What’s an ideophone? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the place where sounds, meanings and the possible roots of language converge.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Winter People, Part 1

    Feb 16 2019

    Do you feel like a different person during the winter? In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick examine the extent to which winter affects human health and culture. From the winter transformations of the Kwakwa̱ka̱ʼwakw people to the latest studies on seasonal genetic changes, prepare to contemplate the icy dark. (Originally published Dec. 26, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cupid’s Leaden Arrow

    Feb 14 2019

    It’s Valentine’s Day again, which summons images of mythic Cupid and his bow. But we often forget that Cupid has TWO arrows in his quiver: the golden arrow of desire and the leaden arrow of aversion. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the mythic lead-slinger and the nature of his gray metal.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: Crab Sabbath

    Feb 12 2019

    It's listener mail time again and Karnie the mailbot seems rather grumpy about a particular holiday. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they read and respond to various listener mail from the past month.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Minds of Musical Emptiness

    Feb 09 2019

    We're all wired to enjoy different forms of music, but for some of us the wiring is missing entirely. Join Robert Lamb and Christian Sager as they explore the curious conditions of amusia and auditory agnosia in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. (Originally published July 28, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Marah Hardt talks Snails, Sex and the Sea

    Feb 07 2019

    It's almost Valentine's Day, so it's time to invite marine biologist and "Sex in the Sea" author Dr. Marah Hardt back on the show again! Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they chat with STBYM's only four-time guest about all manner of marine invertebrate reproduction. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Demon Eaters and Possessed Tools

    Feb 05 2019

    As we slide into the Year of the Earth Pig, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick turn to the legend of the demon slayer Zhōng Kuí and follow a procession of spirits across the sea to Japan, where discarded tools spark spirit possessions, not joy. Sorry, Marie Kondo. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Aquatic Humanoids, Part 2

    Feb 02 2019

    From the sirens of 'The Odyssey' to 'The Creature From the Black Lagoon' and beyond, humans have always imagined their underwater doubles. In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert and Joe discuss the revealing myth and fiction of mermaids and gillmen -- as well as the aquatic ape theory and the biological possibilities of an aquatic humanoid. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ships of Life: Shipwrecks

    Jan 31 2019

    Water vessels serve the humans who made them, but that doesn’t mean other lifeforms don’t benefit as well. In this pair of Stuff to Blow Your Mind episodes, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the various organisms that thrive aboard functional, abandoned and sunken ships Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ships of Life: Stowaways

    Jan 29 2019

    Water vessels serve the humans who made them, but that doesn’t mean other lifeforms don’t benefit as well. In this pair of Stuff to Blow Your Mind episodes, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the various organisms that thrive aboard functional, abandoned and sunken ships Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Aquatic Humanoids, Part 1

    Jan 26 2019

    From the sirens of “The Odyssey” to “The Creature From the Black Lagoon” and beyond, humans have always imagined their underwater doubles. In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the revealing myth and fiction of mermaids and gillmen -- as well as the aquatic ape theory and the biological possibilities of an aquatic humanoid. (Originally published Jan. 23, 2018)Related Content: Aquatic Humanoids, Part 2 (podcast)Don't Drink the Salt Water (podc...more

  • Invasion of the Globsters, Part 2

    Jan 24 2019

    When mysterious globs of meat wash up on the shores of human civilization, we have a tendency to see beasts in the blobs and have always tried to imagine the creature in the carnage. Welcome to the world of globsters, where mounds of putrid sea flesh birth cryptozoological dreams and science tends to have the last world. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Invasion of the Globsters, Part 1

    Jan 22 2019

    When mysterious globs of meat wash up on the shores of human civilization, we have a tendency to see beasts in the blobs and have always tried to imagine the creature in the carnage. Welcome to the world of globsters, where mounds of putrid sea flesh birth cryptozoological dreams and science tends to have the last world. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Bathysphere, Part 2

    Jan 19 2019

    In 1930, American naturalist William Beebe began his descent in a spherical, unpowered submarine known as a Bathysphere -- and in doing so visited a world previously unseen by human beings. In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss humanity’s prior understanding of the deep ocean and Beebe’s astounding reports from the world a half mile down. (Originally published March 29, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast...more

  • Split Brain, Part 2

    Jan 17 2019

    Our brains are composed of two hemispheres, but in what ways are they truly separate? In which ways are they one? In this bisected Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore what we’ve learned from split brain experiments in animals and humans.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Split Brain, Part 1

    Jan 15 2019

    Our brains are composed of two hemispheres, but in what ways are they truly separate? In which ways are they one? In this bisected Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore what we’ve learned from split brain experiments in animals and humans.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Bathysphere, Part 1

    Jan 12 2019

    In 1930, American naturalist William Beebe began his descent in a spherical, unpowered submarine known as a Bathysphere -- and in doing so visited a world previously unseen by human beings. In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss humanity’s prior understanding of the deep ocean and Beebe’s astounding reports from the world a half mile down. (Originally published March 27, 2018) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast...more

  • The Alien Biped

    Jan 10 2019

    As humans, we’re quite accustomed to our weird vertical spines and precarious two-legged gait. But habitual bipedalism is far from the norm. When did it first occur on planet Earth? Will the robotic future walk on two legs? And can we reasonably expect alien lifeforms to follow suit? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Room of Infinite Unpleasantness

    Jan 08 2019

    If you were to create the most unpleasant room humanly possible, what sort of design choices would you employ? What would the space look like and, more to the point, how would it make you feel? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Biophilia

    Jan 05 2019

    Why are humans so drawn to the natural world of biodiverse organisms? Is this longing merely part of our culture or do we possess an innate and even genetic tendency to focus on life and lifelike processes? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they discuss Edward O. Wilson’s biophilia hypothesis and explore arguments for and against this captivating view of nature lovers. (Originally published July 18, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Thought Experiments

    Jan 03 2019

    Stuff to Blow Your Mind frequently discusses thought experiments on the show, from Schrödinger's Cat to the Infinity Hotel. But what constitutes a thought experiments? How long have they been around and what are the seven categories? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore…  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: The Fires of Orc

    Jan 01 2019

    It's a new year full of new topics, but first comes a final bag of listener mail from 2018. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick consider your thoughts and experiences on the previous month's episodes.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Artificial Gravity

    Dec 29 2018

    Humans are creatures of gravity. We’re born into it. Life as we know it evolved to thrive in it. So what’s a gravitational organism to do in the low-gravity and zero-gravity expanses beyond Earth? You can’t bring it with you, but scientists have cooked up a few different schemes to replicate its effects. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a full exploration in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. (Originally published July 13, 2017)  Learn more about your ad-choices at h...more

  • Christmas Island, Part 2: Deca Deca Pod Y’all

    Dec 27 2018

    Welcome to Christmas Island, a place where it’s still only Christmas once a year… but where red crabs swarm across the land and enormous coconut crabs feast on carrion in the forests. So deck the halls with boughs of SCUTTLING HORROR as Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick celebrate the holiday season in style.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Christmas Island, Part 1: Crabs Rule Everything Around Me

    Dec 25 2018

    Welcome to Christmas Island, a place where it’s still only Christmas once a year… but where red crabs swarm across the land and enormous coconut crabs feast on carrion in the forests. So deck the halls with boughs of SCUTTLING HORROR as Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick celebrate the holiday season in style.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Tree of Life

    Dec 22 2018

    Sacred trees. World trees. Holy trees of wisdom, immortality and the soul. They seem to grow from every culture on Earth and their roots dig deep into the soil of prehistory. What do they mean? Why are we so drawn to their symbolic power? Join Robert Lamb and Christian Sager for a stirring exploration. (Originally published Nov. 30, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Virgin Birth

    Dec 20 2018

    For Christians, the Christmas centers around a miraculous virgin birth. But don’t worry, secular holiday revelers, because nature has its own virgin births to wonder over. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the world of parthenogenesis.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Invention: The Guillotine

    Dec 19 2018

    Stuff to Blow Your Mind hosts Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick have a brand new show -- and they're dropping a full episode of it into the STBYM feed. The show is INVENTION and this episode dives into the history, invention and legacy of the head-chopping French guillotine. What happens when we use our technology to create a more humane form of public execution? Find out, and be sure to subscribe to Invention wherever you get your podcasts.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.ihe...more

  • Ritual of Oak and Mistletoe

    Dec 18 2018

    Twas the night before Christmas and deep in the woods, a sacrifice was planned by the Gauls and their Druids… Yes, in this holiday episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the curious biology of everyone’s favorite smooch-inducing tree parasite -- as well as some of its alleged magic powers and scientifically-studied properties.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Baby Jesus and the Homunculus

    Dec 15 2018

    We’ve all marveled at the grotesque, oddly-proportioned old man babies in medieval art -- but why did artists of the period pain such creatures? In this special Christmas episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the convergence of the homunculus theory of human reproduction, the nativity and the infants of medieval and renaissance art. (Originally published Dec. 21, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Strange Milk

    Dec 13 2018

    Mammals are the true milk-bearers of nature, but there are a host of non-mammals that secrete various strange and wonderful milk-analogues. From avians to invertebrates, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the anomalous world of non-mammalian milk in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Katie Goldin talks 'Creature Feature'

    Dec 11 2018

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, guest Katie Goldin from the podcast 'Creature Feature' drops in to chat with Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick about weird biology and maybe a monster or two.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Greek Fire

    Dec 08 2018

    To engage the ships of Byzantine Empire was to risk the horrors of Greek fire, a medieval weapons system that empowered ships to spew forth flaming liquid on enemy ships and crew members. The secrets of Greek fire are lost to history, but historians and scientists continue to theorize its formula and deployment details. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they discuss the weapon’s history, predominant theories on its specifics and the risks and rewards of secret keeping. (Originally published ...more

  • The Electric Ark

    Dec 06 2018

    What if the Ark of the Covenant was actually a bronze-age machine capable of storing an electrostatic charge? It almost certainly wasn't, but the idea is a great excuse to explore the understanding of electricity in the ancient world. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for another Ark-themed episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Ark of the Covenant

    Dec 04 2018

    What was the Ark of the Covenant? A mere ceremonial vessel for sacred items? A radio for speaking to God? The golden chest of the ancient Hebrews has fascinated historians, theologians, scientists, dreamers and Nazi-punching archeologists for ages. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick consider some of the more thought-provoking ideas concerning its nature.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Satanic Panic

    Dec 01 2018

    What are we to make of alleged ritual satanic abuse and the moral panic that spread in the 1980s and 90s? Robert Lamb and Christian Sager enter a world of religion, fear and demons of the mind. (originally published April 16, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • ‘Oumuamua II: Revenge of the First Messenger

    Nov 29 2018

    Everyone’s favorite interstellar travel has been back in the news, thanks to curious speed increases and an intriguing paper on the possibility of alien solar sail technology. So join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they dock once more with ‘Oumuamua as it tumbles out of our solar system. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Halloween Hangover Listener Mail, Part 2

    Nov 27 2018

    Halloween may be over, but that doesn’t mean all the ghosts and ghouls are banished to the cellar. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they bust dive into the listener mail bag from October 2018.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Dangerous Foods III

    Nov 24 2018

    Thanksgiving is a time of feasting and the wages of feasting, and so Robert and Joe are here to dish up a third installment of Stuff to Blow Your Mind’s “Dangerous Foods” series. Do you dare bite into the likes of licorice, giant Namibian bullfrog, hallucinogenic fish and wriggling octopus tentacles? (Originally published Nov. 23, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Halloween Hangover Listener Mail, Part 1

    Nov 22 2018

    Halloween may be over, but that doesn’t mean all the ghosts and ghouls are banished to the cellar. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they bust dive into the listener mail bag from October 2018. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Animals That Eat Poop

    Nov 20 2018

    Thanksgiving is a time during which many Americans eat things they shouldn’t -- so it’s a perfect time to discuss coprophagia in the animal kingdom. But, unlike many holiday dinners, these examples of poop-eating organisms are not exercises in dysfunction. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick invite you to join yet another feast of knowledge.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Dangerous Foods II

    Nov 17 2018

    Can your heart stand the shocking facts about toxic potatoes, mad honey and the mysteries of the dead man’s fingers? In this classic episode, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick enjoy a heaping helping of potentially dangerous menu choices. (Originally published Dec. 22, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Motivated Numeracy and the Politics-ridden Brain

    Nov 15 2018

    If science were a candle in the dark, we’d need only spread its light to combat climate change denial and vaccine conspiracy theories. But what if the problem is more complex than that? What if a quirk of human cognition enables us to remain willingly in the dark, even as we hold the very candle? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the concept of motivated numeracy.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers...more

  • Stone Age Technology with Dietrich Stout

    Nov 13 2018

    Paleolithic tools inform not just our understanding of prehistoric lives, but also the evolution and nature of the human mind. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick chat with Emory University’s Associate Professor of Anthropology Dr. Dietrich Stout about the hand ax, tool use and even ‘2001: A Space Odyssey.”  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Gordian Knot of Race

    Nov 10 2018

    How deep-seated are today's racial issues? In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Julie Douglas explore how something so abstract - like unconscious racial biases - can have real-world implications. (Originally published March 31, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ig Nobel Prizes 2018: Part 2

    Nov 08 2018

    Each year, the Ig Nobel prizes honor the weirdest and wackiest contributions to humanity’s scientific understanding of the natural world. In this pair of Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast episodes, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick unpack each of this year’s winners. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ig Nobel Prizes 2018: Part 1

    Nov 06 2018

    Each year, the Ig Nobel prizes honor the weirdest and wackiest contributions to humanity’s scientific understanding of the natural world. In this pair of Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast episodes, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick unpack each of this year’s winners. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Cambrian Monster Mash

    Nov 03 2018

    Welcome to the ocean of monsters. In this classic episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick travel back 500 million years to the monster-haunted waters of the Cambrian period. Meet the monstrous trilobite, anomalocaris, opabinia, hallucigenia, wiwaxia, pikaia and leanchoilia. Plus, Dr. Anton Jessup drops by for a visit. (Originally published Oct 19, 2017) Related Content: Original publication (with species illustrations) Buy the Cambrian Life lo...more

  • Listener Mail: The Squirrel Is Not Enough

    Nov 01 2018

    To follow up our two-part look at the secret, bloody life of the common squirrel, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick present an entire listener mail episode devoted to your field reports on skuggs.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Anthology of Horror, Volume 1

    Oct 30 2018

    From “Night Gallery” to “Tales From the Crypt,” everyone loves a great horror anthology show. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a new ghoulish tradition, as they pick a few notable installments from horror anthology TV and cinema history in order to explore the real-life science and history behind the blood and madness.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Bret Wood on 'The Control Group'

    Oct 29 2018

    Bonus episode! Join Stuff to Blow Your Mind hosts Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they chat with Bret Wood, writer and director of "The Control Group," a fiction podcast from How Stuff Works that explores the dark history of CIA-funded mind control experiments. The entire series is out now and ready for your Halloween binge-listening.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The First Monster

    Oct 27 2018

    Humans love monsters, but when did we first dare to dream up bestial hybrids and chimerical horrors? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick consider the 35-40 thousand-year-old Löwenmensch statues. Who created these images of lion-headed men? What do they represent and what do they reveal about human cognition? (Originally published October 27, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Slayer

    Oct 25 2018

    Myth and folklore are full of monsters and the heroes who slay them. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick meet some of these fabulous slayers and discuss the science and potential meaning of their bloody endeavors.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Quetzalcoatl: The Winged Serpent

    Oct 23 2018

    From the Aztec temples of pre-Columbian Mesoamerica to the 1980s monster film “Q: The Winged Serpent,” the feathered serpent god Quetzalcoatl soars high over the human imagination. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the history of this winged wonder -- as well as the prehistoric Quetzalcoatlus named after the ancient Lord of the Dawn.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Halloween Costume Made Me Do It

    Oct 20 2018

    What happens when we slip into a costume? Be it a monster pelt, a sexy witch or a simple children's ghost mask, a psychological transformation takes place. Join Robert Lamb and Christian Sager for a fittingly seasonal look at enclothed cognition and deindividuation. (Originally published October 8, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Vampire Clinic, Part 2

    Oct 18 2018

    Vampire legends are a global phenomenon, and the trope of the blood-sucking humanoid shows no signs of vanishing from human traditions. But can we trace its origins back to any specific diseases and medical symptoms? In this blood-stained episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick haul up the vampire’s casket and look for signs of rabies, syphilis, dermatitis, tuberculosis and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Vampire Clinic, Part 1

    Oct 16 2018

    Vampire legends are a global phenomenon, and the trope of the blood-sucking humanoid shows no signs of vanishing from human traditions. But can we trace its origins back to any specific diseases and medical symptoms? In this blood-stained episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick haul up the vampire’s casket and look for signs of rabies, syphilis, dermatitis, tuberculosis and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Ghoul

    Oct 13 2018

    If your fictional diet contains significant quantities of horror or dark fantasy, then you've likely encountered the ghoul: a scavenging, grave-robbing race of unnatural beings with an insatiable hunger for the dead. As Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore in this episode, the roots of ghouldom sink back into pre-Islamic Arabic folklore -- as well into the distant evolutionary history of humanity itself. (Originally published October 29, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.ih...more

  • The Curse

    Oct 11 2018

    What does it mean when a beggar, wizard or witch spits a curse at another human being? Why does this particular work of magic weigh so heavily in human history? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick take a scientific, historical and cultural look at various curse traditions.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Great Basilisk

    Oct 09 2018

    Behold the Great Basilisk, the crowned monster whose mere glance can kill a mortal and reduce wilderness to desert ash. Medieval bestiaries attest to its might, but today some futurists dread its name as an all-powerful malicious artificial intelligence. Will it imprison all those who oppose it within a digital prison of eternal torment? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick consider the horror of Roko’s Basilisk. Related Content: Machine God: Artifi...more

  • From the Vault: Carnivorous Plants

    Oct 06 2018

    Are humans truly safe from the hunger of meat-eating plants? Can we trust the trees that loom over us? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss myths and fictions of killer trees, the science of carnivorous plants and the curious absence of mean-eating plants in our natural world. (Originally published October 18, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Killer's Mask

    Oct 04 2018

    The masked psychopathic killer is a staple of horror fiction, and yet almost no real-life serial killers employed masks in the commission of their crimes. Why is this? What does the discrepancy between fact and fiction reveal both about the reality of murderer and the nature of our myth-making? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Jenny Greenteeth: Horror at the Water’s Edge

    Oct 02 2018

    According to certain English folktales, a vile creature lurks in the slime-caked dark of local ponds. When little ones wander too close to shore, she lashes out to drown them in her slippery embrace. She has many names: Nelly Longarms, Peg Powler, the Grindylow... and Jenny Greenteeth. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss these old tales of aquatic terror, their instructional nature and the real-world predators who swim the shores in search of terrest...more

  • From the Vault: John C. Lilly

    Sep 29 2018

    The figure of John C. Lilly as psychedelic dolphin communicator burns in the collective memory as a counterculture avatar, yet his legacy embodies far more than the mythologized and/or vilified figure that most of us know. Join Robert Lamb and Christian Sager as they examine the life, career and ideas of Lilly the scientist, Lilly the counterespionage researcher and Lilly the psychonaut. Welcome to the province of the mind. (Originally published Feb. 23, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at...more

  • Listener Mail: Robots of Theseus

    Sep 27 2018

    It's listener mail time again and the plan to gradually replace every part of our mailbot Karnie is complete. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they read and respond to various listener mail from the past month.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Salamander Talk with Mark Mandica

    Sep 25 2018

    Wade into the amazing and weird world of salamanders and other notable amphibians as Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick chat with Mark Mandica, executive director of The Amphibian Foundation. Gain a new level of appreciation for these fabulous organisms and learn what you can do to help them.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Mixologia

    Sep 22 2018

    While the cocktail is an inherently American invention, the history of combining alcohols with other substances to create potent, drinkable concoctions dates back to ancient times. While you might expect dangerous ingredients to have a place in a wizard’s potion or a philosopher's goblet, modern cocktails and spirits have also dabbled with nefarious elixirs. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they explore the history, myth and science behind it all in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. ...more

  • Age of the Earth, Part 2

    Sep 20 2018

    Scientific consensus currently holds that the Earth is a 4.5 billion-year-old planet in a 13.8 billion-year-old universe. But how do we know? Why do religious models of a much younger (or older) Earth fail to pass the baloney test? In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the answers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Age of the Earth, Part 1

    Sep 18 2018

    Scientific consensus currently holds that the Earth is a 4.5 billion-year-old planet in a 13.8 billion-year-old universe. But how do we know? Why do religious models of a much younger (or older) Earth fail to pass the baloney test? In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the answers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Syphilis

    Sep 15 2018

    Doctors have called it the great imitator because this destructive venereal disease can manifest almost any symptom. Initially spreading through sexual contact, Syphilis can remain dormant in the body for decades before flaring up again in brutally disfiguring, debilitating and deadly ways. It's difficult to overstate the impact of syphilis on the Western world, and it remains a threat to this day despite effective antibiotic treatments. In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert...more

  • The Obvious: Invisible Gorillas of the Mind

    Sep 13 2018

    What is truly obvious in life? What does the word even mean? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a look at how we engage with the natural world -- from invisible gorilla experiments to the realm of phenomenology.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • On Teasing

    Sep 11 2018

    We all know teasing when we see it or experience it, but what role does it play in human interactions? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind as they explore hurtful, playful and educative teasing. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Black Stone of Mecca

    Sep 08 2018

    The Kaaba marks the geographic center of the Islamic world, and here one finds Al-Hadjar Al-Aswad, the Holy Black Stone of Mecca. Islamic traditions hold that the once white white stone blackened with humanity’s sins, but various scientific theories point to geological and potentially cosmic origins. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the mythic, historical and scientific substance of the Kaaba. (Originally published on Feb. 16, 2017) Learn more abo...more

  • Kirk Allen and Maladaptive Daydreaming

    Sep 06 2018

    We all daydream and many of us funnel our imagination into creative acts. But what happens when these exercises overpower us? In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the strange case of nuclear physicist Kirk Allen, whose imagination may have gotten the better of him -- and his psychoanalyst. Dive into the world of cooperative illusions and maladaptive daydreaming.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advert...more

  • Kirk Allen and the Cooperative Illusion

    Sep 04 2018

    We all daydream and many of us funnel our imagination into creative acts. But what happens when these exercises overpower us? In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the strange case of nuclear physicist Kirk Allen, whose imagination may have gotten the better of him -- and his psychoanalyst. Dive into the world of cooperative illusions and maladaptive daydreaming.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advert...more

  • From the Vault: Jump Into The Void

    Sep 01 2018

    Ever wrestle with the illogical quasi-compulsion to throw yourself off a cliff or building? Don’t worry! You’re probably not suicidal, but merely touched by the 'call of the void' or 'high place phenomenon.' In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert Lamb and Christian Sager explore some of the more enlightening theories about this experience.(Originally published Feb. 9, 2017) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Squirrels, Part 2: A Skugg Mystery

    Aug 30 2018

    You might think you know squirrels, but what do you REALLY know about these woodland tree rodents? In this special two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss their appetite for meat, their alleged acts of savagery and various other facts that will make you reconsider the skugg and respect its kingdom. In this episode, things get weird.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Squirrels, Part 1: The Bloody Beast

    Aug 28 2018

    You might think you know squirrels, but what do you REALLY know about these woodland tree rodents? In this special two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss their appetite for meat, their alleged acts of savagery and various other facts that will make you reconsider the skugg and respect its kingdom. Up first, let’s talk about their bloody diet... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: A Taste of MSG

    Aug 25 2018

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the history and science of MSG and explore just why we demonized it for so long. (Originally published Aug. 30, 2016)  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • World Without Predators

    Aug 23 2018

    What would the world be like without predators? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the essential role of predators in Earth’s ecosystems and the terrible, cascading effects of their loss. A world without predators isn’t heaven. It’s hell.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Ship of Theseus

    Aug 21 2018

    An ancient ship rots in the harbor and so we restore it piece by piece until nothing of the original ship remains. Is it still the same ship? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they discuss one of history’s more mind-boggling thought experiments.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Cobra Effect

    Aug 18 2018

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the perverse world of unintended consequences and the cobra effect. (Originally published Sept. 13, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: Tridents, Aliens, Microgravity

    Aug 16 2018

    It's time for another dose of listener mail. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they read YOUR feedback on recent episodes related to coffee in space, tridents, Jungfrau Park and more.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • 2001: A Space Odyssey

    Aug 14 2018

    No discussion of great sci-fi cinema is complete without mention of “2001: A Space Odyssey.” The 1968 classic is 50 years old this year, so Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick figured it the perfect time to board the Discovery One and discuss its many scientific and futurist elements, as well as the legacy of Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke’s creation. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Post-Empirical Science

    Aug 11 2018

    Most scientists declare empirical falsifiability -- the notion that a theory may be proven right or wrong via scientific investigation -- to be the core principle of science. Others, such as string theorists, think science should move beyond those boundaries. Is empiricism an unnecessary straight jacket? Is “post-empirical science” an oxymoron? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. (Originally published Sept. 15, 2016) Learn more about your...more

  • Fear and the Autonomous Cyber Weapon

    Aug 09 2018

    We often focus our fear in the wrong direction -- developing flying anxieties when we should be more concerned about that ride to the airport. We also tend to focus on autonomous weapons when we should be thinking more about autonomous CYBER weapons. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a discussion of cyber warfare.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Divine Weapon: The Trident

    Aug 07 2018

    What are we to make of the trident? The three-toothed spear has seen service as the divine weapon of mythic deities, the fishing implement of common mortals and a symbolic weapon in gladiatorial combat. What does it mean, and was it ever a practical weapon? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick look for answers in myth, archaeology and military history.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: To The Escape Pod!

    Aug 04 2018

    Ever wanted to climb into the safe, metal womb of an escape pod and blast yourself free of this doomed vessel called life? Sure you have, but in the meantime consider some of the real-life air, space and terrestrial escape capsules that humans have envisioned over the years. Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick tell you all about it in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. (Originally published Nov. 24, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers...more

  • The Gods Must Be Counterintuitive

    Aug 02 2018

    What’s the key to a lasting myth, a captivating religion or a sensational film pitch? Some cognitive scientists and anthropologists argue that the key is a minimally counterintuitive narrative: the right balance of the mundane with just a dash of the unreasonable and unexpected. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they discuss the minimal counterintuitiveness effect.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Astronauts in Spaceships Getting Coffee

    Jul 31 2018

    How can humanity ever hope to thrive without Earth if it can’t even function without its morning cup of coffee? Fortunately, engineers have devised increasingly practical means of brewing and sipping coffee in space -- neither of which are easy feats in microgravity. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a consideration of space coffee.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: When We Think About Cyborgs

    Jul 28 2018

    What began as a 1960s term for a retrofitted human space explorer has become a focal point for considerations of human and machine interaction, technological culture, biomechanics and feminist identity. Join Robert Lamb and Christian Sager as they set aside the brain/computer interfaces for a discussion of what it is to be a "cyborg" in 2016. (Originally published April 19, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Summer Reading 2018, Part 2

    Jul 26 2018

    It's a summer tradition! Once more, Stuff to Blow Your Mind devotes a summer episode to the discussion of fiction, non-fiction and children's books that the hosts read over the course of the last year. So listen in and maybe one of these books will accompany you on your next beach trip. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Summer Reading 2018, Part 1

    Jul 24 2018

    It's a summer tradition! Once more, Stuff to Blow Your Mind devotes a summer episode to the discussion of fiction, non-fiction and children's books that the hosts read over the course of the last year. So listen in and maybe one of these books will accompany you on your next beach trip. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Transhumanist Rapture War, Part 2

    Jul 21 2018

    What do the transhumanist visions and singularitarians have in common with Christian rapture doctrine, apocalyptic prophesies and far-future saviors? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they explore the space for common ground -- and conflict -- between genetically modified cyborgs and Heaven-teleported believers in this two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. (Originally published Aug 25, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Ashen Light

    Jul 19 2018

    Does the dark side of Venus occasionally glow with a dim, haunting phosphorescence? It’s one of astronomy’s oldest and most enduring mysteries. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for an examination of the ashen light. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Galactic Civilization’s End

    Jul 17 2018

    If a technological civilization manages to survive itself, how will it fare against the larger challenges of a changing and hostile universe? If humanity ascends the Kardashev scale, how will our unrecognizable and godlike descendants cope with the end of the universe itself? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for an exploration of the cosmic end times.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Transhumanist Rapture War, Part 1

    Jul 14 2018

    What do the transhumanist visions and singularitarians have in common with Christian rapture doctrine, apocalyptic prophesies and far-future saviors? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they explore the space for common ground -- and conflict -- between genetically modified cyborgs and Heaven-teleported believers in this two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. (Originally published Aug 23, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Illusory Truth Effect, Part 2: Fight the Lies

    Jul 12 2018

    If a lie is repeated often enough, are we more likely to believe it? Sadly, the answer is yes. Psychologists call it the illusory truth effect and it influences both our daily lives and the larger movements of politics and culture. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a two-part discussion of untruths, the human mind and just what you can do to fight the big lies at work in your world.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Illusory Truth Effect, Part 1: The Big Lie

    Jul 10 2018

    If a lie is repeated often enough, are we more likely to believe it? Sadly, the answer is yes. Psychologists call it the illusory truth effect and it influences both our daily lives and the larger movements of politics and culture. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a two-part discussion of untruths, the human mind and just what you can do to fight the big lies at work in your world.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Sexbots

    Jul 07 2018

    Sex between humans and machines is nothing new in the world of science fiction. Their forms range from angelic mechanoids to victimized humanoids, but the robotic lover is almost always an expression of purely human anxieties. Yet as real-world technology advances, we’re left to ponder the emerging form of the sex bot -- and the possibilities range from mere animate fetishes to therapeutic surrogates. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Christian Sager consider arguments ...more

  • The Dark Side of Neuroplasticity

    Jul 05 2018

    When you hear the word “neuroplasticity,” you probably think of it in terms of a young brain’s ability to learn or an older brain’s struggles to rebound from injury. The possibility of a neuroplasticity-boosting drug remains one of medicine's true holy grails, but is there a dark side? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the balance of plasticity and stability in the human mind.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: Dreams, Subs and Goddesses

    Jul 03 2018

    Once more, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick turn to Karnie the Mailbot for listener reactions and commentaries on recent episodes. Strap in for discussion of dreams, submarines, ancient goddesses and more.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Inca Kingdom of Fibers

    Jun 30 2018

    Welcome to the Kingdom of the Inca, where hundreds of rope bridges connect an imperial highway system and fiber-armored soldiers wield woven slings against the enemies of the Emperor. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the khipu system of knotted, colored string that served as a physical notation system in lieu of written language. (Originally published March 8, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Chariots of the Gods

    Jun 28 2018

    Chances are, you’re already quite familiar with the notion the ancient astronauts visited the earth and gave humans the tech support they needed to climb the ladder of civilization. There's no true proof to back it up, yet ancient astronaut speculation is a 20th century invention -- and one tied closely to a single bestselling author. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss Erich von Däniken and Carl Sagan's thoughts on ancient aliens. Learn more about y...more

  • Black Holes, Part 3: The Future

    Jun 26 2018

    Nothing can escape the pull of a black hole, not even Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a three-part exploration of these incredible, invisible regions of the cosmos where ponderous mass warps the very fabric of space and time. In this final episode, cross the event horizon... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Humanzee

    Jun 23 2018

    Chimpanzees are humanity's closest living relative, but there's both wonder and existential horror in that closeness. A species barrier separates us from the rest of the animal kingdom, but what if a chimp/human hybrid were to bridge that barrier? Join Robert Lamb and Christian Sager as they explore the case history of Russian biologist Ilya Ivanovich Ivanov and his attempts to breed a human/chimp hybrid in the early 20th century. (Originally published Jan. 21, 2016) Learn more about your ad-cho...more

  • Black Holes, Part 2: Detection

    Jun 21 2018

    Nothing can escape the pull of a black hole, not even Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a three-part exploration of these incredible, invisible regions of the cosmos where ponderous mass warps the very fabric of space and time. In this episode, learn all about the science of black hole detection.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Black Holes, Part 1: Phantom

    Jun 19 2018

    Nothing can escape the pull of a black hole, not even Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a three-part exploration of these incredible, invisible regions of the cosmos where ponderous mass warps the very fabric of space and time. Up first, learn how the idea of black holes emerged as a mere ghost in the math.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Substance of Silence

    Jun 16 2018

    We all have a pretty good notion of noise, but what exactly is silence? Is it a substance or an absence? Between the mindflaying quiet of soundless rooms to wildlife ambience and white noise machines, what is the ideal balance of silence? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe look for answers and, yes, also discuss a few sound-sensitive monsters and the likelihood of blowing up a humanoid head with sound. (Originally published on Aug. 31, 2016) Learn more about y...more

  • Interview: Carl Zimmer on Heredity's Power

    Jun 14 2018

    Why does heredity hold such power over us? How did the ancients contemplate it and how is genetic technology changing the shape of future heredity? Robert and Joe chat with acclaimed science writer Carl Zimmer about the topics explored in his new book “She Has Her Mother's Laugh: The Powers, Perversions, and Potential of Heredity.” Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • World Science Festival 2018 Field Report

    Jun 12 2018

    Robert Lamb attended the 2018 World Science festival in New York City and had the chance to chat with its founder, physicist Brian Greene -- as well as a couple of noted panelists: physicist Max Tegmark and anthropologist Barbara J. King. This episode features those green room interviews, plus Robert and Joe’s discussion of their answers on theoretical physics, artificial intelligence and the evolution of religion.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-adverti...more

  • From the Vault: P vs. NP

    Jun 09 2018

    What does it mean to solve a problem in our universe? That's a trickier question than you might think, with some fairly high-stakes ramifications in the worlds of computing and even philosophy. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the inherent logic of problem-solving in our universe, with some attention to a special example of an outstanding problem in computer science: P vs. NP. (Originally published April 12, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices ...more

  • Sleep and Creativity

    Jun 07 2018

    What roles does sleep play in human creativity? Can we learn in our dreams? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a look at famous accounts of dream inspiration and scientific research into the link between creativity and sleep. And yes, they want you to tell them your dreams.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Troubled Sleep in the Arks of Doom

    Jun 05 2018

    It’s hard enough to sleep just knowing that dozens of nuclear ballistic missile submarines haunt the oceans, each containing the means to rain nuclear annihilation on the world. But what’s it like to sleep aboard these arks of doom? It actually ties into long-term military study, and the results may help us send humans to other planets. Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore...  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Early Days Electric, Part 2

    Jun 02 2018

    Electricity lost its magic over the course the 18th and 19th centuries. The "invisible fire" steadily transitioned from a mysterious force of wonder to a mundane reality of daily modern life. In this two-part edition of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the various electrical experiments, stunts, inventions, performances, innovations, occultisms and atrocities that transformed the tractable thunder. (Originally published Feb 11, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://new...more

  • Finite and Infinite Games

    May 31 2018

    How do you play the game of life? Do you play it as a finite game or an infinite one? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the 1986 philosophy book “Finite and Infinite Games: A Vision of Life as Play and Possibility” by American scholar James P. Carse.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Quantum Immortality

    May 29 2018

    What is quantum immortality? How do we get from quantum physics to thought experiment suicide machines and what does it all say about the nature of our reality? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick dive into the multiverse.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Early Days Electric, Part 1

    May 26 2018

    Electricity lost its magic over the course the 18th and 19th centuries. The "invisible fire" steadily transitioned from a mysterious force of wonder to a mundane reality of daily modern life. In this two-part edition of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the various electrical experiments, stunts, inventions, performances, innovations, occultisms and atrocities that transformed the tractable thunder. (Originally published Feb 9, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices ...more

  • The Alphabet and the Goddess, Part 2

    May 24 2018

    What happened to the worship of goddesses? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore Leonard Shlain’s hypothesis from his 1998 book “The Alphabet Versus the Goddess,” in which the author argues that the brain-altering power of written language unbalanced human civilization in favor of misogyny, tyranny and the worship of abstract, masculine gods. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Alphabet and the Goddess, Part 1

    May 22 2018

    What happened to the worship of goddesses? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore Leonard Shlain’s hypothesis from his 1998 book “The Alphabet Versus the Goddess,” in which the author argues that the brain-altering power of written language unbalanced human civilization in favor of misogyny, tyranny and the worship of abstract, masculine gods. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Techno-Religion, Part 2

    May 19 2018

    We often think of technology and religion as distinct and separate worlds, but what happens when they converge? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick in this two-part episode as they examine religious world views shaped by technology, such as John Murray Spear’s electrical messiah, the simple prayer wheel and the psycho-spiritual technologies of Scientology. (Originally published Jun 11, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Life on Venus

    May 17 2018

    The planet Venus might seem a hellish destination and an unlikely place to find extraterrestrial life. And yet, many experts agree that life may have existed in the planet's ancient oceans -- and may thrive yet within the upper atmosphere. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick in a quest for Venusian aliens.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Crazy Ants and Electricity

    May 15 2018

    Do crazy ants crave electronics? Do they feast on that sweet, sweet juice? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick dispel some myths and explore the science of this particular insect invader. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Techno-Religion, Part 1

    May 12 2018

    We often think of technology and religion as distinct and separate worlds, but what happens when they converge? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick in this two-part episode as they examine religious world views shaped by technology, such as John Murray Spear’s electrical messiah, the simple prayer wheel and the psycho-spiritual technologies of Scientology. (Originally published Jun 9, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: Of AI Minds and Human Farts

    May 10 2018

    Once more, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick consult recent offerings of listener mail for your thoughts on artificial intelligence, demonic flatulence and more.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Boltzmann Brains Revisited

    May 08 2018

    Space brains. Religious models of infinity. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they revisit the topic of Boltzmann brains and discuss the general history of infinity.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Animal Sex Cannibals

    May 05 2018

    Sexual cannibalism is a rarity in the natural world, and scientists are still attempting to understand the act as practiced by mostly arachnids and insects. Why consume your mate after or during sexual intercourse? Why venture into such a scenario in the first place? Join Robert and Joe as they explore the thoroughly inhuman world of sexual cannibalism. (Originally published March 10, 2016)  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Unicorns of the Natural World

    May 03 2018

    While the unicorn itself is a creature of fantasy and legend, one-horned and one-tusked animals do reside in the natural world. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they examine several extant and extinct species noted for their solitary protrusions  -- including the narwhal and a certain circus unicorn.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Unicorns of the Mythic World

    May 01 2018

    Jorge Luis Borges tells us that the oldest unicorn legends are nearly identical to the most recent ficitonal treatments -- but why is that? Why is the notion of a sacred, one-horned horse so resilient in human culture? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a look at the history of global unicorn myths and legends. Plus, don't be shocked if a satyr shows up.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Jumping Fish

    Apr 28 2018

    Fish belong in the water, right? What business do they have leaping out of their world and into ours? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the surprisingly fascinating, dangerous and mysterious world of leaping, jumping and gliding fish. From skewering swordfish and breaching sharks to the alleged urethra-bound candiru, nature provides more than a few mind-blowing specimens of note. (Originally published July 14, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices...more

  • Evolution and the City: The Birds

    Apr 26 2018

    How have birds adapted to the artificial environments of human cities? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick sit down with educator, writer and Audubon Society birder Jason Ward about everything from urban hawks to Atlanta’s wild turkeys.   Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Evolution and the City: The Beasts

    Apr 24 2018

    Human cities are the ultimate artificial environments -- and we're not the only organisms to call them home. In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick consider some of the adaptive animals that have taken to city life and thrive within its challenging complexity.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Library of Babel

    Apr 21 2018

    In Jorge Luis Borges' masterful short story "The Library of Babel," librarians and cultists wander a vast honeycomb library of hexagonal rooms -- rooms that contain not only all books but all possible books, from unwritten masterpieces to tomes of typographical nonsense. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick venture into this metaphoric labyrinth for contemplations of genetics, cosmology, philosophy, computer programing and magic. (Originally published Aug 2, ...more

  • Listener Mail: Kingdom of the Face Blind

    Apr 19 2018

    What's it like to live with prosopagnosia or face blindness? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they devote an entire Stuff to Blow Your Mind episode to listener thoughts, observations and experiences.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Fartonomicon

    Apr 17 2018

    What is a fart? From what foul bodily depths does it arise? Join Stuff to Blow Your Mind hosts Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as the crack open the Fartomicon. Explore the fascinating chemistry of flatus, recoil in horror at the thought of medieval fart demons and consider the curious creatures that enjoy a flatulence-free existence.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Hollywood Acid

    Apr 14 2018

    From the corrosive blood of the "Alien" xenomorph to the various Bond and Batman villains' use of the iconic acid vat, popular media presents us with a dramatic and largely unrealistic vision of acidic power. What are our strongest acids and superacids actually like? How do they generate those acid effects in the movies? And just what sort of blood courses through the xenomorph's veins? Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. (Originally published May 12...more

  • Machine Consciousness and P-Zombies

    Apr 12 2018

    If a machine told you it was conscious, how could you tell if it was lying? Indeed, how can you tell that any random human in your life is lying when they speak of their own consciousness. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a stirring discussion on AI consciousness, philosophical zombies and the coming techno-cognitive dilemma.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Singing Colossus of Memnon

    Apr 10 2018

    The twin Egyptian statues erected by Amenophis III were already ancient relics when Roman travelers visited them in the first century CE. One stood tall and unconquered by some 1400 years of sun and sand, the other lay toppled by a recent earthquake. The Romans mistakenly called them the Colossi of Memnon, and inscribed proof of their visit on the legs of the toppled colossus -- because it spoke to them. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the singin...more

  • From the Vault: Myth-Fleshed Fossil

    Apr 07 2018

    Are the fossilized monsters of paleontology and the fantastic monsters of myth one and the same? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they discuss the realm of of geomythology, entailing the possible ancient real-world origins of dragons, griffins, giants the cyclops and other wonders. (Originally published Jun 28, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Face Blindness

    Apr 05 2018

    It’s easy to take the human brain’s facial recognition powers for granted, unless there’s a malfunction. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the science of prosopagnosia or face blindness.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Cambodian Stegosaurus

    Apr 03 2018

    Do Cambodian temple ruins speak to a time when humans and dinosaurs coexisted? Absolutely not, but it’s a great excuse for Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick to talk about the armored stegosaurus, Ta Prohm temple, young Earth creationism and avian evolution.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Saturn's Brood

    Mar 31 2018

    The planet Saturn offers far more than rings to those who venture within its gravitational influence. This wind-swept gas giant also holds sway over no fewer than 53 moons, including such wonders as the atmosphere-shrouded Titan, two-faced Iapetus and sponge-like Hyperion. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the mysteries of the Saturnian moons. (Originally published Aug 4, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-adv...more

  • The Bathysphere: William Beebe Descends

    Mar 29 2018

    In 1930, American naturalist William Beebe began his descent in a spherical, unpowered submarine known as a Bathysphere -- and in doing so visited a world previously unseen by human beings. In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss humanity’s prior understanding of the deep ocean and Beebe’s astounding reports from the world a half mile down.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Bathysphere: Life in the Deep

    Mar 27 2018

    In 1930, American naturalist William Beebe began his descent in a spherical, unpowered submarine known as a Bathysphere -- and in doing so visited a world previously unseen by human beings. In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss humanity’s prior understanding of the deep ocean and Beebe’s astounding reports from the world a half mile down.  Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Jupiter’s Children

    Mar 24 2018

    Of all the moons of Jupiter, Callisto, Ganymede, Europa and Io tantalize us the most. These alien worlds of ice, fire, desolation and hidden oceans tantalize us with their possibility for extraterrestrial life and human exploration of the outer solar system. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a mind bending exploration of the great gas giant's Galilean Moons. (Originally published April 26, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Leviathan: The Wolf of Whale Street

    Mar 22 2018

    Canst thou draw out Livyatan melvillei with a hook? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the awesome undersea world of carnivorous whales -- as well as the sperm whale ancestor that may have preyed on its fellow toothed cetaceans. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Life Beyond The Shield

    Mar 20 2018

    Life on Earth depends on the planet’s natural shielding, otherwise solar and cosmic radiation would ravage our small blue world. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, sponsored by the National Geographic Channel’s series 'One Strange Rock,' Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the wonders of the magnetosphere and discuss the risk of radiation with one of the few humans to ever venture beyond the shield: astronaut Dr. Jeff Hoffman. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.c...more

  • From the Vault: Bird Intelligence

    Mar 17 2018

    Just what are the upper limits of avian cognitive ability? Various studies reveal how certain bird species engage in mental time travel, tool use, self recognition, theory of mind and even meta-cognition. But how do their non-mammalian brains actually work, and what might a technologically-advanced bird species even look like? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they explore the avian mind. (Originally published March 31, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcas...more

  • The Nuts and Bolts of Boltzmann Brains

    Mar 15 2018

    Do your ever have the feeling that your entire reality is just a momentary hallucination inside a randomly formed space brain? If so, then this is the podcast episode for you! In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the existential nightmare of Boltzmann brains, a thought experiment that questions the nature of self and cosmos. Plus, expect some discussion of Descartes’ evil demon, brain in a vat and the Hindu concept of Māyā. Learn more about your ad-ch...more

  • I Ching: The Book of Changes

    Mar 13 2018

    The Book of Changes stands as one of the most important divination texts in human history -- and a foundational text of Chinese culture in general. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss the I Ching. How does it work? How does it relate to other divination traditions and why do humans, concerned with uncertainty, turn to randomness generators? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Tip of the Tongue

    Mar 10 2018

    Your know the feeling. You're trying to recall the name of a time-keeping musical device or the the actor who played Fredo in 'The Godfather' and all that comes to mind is a memory-hole in the shape of a metronome or John Cazale. It's on the tip of your tongue and it's a universal experience of memory retrieval. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they discuss the science of TOT phenomenon and what you can do to prevent it. (Originally published Apr...more

  • Listener Mail: Crab Faces, Anus Myths and More

    Mar 08 2018

    Once again, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick read listener mail related to recent episodes. You'll hear myths about the anus, reflections on samurai crab faces, Egyptian religion, salt water consumption, virtual reality and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • War, Pain and the Super Soldier

    Mar 06 2018

    The history of war is filled with examples of soldiers who, in the heat of battle, fail to register the full extent of their injuries. In fact, some of our oldest accounts of battle seem devoid of pain’s emotional context. For humans possess two systems of pain: sensory pain and conscious pain. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a discussion that spans the battlefields of human history and future, invoking everything from the bicameral mind to current neuroscience. Learn more about your ad-c...more

  • From the Vault: Hyper-Real Religion

    Mar 03 2018

    When does a protest religion become an actual faith? What happens when purely fictional modes of belief leak off the page or screen? Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick as they discuss modern religious movements, the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster and the rise of so-called hyper-real religions like Jediism and Dudeism (Originally published March 29, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Great Eyeball War, Part 2

    Mar 01 2018

    Are apps, smart phones and social media sucking us dry? As Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss in this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, the modern media experience certainly depletes our attention. Learn all about the ramifications of this dystopian reality, as well as some tips to combat these neurological vampires. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Great Eyeball War, Part 1

    Feb 27 2018

    Are apps, smart phones and social media sucking us dry? As Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick discuss in this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, the modern media experience certainly depletes our attention. Learn all about the ramifications of this dystopian reality, as well as some tips to combat these neurological vampires. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Science of Whining

    Feb 24 2018

    Unless you've lived your life in a childless fortress of seclusion, you've likely encountered the maddening, high-pitched whine of a complaining child. But what is whining? Is it universal? Why is it so annoying and just what's being communicated between parent and child? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore. (Originally published November 24, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Proteus Effect

    Feb 22 2018

    What effect does a virtual reality avatar have on the user? Can it alter your identity? Can it change how you behave in the real world? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick explore the Proteus Effect, named for the shape-shifting, formless Greek sea god. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Carl Sagan and the Samurai Crabs

    Feb 20 2018

    Legend has it that a variety of crabs contain the ghosts of a drowned samurai army -- and each bears a grimacing warrior face on their backs to prove it. But what can we really gather from this biological peculiarity? In the book and TV series “Cosmos,” Carl Sagan argued that it presented a case of artificial selection, but critics disagree. Join Robert Lamb and Joe McCormick for a discussion of the Heikegani. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Dune Biology

    Feb 17 2018

    Frank Herbert's 1965 novel 'Dune' is a game-changing saga of space-age feudalistic intrigue, rampaging sandworms and prescient mind drugs on a desert world. Even today, the work resonates with scientific wonder and philosophical intrigue, so join Robert and Joe for a two-part exploration of the science of 'Dune.' In this episode, explore the lifecycle of the sandworm, mentats and the power of the spice. (Originally published Oct. 1, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.c...more

  • The Chinese Typewriter (with Tom Mullaney)

    Feb 15 2018

    Where the technolingustic systems of the west meet the non-alphabetic written characters of the east, the Chinese typewriter emerges. It’s a story of technological innovation, linguistic imperialism and China’s 19th and 20th century struggle over national identity. Join Robert and Joe as they chat with Thomas S. Mullaney about his book 'The Chinese Typewriter: A History.' Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mausoleum of the First Qin Emperor

    Feb 13 2018

    You’ve seen the photos of the famed terracotta warriors, but no one in over 2200 years has glimpsed inside the tomb of Qin Shi Huang, the first emperor of China. It’s a chamber where rivers of mercury trace the empire’s form beneath a ceiling starscape of precious stones. We know where it is, yet it remains just outside of our scientific reach. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the first emperor’s life and afterlife. Plus Anney and Lauren from FoodStuff drop by t...more

  • From the Vault: Dune Technology

    Feb 10 2018

    Frank Herbert's 1965 novel 'Dune' is a game-changing saga of space-age feudalistic intrigue, rampaging sandworms and prescient mind drugs on a desert world. Even today, the work resonates with scientific wonder and philosophical intrigue, so join Robert and Joe for a two-part exploration of the science of 'Dune.' First up, consider the real-life possibilities of water-recycling stillsuits, the Holtzman Effect and the war against thinking machines. (Originally published Sept. 29, 2015) Learn more...more

  • Animal Lies: Six Tales of Mimicry and Deception

    Feb 08 2018

    What are the shadiest lies in the animal kingdom? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, join Robert and Joe as they explore six different organisms and the fabulous ways they deceive each other and rival species. Meet cuckoos, cuttlefish, mountain alcon blue butterflies, nursery web spiders, femme fatal lightning bugs and the death's head hawk moth. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Anchor in the Mind

    Feb 06 2018

    Anchoring bias is one of the most powerful and easily exploited vulnerabilities in the human mind. Throughout your life, people, companies and organizations will use it to influence your thoughts and control your behavior. In this episode of Stuff to Blow to Your Mind, Robert and Joe tell you what you need to know and to fight the anchor in your mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Tears of Re

    Feb 03 2018

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, enter a kingdom within a kingdom: the remarkable honey-and-wax monarchy within a beehive and the organizational complexity of ancient Egypt. Join Robert and Joe as they discuss the importance of apiculture in ancient Egypt and chat with 'The Tears of Re' author entomologist Gene Kritsky. (Previously published Mar 17, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Evolution of the Anus

    Feb 01 2018

    Chances are, you take the anus for granted -- at least so long as it’s behaving itself. Yet this fascinating anatomical feature has a deep evolutionary history and is itself a marvel of engineering. Join Robert and Joe for a look at this most marvelous alimentary portal. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Miasma Theory and the Evil Air

    Jan 30 2018

    Prior to the germ theory of disease, miasma theory ruled the day -- the notion that bad air, full of destructive particles, wafted out from the foul places of the earth to corrupt everything it touched. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the origins or the theory, its effects on society and how it eventually gave way to an accurate understanding of contagion. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Techno-Telepathy

    Jan 27 2018

    You've always wanted to meet a sensitive alien telepath who could understand you like no one else, but SETI is really dropping the ball on your galactic personal ad. Could new technologies that push the frontiers of brain science allow telepathic communication between humans? Join Robert and Joe as they make a case for the slogan, 'Talk is cheap. Scan me!' (Previosuly published Dec. 22, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Aquatic Humanoids, Part 2

    Jan 25 2018

    From the sirens of 'The Odyssey' to 'The Creature From the Black Lagoon' and beyond, humans have always imagined their underwater doubles. In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert and Joe discuss the revealing myth and fiction of mermaids and gillmen -- as well as the aquatic ape theory and the biological possibilities of an aquatic humanoid. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Aquatic Humanoids, Part 1

    Jan 23 2018

    From the sirens of 'The Odyssey' to 'The Creature From the Black Lagoon' and beyond, humans have always imagined their underwater doubles. In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert and Joe discuss the revealing myth and fiction of mermaids and gillmen -- as well as the aquatic ape theory and the biological possibilities of an aquatic humanoid. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Better Living Through Tetris

    Jan 20 2018

    In their previous episode, Robert and Joe explored the geometric hallucinations of Tetris syndrome. Now they're back for a serious look at the ways in which a good dose of cascading, interlocking tetrominoes might just cure what ails ya -- from lazy eye to full-blown post-traumatic stress disorder. (Previously published Dec. 3, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: Talos, Homunculi, Winter and More

    Jan 18 2018

    Join Robert and Joe for another round of Stuff to Blow Your Mind listener mail, in which they read and attend to your thoughts and insight on recent episodes. This round features discussions on the speed of Talos, homunculi generations, Kwakwa̱ka̱ʼwakw traditions, werewolves and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Don't Drink the Salt Water

    Jan 16 2018

    Whether you draw your wisdom from 18th century poems or experience in the surf, you probably know that drinking seawater is a terrible idea. But exactly why shouldn’t you drink saltwater? What happens if you do? Can it really drive you mad with hallucinations? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe look to the world of biology for answers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Tetris Syndrome

    Jan 13 2018

    To play a game of “Tetris” is to invite a geometric invasion into your mind. After hours of intense block manipulation, you finally set aside your gaming device. You take a deep breath, close your eyes -- and there the frenzied, multicolored tetrominoes continue to cascade across your vision. They build walls in your dreams and shape the patterns of your very thought. What’s going on inside the mind of a 'Tetris' player and what can we learn from so-called 'Tetris' syndrome. In this episode of S...more

  • Meditation Lab: Empathy and Energy

    Jan 11 2018

    We all know what meditation looks like, and many of us know what it feels like. But what does it provide us in return for these brief periods of mental and physical stillness? Join Robert and Joe as they talk to Emory University meditation researcher Dr. Jennifer Muscaro about the challenges of objective scientific meditation research and the empathetic potential of compassion meditation. Plus they’ll check in with Vedic meditation instructor Jill Wener and discuss stress and adaptation energy. ...more

  • Where’s my eternal youth? Part 2

    Jan 09 2018

    Throughout history, humans have faced the inexorable process of aging and death. We’ve dreamt up countless myths to explain why we age and what comes of seeking immortality, but what does science tell us about the process? Why do we age? What purpose does it serve in natural selection? Indeed, what can science offer us in the way of eternal youth? Robert and Joe seek to find out in this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podc...more

  • From the Vault: Aphantasia

    Jan 06 2018

    Mental images play an important role in our daily experience of reality, from thoughts of the past to daydreams, fantasies and entire worlds of the imagination. Just what’s happening when we see through the mind’s eye and what on Earth is it like for individuals who experience aphantasia and experience no visual imagination at all? In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore. (Originally published May 10, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.ihear...more

  • Where’s my eternal youth? Part 1

    Jan 04 2018

    Throughout history, humans have faced the inexorable process of aging and death. We’ve dreamt up countless myths to explain why we age and what comes of seeking immortality, but what does science tell us about the process? Why do we age? What purpose does it serve in natural selection? Indeed, what can science offer us in the way of eternal youth? Robert and Joe seek to find out in this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podc...more

  • Talos: The Bronze Automaton

    Jan 02 2018

    Among the many humanoid gods and bestial monsters of Greek mythology, one finds a peculiar outlier: Talos the bronze automaton. Said to stalk the shores of Crete, Talos pelted suspicious ships with rocks and immolated enemy soldiers with its smoldering embrace. Does this myth reveal Greek attitudes toward technology? What existing technologies can we decode in its description? Robert and Joe explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.ihea...more

  • From the Vault: The Forer Effect

    Dec 30 2017

    From palm-reading fortune tellers to professionally-administered Myers Briggs test, everyone’s a sucker for a an ego-stroking personality assessment. In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the subtle forces of the Forer effect. (Originally published July 23, 2015) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Winter People, Part 2

    Dec 28 2017

    Do you feel like a different person during the winter? In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert and Joe examine the extent to which winter affects human health and culture. From the winter transformations of the Kwakwa̱ka̱ʼwakw people to the latest studies on seasonal genetic changes, prepare to contemplate the icy dark. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Winter People, Part 1

    Dec 26 2017

    Do you feel like a different person during the winter? In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration, Robert and Joe examine the extent to which winter affects human health and culture. From the winter transformations of the Kwakwa̱ka̱ʼwakw people to the latest studies on seasonal genetic changes, prepare to contemplate the icy dark. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: The Stone of Madness

    Dec 23 2017

    Madness has always intrigued artists, and medieval paintings sometimes presented this malady's treatment via the surgical removal of cranial stone. What was the stone of madness? Was it mere fantasy, metaphor or an actual medical condition? In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe collect their trepanation tools and investigate. (Originally published Jan 7, 2016) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Baby Jesus and the Homunculus

    Dec 21 2017

    We’ve all marveled at the grotesque, oddly-proportioned old man babies in medieval art -- but why did artists of the period pain such creatures? In this special Christmas episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the convergence of the homunculus theory of human reproduction, the nativity and the infants of medieval and renaissance art. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • First Messenger From an Alien Star

    Dec 19 2017

    In recent weeks, the first recorded object from another star system appeared in our solar neighborhood. Dubbed 'Oumuamua,' the interloper stirs both our scientific curiosity and imagination. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss the latest findings. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Machine God: Artificial Superintelligence

    Dec 14 2017

    Voltaire famously postulated that if God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him. As humanity approaches the technological singularity, this statement takes on new meaning. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe contemplate the nature of gods and what it would mean to create an artificial superintelligence. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ophiocordyceps: Fungal Puppet Masters

    Dec 12 2017

    The fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis is the Mona Lisa of mind control parasites. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss the latest findings on its insidious ant-hijacking antics -- as well as a few other favorite biological puppet masters. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • This Present Moment: Philosophy & Neuroscience

    Dec 07 2017

    What is now? What is the present moment? These questions continue to stagger us, for nothing is so simultaneously familiar and alien than the passage of time. Nothing seems more “real” to us that the present, yet it vanishes into nothing at every attempt to capture or quantify it. In this special two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe dive into the experience, physics, philosophy and neuroscience of now. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-adv...more

  • This Present Moment: Experience and Physics

    Dec 05 2017

    What is now? What is the present moment? These questions continue to stagger us, for nothing is so simultaneously familiar and alien than the passage of time. Nothing seems more “real” to us that the present, yet it vanishes into nothing at every attempt to capture or quantify it. In this special two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe dive into the experience, physics, philosophy and neuroscience of now. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-adv...more

  • Tree of Life

    Nov 30 2017

    Sacred trees. World trees. Holy trees of wisdom, immortality and the soul. They seem to grow from every culture on Earth and their roots dig deep into the soil of prehistory. What do they mean? Why are we so drawn to their symbolic power? Join Robert and Christian for a stirring exploration. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: Leary, Bicameralism and Monsters

    Nov 28 2017

    Once more, Stuff to Blow Your Mind powers up the mailbot and considers YOUR comments, stories, insights and questions on recent episodes. In this installment, Robert, Joe and Christian discuss Timothy Leary, bicameralism, twins and all sorts of monsters. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Dangerous Foods III: A Festival of Pain

    Nov 23 2017

    Thanksgiving is a time of feasting and the wages of feasting, and so Robert and Joe are here to dish up a third installment of Stuff to Blow Your Mind’s 'Dangerous Foods' series. Do you dare bite into the likes of licorice, giant Namibian bullfrog, hallucinogenic fish and wriggling octopus tentacles? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • When will the Earth become uninhabitable?

    Nov 21 2017

    Earth is our home, but how much longer can it remain so? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Christian explore the many threats to terrestrial habitability, from the cosmically distant to the frighteningly close at hand. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • An Attempt to Understand Zoophilia

    Nov 16 2017

    Human culture emerges from a legacy of lives lived in close proximity to wild and domesticated animals. We see it in our myths and, in its most taboo and perplexing form, we see it in zoophilia. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian attempt to demystify this abnormal realm of human behavior in a straightforward, tactful manner. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ig Nobels 2017: Vampires, Vaginal Music & Cheese

    Nov 14 2017

    Each year, the Ig Nobel prizes celebrate the most absurd and humorous efforts in legitimate scientific research – and 2017’s winners do not disappoint. Join Robert, Joe and Christian as they discuss all 10 studies in a special three-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind feature. It’s time to finish this three-part series with hair legged vampires, intravaginal music and cheese. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ig Nobels 2017: Crocodile Slots, Twins & Old Ears

    Nov 09 2017

    Each year, the Ig Nobel prizes celebrate the most absurd and humorous efforts in legitimate scientific research – and 2017’s winners do not disappoint. Join Robert, Joe and Christian as they discuss all 10 studies in a special three-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind feature. In part 2, you’ll gamble with crocodiles, stare at your twin’s reflection and measure some old man ears. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ig Nobels 2017: Liquid Cats, Didgeridoos & More

    Nov 07 2017

    Each year, the Ig Nobel prizes celebrate the most absurd and humorous efforts in legitimate scientific research – and 2017’s winners do not disappoint. Join Robert, Joe and Christian as they discuss all 10 studies in a special three-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind feature. Up first, prepare yourself for sex-swapped cave bugs, liquid cats, a better way to drink coffee and the health benefits of the didgeridoo. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From the Vault: Mind Flayers

    Nov 03 2017

    If you've watched Stranger Things 2, then you know another beloved Dungeons and Dragons monster pops up as an analogy for an extra-dimensional menace: the mind flayer. Join Robert and Christian for the 2016 episode 'The Body Illithid: Science of the Mind Flayers,' in which they explore the real-world science behind these tentacled, brain-sucking monsters. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Creepypasta 4: More SCP, Polybius and Grifter

    Nov 02 2017

    Dive into a world of indestructible reptiles, killer video games, bizarre god towers and haunted video tapes as Robert and Christian take on a fourth helping of creepypasta. Join them on Stuff to Blow Your Mind as they seek scientific, psychological and cultural connections between the Internet’s weirdest fiction-shrouded urban legends and the human condition. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Monstrosity/Cuteness Spectrum

    Oct 31 2017

    It seems the unavoidable fate of all terrifying monsters, doesn’t it? We reduce the most horrifying creatures of myth, legend and folklore to an adorable kids costume or a mega-cute illustration. Why can’t we help ourselves? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the battle between cuteness and monstrosity, with examples drawn from Japanese traditions. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The First Monster

    Oct 26 2017

    Humans love monsters, but when did we first dare to dream up bestial hybrids and chimerical horrors? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe consider the 35-40 thousand-year-old Löwenmensch statues. Who created these images of lion-headed men? What do they represent and what do they reveal about human cognition? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Optography: Image in a Dead Man's Eye

    Oct 24 2017

    Pseudoscience often enters our world where magic fails us, seeming to make the impossible possible via the invocation of actual scientific and technological marvels. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the unmistakably necromantic world of optography, a 19th century notion that the last images seen by the dead might be retrieved from the flesh and fluid of the eye. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cambrian Monster Mash

    Oct 19 2017

    Welcome to the ocean of monsters. In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe travel back 500 million years to the monster-haunted waters of the Cambrian period. Meet the monstrous trilobite, anomalocaris, opabinia, hallucigenia, wiwaxia, pikaia and leanchoilia. Plus, Dr. Anton Jessup drops by for a visit. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • A Game of Werewolf

    Oct 17 2017

    If you’ve ever played the party game 'Werewolf,' then you know the thrill of weeding out secret lycanthropes in a medieval village -- or devouring the villagers secretly in the night. But the game goes far beyond parlor fun and mild roleplaying as numerous studies in deception, artificial intelligence and game theory look to its complex social mechanics. Join Robert and Joe as they seek for meaning in the long, murderous night of the werewolf. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.ihe...more

  • Stuff to Blow Your Mind Live: Stranger Science

    Oct 12 2017

    With another season of “Stranger Things” just around the corner, the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast explores the mind rending science behind government research into psychic phenomena, sensory deprivation tanks, interdimensional travel and the real-life researcher lurking behind the fictional Dr. Brenner. Join hosts Robert, Joe and Christian for a live journey into the upside-down from New York Comic Con 2017. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Six Ghost Stories

    Oct 10 2017

    Human superstition provides us with an overwhelming wealth of ghost stories, each an unreal creation that reveals something crucial about culture, history and psychology. In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Christian explore six ghost stories from around the world and discuss what they reveal about the (living) human experience. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Science of It: Deadlights and Derry

    Oct 05 2017

    If you’ve read Stephen King’s “It” or recoiled in fear from the 2017 film and the 1990 miniseries, then perhaps you’ve wondered what science can reveal about Pennywise the Dancing Clown and the horrors of Derry, Maine. Join Robert and Christian as they consider the monster science of the creature itself and various, real world explanations that grown-ups might turn to for a town gone bad. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Laughing During Horror Movies

    Oct 03 2017

    Have you ever heard inappropriate laughter during a horror movie? For that matter, are you the guilty party? Join Robert and Christian as they explore our curious reactions to frightful cinema and how horror and comedy converge in the human mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Bonus: R. Scott Bakker, Consciousness & Consult

    Sep 29 2017

    In this special bonus episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, author R. Scott Bakker returns to the show for a discussion of consciousness, philosophy, artificial intelligence, inhuman minds and the conclusion to his 2017 novel "The Unholy Consult." Don't worry, Robert and Joe will issue warnings prior to the spoiler section of the episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Bicameralism, Part 2: The Silent Pantheon

    Sep 28 2017

    In 1976, psychologist Julian Jaynes presented the world with a stunning new take on the history of human consciousness. His book “The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind” hypothesized that ancient humans heard hallucinated voices in place of conscious thought, and presented archaeological, literary, historical and religious evidence to support this highly controversial view. Join Robert and Joe as they dissect bicameralism and discuss the evidence, the criticisms and m...more

  • Bicameralism, Part 1: The Voice of God

    Sep 26 2017

    In 1976, psychologist Julian Jaynes presented the world with a stunning new take on the history of human consciousness. His book “The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind” hypothesized that ancient humans heard hallucinated voices in place of conscious thought, and presented archaeological, literary, historical and religious evidence to support this highly controversial view. Join Robert and Joe as they dissect bicameralism and discuss the evidence, the criticisms and m...more

  • Timothy Leary, Part 2: Turn On, Tune In, Drop Out

    Sep 21 2017

    Idolized by some and reviled by others, Timothy Leary remains an icon of 1960s counterculture and psychedelic self-exploration. But who was this rebel, psychologist and celebrity? What did he reveal about LSD’s power and potential? Join Robert and Christian for a special two-part look at the man, the time and the drug he championed. Turn on, tune in, drop out... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Timothy Leary, Part 1: The Science of LSD

    Sep 19 2017

    Idolized by some and reviled by others, Timothy Leary remains an icon of 1960s counterculture and psychedelic self-exploration. But who was this rebel, psychologist and celebrity? What did he reveal about LSD’s power and potential? Join Robert and Christian for a special two-part look at the man, the time and the drug he championed. Turn on, tune in, drop out... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: Media and Memory

    Sep 14 2017

    Join Robert, Joe and Christian for another listener mail extravaganza! They'll read your feedback on human memory, science communication, Chinese culture, history and more. Plus is Karny the Mailbot in love? Tune in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Poison and the Rhino Horn

    Sep 12 2017

    Can a chalice made of rhino horn detect poison? Can its ground powder serve as an aphrodisiac? The science is at best sketchy on both fronts, but such beliefs continue to endanger the world’s remaining rhinoceros species. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the magical beliefs surrounding rhino horn and exactly what science has to say about the matter. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Psychology of Tattoos

    Sep 07 2017

    Do you have a tattoo? If so, you probably have an interesting story to go with it, or some personal insight into just what the design and the experience mean to you. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian discuss the science of tattoos and the psychology behind why we get them and how the world sees us afterwards. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Chakram: Spinning Death in Myth, War & Physics

    Sep 05 2017

    It’s easy to assume that spinning, ring-shaped blades are weapons best left to Hindu gods and TV warrior princesses. But long before humans invented the peaceful Aerobie, ancient Indian warriors unleashed spinning chakram against their enemies -- and Sikh warriors continued to use them in combat up into the 19th century. Join Robert and Christian as they explore the mythic power, military history and aerodynamics of this marvelous flying halo. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.ihe...more

  • Green Beard Genes

    Aug 31 2017

    Join Robert and Joe as they explore the world of green beard genes and their role in biological altruism. The Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast takes you from the writings of William D. Hamilton and Richard Dawkins to laboratory results entailing ants, slime molds and rodent sperm trains. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Shared False Memories and The Mandela Effect

    Aug 29 2017

    If you’ve ever reminisced with friends about movies that never existed or historical details that never came to pass, then you’ve experienced the weirdness of shared false memories. Also known as the Mandela Effect, it’s led some to interpret erroneous memories of 90s Sinbad movies as paranormal events. But as Robert and Christian explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, it all boils down to the complex, amazing and fallible way our memory works. Learn more about your ad-choices at ht...more

  • Are we condemned to repeat history?

    Aug 24 2017

    Philosopher George Santayana said that 'Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.' If that’s true, then can an extensive understanding of past events help human civilization avoid future catastrophes? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian turn to the field of cliodynamics and its attempts to identify the cycles of social unrest and violence. Can we avoid the terror of history? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-adve...more

  • Greek Fire: The Byzantine Secret Weapon

    Aug 22 2017

    To engage the ships of Byzantine Empire was to risk the horrors of Greek fire, a medieval weapons system that empowered ships to spew forth flaming liquid on enemy ships and crew members. The secrets of Greek fire are lost to history, but historians and scientists continue to theorize its formula and deployment details. Join Robert and Joe as they discuss the weapon’s history, predominant theories on its specifics and the risks and rewards of secret keeping. Learn more about your ad-choices at h...more

  • Six Deadly Poisons

    Aug 17 2017

    Deadly elixirs in tiny bottles play into the cruelest machinations of history, fiction and myth. In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, join Robert and Christian as they sneak six of these deadly concoctions from the poisoner’s chest and explore each one’s power and place in human history. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Path of Totality: See the Eclipse!

    Aug 15 2017

    There’s a total solar eclipse sweeping across the center of the United States on Monday, August 21, 2017, so here’s a special Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast episode to enhance the experience! Join Robert and Joe for practical viewing tips and a rundown on the celestial mechanics at work in the sky above. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Alien Abduction Experience, Part 2

    Aug 10 2017

    What are we to make of alien abduction experiences? Scientific investigation points to a barrage of logical explanations for abnormal sensory experience, from sleep paralysis and temporal lobe anomalies to false memory encoding. Interpret it all within the confines of a sci-fi narrative and you have a revealing, kaleidoscopic view of the 20th century zeitgeist in all its wonder, hope, anxiety and yearning. Join Robert and Christian for this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-part examination of paranor...more

  • Alien Abduction Experience, Part 1

    Aug 08 2017

    What are we to make of alien abduction experiences? Scientific investigation points to a barrage of logical explanations for abnormal sensory experience, from sleep paralysis and temporal lobe anomalies to false memory encoding. Interpret it all within the confines of a sci-fi narrative and you have a revealing, kaleidoscopic view of the 20th century zeitgeist in all its wonder, hope, anxiety and yearning. Join Robert and Christian for this Stuff to Blow Your Mind two-part examination of paranor...more

  • The Science of Secrets

    Aug 03 2017

    Can you keep a secret? If so, what's the psychic weight of that secret? How does secret keeping fit into human evolution and the modern shape of human society? Join Robert and Joe as they discuss the science of secrets and secret keeping in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Buddha is a Mountain

    Aug 01 2017

    One of the largest historical statues in the world, China’s Lèshān Grand Buddha has overlooked the Dàdù river for 1200 years. Carved from the side of a mountain, this serene titan is a testament to human artistry and the Anthropocene Epoch. Join Robert and Joe for a discussion of the Buddha’s history, meaning and the overarching theme of humanity’s remaking of the natural world. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sharks of Summer (with Marah Hardt of ‘Sex in the Sea’)

    Jul 27 2017

    If you watch enough 'Jaws' and Shark Week, you’re bound to see sharks as ravenous death machines. But is it really more appropriate to think of these ancient creatures as LIFE machines? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Christian welcome 'Sex in the Sea' author Marah Hardt back on the podcast for a discussion of embryonic cannibalism, virgin shark birth, conservation efforts and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertiser...more

  • Svalbard: Land of Snow and Apocalypse Arks

    Jul 25 2017

    The Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard has it all: glaciers, polar bears, scientific researchers and an epic seed vault built to survive the apocalypse. Join Robert and Christian as they discuss this frigid environment and the human activities that have come to define it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Summer Reading: Aliens, Microbes, Cocktails and More

    Jul 20 2017

    It's time once again for Robert, Joe and Christian to share a selection of fiction, nonfiction and comic book reads to enhance your summer travels -- or simply boost your reading list. Join your Stuff to Blow Your Mind hosts as they discuss volumes about alien worlds, space vampires, nuclear war, content creation, cocktails and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Biophilia Hypothesis

    Jul 18 2017

    Why are humans so drawn to the natural world of biodiverse organisms? Is this longing merely part of our culture or do we possess an innate and even genetic tendency to focus on life and lifelike processes? Join Robert and Joe as they discuss Edward O. Wilson’s biophilia hypothesis and explore arguments for and against this captivating view of nature lovers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Artificial Gravity: Cosmic Wheels and Hurtling Towers

    Jul 13 2017

    Humans are creatures of gravity. We’re born into it. Life as we know it evolved to thrive in it. So what’s a gravitational organism to do in the low-gravity and zero-gravity expanses beyond Earth? You can’t bring it with you, but scientists have cooked up a few different schemes to replicate its effects. Join Robert and Joe for a full exploration in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Order out of Chaos: How to Create a Universe

    Jul 11 2017

    Numerous mythologies speak to the birth of our universe out of darkness and chaos, but can humans follow in the footsteps of the gods? Can we create a universe in the lab? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe explore the primordial darkness of multiple cosmologies as well as the theoretical depths of human-created universes and simulated realities. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cultural Appropriation

    Jul 06 2017

    We’ve all heard charges of cultural appropriation in everything from fashion and music to personal world view, but what’s actually at stake here? What is cultural misappropriation, when does it have negative consequences and how does it fit into our historical and scientific understanding of the human experience? Robert and Christian explore. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sword of the Samurai

    Jul 04 2017

    Appreciation for the katana cuts across cultures and genres, slicing into the hearts of history buffs, japanophiles, comic book fans and more. But what’s so special about the sword of the Samurai? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian discuss the science of this most skillful blade, the grisly test for its sharpness and its importance in Japanese culture. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ticks, Mites and Mysterious Lone Star Illnesses

    Jun 29 2017

    Ticks are, in the words of Pliny the Elder, 'the foulest and nastiest creature that be.' If these blood sucking arachnids and their mite brethren weren’t horrible enough, they’re second only to the mosquito in the risk of blood borne human pathogens. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss ticks, chiggers and the mysterious illnesses associated with the lone star tick -- one of which generates a meat allergy in the host. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news...more

  • CRISPR and the Genetic Astronaut

    Jun 27 2017

    In 1960, scientists Nathan Kline and Manfred Clynes envisioned a spacefaring cyborg, technologically augmented to endure the rigors of space travel. The subsequent six decades of space exploration largely ignored this radical suggestion, but the advent of gene editing tools like CRISPR present raise new questions. Might genetic alterations give future astronauts the 'right stuff?' What would the physiology of a genetically-augmented space traveler even look like? Robert and Joe explore in this e...more

  • Extended Cognition: Brain, Fingers, Web and Krang

    Jun 22 2017

    It’s easy to think yourself a mere brain within a human body -- a cognitive machine making sense out of all the incoming sense data from outside world. But what if other parts of the body and even objects beyond the body serve a vital role in our cognition? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe discuss the concept of extended cognition and how it relates to the human condition, number systems, spider webs, octopuses, mantises and even a fictional alien brain mons...more

  • Name Thy Demons: The Roots of Human Violence

    Jun 20 2017

    Is human civilization growing less violent? Cognitive scientist Steven Pinker argued the point in his 2011 book 'The Better Angels of Our Nature,' in which he also defined the 'five inner demons' that push us to wrath. Know them -- speak their true names -- and you have the power to undermine their influence. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore Pinker's thesis and draw in supporting research and dissenting opinions. Learn more about your ad-choices at https:/...more

  • AI, Machine Learning and Human Creativity

    Jun 15 2017

    Just as manufacturing automation cuts into human jobs, the prospect of creative artificial intelligence raises the specter of robot writers, robot artists and robot musicians who never sleep and always agree with their patron. But paranoia aside, where will creative machine learning take us? Robert and Christian discuss some possibilities in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Science Communication Breakdown

    Jun 14 2017

    Science enabled humans to ascend out of the darkness and tackle life’s problems with systematic, self-correcting rigidity. Yet, when faced with scientific consensus on climate change and other issues, some citizens, politicians and even scientists dig in their heels and deny the shape of our current understand. Why do some people doubt scientific consensus? What’s wrong in science communication? Robert and Joe attempt to find an answer. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com...more

  • There But For Science: Blood Navigation

    Jun 09 2017

    Imagine a world in which sailing ships navigate by the yelps of tormented dogs and nuclear submarines whisper to each other via the screams of rabbits and their murdered young? In both of these cases, science won out over magical thinking -- and actual scientific advances stepped in to solve the problems. Join Robert and Joe as the discuss the powder of sympathy and 20th century state-sponsored paranormal research. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Tower of Babel

    Jun 06 2017

    An ancient people build a tower to touch the heavens. A vengeful god disrupts the project through the splintering of human language. Everyone’s left to pick up the pieces. The Tower of Babel myth resonates out from the Mesopotamian cradle of civilization, but what does it mean? Was there really a tower? Join Robert and Joe as they discuss everything from the art of Bruegel the Elder to 'Snow Crash.' Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Neurosecurity: Dawn of the Brain Hackers

    Jun 01 2017

    While hackers and malware can certainly cause a great deal of damage and misery, these dangers can’t hurt us physically, right? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe are sorry to say you’re wrong -- and as more biotechnology and brain-computer interface creeps into our lives, the risk will only go up. Tune in for a discussion on inherent vulnerability, looming technology and what needs to happen to protect us. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.ihea...more

  • Height, Health and Human Happiness

    May 30 2017

    Tall people. Short People. Somewhere-in-between people. What are we to make of human height and its relationship to overall health and personality? Robert and Christian explore in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. All heights welcome. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Five Reasons to Never Take Your Space Helmet Off

    May 25 2017

    You've consumed enough science fiction to know something the average red shirt doesn't: Never take your space helmet off on a foreign planet. But if you're still tempted to breathe deep the gathering gloom, how about five compelling scientific reasons not to? Join Robert and Joe as they discuss 'Alien: Covenant' and explore some very compelling biological and radiological reasons to remain helmeted on an alien hell world. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advert...more

  • R. Scott Bakker: On Alien Philosophy and Fantasy

    May 23 2017

    Canadian author R. Scott Bakker is best known for his Second Apocalypse saga, a series of dark fantasy novels that explore philosophical and even neuroscientific ideas through a world of sorcery, holy wars and inhuman evil. In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe chat with Bakker about his recent paper 'On Alien Philosophy,' published in the The Journal of Consciousness Studies. Plus, as a long-time fan, Robert throws in a few questions about Bakker’s approach to fiction a...more

  • Hook Suspension and the Complexity of Pain

    May 18 2017

    Hook suspension challenges our perceptions of pain. We see practitioners, pierced through the flesh with hooks, suspended by chains and yet smiling as if lost to a state of bliss. What are they feeling? Where does this practice come from and how does it fit into the larger human experience? Join Robert and Christian as they explore this most-outsider form of masochistic performance art. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Escape Velocity: Jack Parsons and the New Magick

    May 16 2017

    Jack Parsons wanted to break free, from both the limits of Earth and the boundaries of traditional early 20th century American thought. He devoted his short life to the scientific pursuit of rocket engineering and the occult exploration of magick. As such, Parsons is a contradiction -- a counterculture figure that continues to fascinate us with his mystery. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the work and wonder that moved his life. Learn more about your ad-c...more

  • Weird Wonders of House Gastropoda

    May 11 2017

    The world of slugs and snails is a grotesque circus of fever-dream horrors and biological marvels. Join Robert and Christian for a six-species dive into their life cycles of slime, iron plating, deadly neurotoxins and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Jade Immortality: Burial Armor of the Han Dynasty

    May 09 2017

    Chinese aristocracy of the Western Han Dynasty embarked on their journey into the afterlife within garments of stone -- luxurious suits of jade armor entailing thousands of individual plates sewn together with gold, silver or silk. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore this ancient funeral custom and both the scientific and superstitious qualities of jade. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Push the Frontier

    May 04 2017

    You’ve seen enough Westerns and Game of Throne episodes to know a frontier when you see it, but what exactly is this boundary between the laws of your world and the promise or threat of another? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss the membranous nature of frontier in world-systems theory, as well as Frederick Jackson Turner’s influential thesis on the American frontier. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • STBYM Live: Weird Science in the Windy City

    May 02 2017

    Robert, Christian and Joe transport you back to the Chicago Columbian Exposition of 1893, when the neoclassical architecture of Daniel Burnham’s White City loomed on the shores of Lake Michigan, Nikola Tesla’s alternating current powered thousands of decorative incandescent lamps, and the original Ferris Wheel gave visitors from all around the world a view from the top. Join them for a live C2E2 2017 discussion on the great wheel, the Parliament of World Religions and the H. H. Holmes Murder Cas...more

  • Listener Mail: In One Ear, Out the Third Eye

    Apr 27 2017

    Robert, Joe and Christian call in the mailbot for yet another dose of listener feedback. Join them as they read your thoughts on everything from the uncanny valley and the Black Stone of Mecca to hook suspension and the science of guessing. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • H. R. Giger and the Biomechanical Soul

    Apr 25 2017

    We’ve all seen the surreal biomechanical art of the late H.R. Giger, but the artist’s mainstream success and the undying appeal of his 'Alien' sometimes prevent a full appreciation of his dark vision. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the psychology and themes present in Giger’s art and chat with artist E.C. Steiner on Giger’s influences and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Where is my mind?

    Apr 20 2017

    Today, most humans accept the brain as the seat of human consciousness, but this was not always the case. Join Robert and Joe as they explore ancient, alternative views on the anatomical center of reason and tackle contemporary mysteries regarding the neurological seat of consciousness. Where is your mind? Prepare to find out… Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fossil Action Scenes: Dino Birth and Prehistoric Combat

    Apr 18 2017

    Fossilized remains provide exciting insight into the biology and behavior of prehistoric beasts, but sometimes the fossil record gives us even more -- a bonafide action scene! In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explain fossilization and discuss examples of birth, mating behavior and deadly dinosaur-on-dinosaur combat written in the rocks. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Disease Takes Flight on Leathery Wings

    Apr 13 2017

    Bats have been demonized through history. Our folklore and horror stories tell us they’re something to be afraid of because they’re 'creatures of the night' with weird abilities like echolocation. And recent events tell us they carry diseases that could kill us. But bats could also have super immune systems that allow them to live long lives, avoid cancer and fight off viruses. What can we learn from them? Robert and Christian explore... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.co...more

  • The Demon-Haunted Mind

    Apr 11 2017

    Demons exist only within the human imagination, but that doesn’t make them harmless. If positive religious world views can result in a more positive state of mind, then might belief in soul-clawing, life-wrecking horned Hell fiends edge one closer to the edge of madness? Join Robert and Christian as they explore a recent study on the topic, and they might even summon a demon or two from the realms of myth. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Beyond the Uncanny Valley

    Apr 06 2017

    The far side of the uncanny valley rises steeply, assaulting our psyche as our artificial human likenesses creep ever closer toward perfection. But what happens when we actually emerge on the other side? What happens to human society when video footage is no longer the gold standard? Robert and Joe investigate. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Into the Uncanny Valley

    Apr 04 2017

    From bad CGI characters to creepy humanoid robots, everyone knows the uncanny valley effect when they see it. But where did this idea come from and to what extent is it actually a thing? Join Robert and Joe as they descend into the uncanny valley and explore just what's going on in our minds when we lock eyes with less-than-human simulacrums. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sexbots: From Objectification to Therapeutic Surrogates

    Mar 30 2017

    Sex between humans and machines is nothing new in the world of science fiction. Their forms range from angelic mechanoids to victimized humanoids, but the robotic lover is almost always an expression of purely human anxieties. Yet as real-world technology advances, we’re left to ponder the emerging form of the sex bot -- and the possibilities range from mere animate fetishes to therapeutic surrogates. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian consider arguments for and aga...more

  • Fertility, Ovulation and Consumer Decision Making

    Mar 28 2017

    For 50 percent of the population, ovulation plays a role in human behavior -- but to what extent? Marketing researcher and social psychologist Kristina Durante contends that ovulation plays a large role in the decision making process of fertile females. If her research holds true, then it means corporations and even political parties are already attempting to game ovulation for their own benefit. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian examine and discuss the research. L...more

  • Be a Better Guesser With Fermi Estimation

    Mar 23 2017

    How many eyeballs are in the jar? How many piano tuners ply their trade in Chicago and how many intelligent alien civilizations await us in the universe? These questions might seem overwhelming, but Fermi estimation allows us to break down overwhelming mysteries into smaller, digestible problems. Robert and Joe will guide you through the numbers in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Far Below: The London Underground Mosquito

    Mar 21 2017

    Unnatural tunnels worm and weave their way beneath centuries of accumulated London sprawl, and here a few natural creature assume unnatural behaviors -- including the humble mosquito. For wherever humans travel, into whatever new shapes they give the environment, the drinkers of their blood inherently follow. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the curious ways of the London Underground mosquito. Mind the gap… between species! Learn more about your ad-choices at ht...more

  • Two Minutes To Midnight: The Doomsday Clock

    Mar 16 2017

    The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists continues to calculate humanity’s countdown to annihilation, but who calculates the doomsday clock and what factors bring us closer to midnight? Robert and Christian explore in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Necessity of Patient Zero

    Mar 14 2017

    Patient zero looms large in our collective consciousness. Through carelessness, impropriety or sheer twisted luck, they introduce highly contagious pathogens into new human populations -- if not the human species itself. But where does the science end and the game of scapegoating and othering begin? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the concept of patient zero in science, history and myth. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-...more

  • Life After Radiation: Sickness, Death and Sustenance

    Mar 09 2017

    While fictional monsters and superheroes consume rads like video game power-ups, radiation is a trickier matter in reality -- from everyday radiation to the destructive exposure associated with nuclear accidents and nuclear war. In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe explore the nature of radiation, its effects on living tissue and the curious world of radiotrophic fungi. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • One-Armed Bandits: The Science of Slot Machines

    Mar 07 2017

    You may call it a slot machine, a fruit machine or a one-armed bandit, but the reality is the same: an algorithmically precise machine designed to drain the human gambler of all his or her earnings. Where did these insidious machines come from? How do they ensorcell us? In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the science and psychology of slot machine gambling behavior. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mandala: Memory Palace and Simulated Worlds

    Mar 02 2017

    The mandalas of Tibetan Buddhism entice us as artistic expressions, meta symbols and conscience expressions of a complex spiritual cosmology. In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Christian explore the nature of Tibetan Buddhism, the meaning within mandalic art and how this all connects to the western mnemonic system known as ‘the memory palace’ and the modern use of simulated worlds. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Books of Flesh: Anthropodermic Bibliopegy

    Feb 28 2017

    The libraries of horror fiction typically offer many a dark tome bound in human flesh, but do books like the ‘Necronomicon Ex-Mortis’ of ‘Evil Dead’ really exist? They do, and the true story of skin-clad literature will chill you. Join Robert and Christian as they crack open the history and science of anthropodermic bibliopegy. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Secret Intellect of Animals, Part 2

    Feb 23 2017

    In the second of two episodes, Christian and Joe continue their discussion of animal cognition, including animal morality, tool use, mental time travel, culture, and other strange clues to the intellectual complexity of our cousins in the animal kingdom. Afterwards, they speak to Dutch-American primatologist Frans de Waal about his book and his thoughts on the future of animal intelligence research. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Secret Intellect of Animals, Part 1

    Feb 21 2017

    In the 18th century, David Hume wrote that “no truth appears to me more evident than that beasts are endow’d with thought and reason as well as men.” Yet animal cognition has remained a controversial subject in science ever since. In the first of two episodes, Christian and Joe discuss the work of Dutch-American primatologist Frans de Waal, and ask the question of not just whether animals are smarter than we understand, but why the evidence of animal cognition is often so difficult for we humans...more

  • The Holy Black Stone of Mecca

    Feb 16 2017

    The Kaaba marks the geographic center of the Islamic world, and here one finds Al-Hadjar Al-Aswad, the Holy Black Stone of Mecca. Islamic traditions hold that the once white white stone blackened with humanity’s sins, but various scientific theories point to geological and potentially cosmic origins. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss the mythic, historical and scientific substance of the Kaaba. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-a...more

  • The Mystery of Crab Boxing

    Feb 14 2017

    Boxer crabs stand out amid their crustacean brethren due to their amazing tool use -- a mutualistic relationship between these tiny crabs and the living sea anemones they employ as weapons. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian look at a pair of studies that expand on their amazing use of weapons. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Jump Into The Void

    Feb 09 2017

    Ever wrestle with the illogical quasi-compulsion to throw yourself off a cliff or building? Don’t worry! You’re probably not suicidal, but merely touched by the 'call of the void' or 'high place phenomenon.' In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Christian explore some of the more enlightening theories about this experience. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Scientific Reductionism

    Feb 07 2017

    You might have read that 'love is a smoke raised with the fume of sighs,' but would it really be better explained as the behavior of a large aggregation of elementary particles and their quantum mechanical and electrodynamic properties? Would a perfect a scientific worldview ultimately reduce all explanations to fundamental physics, or is there genuine novelty at the higher levels of complexity we find in everything from superconductors to politics? Join Robert and Joe for a journey into the inn...more

  • 100 Days Later: Mathematics of a Zombie Apocalypse

    Feb 02 2017

    When it comes to the particulars of a fictional zombie apocalypse, the particulars are all over the place -- but it’s always fun to throw fantastic monsters up against the wall of science to see what sticks. In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Christian explore a few different studies that examine the undead plague from the standpoint of mathematics and infections disease. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Chinese Immortality: Elixirs and Enlightened Beings

    Jan 31 2017

    From deathless beheaded warriors and sacrificial heroines to mystical hermits, Chinese mythology is rich with tales of the undying. After all, the notion of immortality is as old as recorded history, so it makes sense to find a diverse, uniquely Chinese take on the trope. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, join Robert and Joe as they contemplate tales and traditions from Taoist sorcery, alchemy and Chinese folktales. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-ad...more

  • Chinese Zodiac: Superstition, Economics & Destiny

    Jan 26 2017

    As we celebrate Chinese New Year and enter the year of the fire rooster, join Robert and Joe for an encore Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration of the Chinese zodiac and some interesting studies related to its impact on birth rates, economics and individual destiny. As always, you can take astrology with a grain of salt, but the impact on human behavior and culture is undeniable. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Interplanetary War

    Jan 24 2017

    Syfy’s 'The Expanse,' based on the James S. A. Corey book series, revolves around conflict between human-seeded planetary civilizations -- namely a UN-governed Earth and an independent Martian state. How does this vision match up with futurist predictions concerning interplanetary war, the rigors of space travel and postcolonial cultural schisms? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore and even chat with 'The Expanse' executive producer Naren Shankar. Learn more ...more

  • Sailors on a Dark Sea: Political Extremism, Child’s Play

    Jan 19 2017

    As we sail through this world of technological marvel and complex systems, it’s easy to assume we know the watery depths that yawn beneath our hull. As it turns out, however, it’s all an illusion of explanatory depth. We think we understand day-to-day gadgets, but are at a loss to explain their functionality. We think we understand policy and politics, but are better at explaining why we hold our beliefs than how particular policies might solve life’s hideous problems. In this two-part episode o...more

  • Sailors on a Dark Sea: Illusion of Explanatory Depth

    Jan 17 2017

    As we sail through this world of technological marvel and complex systems, it’s easy to assume we know the watery depths that yawn beneath our hull. As it turns out, however, it’s all an illusion of explanatory depth. We think we understand day-to-day gadgets, but are at a loss to explain their functionality. We think we understand policy and politics, but are better at explaining why we hold our beliefs than how particular policies might solve life’s hideous problems. In this two-part episode o...more

  • Mixologia: Potions, Cocktails & Deadly Spirits

    Jan 12 2017

    While the cocktail is an inherently American invention, the history of combining alcohols with other substances to create potent, drinkable concoctions dates back to ancient times. While you might expect dangerous ingredients to have a place in a wizard’s potion or a philosopher's goblet, modern cocktails and spirits have also dabbled with nefarious elixirs. Join Robert and Joe as they explore the history, myth and science behind it all in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more abou...more

  • The Science of Holy Butter

    Jan 10 2017

    There's more to butter than meets the eye. Each yellow pat of fatty goodness is nothing short of processed solar energy, and its long history entails many a magical and sacred rite. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian consider the curious nature of butter. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Myth of Green Tea Hallucinations

    Jan 05 2017

    Read the 1872 ghost story “Green Tea” and you might worry that a fresh cup of Sencha might summon visions of a demonic ghost monkey. But don’t fear! In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the myth and likelihood of green tea hallucinations. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Exorcism/Adorcism

    Jan 03 2017

    You’ve likely never attended an exorcism, but popular culture ensures that you know what one is. Yes, we’re talking the forced removal of a demonic entity from the human psyche, but what else can we glean about this paranormal experience from shamanistic rites of exorcism and the psychological principles of dissociative identity disorder and cognitive dissonance? As 'The Exorcist' creeps in on its 43rd anniversary, Robert and Christian discuss the real and imaginary forces at work in the demon-h...more

  • What Mind Control Feels Like

    Dec 29 2016

    If mind control is possible, whether enabled by hard neurotechnology or good old fashioned social and linguistic suggestion, what does it feel like? What is it like to be controlled by a will other than your own? Would you even know it was happening? Robert and Joe explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Body Illithid: Science of the Mind Flayers

    Dec 27 2016

    If Dungeons and Dragons has ever touched your life, then you’re probably familiar with the tentacled, brain-sucking Illithids. Even in a fantasy world so rich in bizarre monstrosities, the Mind Flayers stand out as shockingly alien. Yet the Illithids are not without their parallels in the natural world -- and even in human civilization. Join Robert and Christian for a science-grounded look at everyone’s favorite Underdark horror. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcas...more

  • Dangerous Foods II: The Second Course

    Dec 22 2016

    In a world… where few people know the source of their foods and everyday meals seem the safest refuge, some dishes have deadly designs. From the masters of terror who brought you last year’s Stuff to Blow Your Mind episode 'A Six Course Feast of Dangerous Foods' comes the holiday dread of 'Dangerous Foods II: The Second Course.' Can your heart stand the shocking facts about toxic potatoes, mad honey and the mysteries of the dead man’s fingers? 'Dangerous Foods II: The Second Course.' This time, ...more

  • A Six Course Feast of Dangerous Foods

    Dec 20 2016

    Considering a holiday feast of toxic sushi and deadly casserole? Then this encore presentation is for you. Join Robert and Joe for a six-course meal of culinary danger! Discover six foods that deliver a lethal taste profile when carelessly prepared or consumed by the uninitiated diner -- and tune in for a brand NEW 'Deadly Foods' episode on Thursday. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Nature of Heroism

    Dec 15 2016

    Heroes permeate our culture, from mythic archetypes and pop-culture superheroes to real-life humans who risk their lives for others. But from where does heroism emerge? Robert and Christian explore the question in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind Podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Euphemisms: Linguistic Transmutation

    Dec 13 2016

    Sure, euphemisms allow us to talk about something unpleasant or taboo without actually invoking the dreaded word or words -- but what else is going on? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe explore the linguistic power of euphemisms to alter and transform the tone or meaning of everyday communication. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Artes Mathematicall: The Diviner John Dee

    Dec 08 2016

    Elizabethan scholar Dr. John Dee was one of the most learned men of the 16th century, applying his intense mathematical intellect to matters scientific, political, alchemical and occult. He advised Queen Elizabeth, sought communion with angelic beings, advocated British expansion and plunged the depths of human knowledge in age of great change. In this second of two episodes on the topic, Robert and Christian discuss Dr. Dee’s involvement in science, statecraft, cryptography and espionage. Learn...more

  • Artes Mathematicall: The Conjurer John Dee

    Dec 06 2016

    Elizabethan scholar Dr. John Dee was one of the most learned men of the 16th century, applying his intense mathematical intellect to matters scientific, political, alchemical and occult. He advised Queen Elizabeth, sought communion with angelic beings, advocated British expansion and plunged the depths of human knowledge in age of great change. In this first of two episodes on the topic, Robert and Christian discuss the world, life and magic of the enigmatic Dr. Dee. Learn more about your ad-cho...more

  • Listener Mail VII: Fill Your Ears

    Dec 01 2016

    It's listener mail time again! Join Robert, Joe and Christian for listener feedback on combat drugs, only child syndrome, technology without fire, ghost marriage, forensics and more. Plus Karnie the Mailbot scans itself for viruses and reboots for action. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Creep

    Nov 29 2016

    You've all witnessed and been witnessed by the Creep, but what attributes compose this unsettling character? Why do we fear the creep and what, indeed, are we to make of the Creep in the mirror? Join Robert and Joe for an autopsy of this most unsavory archetype. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • To The Escape Pod!

    Nov 24 2016

    Ever wanted to climb into the safe, metal womb of an escape pod and blast yourself free of this doomed vessel called life? Sure you have, but in the meantime consider some of the real-life air, space and terrestrial escape capsules that humans have envisioned over the years. Robert and Joe tell you all about it in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Is social media driving us insane?

    Nov 22 2016

    If our collective social, cultural and political angst may be compared to a fire, then social media often seems the kiln that contains it. But are resources such as FaceBook and Twitter mere vessels for the blistering heat, or are they complacent in the flame’s intensity? Robert and Christian explore in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • I Was Eaten by a Giant Spider

    Nov 18 2016

    The spiders that occur in nature are not a creeping menace -- rather, they are a true invisible ally of humankind. But if one were to grow to 1950s sci-fi proportions, even the arachnophiliacs among us would have to admit we had a problem on our hands. How do spiders eat their prey, and what would it be like if a human being were consumed by an impossibly large spider? Robert and Joe explore in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news....more

  • A World Before Fire: The Human Flame

    Nov 17 2016

    Humans existed before their mastery of fire, albeit in a rather primitive state -- and yes, even Earth itself knew an age when fire itself was not only scarce, but chemically impossible. In this two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe venture back to a time before the flame and consider the curious, interconnected ascension of man and fire. In part two, consider how fire enabled the evolutionary and technological ascent of humanity. Learn more about your ad-choices at https:/...more

  • A World Before Fire: The Terrestrial Anomaly

    Nov 15 2016

    Humans existed before their mastery of fire, albeit in a rather primitive state -- and yes, even Earth itself knew an age when fire itself was not only scarce, but chemically impossible. In this two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe venture back to a time before the flame and consider the curious, interconnected ascension of man and fire. In part one, explore the chemistry of a flameless Earth and the possibility of alien technology without fire. Learn more about your ad-ch...more

  • Combat Stims: Better Warriors Through Chemistry

    Nov 10 2016

    Combat stims and pharmacological power-ups are a staple of our gun-blazing video games, enabling players to rack up atrocious body counts. But what’s the reality of combat drugs? How do we separate legends from reality and just what our soldiers currently taking to enable, survive and live with the violence of their profession? Robert and Christian explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Only Child Syndrome: Brats, Myths and Little Emperors

    Nov 08 2016

    What sort of behavior, personality and life can we expect from an only child? A lot of cultural expectations persist about the singleton, from the spoiled Veruca Salt of “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” to the “little emperors” who rose up in the wake of China’s One Child Policy. But what’s the truth of the matter? Robert and Christian explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Incu-succubi: Demon in the Halls of Sleep

    Nov 01 2016

    Incubi and succubi emerge from Western demonology as supernatural seducers who prey on human passion. But of course seductive demons and sexual ghosts can be found in traditions around the world. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the basics of incubus and succubus myths, a few international variants and the possible biological, psychological and neurological explanations for these paranormal encounters. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/...more

  • Frankenstein: 200 Years of Scientific Dread

    Oct 27 2016

    Mary Shelly’s “Frankenstein” has terrified the world for nearly two centuries, thanks to countless adaptations and the timeless nature of the 1816 text. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian discuss the modern world that this science-fiction horror classic emerged from and the dark shadow it continues to cast over scientific endeavor. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Creepypasta 3: The SCP Foundation

    Oct 25 2016

    Is there science behind the creepypasta? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian return to the realm of online folklore and collaborative fiction for a look at the Special Containment Procedures (SCP) Foundation. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Now I am Become Death: Cotard's Delusion

    Oct 20 2016

    Consider Cotard’s Delusion, also known as Cotard’s Syndrome, that rare mental illness in which the patient comes to believe themselves a corpse. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe investigate tales of the deathly deluded. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Death Roots: Dreams and Science of Carnivorous Plants

    Oct 18 2016

    Are humans truly safe from the hunger of mean-eating plants? Can we trust the trees that loom over us? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe discuss myths and fictions of killer trees, the science of carnivorous plants and the curious absence of mean-eating plants in our natural world. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Will-o'-the-Wisp: A Light in the Swamp

    Oct 13 2016

    There was a time when strange lights appeared in the marshlands. Commoners might have known the eerie luminescence as “Will-o’-the-Wisp” or “Hinky Punk,” while the learned pondered the mysteries of “Ignis Fatuus.” Superstitions aside, what natural phenomenon was at work here, before accounts of false fires in the night largely vanished from history? In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe search for answers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/p...more

  • The Creepypasta Experiments

    Oct 11 2016

    Surf the Internet long enough and you’ll happen upon creepypasta: little cut-and-paste snippets of horror that blur the lines between reality and the fantastic. These collectively assembled amalgams of pop culture influences take on their own amorphous power -- and more than a few of them seem to involve shadowy science experiments. So in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the real-life science behind a handful of experiments from the world of creepypasta. Lear...more

  • The 2016 Ig Nobels: Pale Horses, Dead Flies and Quantified Bullroar

    Oct 06 2016

    Each year, a magazine called The Annals of Improbable Research awards the Ig Nobel prizes to honor the weirdest and funniest scientific projects ever undertaken by humans. In this pair of Stuff to Blow Your Mind episodes, Robert, Joe and Christian discuss this year's winners. In part two, you’ll hear about profiles in lying, pale horses, automotive alchemy, the passion of a fly collector, and people who find profundity in meaningless statements. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.i...more

  • The 2016 Ig Nobels: Rat Pants, Mooning and the Sincerity of Rocks

    Oct 04 2016

    Each year, a magazine called The Annals of Improbable Research awards the Ig Nobel prizes to honor the weirdest and funniest scientific projects ever undertaken by humans. In this pair of Stuff to Blow Your Mind episodes, Robert, Joe and Christian discuss this year's winners. In part one, you can expect to hear about rats with pants, the personalities of rocks, scientific mooning, mirror-assisted itch relief, as well as the lived experience of goatmen and badgermen. Learn more about your ad-choi...more

  • Conjoined Dreamers

    Sep 29 2016

    Is the dream world a solitary creation of the sleeping mind, or can we share these spaces of fear, wonder and desire with other dreamers? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore Carl Jung’s collective unconscious as well as the science of linked dreaming via computer interfaces. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Nine Dream Worlds of Frederik van Eeden

    Sep 27 2016

    Have you ever desired a map of the dream world? Look no further than the ideas and practices of Dutch psychiatrist Frederik van Eeden. Influenced by Hindu philosophy, mysticism and panpsychism, van Eeden coined the term 'lucid dreaming' along with eight other specific states of dreaming. Join Robert and Christian as they explore his seven kingdoms of sleep. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Undead Genes: Genetic Activation After Death

    Sep 22 2016

    While more elaborate visions of the afterlife view mortal existence as a sort of larval stage in a grander human timeline, science tells us that death is the end. The human mind blinks out of existence as the brain dies. The vast multicellular, microbiota-colonized empire collapses into decay. And yet, as things fall apart, certain genes have been observed to activate. Join Robert and Joe as they explore the world of ‘undead genes.’ Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/pod...more

  • Weird Mushrooms!

    Sep 20 2016

    Join Robert and Christian as they crack open the sacred book of the shroom and examine a half-dozen examples of magnificently weird mushrooms. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Beyond this Vale of Testing: Post-Empirical Science

    Sep 15 2016

    Most scientists declare empirical falsifiability -- the notion that a theory may be proven right or wrong via scientific investigation -- to be the core principle of science. Others, such as string theorists, think science should move beyond those boundaries. Is empiricism an unnecessary straight jacket? Is “post-empirical science” an oxymoron? Robert and Joe explore in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-adver...more

  • Scalp Hunters and the Cobra Effect

    Sep 13 2016

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the perverse world of unintended consequences and the cobra effect. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • STBYM Live: Prime Directives & Planetary Contamination

    Sep 08 2016

    The Prime Directive serves as the Federation’s philosophical backbone, no matter how often our favorite Trek heroes bend and break its values in order to save the day. How does this policy match up with current space exploration procedures, colonial Earth history and our most dangerous terrestrial ideas? Robert, Joe and Christian explore in this special LIVE Stuff to Blow Your Mind presentation from Star Trek: Mission New York. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-...more

  • Chinese Ghost Marriage: The Rite of Mínghūn

    Sep 06 2016

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, join Robert and Christian for an investigation into the practice, history and exploitation of ghost marriage. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Substance of Silence

    Aug 31 2016

    We all have a pretty good notion of noise, but what exactly is silence? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • MSG: Umami and Chinese Restaurant Syndrome

    Aug 30 2016

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the history and science of MSG and explore just why we demonized it for so long. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Great Transhumanist Rapture War: Part 2

    Aug 25 2016

    Join Robert and Joe as they explore the space for common ground — and conflict — between genetically modified cyborgs and heaven-teleported believers in this two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Great Transhumanist Rapture War: Part 1

    Aug 23 2016

    What do the transhumanist visions and singularitarians have in common with Christian rapture doctrine, apocalyptic prophesies and far-future saviors? Join Robert and Joe as they explore the space for common ground -- and conflict -- between genetically modified cyborgs and Heaven-teleported believers in this two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Curious Incident of the Guinea Worm in the Dog

    Aug 18 2016

    Humans have waged a decade-spanning war of extinction against the parasitic Guinea worm. With cases down roughly 99.99 percent from 1986, it would seem the struggle is nearly at an end. Now our inhuman adversary has found a new place to hide -- and that place is man's best friend. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • OSIRIS-REx: NASA's Journey to the Netherworld

    Aug 16 2016

    In the year 2018, NASA's OSIRIS-REx will rendezvous with the asteroid Bennu, a 1,614-foot near Earth object that might just collide with our world at some point in the 22nd century. OSIRIS-REx will explore this carbonaceous wanderer, but it will also bring a portion of it back home. Join Robert and Christian as they discuss the mission and chat with space scientists Dr. Amy. A Simon about OSIRIS-REx . Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail VI: The Listener Mailbox of Babel

    Aug 11 2016

    Yet again, the mailbot brings forth the responses and queries of many loyal Stuff to Blow Your Mind listeners. Join Robert, Christian and Joe on a sacred journey to catalog the Listener Mailbox of Babel and eventually find the precious texts of the legendary Crimson Inbox. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Welcome to the Mosquito Factory

    Aug 09 2016

    In humanity's ongoing war against mosquito borne illness, some of the most innovative offense comes in the form mosquito breeding programs. Yes, these "mosquito factories" are all about manipulating the enemy rather than simply killing them. Join Robert and Christian as they explore the world of GMO mosquitoes, Wolbachia bacteria and the possible wages of mosquito eradication Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Saturn's Brood: Beyond the Outer Ring

    Aug 04 2016

    The planet Saturn offers far more than rings to those who venture within its gravitational influence. This wind-swept gas giant also holds sway over no fewer than 53 moons, including such wonders as the atmosphere-shrouded Titan, two-faced Iapetus and sponge-like Hyperion. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the mysteries of the Saturnian moons. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • O Time Thy Pyramids: The Library of Babel

    Aug 02 2016

    In Jorge Luis Borges' masterful short story "The Library of Babel," librarians and cultists wander a vast honeycomb library of hexagonal rooms -- rooms that contain not only all books but all possible books, from unwritten masterpieces to tomes of typographical nonsense. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe venture into this metaphoric labyrinth for contemplations of genetics, cosmology, philosophy, computer programing and magic. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://...more

  • Minds of Musical Emptiness

    Jul 28 2016

    We're all wired to enjoy different forms of music, but for some of us the wiring is missing entirely. Join Robert and Christian as they explore the curious conditions of amusia and auditory agnosia in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Great Flood

    Jul 26 2016

    From tales of Utnapishtim and Noah to Yü and Manu, everyone loves a good mythical deluge. But why are flood myths so important? What sort of natural phenomena could cause the sort of massive flooding likely to resonate through the heritage memories of a flood-traumatized civilization? Join Robert and Christian for a Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Failings of Forensic Science, Part II

    Jul 21 2016

    What if bad science put you in prison for a crime you didn't commit? How many guilty offenders are still out there because of pseudoscience, fraud or disorganized laboratories? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, join Joe and Christian for part two of our review of forensic science in the courtroom. How accurate is the analysis of fingerprints, ballistics, hair, bite marks, fire and DNA? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Failings of Forensic Science, Part I

    Jul 19 2016

    What if bad science put you in prison for a crime you didn't commit? How many guilty offenders are still out there because of pseudoscience, fraud or disorganized laboratories? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Joe and Christian review the use of forensic science in law enforcement. Scientific evidence is prevalent in both courtrooms and popular culture. But why are we only recently questioning its validity? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertiser...more

  • Leaping Mullets! Flying Fish! Breaching Sharks!

    Jul 14 2016

    Fish belong in the water, right? What business do they have leaping out of their world and into ours? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the surprisingly fascinating, dangerous and mysterious world of leaping, jumping and gliding fish. From skewering swordfish and breaching sharks to the alleged urethra-bound candiru, nature provides more than a few mind-blowing specimens of note. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Coral Sex in the Sea (With Guest Marah J. Hardt)

    Jul 12 2016

    Sure coral reefs are rich, vibrant ecosystems, but did you know they also have a kinky side? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, "Sex in the Sea" author Dr. Marah J. Hardt returns to chat about coral reproduction and the role this vital, threatened organism plays in our world. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Summer Reading 2016: Time Enough at Last

    Jul 07 2016

    It's a summer tradition, so once more the hosts of Stuff to Blow Your Mind share their fiction and nonfiction reading recommendations with listeners. That means science, science fiction, horror, children's books and more -- all with a distinct STBYM flavor. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Biohacking and the Road to Transhumanism

    Jul 05 2016

    Humanity is on the road to transhumanism, but some individuals are a little farther down the technologically-evolved highway than the rest of us. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian discuss the definition of transhumanism and some of the DIY pioneers and cyborg harbingers preparing us for Homo sapiens 2.0. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Incomplete/Unfinished

    Jun 30 2016

    How are we to process an incomplete or unfinished work? Art, literature and film all present us with partial works, yet our reaction varies. Some works remain incomplete due to tragedy or neglect, while others are intentionally non finito. We demand some incomplete compositions completed, while others remain sacrosanct testaments to the creator. Join Robert and Joe as they discuss the nature of incomplete works. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mystery of the Myth-Fleshed Fossil

    Jun 28 2016

    Are the fossilized monsters of paleontology and the fantastic monsters of myth one and the same? Join Robert and Joe as they discuss the realm of of geomythology, entailing the possible ancient real-world origins of dragons, griffins, giants the cyclops and other wonders. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Pieces of a Human: The Science of Artificial Organs

    Jun 23 2016

    Imagine a future in which much-needed transplant organs are printed on demand, grown within the bodies of humanized animals or plucked fresh and dripping from the organ vats. It's the age of artificially grown organs and yes, gentle listener, we already have one foot planted within this amazing, Frankenstein-tinged world. Join Robert and Christian for a discussion of artificial organs in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-...more

  • A New Kingdom of Life: Synthetic Biology

    Jun 21 2016

    Genomic maps unfurl before us and edited genetic codes alter the expression of life. The past few decades have seen tremendous advancements in genetic engineering, but exactly what takes place in modern gene-editing? What is synthetic biology and how soon might we see the first synthetic human genome? Robert and Christian explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Forbidden Void: Cases Against Space

    Jun 16 2016

    For most of us, space exploration seems like a no-brainer. By venturing out into the cosmic ocean, we advance our technology, unravel the secrets of our universe and further ensure the long term survival of the human race. Not everyone's on board, however. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore some past and present arguments against space exploration. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Colossal: The Science of Human Height

    Jun 14 2016

    From fictional obsessions with impossible giants to questions to height psychology and the upper and lower limits of human size, join Robert and Joe for a massive exploration of human height in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Wicker Men, Mock Kings and Ritualized Regicide

    Jun 09 2016

    When you think about human sacrifice, you probably envision blood-soaked altars where the weak and defeated are massacred to a divine force. But what about situations where the most powerful member of a society, even a divine king, is sacrificed for the good of the people? Join Robert and Joe as they discuss literal, figurative and symbolic ritual regicide in human civilization. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Penile Transplants (With Special Guest Mary Roach)

    Jun 07 2016

    The year is 2016 and we officially live in the age of the penis transplant -- and while the notion may stir giggles from some, there's nothing humorous about the cancer survivors and wounded soldiers who can benefit from such surgeries. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian discuss recent advances in penile transplant surgery and chat with author Mary Roach, who devotes two chapters of her new book "Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War" to urotrauma and genital ...more

  • The Science of Necrophilia

    Jun 01 2016

    Don't run away! True enough, this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind considers a most repellent sexual atrocity, but there's more to necrophilia than the sexual abuse of human corpses. Join Robert and Christian as they discuss necrophilia in the animal kingdom, including one rare case of "functional necrophilia" that actually produces offspring. Stay for the later half of the episode and you'll also plunge the psychological depths of human necrophilia in all its varied forms. Learn more ...more

  • The Science of Coincidence

    May 31 2016

    What are we to make of coincidence? From the numerological cats cradles we weave around famous events to the curious ways human lives converge through time, coincidence seems to fly in the face of reason and even suggest the supernatural. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the synchronicity, statistics and psychology of coincidence. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Unraveling the Mythic

    May 26 2016

    Mythology is a powerful force, but what exactly IS myth? How does it differ from legend and folklore? How do we study it?Join Robert and Christian as they consider the powerful, polyfunctional nature of myth and all the various ways we interpret it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Your Experiences With Aphantasia

    May 24 2016

    Following the recent episode "Aphantasia: Blindness of the Mind's Eye," a number of Stuff to Blow Your Mind listeners wrote in about their own inability to summon voluntary mental images. Join Robert and Joe as they read and discuss some of the many listener mails on the matter. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Akademgorodok: Siberia's Super Science Town

    May 19 2016

    Hidden away in the cold of Siberia's forest is an alternative to Silicon Valley, what some refer to as Russia's Silicon Forest. You can think of it as Russia's Eureka or Limetown -- maybe even the Siberian scientific Hogwarts, but Akademgorodok has encapsulated Russia's scientific dreams since the 1950s. Join Robert and Christian as they discuss the place some describe as a "scientific utopia." Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Organic Panic: A Dietary Dilemma

    May 17 2016

    We all build our new bodies out of the foods we eat, so why not obtain the best building materials we can afford? It's a reasonable thought, but the concept of "organic food" is often confusing. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian look to see what science has to say about organic and conventional foods. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Quest for Hollywood Acid

    May 12 2016

    From the corrosive blood of the "Alien" xenomorph to the various Bond and Batman villains' use of the iconic acid vat, popular media presents us with a dramatic and largely unrealistic vision of acidic power. What are our strongest acids and superacids actually like? How do they generate those acid effects in the movies? And just what sort of blood courses through the xenomorph's veins? Robert and Joe explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https:/...more

  • Aphantasia: Blindness of the Mind's Eye

    May 10 2016

    Mental images play an important role in our daily experience of reality, from thoughts of the past to daydreams, fantasies and entire worlds of the imagination. Just what's happening when we see through the mind's eye and what on Earth is it like for individuals who experience aphantasia and experience no visual imagination at all? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cannabis Files: Medical Marijuana

    May 05 2016

    It's easy to misjudge "medical marijuana" as an attempt by cannabis advocates to legitimize their favorite herb, but medicinal use of cannabis dates back to ancient times. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore both historical and modern uses of "the green medicine." Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cannabis Files: Humanity's THC Odyssey

    May 03 2016

    Humans have known about cannabis for thousands of years, crafting hemp textiles and consuming its psychoactive THC. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian examine the cannabis plant, its travels through human populations and its famed sensory and psychological effects. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail V: Computing the Hyper-Real

    Apr 28 2016

    Once more, the mailbot delivers the spoils of listener feedback and your loyal Stuff to Blow Your Mind hosts read and respond to them. Join Robert, Christian and Joe as they cover everything from computing and hyperreal religions to cargo cults and even Dungeons and Dragons. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Jupiter's Children: A Voyage to the Galilean Moons

    Apr 26 2016

    Of all the moons of Jupiter, Callisto, Ganymede, Europa and Io tantalize us the most. These alien worlds of ice, fire, desolation and hidden oceans tantalize us with their possibility for extraterrestrial life and human exploration of the outer solar system. Join Robert and Joe for a mind bending exploration of the great gas giant's Galilean Moons. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tree Man Disease

    Apr 21 2016

    Imagine a disease that warps and petrifies the flesh, transforming normal skin into bark-like growths that slowly consume the hands and feet. Commonly known as "tree man disease," Epidermodysplasia Verruciformis (EV) is one of the rarest medical conditions in the world, yet the extreme, deformative nature of the disease continues to intrigue media consumers around the world. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the science of EV, it's links to Human Papillomav...more

  • When We Think About Cyborgs

    Apr 19 2016

    What began as a 1960s term for a retrofitted human space explorer has become a focal point for considerations of human and machine interaction, technological culture, biomechanics and feminist identity. Join Robert and Christian as they set aside the brain/computer interfaces for a discussion of what it is to be a "cyborg" in 2016. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tip of the Tongue

    Apr 14 2016

    Your know the feeling. You're trying to recall the name of a time-keeping musical device or the the actor who played Fredo in "The Godfather" and all that comes to mind is a memory-hole in the shape of a metronome or John Cazale. It's on the tip of your tongue and it's a universal experience of memory retrieval. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, join Robert and Joe as they discuss the science of TOT phenomenon and what you can do to prevent it. Learn more about your ad-choices at https...more

  • Algorithms In The Blood: The P vs. NP Problem

    Apr 12 2016

    What does it mean to solve a problem in our universe? That's a trickier question than you might think, with some fairly high-stakes ramifications in the worlds of computing and even philosophy. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the inherent logic of problem-solving in our universe, with some attention to a special example of an outstanding problem in computer science: P vs. NP. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Vampire Physics, Mathematics & Evolution

    Apr 07 2016

    The human obsession with vampires runs deep, so deep that it survives our consistent attempts to squeeze all the mystery and fun out of the topic. Inject a little science, however, and the patient returns once more to a state of fabulous un-life. Join Robert and Christian as they explore the fluid dynamics of blood drinking, the mathematics of pandemic vampirism and the evolution of real-world blood drinkers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cargoism: Science, Desire and the Cargo Cults

    Apr 05 2016

    During the Second World War, Melanesian islanders encountered the vast, commercial systems of Allied and Japanese forces. Cargo Cults sprang up in the wake of such contact, typified by deification and a ritualistic appeal to the impossible return of material wealth. What can such encounters tell us about science, programing, sustainability and the human condition? Robert and Christian explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/...more

  • The Unsettling Depths of Bird Intelligence

    Mar 31 2016

    Just what are the upper limits of avian cognitive ability? Various studies reveal how certain bird species engage in mental time travel, tool use, self recognition, theory of mind and even meta-cognition. But how do their non-mammalian brains actually work, and what might a technologically-advanced bird species even look like? Join Robert and Joe as they explore the avian mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Hyper-Real Religion: Pastafarianism and Beyond

    Mar 29 2016

    When does a protest religion become an actual faith? What happens when purely fictional modes of belief leak off the page or screen? Join Robert and Joe as they discuss modern religious movements, the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster and the rise of so-called hyper-real religions. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Wound Mouth of the Undying Hydra

    Mar 24 2016

    Behold a tentacled, immortal predator with a wound for a mouth. No, this isn't the product of a horror writer's fever dream, but rather a denizen of the natural world. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian consider the hydra, from its mythological namesake to all the fascinating scientific studies about its sex life, longevity and penchant for tearing itself a new mouth hole each and every mealtime. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-ad...more

  • Wicked Problems

    Mar 22 2016

    How do you solve a problem like crime, poverty or climate change? The answer, like the problem itself, is elusive and amorphous. These are not "tame problems," but "wicked problems" -- conundrums that defy even the powerful problem-solving powers of scientific ingenuity. Join Robert and Christian for a proper Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Beekeeping, Ancient Egypt and the Tears of Re

    Mar 17 2016

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, enter a kingdom within a kingdom: the remarkable honey-and-wax monarchy within a beehive and the organizational complexity of ancient Egypt. Join Robert and Joe as they discuss the importance of apiculture in ancient Egypt and chat with "The Tears of Re" author entomologist Gene Kritsky. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Creepypasta 2: Disturbing Smiles & Lidless Eyes

    Mar 16 2016

    You asked for it, you got it. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian return to the Creepypasta files and discuss some actual science behind the "Jeff the Killer" tale of mutilation and madness. Why do fake files creep us out? Are people really opting for permanent, surgical smiles? Could fictional Jeff get his eyelids replaced and how does this dark tale mirror reality? Find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sex Cannibals of the Animal Kingdom

    Mar 10 2016

    Sexual cannibalism is a rarity in the natural world, and scientists are still attempting to understand the act as practiced by mostly arachnids and insects. Why consume your mate after or during sexual intercourse? Why venture into such a scenario in the first place? Join Robert and Joe as they explore the thoroughly inhuman world of sexual cannibalism. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Talking Knots in the Inca Kingdom of Fibers

    Mar 08 2016

    Welcome to the Kingdom of the Inca, where hundreds of rope bridges connect an imperial highway system and fiber-armored soldiers wield woven slings against the enemies of the Emperor. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the khipu system of knotted, colored string that served as a physical notation system in lieu of written language. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Osedax: Sex Life of an Ocean Bone Worm

    Mar 03 2016

    Enter the world of the osedax worm, where mouthless female scavengers liquefy the bones of dead whales with acid-drenched roots -- and where each female's body contains a harem of tiny, sperm-producing males. Robert and Christian discuss the bizarre lives of the osedax worms and invite "Sex in the Sea" author Dr. Marah J. Hardt for a discussion on this and other fascinating modes of deep-water reproduction. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Medusa Nebula: A Monstrous Beauty of Space

    Mar 01 2016

    Join Robert and Christian as they consider the beauty and composition of the Medusa nebula in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail IV: The Listening

    Feb 25 2016

    It's that time again. Join Robert, Joe and Christian for another round of robot-delivered listener mail. They're read your missives concerning everything from the Chinese zodiac and psychopaths to solar sails, MDMA and the X-Files. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • John C. Lilly: Province of the Mind

    Feb 23 2016

    The figure of John C. Lilly as psychedelic dolphin communicator burns in the collective memory as a counterculture avatar, yet his legacy embodies far more than the mythologized and/or vilified figure that most of us know. Join Robert and Christian as they examine the life, career and ideas of Lilly the scientist, Lilly the counterespionage researcher and Lilly the psychonaut. Welcome to the province of the mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Dreams of Orgonon: Sex, Storms & Death

    Feb 18 2016

    Do you believe there's a natural energy that permeates the universe? Wilhelm Reich did, calling it "orgone." He also thought it was generated by orgasms, could manipulate the weather and cure cancer. Join Joe and Christian as they review Reich's life work, including a personal visit to his Orgonon observatory. We cover Reich's history, his contributions to alternative medicine and psychoanalysis, his orgone theories and his construction of orgone accumulators and cloudbusters. Learn more about y...more

  • Echoborg: The Computer Controls You

    Feb 16 2016

    Imagine a future in which powerful AIs use human surrogates or "echoborgs" to speak their words and socialize with humans. The living, breathing avatar simply recites the computer's words at the conference table, serving as a humanizing conduit for an inhuman will. It may sound like the stuff of science fiction and TV's "Black Mirror," but such experiments are a reality in artificial intelligence research. Join Robert and Joe as they get to know the echoborgs and cyranoids among us. Learn more a...more

  • Tractable Thunder: Early Days of Electricity, Part 2

    Feb 11 2016

    Electricity lost its magic over the course the 18th and 19th centuries. The "invisible fire" steadily transitioned from a mysterious force of wonder to a mundane reality of daily modern life. In this two-part edition of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the various electrical experiments, stunts, inventions, performances, innovations, occultisms and atrocities that transformed the tractable thunder. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Holy Amber: Early Days of Electricity, Part 1

    Feb 09 2016

    Electricity lost its magic over the course the 18th and 19th centuries. The "invisible fire" steadily transitioned from a mysterious force of wonder to a mundane reality of daily modern life. In this two-part edition of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the various electrical experiments, stunts, inventions, performances, innovations, occultisms and atrocities that transformed the tractable thunder. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Weaponized Animals: From Fire Pigs to Bomb Bats

    Feb 04 2016

    Warfare has always played a central role in human civilization, but we've always invited to share the rest of the animal kingdom to share in the violence and misery -- sometimes as actual weapons. Join Robert and Christian as they explore the history of weaponized animals, from flaming war pigs in ancient Greece to high-tech incendiary bats in the Second World War. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tooth, Mind and Soul: Dental Modification

    Feb 02 2016

    When you think of body modification, you probably don't think about your teeth. Yet dental modification takes place throughout the world, from ancient superstitious practices to the modern cult of the Hollywood smile. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the world of tooth filling, tooth blackening and even tooth extraction as a means to treat illness and transform the soul. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • A Six Course Feast of Dangerous Foods

    Jan 28 2016

    Join Robert and Joe for a six-course meal of culinary danger! In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, discover six foods that deliver a lethal taste profile when carelessly prepared or consumed by the uninitiated diner. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Chinese Zodiac: Superstition, Economics & Destiny

    Jan 26 2016

    As we celebrate Chinese New Year and enter the year of the fire monkey, join Robert and Joe for a Stuff to Blow Your Mind exploration of the Chinese zodiac and some interesting studies related to its impact on birth rates, economics and individual destiny. As always, you can take astrology with a grain of salt, but the impact on human behavior and culture is undeniable. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Humanzee: Breaking the Species Barrier

    Jan 21 2016

    Chimpanzees are humanity's closest living relative, but there's both wonder and existential horror in that closeness. A species barrier separates us from the rest of the animal kingdom, but what if a chimp/human hybrid were to bridge that barrier? Join Robert and Christian as they explore the case history of Russian biologist Ilya Ivanovich Ivanov and his attempts to breed a human/chimp hybrid in the early 20th century. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertis...more

  • Space Mirrors: Weapons, Energy & Propulsion

    Jan 19 2016

    What can you accomplish with a space mirror? Quite a lot, actually. You can use them to gaze far into the cosmos, to propel exploration craft and even cast patches of light back down on night-cloaked regions of the planet. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian discuss the power of space mirrors. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • X-Files Science Part II: Bugs, Hybrids and Hypnosis

    Jan 14 2016

    We want to believe. With the return of The X-Files to television Joe and Christian go digging through Scully's reports for scientific answers to the big themes of the show. Join us to learn more about regression hypnosis, weaponized bees, alien hybridization and more. Just remember... trust no one. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • X-Files Science Part I: Mutants & Parasites

    Jan 12 2016

    With the return of television's The X-Files, it's never been a better time to look at the science behind the show. Join Joe and Christian as they examine the possibilities of classic Monsters of the Week, including otherworldly parasites, killer mutants, talking tattoos and more. We'll add present research to the scientific theories surrounding the show during its initial release to find if the truth is out there. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Stone of Madness

    Jan 07 2016

    Madness has always intrigued artists, and medieval paintings sometimes presented this malady's treatment via the surgical removal of cranial stone. What was the stone of madness? Was it mere fantasy, metaphor or an actual medical condition? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe collect their trepanation tools and investigate. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • New Year's Resolutions: Science and Moral Behavior

    Jan 05 2016

    So many of our most common resolutions for personal improvement are inherently narcissistic: Quit smoking, lose weight, get in shape. We want to look sexier, feel stronger and live forever. But beyond this alternately self-gratifying and self-flagellating topography lies the most quintessential self-improvement project of all: Being a better person. Can science show us how to re-engineer our moral behavior and live better lives? Robert and Joe explore. Learn more about your ad-choices at https:/...more

  • Pink Snow, Black Snow, Space Snow, Weird Snow

    Dec 31 2015

    Sure, snow is one of those amazing natural wonders that we so often take for granted, but this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind is more concerned with the weirder corners of our winter wonderland. We're talking pink snow, black snow, blood snow, blue snow, alien snow, conspiracy theory snow and giant snow. Join Robert and Joe as they plunge knee-deep in the weird flaky stuff. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of 'Ant-Man'

    Dec 29 2015

    The 2015 movie "Ant-Man" continues a long Hollywood tradition of miniaturization sci-fi, but how much real science is there in this tale of tiny superheroes and lovable ants? Join Robert and Christian as they shrink down to the film's level and discuss physics, the quantum realm and the fantastic world of ant biology. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Holiday Monsters & Listener Mail

    Dec 24 2015

    Christmas is here again, so join Robert, Joe and Christian as they discuss a few holiday monsters and tend to your listener mail. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Brain-to-Brain: The Science of Techno-Telepathy

    Dec 22 2015

    You've always wanted to meet a sensitive alien telepath who could understand you like no one else, but SETI is really dropping the ball on your galactic personal ad. Could new technologies that push the frontiers of brain science allow telepathic communication between humans? Join Robert and Joe as they make a case for the slogan, "Talk is cheap. Scan me!" Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Grand Theft Genome: Genestealers in the Wild

    Dec 17 2015

    When it comes to gene transfer, most organisms -- yourself included -- play by the rules and stick to sexual and/or asexual reproduction. But then there are the genestealers, organisms that just take the genes they want from other species. Join Robert and Joe as they discuss the mind-bending world of horizontal gene transfer. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Twinkle, Twinkle, Killer Child

    Dec 15 2015

    Due to a strange combination of nature and nurture, some children unfortunately develop into murderers. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian try to understand what causes juvenile homicide, how likely it is and whether these offenders may kill again. Through studies in psychopathy and neuroscience we're looking for an answer to the scariest question: Could my child be a killer? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • MDMA: Pharmacological Healer

    Dec 10 2015

    In the form of recreational ecstasy, the psychoactive drug MDMA carries with it a stigma of wide-eyed ravers, free love and counterculture pharmacological spirituality. But beyond its cultural legacy, MDMA offers a potent therapeutic tool for doctors and therapists -- if we can only unravel its mysteries. Join Robert and Christian for a look at past and current studies into the healing properties of this powerful substance. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-adve...more

  • MDMA: Pharmacological Ecstasy

    Dec 08 2015

    Some of you have tried the ecstasy. Others have merely heard about the drug on a TV sitcom, or heard about it in a news report. Either way, MDMA's power resonates through our culture -- and sometimes it's hard to distinguish the truth form the misinformation. But what exactly is this psychoactive agent? Where does it come from and what sort of effect does it have on the human experience? Join Robert and Christian as they explore the origins and properties of MDMA. Learn more about your ad-choice...more

  • Better Living Through Tetris

    Dec 03 2015

    In their previous episode, Robert and Joe explored the geometric hallucinations of Tetris syndrome. Now they're back for a serious look at the ways in which a good dose of cascading, interlocking tetrominoes might just cure what ails ya -- from lazy eye to full-blown post-traumatic stress disorder. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tetris Syndrome: A Mind Made of Blocks

    Dec 01 2015

    To play a game of "Tetris" is to invite a geometric invasion into your mind. After hours of intense block manipulation, you finally set aside your gaming device. You take a deep breath, close your eyes -- and there the frenzied, multicolored tetrominoes continue to cascade across your vision. They build walls in your dreams and shape the patterns of your very thought. What's going on inside the mind of a "Tetris" player and what can we learn from so-called "Tetris" syndrome. In this episode of S...more

  • Listener Mail: Robot Thanksgiving

    Nov 26 2015

    It's Thanksgiving in the United States, so Robert, Joe and Christian dine with their devoted mailbot Karnie to consider a selection of Stuff to Blow Your Mind listener mail related to recent episodes. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • But, Mom! The Science of Whining

    Nov 24 2015

    Unless you've lived your life in a childless fortress of seclusion, you've likely encountered the maddening, high-pitched whine of a complaining child. But what is whining? Is it universal? Why is it so annoying and just what's being communicated between parent and child? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe explore. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Self-Mummifying Monk

    Nov 19 2015

    We tend to think of mummification as either an environmental event or a mortuary act perpetrated by others, but mummification can also occur as an act of ritualized self destruction. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian consider the Sokushinbutsu of Japan, who once engaged in a process of ascetic self mummification that spanned years of extreme body modification. Their purpose? To travel through time... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podca...more

  • Space Weapons: Rods From God

    Nov 17 2015

    You may call it "rods from god," project Thor" or a glorious "hypervelocity rod bundle," but this theoretical space weapon comes down to one devastating reality: A space-empowered nation's ability to raise a 20-foot tungsten rod up into orbit and then drop it on an enemy target with mass-accelerated force. No bombs, no lasers, just pure reentry power. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the feasibility of rod-based warfare. Learn more about your ad-choices at...more

  • The 2015 Ig Nobels: Kisses, Stings & Dino Chickens

    Nov 12 2015

    Each year, the Ig Nobel prizes honor the weirdest and wackiest contributions to humanity's scientific understanding of the natural world. In this pair of Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast episodes, Robert, Joe and Christian unpack each of this year's winners. In this episode, explore the wonders of dinosaur chickens, medicinal speed bumps, passionate kisses, dino chickens, Moulay Ismael the Bloodthirsty and the sting index. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-adver...more

  • The 2015 Ig Nobels: Unboiled Eggs & Urine Speed

    Nov 10 2015

    Each year, the Ig Nobel prizes honor the weirdest and wackiest contributions to humanity's scientific understanding of the natural world. In this pair of Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast episodes, Robert, Joe and Christian unpack each of this year's winners. In this episode, explore the wonders of unboiled eggs, urination speed, "huh" literature, police bribes and disastrous managers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Fist Punch Theory of Evolution

    Nov 05 2015

    Did the human fist evolve to punch faces? Did our faces evolve to take punches? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore University of Utah biologist David Carrier's research into human evolution -- including his 2015 study that involves a cadaver-armed punching machine. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sanity/Insanity: The Rosenhan Experiment

    Nov 03 2015

    How do we know precisely what constitutes "normality" or mental illness? And if there is a difference, can anybody detect it? Even professionals? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the groundbreaking 1973 study that saw eight otherwise-healthy "pseudopatients" admitted to 12 different psychiatric facilities and diagnosed with mental illness. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ghouls: Myth, Fiction and... Evolutionary Heritage?

    Oct 29 2015

    If your fictional diet contains significant quantities of horror or dark fantasy, then you've likely encountered the ghoul: a scavenging, grave-robbing race of unnatural beings with an insatiable hunger for the dead. As Robert and Joe explore in this episode, the roots of ghouldom sink back into pre-Islamic Arabic folklore -- as well into the distant evolutionary history of humanity itself. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • I Drink Your Blood

    Oct 27 2015

    Global myth cycles are rife with blood-drinkers and blood bathers. Often, the tale centers around the notion of young blood as a fountain of youth. The aging countess or decrepit monster needs only to drink from young veins in order to restore a failing body. Yet science has a way of catching up with myth, and in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the history of medicinal blood drinking and the startling scientific reality of rejuvenation through transfusions of youn...more

  • Will-o'-the-Wisp: A Light in the Swamp

    Oct 22 2015

    There was a time when strange lights appeared in the marshlands. Commoners might have known the eerie luminescence as "Will-o'-the-Wisp" or "Hinky Punk," while the learned pondered the mysteries of "Ignis Fatuus." Superstitions aside, what natural phenomenon was at work here, before accounts of false fires in the night largely vanished from history? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe search for answers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-a...more

  • Final Girls: Feminism, Slashers & Culture

    Oct 20 2015

    The "final girl" trope has become a standard horror cinema convention, in which a single strong female character outruns, outsmarts and outstabs her murderous pursuer to stand victorious amid the slain. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the film roots, cultural resonance and symbolic power of the final girl. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Creepypasta Experiments

    Oct 15 2015

    Surf the Internet long enough and you'll happen upon creepypasta: little cut-and-paste snippets of horror that blur the lines between reality and the fantastic. These collectively assembled amalgams of pop culture influences take on their own amorphous power -- and more than a few of them seem to involve shadowy science experiments. So in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the real-life science behind a handful of experiments from the world of creepypasta. Lear...more

  • Human Remains: Past, Present and Future

    Oct 13 2015

    Humanity currently stands at a crossroads in the treatment of its dead. Forced to contend with the environmental and economic downsides to modern mortuary customs, various innovators look back to our most basic burial customs and recreate them with a suitably high-tech design twist. Join Robert and Joe for a look at human remains and the way we help (or hinder) their return to the soil. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Halloween Costume Made Me Do It

    Oct 08 2015

    What happens when we slip into a costume? Be it a monster pelt, a sexy witch or a simple children's ghost mask, a psychological transformation takes place. Join Robert and Christian for a fittingly seasonal look at enclothed cognition and deindividuation. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Egyptian Mummies: A Cosmic, Mortuary Odyssey

    Oct 06 2015

    Ancient Egyptian mummification is not unlike sci-fi space travel in many respects. The leading minds of the day preserved a chosen human within a costly vessel, and then they sent that vessel on a journey across time and space to another world -- a dangerous and uncertain world inhabited by monsters and alien entities. Join Robert and Christian as they explore the cosmology and process of Egyptian mummification, as well as the actual alien entities these necronauts encountered: grave robbers, Vi...more

  • The Science of Dune: Biology

    Oct 01 2015

    This year marks the 50th anniversary of Frank Herbert's "Dune," the game-changing 1965 sci-fi novel full of space-age feudalistic intrigue, rampaging sandworms and prescient mind drugs on a desert world. Even today, the work resonates with scientific wonder and philosophical intrigue, so join Robert and Joe for a two-part exploration of the science of "Dune." In this episode, explore the lifecycle of the sandworm, mentats and the power of the spice. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://ne...more

  • The Science of Dune: Technology

    Sep 29 2015

    This year marks the 50th anniversary of Frank Herbert's "Dune," the game-changing 1965 sci-fi novel full of space-age feudalistic intrigue, rampaging sandworms and prescient mind drugs on a desert world. Even today, the work resonates with scientific wonder and philosophical intrigue, so join Robert and Joe for a two-part exploration of the science of "Dune." First up, consider the real-life possibilities of water-recycling stillsuits, the Holtzman Effect and the war against thinking machines. L...more

  • Poison Arrows, Chinese Medicine and Werewolves

    Sep 24 2015

    Perhaps you've heard of wolf's bane as curative or even causal agent in the mythology of lycanthropy, yet the appeal of this very real plant reaches far beyond the realm of werewolves. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian consider the role of wolf's bane in traditional Chinese medicine, early biological warfare and natural insect defenses. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • One-Armed Bandits: The Science of Slot Machines

    Sep 22 2015

    You may call it a slot machine, a fruit machine or a one-armed bandit, but the reality is the same: an algorithmically precise machine designed to drain the human gambler of all his or her earnings. Where did these insidious machines come from? How do they ensorcell us? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the science and psychology of slot machine gambling behavior. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Unlanguaged Mind: A World Built With Words

    Sep 17 2015

    How can we even imagine a life without language when language itself plays such a crucial role in human cognition? Can you even imagine a world in which nothing has a name? Join Robert and Christian as they continue their exploration of the brain's linguistic operating system. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Unlanguaged Mind: Feral Children

    Sep 15 2015

    The feral child occupies two worlds: that of lighthearted myth and depressing reality. We entertain ourselves with fantasies about wolf-reared infants, but most studies of feral children stem from cases of extreme child abuse and neglect. Join Robert and Christian as they explore human language acquisition and childhood without words. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Palimpsests: Reading History's Blank Pages

    Sep 10 2015

    Historians learn a great deal from historical texts -- and not only that which was written, but that which was unwritten. Join Robert and Christian as they explore the world of palimpsests, the erased books just under the surface of ancient tomes. Modern technology allows us to uncover more and more of their secrets, while the idea of the palimpsest itself serves as a powerful metaphor for media, the mind and maybe life itself. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-...more

  • Wes Craven Tribute: Serpents, Rainbows & Zombies

    Sep 08 2015

    With the recent passing of horror director Wes Craven, it seems appropriate to cover the science behind his 1988 film "The Serpent and the Rainbow." Join Robert and Christian for a discussion of Haitian folklore, zombie powder and the challenges of filmmaking. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tail as Old as Time: Part 2

    Sep 03 2015

    Where is the human tail? Our embryos lose them in the womb and our great ape kin lost them in the shadows of evolutionary history. Join Robert and Joe as they continue to explore the worlds of human tails and even a Utopian dream of tailed transhumans. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tail as Old as Time: Part 1

    Sep 01 2015

    Tails are a common feature in the animal kingdom, fulfilling just about every role from comfy blanket to instrument of venomous death. Join Robert and Joe as they explore some of the more outstanding uses, including your dog's caudal language and the scorpion that sheds its own tail and anus. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Necrophilia

    Aug 27 2015

    Don't run away! True enough, this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind considers a most repellent sexual atrocity, but there's more to necrophilia than the sexual abuse of human corpses. Join Robert and Christian as they discuss necrophilia in the animal kingdom, including one rare case of "functional necrophilia" that actually produces offspring. Stay for the later half of the episode and you'll also plunge the psychological depths of human necrophilia in all its varied forms. Learn more about yo...more

  • V2K: The Microwave Auditory Effect

    Aug 25 2015

    Voice-to-skull or V2K technology is generally the stuff of paranoid government conspiracies, and yet the microwave auditory effect is very real. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe consider the military and commercial applications for what some people call microwave telepathy. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Born Under the Caul

    Aug 20 2015

    While all humans develop inside an amniotic sac, only a rare few are born with part of it enveloping their face. These membranous veils protect us in utero, but what does it mean when a newborn is covered in one at birth? In this episode of Stuff To Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore what a birth caul is and the many superstitions and omens attached to their presence. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Your Health as a Mars Colonist

    Aug 18 2015

    Sure, you need to get your butt to Mars, but what are the long-term health ramifications of life on the Red Planet? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore reduced gravity, radiation, toxic dust and a microbiotic desert. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Strain: Dissecting del Toro's Vampires

    Aug 13 2015

    Guillermo del Toro's "The Strain" continues to enthrall readers and viewers -- and, love it or hate it, there's no denying the complexity and creativity that del Toro and co-author Chuck Hogan poured into the series' vampires. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore some real-world organisms that line up nicely with the science of "The Strain." Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Echoborg: The Computer Controls You

    Aug 11 2015

    Imagine a future in which powerful AIs use human surrogates or "echoborgs" to speak their words and socialize with humans. The living, breathing avatar simply recites the computer's words at the conference table, serving as a humanizing conduit for an inhuman will. It may sound like the stuff of science fiction and TV's "Black Mirror," but such experiments are a reality in artificial intelligence research. Join Robert and Joe as they get to know the echoborgs and cyranoids among us. Learn more a...more

  • Summer Reading 2015: Books to Blow Your Mind

    Aug 06 2015

    It's a summer tradition, so once more the hosts of Stuff to Blow Your Mind share their fiction and nonfiction reading recommendations with listeners. That means science, science fiction, horror and more -- all with a distinct STBYM flavor. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From Hell's Heart: The Science of Spite

    Aug 04 2015

    What are we to make of spite? As humans, we lash out to hurt our neighbor due to petty grudges and prejudices all the time. Yet we're also capable of such altruistic grace. How are these two opposites linked in the human condition and just how important is spite in the framework of civilization? Robert and Christian explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: The Mailbot Reboots

    Jul 30 2015

    We've entered a new era of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, so it's time for Robert, Joe and Christian to reboot the mailbot with updated user data. As the former "Arnie" comes back online, your three hosts will answer some recent e-mail and social media missives from you the listener. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Dreams of R. Buckminster Fuller

    Jul 28 2015

    Imagine a world where cities fly, we all drive three-wheeled cars and mainly eat Jell-O. This is where the dreams of architect and engineer Richard Buckminster "Bucky" Fuller would have taken us. At his height, Bucky was influential between the 1930s and 1950s. But his legacy today is largely that of a designer and a counterculture symbol, not as an inventor. In this episode of Stuff To Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian examine the life of Fuller, as well as the success of his dymaxion invent...more

  • Something for Everybody: The Forer Effect

    Jul 23 2015

    From palm-reading fortune tellers to professionally-administered Myers Briggs test, everyone's a sucker for a an ego-stroking personality assessment. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the subtle forces of the Forer effect. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • My Body is Made of Glass

    Jul 21 2015

    Imagine waking to a new, terrifying sensation: Your seemingly organic body is actually made of glass. While doctors and loved ones insist otherwise, you know in your heart that the slightest bump or fall will shatter you into a million shards. While cases of glass delusion largely vanished in the early 19th century, a few cases persist to this day. What underlies this bizarre psychiatric disorder? Robert and Joe explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices...more

  • Stigmata: Madness or Miracle?

    Jul 16 2015

    In the previous episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explored the Christian tradition of the stigmata and its 13th century originator, Saint Francis of Assisi. But what are we to make of of all the stigmatics to follow in the saint's footsteps? Are these holy wounds the work of deceptive self-harm, masochistic devotion or psychosomatic anomaly? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Stigmata: Patient Zero

    Jul 14 2015

    According to Christian tradition, a stigmatic prays to God so zealously, so faithfully that Christ's crucifixion wounds of manifest in the form of bleeding sores and gorey holes. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore stigmata patient zero in the form of Saint Francis of Assisi. What real-life illness might underlie this 13th century mystic's legendary condition? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Grizzly Bears from Outer Space

    Jul 09 2015

    A region of space barely a thousandth of a square degree on the sky contains a whopping 5,500 galaxies. Making the probability that there exists at least one planet that could support life pretty tantalizing. What might that life form look like? Robert and Joe discuss cosmologist Fergus Simpson's statistical argument that an extraterrestrial could weigh in at 660 pounds. My friend, can your heart stand the shocking facts of grizzly bears from outer space? Learn more about your ad-choices at http...more

  • The Psychedelic Nightmare of Ergotism

    Jul 07 2015

    Imagine an entire 15th-century town overcome by a collective waking nightmare. The afflicted walk the streets with blackened limbs and seeping sores, all while psychotic hallucinations assault their fragile hold on sanity. Join Robert and Joe as they explore the world of Ergotism and discuss how a toxic fungus terrorized and inspired generations of Medieval Europeans. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Future of Addiction

    Jul 02 2015

    Highly addictive substances like meth and heroin are formidable enemies for the recovering addict, but what does the future hold for their treatment? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the use of electromagnetic stimulation, vaccines and other treatments to help win the battle. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Addiction

    Jun 30 2015

    What is addiction? Why are some people predisposed to it and what happens in the brain when addiction takes hold? In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie break it all down for you and ponder the addiction-shattered brain. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Memory Palace Revisited (with Nelson Dellis)

    Jun 25 2015

    Stroll into the memory palace, an imagined location that just might expand your brain power. In this classic episode you'll learn all about the Method of Loci, a mnemonic device that allows mental athletes to perform astounding acts of recall. Plus, in this updated publication of the episode, learn the secrets firsthand from 4-time USA memory champion Nelson Dellis. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Escape from Universe 25

    Jun 23 2015

    Explore Universe 25, a 101-square-inch tank designed as a utopia for mice and a mirror of human behavior. Every detail of the structure was crafted with comfort in mind: a never-ending supply of food; a constant 68 degree F temperature; a self-cleaning environment and spacious apartments for its inhabitants. So what contributed to Universe 25's spiral into degradation and violence? And why were a subset of mice dubbed "The Beautiful Ones?" Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart....more

  • Detective Story

    Jun 18 2015

    Everyone loves a good whodunit, but why does the figure of the fictional detective tower so staggeringly over the modern world? He or she is a seeker of truth, a resolver of conflict, a subcultural liaison and perhaps even a shaman for an increasingly secular world. Join Robert and Christian for dive through the history, science and cultural resonance of the detective story. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Supernormal Stimuli

    Jun 16 2015

    No longer limited by the constrains of their environment or biology, humans have remade their world. Why walk when you can soar? Why shout when you can whisper in the ear of a listener halfway round the world? And why limit yourself to normal stimuli when you can condense the sensory world into nuggets of superstimuli. Join Robert and Julie in this classic episode as they discuss junk food, gaming, pornography, the Internet and beauty itself all in the framework of natural biology. Learn more ab...more

  • Techno-Religion for the Masses: Part 2

    Jun 11 2015

    We often think of technology and religion as distinct and separate worlds, but what happens when they converge? Join Robert and Joe in this two-part episode as they examine religious world views shaped by technology, such as John Murray Spear's electrical messiah, the simple prayer wheel and the psycho-spiritual technologies of Scientology.v Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Techno-Religion for the Masses: Part 1

    Jun 09 2015

    We often think of technology and religion as distinct and separate worlds, but what happens when they converge? Join Robert and Joe in this two-part episode as they examine religious world views shaped by technology, such as John Murray Spear's electrical messiah, the simple prayer wheel and the psycho-spiritual technologies of Scientology. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mass Extinction: Earth's Cycle of Annihilation

    Jun 04 2015

    Five mass extinction events have ravaged the species of Earth, and we just might be living in the sixth. How can humanity survive the threat of cosmic calamity and its own tireless work to unbalance the world? Robert and Christian discuss in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Heartbeat in the Brain, Hole in the Skull

    Jun 02 2015

    Trepanation is an ancient surgical procedure and we've found the millennia-aged skulls to prove it - each punctured and gouged to relieve inner-pressure and inner-madness. But is such cranial perforation truly a relic of a primitive age or do modern trepanation advocates have a point in their quest to free the brain's heartbeat from its prison of bone? Tune in to this classic STBYM episode of to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Silk of the Spider, Thread of the Future

    May 28 2015

    Spider silk is nothing short of an engineering marvel. Weight for weight, it's stronger than steel and tougher than Kevlar. But spiders are disagreeable creatures. Unlike the silkworms, they've proven unwilling to bow to humanity's domestication, but that hasn't stopped scientists from stealing the secrets. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, enter a world of spider silk medicine, nanomaterials, optics, music and of course transgenic goats. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://new...more

  • Scientifically Sound Weather Superstitions

    May 26 2015

    At one time in human history superstitions were the guiding force in a person's life -- rules of thumb to live by. Find out which pieces of lore and superstition are actually spot-on and why in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Coincidence

    May 21 2015

    What are we to make of coincidence? From the numerological cats cradles we weave around famous events to the curious ways human lives converge through time, coincidence seems to fly in the face of reason and even suggest the supernatural. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the synchronicity, statistics and psychology of coincidence. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Gazing into the Eclipse

    May 19 2015

    Amid the regular cycle of sun and moon stalks a darkness -- a darkness that ancient humans perceived as cosmic abandonment, portent and demonic disruption. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe explore the celestial mechanics, mythology and terrestrial ramifications of solar and lunar eclipses. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Vacation Tribulation

    May 14 2015

    Why do some people take vacations and others fret to take off time? We'll find out which nations go on holiday the most and least, the benefits of downtime, and we'll discuss how time off messes with the mind (in a good way). Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • There's a Problem with Your Study

    May 12 2015

    Science has advanced human civilization to an astounding degree, but what happens when science gets it wrong? What does it mean that a good half of published biomedical research cannot be replicated? From the publish-or-perish world of modern science careerism to the pitfalls of WEIRD populations, Stuff to Blow Your Mind explores. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Power of the Nap

    May 07 2015

    Why do we feel so refreshed after a power nap and so sapped after a mega nap? Do coffee naps work and just what sort of benefits can we get out of an extra 20 minutes in the hammock? Explore the answers in this episode of the STBYM podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Animal Sexual Fluidity

    May 05 2015

    Why do some species change sex and how to they carry out this remarkable transformation? This episode of the STBYM podcast takes you into a world of hermaphrodites, clownfish and the high-stakes game of reproduction in the animal kingdom. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Ring of Gyges

    Apr 30 2015

    Before H.G. Wells' Invisible Man and J.R.R. Tolkien's One Ring, there was the Ring of Gyges: a mythical artifact that turned the wearer invisible. Would such anonymity turn you into a law-breaking monster, or does morality extend beyond the fear of judgement and punishment? From Plato to modern psychology, Stuff to Blow Your Mind explores... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Road Warriors

    Apr 28 2015

    Perhaps you've witnessed something you'd call "road rage" out there on Earth's highways. Perhaps you've even engaged in it yourself. But where does mere aggressive driving end and true violence begin? Where does the notion of "road rage" come from and to what extent does it match up with humanity's peculiar love of the automobile? Find out in this episode of the STBYM podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Space Roar

    Apr 23 2015

    In 2006, NASA discovered "space roar" -a sound that's six times louder than what they expected to hear when they eavesdropped on space. Inexplicably weird, right? Stuff to Blow Your Mind explores. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Power of Polite

    Apr 21 2015

    Kindly step this way to the politeness theory where you'll discover the power of good manners. We'll also discuss which countries are the most polite and discreetly mention the ones that are the least polite. Thank you for your time and attention. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Satanic Panic

    Apr 16 2015

    What are we to make of alleged ritual satanic abuse and the moral panic that spread in the 1980s and 90s? Christian Sager joins Robert for an exploration of religion, fear and demons of the mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Grimoire: Occult Books and the Magic of Writing

    Apr 14 2015

    We're all familiar with such fictional grimoires as "The Necronomicon," but what about the rich legacy of occult books and cryptic tomes that preceded its invention? Robert and guest host Christian Sager investigate and maybe summon a demon or two. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mean World Syndrome

    Apr 09 2015

    Is there more violence in the world today, or have we just been watching too many CSI shows? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast, Julie and Robert explore cultivation theory and the idea that we live in a mean, mean world. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What's the largest snake that has ever existed?

    Apr 07 2015

    Everyone loves a giant snake tale, but what's really the largest serpent on the planet? Hunt for the answer across space and time in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Power of Shame

    Apr 02 2015

    Shame is a powerful emotion that, depending on the way you frame it, can be a force for either good or evil. Find out what the difference is between embarrassment, guilt and shame. Do dogs feel shame? And have you ever suffered from second-hand embarrassment? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Gordian Knot of Race

    Mar 31 2015

    To "see no color" is to gloss over the deep-seated racial issues that exist today. Find out about how something so abstract - like unconscious racial biases - can have real-world implications in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The School to Prison Pipeline

    Mar 26 2015

    No one ever says they want to be a convict when they grow up. Julie and Robert look at the School-to-Prison pipeline and the variables that form this insidious system in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Send in the Exploding Termites

    Mar 24 2015

    Enter a world where toxic ants and termites explode at will to stave off murderous invasions - a world of highly-evolved chemical weapons an ruthless guerrilla tactics. It's all in this bombastic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Optimal Inattention

    Mar 19 2015

    It may not always be polite but optimal inattention, aka willful ignoring, someone or something is a necessity. Let's explore with a study on hands and feet, not to mention our wildly distracted eyes in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Leprechaun Hallucinations

    Mar 17 2015

    It's Saint Patrick's Day, so our minds inevitably turn to the little people of Irish folklore. But diminutive fairy folk pop up in folk traditions around the world. Listen in for a celebration of the myth and science behind those Leprechaun encounters in this classic STBYM podcast episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cry Me a River

    Mar 12 2015

    Tears are an integral part of the shared human language of expression -- even though at one time in history a display of public waterworks was considered "emotional incontinence." Explore the world of lachrymal effluvia with us, won't you? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Could you outrun a fireball?

    Mar 10 2015

    It's a Hollywood classic: Our hero leaps in the nick of time, right before tendrils of flames close in. But could you escape a raging fire in real life? Run from wild fires and explosions in this red-hot episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Scent of Cognition

    Mar 05 2015

    We are enrobed in a world of scent, and as we know it's a heady powerful one -- with the power to make and summon memories. But this power is far more deep-seated in the brain than we previously thought. The ability to smell may even be root our ability to think. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How much does the soul weigh?

    Mar 03 2015

    Is it possible to measure the energy lost when the "soul" departs the body? Take a tour of soul-weighing and the quest to make what is immaterial material ijn this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Respect the Rat

    Feb 26 2015

    You may think rats are just vermin, but the fact is they own huge metropolitan cities like New York. And when it comes to science they've contributed an immense amount of data (although not voluntarily). Find out how similar rats are to humans and whether or not they're capable of empathy in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Pineal Optics: My Third Eye

    Feb 24 2015

    Prepare to open that third eye, listeners, because Robert and Julie are taking you on a journey from philosophical ponderings about human spirituality to scientific explorations of the human pineal gland and the extra parietal eye common to other animals in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Love at First Sight

    Feb 19 2015

    Does love at first sight really exist? And is it biological or cultural? Stuff to Blow Your Mind explores this split-second phenomenon. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Objects of Love

    Feb 17 2015

    We live in a world of objects to which we assign varying degrees of worth, from old newspapers to treasured action figures, family heirlooms and golden idols. What's it all about? Where does this object attachment come from? Tune in to learn more in this classic episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sealed with a Bacterial Kiss

    Feb 12 2015

    Find out about the bacterial life of a passionate kiss as Robert and Julie explore the human smooch. Is kissing instinctual and learned, and what does it have to with food, if anything? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Spanish Fly: The Deadly Aphrodisiac

    Feb 10 2015

    It's easy to assume the so-called "Spanish fly" is nothing but a myth, but this legendary aphrodisiac is as real as it is deadly. Just why did humans come to treat male sexual dysfunction with ground-up blister beetles? How does it work and why is the Marque de Sade involved in all of this? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Lingerie Probability

    Feb 05 2015

    We live within the lingerie industrial complex, but dare we tease apart the lacy cords that bind us? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, explore the behavioral underpinnings of sexy underthings, rat-based experimentation and the future of date night undies. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • In the Pink

    Feb 03 2015

    From its modern gender connotations to its absence on the ROYGBIV electromagnetic spectrum, the color pink has a lot to answer for. Does staring into pink truly calm the savage beast and reduce physical strength, or is it a strong color of flayed flesh and blood? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Into the Ossuary: Consult the Bones - Part 2

    Jan 29 2015

    You and your skeleton are cordially invited to join your Stuff to Blow Your Mind hosts on an excursion into the bone-choked depths of the HowStuffWorks ossuary. What curious skulls and skeletal specimens will they uncover? What curious science and cultural anomalies will factor into their discoveries? Grab a torch and join them in the depths in part 2 of 2. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Into the Ossuary: Consult the Bones - Part 1

    Jan 27 2015

    You and your skeleton are cordially invited to join your Stuff to Blow Your Mind hosts on an excursion into the bone-choked depths of the HowStuffWorks ossuary. What curious skulls and skeletal specimens will they uncover? What curious science and cultural anomalies will factor into their discoveries? Grab a torch and join them in the depths in part 1 of 2. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Almost Blue

    Jan 22 2015

    Up in the sky and down in the ocean, blue is the endcap of our visuall existence.One that may even influence us subconsciously. Find out why this color is the ultimate magician, appearing mostly as an illusion, in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • So Cute I Could Eat You Up

    Jan 20 2015

    What do tears of joy and the desire to pinch a baby's cheek have to do with one another? Quite a lot. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, find out about dimorphous expressions, as well as the siren call of baby scents that lure the joyful aunt to its cheek in the first place. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Whisperings & ASMR

    Jan 15 2015

    Shhhh! Some of us are listening intently to a certain tone, one that sends waves of pleasure down our spine. It's called autonomous sensory meridian response. Robert and Julie explore, and while they're at it, they'll find out if whispering exists among any non-human primates. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Extraordinary Science of 2014

    Jan 13 2015

    Sex-reversed genitalia and tractor beams -- just a few of the extraordinary discoveries and breakthroughs of 2014. How have they changed our perception of the universe and ourselves? Join in on the discussion in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Astonishing Science of 2014

    Jan 08 2015

    Find out what the most astonishing moments in science were in 2014 and why they may just be game-changers for humanity. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sonic Illusions

    Jan 06 2015

    Imagine exploring a cave and discovering paintings that appear to come alive with a few claps of your hand. Enter the cave of forgotten sounds with Robert and Julie and they spelunk their way through sonic illusions. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Brainhacking 101: New Year, New Habits

    Jan 01 2015

    How long does it take to make or break a habit? Is this really the year you make major changes or learn a new craft? Robert and Julie break down the science of it all in this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Dung Beetle Mania!

    Dec 30 2014

    Find out how and why dung beetles have been capitalizing on poop in a big way for 30 million years. Also, these little guys may be the world's tiniest astronomers. Robert and Julie reveal why. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Give the Gift of a Mystery Box

    Dec 25 2014

    Why are mystery packages so appealing? How do they improve our mental faculties and fuel our creativity? In this classic episode, Robert and Julie share tales of sealed envelopes, quantum thought experiments, virginity boxes and things Pandora should never have opened. You might even score a gift idea or two. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Necessary Spice

    Dec 23 2014

    Spices are essentially chemical weapons. They protect a plant from animals and microbes. yet humans long ago learned to hack these defenses and use them to flavor their food. Join Robert and Julie for a discussion of spice and evolution. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Scrooge: Post-traumatic Embitterment Disorder

    Dec 18 2014

    Was Scrooge's bitterness an actual mental disorder? And was his visitation by the ghosts of the past, present and future his subconscious mind's attempt at DIY psychotherapy? Or did he merely spike his pot of gruel with a little mind-altering something-something? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Deconstructing the Grinch

    Dec 16 2014

    Find out why the Grinch had the personality of a toadstool sandwich, with arsenic sauce. Robert and Julie explore the physiology of the Green One, not to mention his self-imposed social isolation, which may have contributed to the woefully diminutive size of his heart. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mystery of the Antler

    Dec 11 2014

    Why do deer and moose boast antlers? How does this material grow faster than any living vertebrate bones on Earth? You'd think we'd know the answers to these questions, but antlers remain far more mysterious than we often realize. Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the science of antlers and how these weapons factor into ancient human history, global myth cycles and professional athlete urine samples. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Bring Your Own Oxygen

    Dec 09 2014

    What if you could suck all the oxygen out of a room with a nifty piece of material? Soon you may be able to with a crystalline material that stores, binds and releases oxygen. Find out how, and join Robert and Julie for a little Oxygen 101, including the question, "What lifeform provides half of the world's oxygen?"' Hint: It's not trees. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Future of Tattoos

    Dec 04 2014

    Whether you're a tattoo virgin or a sleeved-and-stamped ink enthusiast, there's no denying the cultural staying power of the tattoo. But where do we go from here? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, explore the world of cutting-edge and near-future high-tech tattoos, from glowing raver ink to tattoos that actually serve as technological interfaces. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Tattoos

    Dec 02 2014

    Tattoos allow us to make the outer body reflect the inner self. In a life of flux, they allow us to make names, symbols, gods and ideas a semi-permanent part of corporeal form. Then again, they also allow others to mark us as "criminal" or "outsider." Join Robert and Julie as they explore not only the science of tattoos, but also a bit of their rich and varied history. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Comfort

    Nov 27 2014

    What does comfort mean to you? Thanksgiving dinner? A cup of tomato soup and a warm blanket? In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie examine the particulars of comfort, why we crave it and what happens when we have too much of a good thing. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Surviving Thanksgiving

    Nov 25 2014

    You may not be the turkey on the chopping block, but holiday get-togethers with family can make you feel that way. Find out how to navigate the holiday in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fecal Transplants and You

    Nov 20 2014

    What if you were suffering from a debilitating bacterial infection and you found out that pumping someone else's fecal matter into your rectum could vanquish it. Find out about fecal microbiota transfers and why we might one day seek out "artisanal" poop samples to cure what ails us. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail: Arnie's Revenge

    Nov 18 2014

    Robert and Julie bow down to the will of Arnie the Mailbot and finally get to the mounting stack of listener mail. Tune in for discussions on past episodes, mind-bending concepts and the future of humanity -- all while a laser-armed mail-bot runs amok in the HowStuffWorks offices. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Reboot the Biosphere

    Nov 13 2014

    Sure Biosphere 2 was the laughingstock of the science community when its mission came to a close in 1993. (Blame the Star Trek-like uniforms.) But scientific findings spiraled out of it long after the project was officially canceled. Some 150 papers and scads of new insights into the environment are due to the visionary wonderland that is Biosphere 2. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Two Years and 20 Minutes Inside Biosphere 2

    Nov 11 2014

    Enter Biosphere 2 with Robert and Julie and tour a technological wonder of the early 90s -- a 7,200,000 cubic foot Earth-in-miniature. Find out about this "Eden on top of an aircraft" and what went awry when eight people sealed themselves inside a biosphere for two years. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Spiral of Silence

    Nov 06 2014

    Have you ever heard someone say something you disagreed with and kept your opinions to yourself? You, my friend, just fell into the spiral of silence. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mass Hysteria and the Mad Gasser

    Nov 04 2014

    Did a masked madman terrorize a sleepy Illinois town with a paralyzing gas gun? Or did something equally bizarre transpire back in August of 1944? Lend an ear to this bone-chilling episode of Stuff to Blow your Mind and explore the topic of mass hysteria (AKA mass psychogenic disorder), from dancing plagues and witch trials of old to our modern age of bioterrorism. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Uncanny Music

    Oct 30 2014

    Why is scary music so scary? Why does an uncanny tune creep us out so? Is it all context and culture or is there something deeper at work? In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie provide the answers and Christopher Gladwin of The Wyrding Module provides some unsettling tunes and a few answers of his own. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What's in a witches' brew?

    Oct 28 2014

    Gather round the cauldron with Robert and Julie as they ladle out hefty servings of magical thinking, medieval psychedelics, feminist history and the power of ritual. Just what was old-school witchery all about? This classic episode has some answers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Dark

    Oct 23 2014

    What about darkness is so unsettling? Find out about the most extreme instances of an absence of light and how it works on our bodies. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Steven Johnson: How We Got to Now

    Oct 21 2014

    Glass, Cold, Sound, Clean, Time and Light. Just a random collection of items in the physical world, right? Not in the hands of science journalist Steven Johnson, who weaves a revelatory tale of technological wonders in his new book and PBS series, "How We Got to Now: Six Innovations That Made the Modern World." Join Julie and Robert for an interview with the man behind the book and series. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Trypophobia: Fear of Holes

    Oct 16 2014

    Phobias can arise from all sorts of lurking dangers, like venomous snakes. But holes? Is trypophobia really a thing? Find out why a person might fear an array of innocent holes and the role social contagion could play. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Zen of Pain

    Oct 14 2014

    Can pain elevate us to a higher state of conscious? Can we find peace and forgiveness with self-inflicted cuts and lashes? Join Robert and Julie as they raise the lantern of science to the humanity's longstanding quest for liberation through physical suffering. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Infinity Hotel

    Oct 09 2014

    Imagine a hotel with infinite rooms and infinite guests. Do you fancy they have space for one more late arrival? Join Robert and Julie as they check into the Infinity Hotel to discover how the concept of infinity affects mathematics, physics and the possibility of a boundless multiverse. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Infinity + One

    Oct 07 2014

    Contemplate the boundless. Contemplate the endless. Join Robert and Julie as they discuss what infinity is, what infinity isn't and the philosopher's never-ending quest to unravel the nature of cosmic, mathematical and divine infinities. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Wendigo...

    Oct 02 2014

    What are we to make of this evil spirit of Algonquin folklore, said to transform unfortunate travelers into cannibalistic monsters? Have true accounts of "wendigo psychosis" actually occurred in the Canadian wilds? Join Robert and Julie as they explore the mythic, anthropological and scientific dimensions of the legend. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Horror Movie Aphrodisiac

    Sep 30 2014

    Are horror movies a sure-fire aphrodisiac? Does the haunted house really exit into the bed room? Join Robert and Julie as they examine the old scary movie seduction trope and look for the scientific connection between scares and sexual arousal. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How Rewilding Works

    Sep 25 2014

    The Anthropocene era has exacted quite a toll on Earth's ecosystem, but could rewilding reverse the damage and restore balance to Earth? Could it bring the human individual and human culture as a whole back in line with the natural order of things? Maybe we won't have to go off-Earth after all... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Ghosts of Evolution

    Sep 23 2014

    We now inhabit the Anthropocene era -- one where man-made environments have displaced entire ecosystems and the plants and animals that inhabited them. Knowing that all species are interconnected -- including us bipedal chatterboxes -- how will vanishing flora and fauna affect evolution? Will humans be added to the list of ghosts haunting the evolutionary halls of Earth? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Money and Happiness

    Sep 18 2014

    Can money buy happiness? Find out if being flush with cash really makes a difference in your outlook. Join Robert and Julie once more for a fascinating examination of the human condition on the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Greed Redux

    Sep 16 2014

    Would you like more money? Sure, we all would. In this encore presentation, Robert and Julie dive into the world of Scrooge McDuck, King Midas and look at how greed is expressed in the brain. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Myth of Average

    Sep 11 2014

    Find out why using statistical averages to understand individuals is a crappy strategy for healthcare and education. Robert and Julie also look at how playing to the average affects our everyday world. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ignorance is Bliss

    Sep 09 2014

    Why do we humans sometimes stick our heads in the sand -- even at the risk of our health and well-being? Robert and Julie explore the topic of information aversion. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Attention Schema Theory: Consciousness and God

    Sep 04 2014

    Life is an enduring mystery. We're forced to unravel the mystery of human consciousness from within, while the enigma of cosmos bears down on us from beyond. We whisper the words "self" and even "god" to ground ourselves in an ocean of chaos, but what's it really all about? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, explore Attention Schema Theory and what it has to say about evolution, consciousness and our notion of the divine. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podca...more

  • Gaming the Flow

    Sep 02 2014

    Join Robert and Julie as they explore what is to enter "the flow state," a place of both clarity and ecstasy that some say leads to ultimate contentment. So how do you achieve it and why are game designers so interested in it? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Syphilis Through The Ages

    Aug 28 2014

    It's difficult to overstate the impact of syphilis on the Western world, and it remains a threat to this day despite effective antibiotic treatments. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the history of the illness and its cultural effects, from powdered wigs and false noses to surgical advances and vampire myths. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Syphilis: The Great Imitator

    Aug 26 2014

    Doctors have called it the great imitator because this destructive venereal disease can manifest almost any symptom. Initially spreading through sexual contact, Syphilis can remain dormant in the body for decades before flaring up again in brutally disfiguring, debilitating and deadly ways. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the science of syphilis. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Mathematics of Happiness

    Aug 21 2014

    Is there a mathematical equation for happiness? Is there a formula for contentment? Explore the science and chase the ephemeral in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Power of Origami

    Aug 19 2014

    There's far more to origami than paper swans. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the mathematics and real-world applications of intricately folded sheets. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Quarantine

    Aug 14 2014

    Sure, we've all seen medical quarantines against infectious disease in the movies, but how do they work in real life? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Understanding Ebola

    Aug 12 2014

    The word "Ebola" is enough to summon feelings of fear, body horror and even xenophobia. But don't give in to paranoia. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie arm you with information about Ebola virus disease (EVD), formerly known as Ebola haemorrhagic fever. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Scientist and the Shaman: Hallucination

    Aug 07 2014

    In this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Julie and Robert continue their discussion of the overlap between shamanism and cognitive neuroscience. In particular, what sort of hallucinatory experiences do substances like DMT, psilocybin and salvia grant users? Why do humans have trace elements of DMT in their bodies? All these questions and more will be discussed. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Scientist and the Shaman: My Egoic Mind

    Aug 05 2014

    A shaman consumes a psychedelic mushroom and visits the spirit world. Meanwhile, a scientist studies the effects of psilocybin on depression and conceptions of self. In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss the common ground shared by these disciplines in this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Wind Beneath My Surgical Wings, Part 2

    Jul 31 2014

    Can science give us the wings we've always envied in birds? Can plastic surgery elevate us to a higher human form? In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss Joseph Rosen's posthuman philosophy and ponder what we'd have to do to transform arms into wings. Learn all about it in this classic episode of STBYM. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Wind Beneath My Surgical Wings, Part 1

    Jul 29 2014

    Can science give us the wings we've always envied in birds? Can plastic surgery elevate us to a higher human form? In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss Joseph Rosen's posthuman philosophy and ponder what we'd have to do to transform arms into wings. Learn all about it in this classic episode of STBYM. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Lost Continent: Part 2

    Jul 24 2014

    There's something intoxicating about the notion of a lost continent. Imagine an entire landscape - perhaps even an entire civilization untouched by Western colonialism or perhaps lost beneath ancient, cataclysmic waves. But lost continents are far from mere whimsy and fictional fancy. Amid the dreams and occult whispers, reason and science emerge to dazzle the imagination. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Lost Continent: Part 1

    Jul 22 2014

    There's something intoxicating about the notion of a lost continent. Imagine an entire landscape - perhaps even an entire civilization untouched by Western colonialism or perhaps lost beneath ancient, cataclysmic waves. But lost continents are far from mere whimsy and fictional fancy. Amid the dreams and occult whispers, reason and science emerge to dazzle the imagination. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Humanity's Lullaby

    Jul 17 2014

    Lullabies are soothing, grotesque and universal. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the surprisingly rich world of human sleep songs. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Earwax: Portable Time Capsules

    Jul 15 2014

    Why do we have ear wax? Why does it build up and what can it tell us about ourselves? Enter the mysterious ear canal in this sticky new episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ballad of the Electric Fish

    Jul 10 2014

    How does the electric eel generate its juice and how did six different lineages of bioelectric fish evolve on this planet of ours? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Junk Food Junkies

    Jul 08 2014

    Why does junk food hold such power over us? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie get to the bottom of modern humanity's favorite supernormal stimuli. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Designer Genes

    Jul 03 2014

    Gene therapy, DNA analysis and genetically modified organisms are increasingly part of our everyday reality. But where is this road taking us and how will it change us on the way? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Summer Reading 2014

    Jul 01 2014

    Looking for a good, intelligent beach read? Join Robert and Julie for their annual Summer Reading episode, loaded with fiction and non-fiction reading recommendations for the curious mind: zombies, animals, Marilyn Monroe, torture, monsters, Muppets, Guillermo del Toro, skeptic science for kids and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • A Perfect Circle

    Jun 26 2014

    What is a mathematically perfect circle and why doesn't it exist in our universe? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind as Robert and Julie look high and low in a universe of imperfection. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Neural Pixie Dust

    Jun 24 2014

    The future of brain-machine interaction will expand human intelligence and forever alter our experience of reality, but where are we now and how long till neurotechnology elevates us to higher human form? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of H.P. Lovecraft

    Jun 19 2014

    Legendary weird fiction author H.P. Lovecraft revolutionized our understanding of supernatural horror in the early 20th century, but he was also a science writer and lived in a time of tremendous scientific advancement and global war. Join Robert and Julie as they chat with S.T. Joshi about the science of H.P. Lovecraft's fiction and how it influenced popular culture. Plus, hear from a few HowStuffWorks podcast personalities on their own favorite Lovecraft tales. Learn more about your ad-choices...more

  • Listener Mail: The Power of Names

    Jun 17 2014

    As a follow-up to their podcast episode on the nominative determinism, Robert and Julie share YOUR thoughts on names and the power of names in this special listener mail episode. Plus, who knows what else they'll chat about? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Future of Addiction

    Jun 12 2014

    Highly addictive substances like meth and heroine are formidable enemies for the recovering addict, but what does the future hold for their treatment? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the use of electromagnetic stimulation, vaccines and other treatments to help win the battle. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Addiction

    Jun 10 2014

    What is addiction? Why are some people predisposed to it and what happens in the brain when addiction takes hold? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie break it all down for you and ponder the addiction-shattered brain. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Status of Flatus

    Jun 05 2014

    The Status of Flatus: What is a fart? What's the science behind passing gas and why does volume, frequency and stench very so much from person to person? Answers await, gentle listener, as Robert and Julie discuss the biology behind breaking wind in this classic STBYM podcast episode Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Troglofauna of Fraggle Rock

    Jun 03 2014

    The Troglofauna of Fraggle Rock: What do the fun-loving denizens of Jim Henson's "Fraggle Rock" have in common with real-life cave animals? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind as Robert and Julie discuss the ecology of Fraggle Rock and the show's ecological message. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Supernormal Stimuli

    May 29 2014

    No longer limited by the constrains of their environment or biology, humans have remade their world. Why walk when you can soar? Why shout when you can whisper in the ear of a listener halfway round the world? And why limit yourself to normal stimuli when you can condense the sensory world into nuggets of superstimuli. Join Robert and Julie as they discuss junk food, gaming, pornography, the Internet and beauty itself all in the framework of natural biology. Learn more about your ad-choices at h...more

  • Heartbeat in the Brain, Hole in the Skull

    May 27 2014

    Trepanation is an ancient surgical procedure and we've found the millennia-aged skulls to prove it - each punctured and gouged to relieve inner-pressure and inner-madness. But is such cranial perforation truly a relic of a primitive age or do modern trepanation advocates have a point in their quest to free the brain's heartbeat from its prison of bone? Tune in to this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • You Are Here: Proprioception

    May 22 2014

    How do we know who and where we are in this ocean of chaos? It's easy to take this question for granted, but the answer goes beyond our five senses and into the realm of body schema, golgi tendon organs and out-of-body experiences. Close your eyes and reach out for... your self. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • A Boy Named Sue

    May 20 2014

    A Boy Named Sue: What's in a name? Does a parentally-bestowed "Fred" force one fate on a hapless child and "Moon Unit" or "Brock" quite another? Join Robert and Julie for a discussion on the power of names and nominative determinism in this Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Beards

    May 15 2014

    You've probably been wondering, "Is there any data about facial hair, particularly gloriously groomed beards?" Why, yes, there is. Find out how facial hair transforms perception and whether or not it could help blunt a few blows in a bar fight, all in this classic episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Over the Moon

    May 13 2014

    Over the Moon: What if we, over at the mother company Earth, Inc., looked at "assets" in our solar system like a corporation looks at its assets? What if we set our sights on that ne'er-do-well moon? Find out how we could harness the moon's resources to do more of Earth's bidding. Mahahahahawaha. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Future Shock: Part II

    May 08 2014

    Future Shock: Back in 1970, Alvin Toffler's book "Future Shock" envisioned a future human civilization outpaced, overstimulated and mentally stunned by relentless technological and social change. Today, we live in the very future Toffler warned everyone about. How did his predictions hold up and how can we stave off the terrors of future shock? Find out in this two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Future Shock: Part I

    May 06 2014

    Future Shock: Back in 1970, Alvin Toffler's book "Future Shock" envisioned a future human civilization outpaced, overstimulated and mentally stunned by relentless technological and social change. Today, we live in the very future Toffler warned everyone about. How did his predictions hold up and how can we stave off the terrors of future shock? Find out in this two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Rethinking Genitalia

    May 01 2014

    Rethinking Genitalia: We're a culture obsessed with human bodies, gender and the morphological differences between male and female. But what happens when we consider gender reversal in nature, as well as the amazing sex-reversed cave insects of the Neotrogla genus? The females of these species boast a penis-like, sperm-collecting "gynosome," which fits perfectly inside the male's sperm-offering "phallosome." Listen to this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind and turn everything you know about gen...more

  • The Cuckoo Mafia

    Apr 29 2014

    The Cuckoo Mafia: Sure, humans have their organized crime, but what about the Earth's other residents? Are their animal mafias? How does "crime" even work outside the confines of human culture? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Habitable Epoch

    Apr 24 2014

    The Habitable Epoch: What if we're wrong. What if life isn't a rarity in a dead cosmos, but rather a common occurrence in the habitable epoch 10 to 20 million years after the Big Bang? Explore the mind-blowing possibility with Robert and Julie. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Rise of the Vampire Bat

    Apr 22 2014

    Rise of the Vampire Bat: It's a hard-knock life for an exclusive blood drinker, yet somehow three species of vampire bat take full honors as the only obligate sanguivores. How did they evolve? How does vampire physiology work? Tune into this bloodthirsty episode of Stuff to Blow your Mind to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Shadow People

    Apr 17 2014

    Do strange shadow people haunt the corners of our existence, or is there a scientific answer within the human brain? Join Robert and guests Ben and Matt of Stuff They Don't Want You To Know as they discuss the answers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Rites of Spring

    Apr 10 2014

    The season of rebirth may be one of the most uplifting seasons humans experience, with a sense of renewal and meaning materializing before their eyes in nature. But could it change our perception and behavior. And is there a dark side to spring? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Through the Looking Glass

    Apr 08 2014

    What are we to make of the mirror world? We surround ourselves with looking glasses, yet rarely understand exactly what we're observing. Our reflected doubles gaze back at us, affecting the way we carry ourselves and the way we experience our own bodies. Travel through the looking glass in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Extreme Survivors of the Animal World

    Apr 03 2014

    Extreme Survivors of the Animal World: Think you've got what it takes to hack it in an unforgiving world? You may have the brains, human, but creatures such as the Saharan silver ant, the Pompeii worm and the tardigrade have the brawn. Learn all about them in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Image: © Science Picture Co./Corbis Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Outsourcing Memory

    Apr 01 2014

    Outsourcing Memory: From digital photography to Internet spellcheckers, we allocate more and more of our cognitive processes to the cloud. But what do we ultimately gain from all of this - and what do we lose? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Labyrinths

    Mar 27 2014

    Labyrinths: Join Robert and Julie once more for their classic series on mazes and labyrinths. Having escaped from the confusion of the Minoan maze, it's time to walk the serene, calming paths of the Chartres Labyrinth. Why is this experience so different? Learn all about the calming effects of labyrinths on the mind. Image: © Sylvain Sonnet/Corbis Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mazes

    Mar 25 2014

    Mazes: Join Robert and Julie once more for their classic series on mazes and labyrinths. In this episode, enter the Minoan maze and wander its endless halls. Feel your heart race. Feel your limbs quiver as the minotaur's roar echoes through the walls. Explore the world of mazes and how they affect the brains of humans and rats. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Acid Flashbacks

    Mar 20 2014

    Acid Flashbacks: Are acid flashbacks real or are they merely a ghost story of psychedelic culture or anti-drug messaging? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss the misconceptions as well as the real science of Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder or HPPD. Image credit: David Crausby/Flick/Getty Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • A Musical Time Machine for the Brain

    Mar 18 2014

    A Musical Time Machine for the Brain: What is music doing to our perception of time? It seems to transport us to the past. It speeds things up and slows things down. And just how do others exploit these qualities to manipulate us? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind with Robert and Julie. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Your Body Odor,Your Destiny

    Mar 13 2014

    Your Body Odor,Your Destiny: Can body odor be destiny? Can it portend health or illness, who we're attracted to and repulsed by? Find out in this pungently scientific episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Image: © H. Armstrong Roberts/ClassicStock/Corbis Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Maneater

    Mar 11 2014

    Maneater: What happens when an animal turns maneater? Is it the irresistible taste of human flesh? Is it the ease of a human kill? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie look to the environmental, biological and bad-luck causes that land humans on a predator's dinner menu. About the Art: "Two Followers of Cadmus devoured by a Dragon," by Cornelis van Haarlem. Read more about it here in the Art Spotlight post. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podc...more

  • Listener Mail: Strange Sleep and Past Lives

    Mar 06 2014

    Strange Sleep and Past Lives: In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie once again call forth the robot and take care of some accumulated listener mail on strange sleep, lucid dreaming, reincarnation and other topics. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Barry White Effect

    Mar 04 2014

    The Barry White Effect: What does voice quality tell us about sexual fitness in a potential mate? Do the deep, velvet tones of Barry White have a scientifically-proven effect on our libido? What about Marilyn Monroe's high, breathy voice? All shall be revealed in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Be sure to watch Julie's video on the topic as well. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Empathic Elephants

    Feb 27 2014

    Empathic Elephants: The elephant is Earth's largest surviving land creature and an example of nature at its most majestic. But these amazing creatures also boast self awareness, a high intelligence and a startling capacity for empathy. Join Robert and Julie as they discuss humanity's troubled relationship with elephant kind. Image source: Neil Emmerson/Robert Harding World Imagery/Getty Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Illusion of Continuity

    Feb 25 2014

    The Illusion of Continuity: What is perceptual constancy and how does the illusion of continuity pull a fast one over our brains? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind as Robert and Julie discuss the science behind Dancing Spider-Man, the whole Pink Floyd/Wizard of Oz thing and the roots of magical thinking. About the Image: Man doing back flip on a trampoline by Eadweard Muybridge, 1881, in his Attitudes of Animals in Motion P&P Case © CORBIS Learn more about your ad-choices at ...more

  • Reincarnation Blues

    Feb 20 2014

    The metaphysics of reincarnation are nothing short of enthralling, from the notion of an immortal soul drifting through myriad life forms to the intimidating Wheel of Samsara with its heavenly and hellish realms. Why does this version of immortality appeal to us? And what, if anything, can science tell us about the survival of the soul? Join Robert and Julie for a rich discussion on the reincarnation. Image source: Godong/Universal Images Group/Getty Learn more about your ad-choices at https://n...more

  • Night Janitors of the Brain

    Feb 18 2014

    The Night Janitors of the Brain: Do you think other species ever look at humans and raise an eyebrow at the amount of sleep we need? Do cockroaches and eyelash mites leave messages on our foreheads in microscopic Sharpies? Perhaps "I just popped on an apex predator's head." We may be the most successful species in existence, but that doesn't mean sleep is just another one of our "choices" as a human being. It is a necessity for survival, even though it requires immobility and vulnerability. Prep...more

  • My Slimey Valentine: Slug Sex Revisited

    Feb 13 2014

    Slug Sex: Whether you're a hopeless romantic or a Valentine's hater, Robert and Julie have quite the episode for you. Prepare to have your mind blown as they expose the daring, disgusting, weaponized, cannibalistic and marathon lovemaking ways of slugs and snails. Originally published in 2013, the episode is now updated with a new page from the slug Kama Sutra that will leave you squirming. Be sure to explore this accompanying mini-gallery for maximum terror. Image Credit: "Slug Sex" by Erica Ne...more

  • The Problem of Immortality: Terror Management Theory

    Feb 11 2014

    Humans are haunted by death. It awaits us all with open arms and all we can do is dream of its blissful antithesis: immortality. And so we've constructed a fortress of ideas to protect us against the terror of impermanence: astral bodies, bodily resurrection, reincarnation and the immaterial soul. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss the Terror Management Theory, which holds that fear of death and the quest for immortality command every facet of our lives. Discove...more

  • Leechpunk: The Power of Leeches

    Feb 06 2014

    The Power of Leeches: Are leeches mere bloodsucking parasites or do these creatures have a place in modern medicine? Plus learn about the very real 19th century invention that incorporated bottled leeches. Tune into this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind for all sorts of vein-tapping goodness. Image credit: Garry DeLong/Oxford Scientific/Getty Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Meaning of Stonehenge

    Feb 04 2014

    The Meaning of Stonehenge: Stonehenge remains one of the great unsolved mysteries of the ancient world. Was it a burial ground for aristocratic families, a Druid temple or pilgrimage for those observing the seasons? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Building of Stonehenge

    Jan 30 2014

    The Building of Stonehenge: Rising up from the plains of Salisbury, England is a mammoth structure that has existed for 5,000 years. How was it constructed and what can it tell us about the Neolithic and Bronze Age people who built it? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • It's a Trap!

    Jan 28 2014

    It's a Trap: Humans aren't alone in their ability to craft a clever trap out of their surroundings. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie look to the insect and arachnid world for deadly examples. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Memory/Story Editing

    Jan 23 2014

    Ever wish you could take a troubling event from your past and dial down the memory without subjecting yourself to total recall erasure? Explore the science of memory/story editing in this Stuff to Blow Your Mind episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Werewolf Principle: Adapting Humans for Space

    Jan 21 2014

    The Werewolf Principle: Will astronauts of the future be able to adapt their physiology for long-term space travel and life on other planets? In this classic STBYM episode, Robert and Julie explore the ideal physical modifications that could theoretically create the world's best astronaut. 'The Werewolf Principle' cover image by artist Ian Miller Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Hibernation: The Ultimate Suspended Animation

    Jan 16 2014

    Hibernation: What is hibernation exactly? Is it the opposite of sleep? Is it the future of manned space exploration? Revisit the topic with Julie and Robert as they enter the hibernacula and discuss this perplexing biologic state. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The War on Creativity

    Jan 14 2014

    The War on Creativity: There's an entire industry dedicate to creativity and innovation. But do people - and corporations-really want to "think outside of the box." Is there an inherent bias against creativity? Image credit: Guillermo Legaria/AFP/Getty Images Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Up in the Air

    Jan 09 2014

    Up in the Air: How long can a bird stay in the air? How about an airplane? From human flight to the future of laser-powered drone aircraft, the answers may surprise you in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. And be sure to click here for a mini-gallery of birds and planes featured in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Brain Hacking 101: New Habits for a New Year

    Jan 07 2014

    New Habits for a New Year: How long does it take to make or break a habit? Is this really the year you make major changes or learn a new craft? Robert and Julie break down the science of it all in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Featured art: "Head of Gold" by Pavel Tchelitchew Click here for the full image and information on the artist. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cluttered Desks, Cluttered Minds & Toddler Hands

    Jan 02 2014

    Cluttered Desks, Cluttered Minds and Toddler Hands: Toddlers might not seem like scientists when they mash up a banana or throws noodles at the wall, but research reveals that messy hands often indicate a hungry mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Normalcy Bias and Psychogenic Death

    Dec 31 2013

    Normalcy Bias and Psychogenic Death: Why do some people continue on with their normal lives when reality comes crashing down on them? Why don't they run for cover or try to jump ship? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Comedic Impressions of the Wild

    Dec 26 2013

    Comedic Impressions of the Wild: Why do birds and other animals imitate other animals? Why would an elephant learn to speak Korean? All of this and more shall be explored in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Snowflake Doppelganger

    Dec 24 2013

    Snowflake Doppelganger: Are snowflakes really one of a kind? How do they form and what do they have to do with grade school art projects, personal identity, climate change and Jack the Ripper? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. And be sure to explore the accompanying gallery, Miniature Crystal Kingdoms, for mind-blowing macro snow flake images. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Thanatosis: Playing Dead to Survive

    Dec 19 2013

    Thanatosis: Playing Dead to Survive: There's more to playing dead that meets the eye. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the science of tonic immobility and thanatosis. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Carrot and Stick: A Genetic Santa Story

    Dec 17 2013

    Santa or Krampus? Gifts or a stocking full of coal? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie look at negative and positive reinforcement and a new study that looks at the genetics behind each. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fist Bumps vs. Bacteria

    Dec 12 2013

    Fist Bumps vs. Bacteria: Can a simple fist bump help us out in a war against antibiotic-resistant bacteria? And what strange corners of the Earth might provide us the artillery we need to fight these deadly enemies? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Image credit: Cultura Science/Joseph Giacomin/Getty Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Urine for a Treat

    Dec 10 2013

    Urine For a Treat: A urine sample reveals a great deal about the person from whence it trickled, but can we drink it? Can it cure what ales us? Does it help with jellyfish stings? The latest science sheds new light on our old myths regarding those salty leavings. Learn all about it in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Welcome to the Panopticon

    Dec 05 2013

    Welcome to the panopticon, both a prison of design and a prison of the mind, where everyone is susceptible to surveillance and no one knows who's being watched. Join Robert and Julie as they explore the history, design and philosophical import of this physical and metaphorical prison. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Smiles

    Dec 03 2013

    The Science of Smiles: Just try to resist the power of the human smile. We dare you! In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the science behind all those upside-down frowns. Be sure to check out the accompanying image gallery by clicking here. (Photo by Adrianna Williams/Digital Vision/Getty) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Gluttony Revisited

    Nov 28 2013

    Gluttony Revisited: When does mere appetite transform into disorder? And what are we to make of the monstrous "sport" of competitive eating? Join Robert and Julie as they revisit one of the sins from their "Seven Deadlies" series (CLICK HERE to explore the other six) just in time for Thanksgiving. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Into the Mouth of Thanksgiving

    Nov 26 2013

    While your stomach may rumble at the thought of Thanksgiving's bounty, your mouth is trembling in fear. Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the oral health battle that takes place between Streptococcus mutans and teeth enamel and find out why our distant ancestors may have had better chompers than ours. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Skeptics and Sasquatches

    Nov 21 2013

    Skeptics and Sasquatches: What are we to make of the Sasquatch, bigfoot, skunk ape and yeti? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss why the fabled creature doesn't hold up to scientific scrutiny. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Before Science

    Nov 19 2013

    Before Science: When did the word "scientist" enter our vocabulary? How did science take off as the driving force of modern culture and what of the natural philosophers of old? Listen in to this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind for all the details. Pictured: Babbage's difference engine (SSPL via Getty Images) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Dexter of Parasites

    Nov 14 2013

    The Dexter of Parasites: Yes, in the same way Dexter preyed on other serial killers, parasitic organisms are targeted by parasites as well. Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the world of hyperparasites. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Cute

    Nov 12 2013

    Why do kitten faces and cartoon cuties hold such power over us? Why does the sight of a puppy tug our heart strings? Find out in this Stuff to Blow Your Mind journey into the science of cute. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Autotomy: Nature's Dismemberment Plan

    Nov 07 2013

    Autotomy: Nature's Dismemberment Plan: When threatened, some species of lizards simply jettison their own twitching tails form their bodies. It's grisly but effective. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the science of autotomy in both the vertebrate and invertebrate worlds. Plus why can't humans do this? And how might it benefit regeneration science? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Into the Hologenome

    Nov 05 2013

    Into the Hologenome... How can the bacterial fauna thriving inside our bodies influence evolution? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Monster Mash: Mummies and Trolls

    Oct 31 2013

    Monster Mash: Mummies and Trolls: Could real science possible explain a horror movie mummy's murderous escape from a museum or a troll's transformation into stone? In the same tradition as their gremlin and zombie episodes, Robert and Julie give it a try for this special Halloween edition of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Wendigo...

    Oct 29 2013

    Wendigo: What are we to make of this evil spirit of Algonquin folklore, said to transform unfortunate travelers into cannibalistic monsters? Have true accounts of "wendigo psychosis" actually occurred in the Canadian wilds? Join Robert and Julie as they explore the mythic, anthropological and scientific dimensions of this fearsome legend. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tainted Love Hormone

    Oct 24 2013

    Tainted Love Hormone: There's a dark side to oxytocin. Tune into this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind for the latest research on the dark side of the love hormone. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Naked Terror

    Oct 22 2013

    Is there a link between nudity and fear? Does naked combat make us more powerful or more vulnerable? Nudists and never-nudes alike can find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Listener Mail Roundup

    Oct 17 2013

    Listener Mail Roundup: The Stuff to Blow Your Mind mailbag grows and the mail-bot grows increasingly insane in its boredom. To remedy the situation, Robert and Julie devote an entire episode to catching up. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ig Nobel Science of 2013

    Oct 15 2013

    Ig Nobel Science of 2013: The IgNobel Prizes never fail to highlight the absurdity of scientific research. In this episode, Robert and Julie look at five of 2013's winners. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • STBYM: Three Years of Word Salad

    Oct 10 2013

    STBYM: Three Years of Word Salad: Robert and Julie celebrate 3 years of cranium-popping episodes and discuss how Stuff to Blow Your Mind has changed their lives. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Uncanny Music

    Oct 08 2013

    The Science of Uncanny Music: Why is scary music so scary? Why does an uncanny tune creep us out so? Is it all context and culture or is there something deeper at work? Robert and Julie provide the answers and Christopher Gladwin of The Wyrding Module provides some unsettling tunes and a few answers of his own. Be sure to check out Robert's interview with Gladwin, as well as his roundup of uncanny musical tracks. Image: Ivan Bliznetsov/E+/Getty Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.ih...more

  • Dread Anxiety

    Oct 03 2013

    What is dread and how are we supposed to cope with it? Why do we let it control our lives so much? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Teaching Robots to Love

    Oct 01 2013

    Will our robots ever love us? And what does that question reveal about the true nature of this much-touted human emotion? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tyrannosaurus Sex

    Sep 26 2013

    Climb into the dinosaur hot tub machine with us on this classic STBYM episode featuring the concept of the cloacal kiss and the very direct question: how did dinosaurs -- with all their spikes and plates -- get it on? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ouroboros: The Tail-Eating Serpent

    Sep 24 2013

    The ouroboros is an ancient symbol of a mythical serpent or dragon that bites its own tail. It has come to represent, rebirth, infinity and the continuous wheel of cycles. But it also turns out to be a clever way for some animals to defend themselves and can be seen in everything from storms on Saturn to nanotechnology. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Nostalgia: The Kryptonite of Existential Angst?

    Sep 19 2013

    Nostalgia: The Kryptonite of Existential Angst? Nostalgia is a bittersweet emotion that evokes a pleasurable memory tinged with the knowledge that you can never really go back. Find out why nostalgia was once considered a psychiatric disorder and why it actually may be balm for the soul. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Word Aversion: The Story of Moist

    Sep 17 2013

    Word Aversion: The Story of Moist: Put your favorite pair of slacks on and join guest host Allison Loudermilk as she and Julie get to the bottom of word aversion. Find out why the word "moist" is so maligned and see if your favorite worst word made the list. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fire Tornado vs Sharknado

    Sep 12 2013

    Fire Tornado vs Sharknado: What would win in a fight, a swirling column of fire or a vortex full of killer sharks? It's not a question to dismiss slightly, so join Robert and Julie as they break down the real science of fire tornadoes as well as the not-so-real science of the deadly "sharknado." Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Human Paper Dolls: Enclothed Cognition

    Sep 10 2013

    Human Paper Dolls:Enclothed Cognition: Can a doctor's lab coat make you feel smarter and more confident? Does a police uniform give the wearer a sense of power? The answers may surprise you. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the manner by which clothing items allow us to wrap ourselves in symbolic power and become something new. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Microchimerism: The Mother Inside You

    Sep 05 2013

    Microchimerism: The Mother Inside You: Does a mother retain cells from her child? Does the child retain cells form the mother? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie introduce you to the fantastic world of microchimerism. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Here There Be Sea Monsters

    Sep 03 2013

    Medieval and renaissance maps are resplendent with sea monsters, but what were these fanciful beasts all about? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie breakdown the science, economics and mythology of sea serpents, walruses and whales the size of islands. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fine Young (Animal) Cannibals

    Aug 29 2013

    Fine Young (Animal) Cannibals: Cannibalism is a bit yucky in the human world, but for animals it's just a matter of economics. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie expore the world of cannibalistic insects and their kin. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Left-Handed Scissors

    Aug 27 2013

    The Left-Handed Scissors: Lefties make up 10 percent of the population, but what are we to make of their curious inversion? Why do they exist? Why do they excel at sports and murder? And might they one day rise up and force right-handed folks to wear special gloves? All this and more shall be revealed... Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Symbols on the Brain

    Aug 22 2013

    Symbols on the Brain:A symbol can instantly convey an abstract idea that would require paragraphs of traditional language to relate. So what are they all about? In this episode, Robert and Julie explore the manner in which symbols take hold of our brain - and how they constantly influence our unconscious mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Walls

    Aug 20 2013

    Walls:Civilizations surround themselves in walls. They raise walls against enemies, against the environment and against the spirit world. In this classic episode, Robert and Julie examine walls, from Ming Dynasty battlements to the galactic borders of our universe. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Staring

    Aug 15 2013

    The Science of Staring: Your mother always told you it's not polite to stare - and yet we do. Why is starring a part of who we are? Why do subway staring contests occur and can we actually feel people's eyes crawling over our bodies? All of this and more shall be discussed. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Satellite Junkies and the Day of the Fall

    Aug 08 2013

    Satellite Junkies and the Day of the Fall: Humanity has become addicted to satellite technology. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the sort of withdrawals we'd feel if the satellites all fell from the sky. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sideshow Secrets Revealed

    Aug 06 2013

    What's the real science behind beds of nails, sword swallowing and headless women? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie strip away the carnie veneer and get right to the facts. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Hell

    Aug 01 2013

    The Science of Hell: Artists aren't alone in their fascination with Hell. Scientists two have long sought to breach the fiery gates and figure out just how it works. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore scientific ponderings over the Dante's "Inferno" and Milton's "Paradise Lost" from modern mathematicians, meteorologists and even Galileo. Robert sketched THIS MAP to help you out with the weather stuff. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/...more

  • The Problem of Hell

    Jul 30 2013

    Belief in Hell is problematic at best. How do we relate to our fellow human beings while sorting them into an imagined afterlife of torment? How do we relate to faiths and myths that heap such additional darkness on an already bleak world? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss the origins of belief in Hell, the philosophical problems it entails and just what sociologists and economists think about its effects on the real world. Learn more about your ad-choices at h...more

  • Roller Derby Microbiome

    Jul 25 2013

    Roller Derby Microbiome: Once upon a time, the word "outdoors" wasn't a thing. But then humans invented "indoors," and with it an artificial environment containing an artificial environment of microorganisms. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss the ways in which we might manage or even engineer the microbiology of these indoor worlds. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cubicle Doom

    Jul 23 2013

    Cubicle Doom: Can your office cubical kill you? Might an open-floor office plan save your life or drive you to madness? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie examine the science and psychology of our artificial work spaces. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Mystery of Human Consciousness

    Jul 18 2013

    What is consciousness? Can we test for it? And how to we rectify the seemingly disparate realities of physical brain and immaterial mind? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie consider the hard problem of human consciousness and the philosophic warnings of the New Mysterians. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Insect Love Song

    Jul 16 2013

    Insect Love Song: The night is alive with insects. To our human ears their song is mere cacophony, but it's actually a vast web of communication signals. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie decode the Insect Internet for the meanings behind insect songs. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Clap, Clap, Clap Your Hands

    Jul 11 2013

    Clap, Clap, Clap Your Hands:Resist the urge to clap at the next concert or play you attend - IF YOU DARE! Because as Robert and Julie explain in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, applause is viral. It's hard-coded into our mental capacity for synchronicity and social adaptation. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Grunting the Conqueror Worm

    Jul 09 2013

    Grunting the Conqueror Worm: Behold the conqueror earthworm, a creature introduced to North America mere centuries ago and now virtually unstoppable. And yet some humans know the means of summoning these worms from the Earth using only music or the rhythmic rubbing of stakes. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie take you inside the world of worm grunting. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • A Cuppa Joe

    Jul 04 2013

    A Cuppa Joe:Just what's in a cup of coffee? Why does it make us feel so invincible and why does it make us poop so much? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How to Beat the Thought Police

    Jul 02 2013

    How to Beat the Thought Police: Want to know how to beat a polygraph test? How about current and near-future fMRI lie detection tests? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie take you to the place where neuroscience and criminal investigation collide. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Isolation Chambers: Float Follow-Up

    Jun 27 2013

    Isolation Chambers: Float Follow-Up: In a previous episode, Robert and Julie discussed the science of sensory deprivation chambers and now they're back from their own first-hand experiences inside the womb-to-tomb wet box. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Clocking In: The Nature of Time

    Jun 25 2013

    Clocking in: What is time? What's the best way to measure it? And is it all an illusion anyway? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss the fourth dimension and the clock on the wall. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Summer Reading: Guest Picks

    Jun 20 2013

    In this special episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie invite six guests to share their recommendations for summer reading. You'll hear from science author Mary Roach, musician DJ Food and author David Barnett. Plus fellow HowStuffWorks podcast hosts Cristen Conger, Lauren Vogelbaum and Tracy V. Wilson pop in with titles as well. And don't forget to check out the accompanying blog post for a complete list of titles. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcas...more

  • Summer Reading: Robert and Julie's Picks

    Jun 18 2013

    Summer Reading: Robert and Julie's Picks: Once again, your Robert and Julie are here to share some summer reading recommendations with their curious listeners. Explore their delightful buffet of science, sci-fi, children's books, literary fiction and graphic novels. Something here might just make your summer. And don't forget to check out the accompanying blog post for a complete list of titles. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Quietest Room in the World

    Jun 12 2013

    The Quietest Room in the World: In Minneapolis, MN there's a room that blocks 99.99 percent of all sound. It's a place of intense silence, intense calm and possibly intense madness. What happens when things are too quite? Robert and Julie explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sensory Deprivation Chambers

    Jun 11 2013

    Sensory Deprivation Chambers:Fancy a return to the womb? Ready to shut off the world of senses and dive into the inner you? Well, the sensory deprivation chamber awaits you. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie breakdown the science of the womb-to-tomb wet box. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Finnish Ed

    Jun 05 2013

    Finnish Ed: STEM education in the US has been on educators and policymakers' minds. One of the reasons is that the US has become far less competitive in terms of turning out a knowledge-based society. Could Finland hold the answer to raising a generation of science literate brainiacs? Stuff to Blow Your Mind travels to Finland (metaphorically) to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Invisible World of the No. 7

    Jun 04 2013

    Invisible World of the No. 7:The 7 deadly sins, the 7 continents, the 7 seas: The no. 7 is everywhere. But is its prevalence simply a byproduct of the brain's pattern recognition machinery, does the no. 7 play a significant role in both human psychology and physiology - and to what extent is one driving the other? Find out in this Stuff to Blow Your Mind episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ventriloquism: The Science of Dummies

    May 30 2013

    Ventriloquism: The Science of Dummies: It's time to rediscover ventriloquism, the surprisingly deft art of illusion that relies on a keen sense of comic timing and obsessive technique from the performer, as well as a buy-in into the illusion from the audience member. Why do we fall for it? What's going on in the brain? All shall be explained in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Extreme Mammals Part II

    May 28 2013

    Extreme Mammals Part II: In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind series, Robert and Julie discuss the amazing world of prehistoric mammals and count down their favorite weird warm bloods from the smallest to largest. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Extreme Mammals Part I

    May 23 2013

    Extreme Mammals Part I: In this two-part Stuff to Blow Your Mind series, Robert and Julie discuss the amazing world of prehistoric mammals and count down their favorite weird warm bloods from the smallest to largest. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Beards

    May 21 2013

    The Science of Beards: Why do human males have beards? Do they protect us? Do they make us more fearsome? Better looking? More trustworthy? Find out in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Status of Flatus

    May 16 2013

    The Status of Flatus: What is a fart? What's the science behind passing gas and why does volume, frequency and stench very so much from person to person? Answers await, gentle listener, as Robert and Julie discuss the biology behind breaking wind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Zombie Apocalypse PSA

    May 14 2013

    Atlanta is in shambles. Parasite-infected humans wander the streets, stinking of death and attacking everyone in sight. Meanwhile Robert and Julie hold up in the HSW headquarters to shed light on the so-called "zombie outbreak" by highlighting real-world examples of minds hijacked and bodies zombified by tiny parasitic organisms. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From Nose to Tail: The Colon

    May 09 2013

    From Nose to Tail: The Colon: Finally, everything comes out in the end - which is to say it comes out of the end. Robert and Julie finish up their digestive journey with discussions of colon science, nutrient enemas, prison wallets and other astounding things. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From Nose to Tail: Into the Intestines

    May 07 2013

    From Nose to Tail: Into the Intestines: In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie continue to follow the journey of a haggis through the digestive system of man. Listen in as the small intestines absorb all sorts of vital nutrients from your liquefied food. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Nude Space Walk

    May 02 2013

    Nude Space Walk: In order to travel in space, humans have to bring a fragment of their native environment with them in the form of a compressed capsule or EV suit. But what would happen if you took off your helmet or simply launched yourself out the airlock in the buff? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie look for the answers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Emotions in Outer Space

    Apr 30 2013

    Emotions in Outer Space: Space madness. Freezing tears. Delirious astronauts tranquilized, duct taped to the wall and forced to listen to Phillip Glass. Yes, in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie examine the mental strains of life and space and how to address them. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Eaten Alive!

    Apr 25 2013

    Ah, to be swallowed whole and hugged within the stomach of a colossal beast. To some this idea is bliss; to most it's the stuff of nightmares. But can any creature on Earth truly swallow a human whole and alive? How likely is it? Join Robert and Julie on this Stuff to Blow Your Mind adventure deep inside the belly of a colossal whale. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From Nose to Tail: Can You Stomach It?

    Apr 23 2013

    Can You Stomach It?: Why doesn't the stomach digest itself? What sorts of chemical wonders go on inside the human gut and what strange language is it speaking after a heavy dinner? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss some stomach science. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Talking 'Gulp' With Mary Roach

    Apr 18 2013

    Mary Roach Interview: We all love Mary Roach, so in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind Robert and Julie invite the "Stiff" author on the show to chat about her latest book "Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal." Plus she'll answer listener questions and discuss how to eat with your butt. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • From Nose to Tail: Mysteries of the Mouth

    Apr 16 2013

    From Nose to Tail: Mysteries of the Mouth: Food goes on quite a fantastic journey through the human body and Stuff to Blow Your Mind is here to guide you on the way. Join Robert and Julie as they begin at digestion's base camp: a world of smell, taste, saliva and gnashing teeth. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Human Lightning Rods

    Apr 11 2013

    Human Lightning Rods: Some folk claim to attract undue attention from electrical storms. Some even insist it's hereditary. But what does science have to say about individuals who incur the wrath of Thor upwards of six or seven times? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the world of human lightning strikes. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Watch Stoppers

    Apr 09 2013

    Watch Stoppers: We've all heard tales of individuals who simply cannot wear wrist watches. The time pieces simply stop working, time and time again. So what' happening? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss personal magnetism and why your watches keep breaking. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • 3D Printer of the Gods II

    Apr 04 2013

    3D Printer of the Gods II: Oh, you're into 3D printing? How 20 years ago. It's one thing to print in the three spatial dimensions, quite another to factor in the fourth dimension of time. But it's happening. And in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Julie and Robert break down exactly what it's all about and discuss the future of manufacturing. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • STBYM Listener Mail Extravaganza

    Apr 01 2013

    Stuff to Blow Your Mind listeners regularly send in imaginative and jaw-dropping correspondence. Sadly, Julie and Robert rarely have time to read it all. So here's a bonus episode devoted to your listener mail, courtesy of everyone's favorite mailbot. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • 3D Printer of the Gods, Part 1

    Mar 29 2013

    Sure 3D printers are cool, but where will they ultimately take us? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss some of the amazing things happening in 3D printing, what the future will bring and whether it will destroy us all. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Slay Your Paper Tigers

    Mar 28 2013

    Slay Your Paper Tigers: Sure, we all know a pile of paperwork or a job interview is nothing like a bloody battle to the death with a saber toothed tiger - but do our bodies know that? Is our brain still wired for fight or flight regardless of the modern stakes? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie discuss how and why our brains interpret minor annoyances as ancestral enemies. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Objects of Love

    Mar 26 2013

    Objects of Love: We live in a world of objects to which we assign varying degrees of worth, from old newspapers to treasured action figures, family heirlooms and golden idols. What's it all about? Where does this object attachment come from? Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Talking 'Space Chronicles' with Neil DeGrasse Tyson

    Mar 22 2013

    In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson chats with Robert and Julie about his new book "Space Chronicles" as well as mad science, philosophy, dark matter and humanity's future amid the stars. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • SETI: The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, Part 2

    Mar 21 2013

    Is there life out there in the cosmos and if so how do we find it? How might it find us? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Julie and Robert discuss the history of SETI as well as what classic TV shows our alien neighbors might be listening to. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • SETI: The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, Part 1

    Mar 19 2013

    Is there life out there in the cosmos and if so how do we find it? How might it find us? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Julie and Robert discuss the history of SETI as well as what classic TV shows our alien neighbors might be listening to. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Wind Beneath My Surgical Wings, Part 2

    Mar 18 2013

    Can science give us the wings we've always envied in birds? Can plastic surgery elevate us to a higher human form? In this second part of this series, Robert and Julie continue exploring of posthuman philosophy and the possibility of winged humans. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Wind Beneath My Surgical Wings, Part 1

    Mar 14 2013

    Can science give us the wings we've always envied in birds? Can plastic surgery elevate us to a higher human form? In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss Joseph Rosen's posthuman philosophy and ponder what we'd have to do to transform arms into wings. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Leprechaun Hallucinations

    Mar 12 2013

    Leprechaun Hallucinations: As Saint Patrick's Day nears, our minds inevitably turn to the little people of Irish folklore. But diminutive fairy folk pop up in folk traditions around the world. Listen in for a celebration of the myth and science behind those Leprechaun encounters. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Pica: Dirt for Dinner

    Mar 07 2013

    Chances are you didn't pack mud pies or clay bricks for lunch, but humans - like many animals - are not above pica in their diet. In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss the practice of dirt and mineral consumption and just what impulses are at work. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Elevators and the Humans who Use Them

    Mar 05 2013

    Like most ubiquitous technology, elevators are often ignored. But there would be no skyscrapers without them. There would be no tightly-packed awkwardness, no dusting of claustrophobic fear. Tune in to learn about the psychology and science of elevators. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Regurgitation Celebration

    Feb 28 2013

    While humans generally try to avoid puking, an upchuck is just another biological function for other creatures. In this episode, Robert and Julie present a vomitory smorgasbord of cud-chewing monkeys, acid-puking spiders, corpse-hurling vultures and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ghost in the Genetic Machine: Humans

    Feb 26 2013

    To what extent are we shackled to genes? How does our upbringing, environment and our grandfather's life choices affect the expression of our genome? Join Julie and Robert as they discuss epigenetic research and ponder underlying questions of free will. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ghost in the Genetic Machine: Animals

    Feb 21 2013

    Between the code and the creature lies the epigenome, where environmental impulses alter genetic expression. Join Robert and Julie as they introduce epigenetics and gene memory. Join them as they discuss Lamarckian Evolution, mice, rats and flat worms. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Memory of Slime

    Feb 19 2013

    So you're telling me slime molds can solve mazes and recreate trade routes? Yes, indeed we are. In this episode, Julie and Robert explore the "intelligence" of slime molds and why they force us to re-think the evolution of intelligence. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • My Slimey Valentine: The Slug Life

    Feb 14 2013

    My Slimey Valentine: Whether you're a hopeless romantic or a Valentine's hater, Robert and Julie have quite the episode for you. Prepare to have your mind blown as they expose the daring, disgusting, weaponized, cannibalistic and marathon lovemaking ways of slugs and snails. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Trilogy of Slime: Tales of Slimedom in the Animal Kingdom

    Feb 12 2013

    We all love slime, but do we really respect it in all its glory? Join Julie and Robert for a mucus-coated journey through the slime of slugs, sea hags and fish. Learn how it provides locomotion, protection, communication and food. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Multitasking Maniacs and the One Track Mind

    Feb 07 2013

    Is multitasking a female super power, a learnable skill or pure myth? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Julie and Robert consider our multitasking world, our unitasking minds and the rare "super taskers" capable of doing it all. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Interrupting Cow: Multitasking, Interruptions and Distractions

    Feb 05 2013

    All joking aside, the Interrupting Cow takes a real toll on your brain and your work life. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie examine just how interruptions and distractions impact our cognitive functions. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Pineal Optics: My Third Eye

    Jan 31 2013

    Pineal Optics: Prepare to open that third eye, listeners, because Robert and Julie are taking you on a journey from philosophical ponderings about human spirituality to scientific explorations of the human pineal gland and the extra parietal eye common to other animals. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Undercover Actors and the Shadow Self

    Jan 29 2013

    Undercover Actors and the Shadow Self: In this episode, we discuss the place where cover and identity collide in the human mind. It's a topic we first raised in our "Wrestling With Kayfabe" episode - so if you skipped that one because of the wrestling content, I urge you to give it a second chance. In this episode, we keep coming back to the idea of an avatar in the traditional sense: one of many physical forms that a formless deity may take in order to engage with a physical world. Your min...more

  • Wrestling with Kayfabe (with guest Colt Cabana)

    Jan 24 2013

    Wrestling with Kayfabe: Professional wrestling is somewhat of a cultural oddity, as it blurs the lines between reality, fiction, sport and theater. Join Robert, Julie and "Art of Wrestling" podcaster Colt Cabana as they lock up with wrestling's mind-twisting layers of fiction. Enjoy part II of this podcast, Undercover Actors and the Shadow Self. Image: French pro-wrestler L'Ange Blanc in Paris, 1959. (Lipnitzki/Roger Viollet/Getty ) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/po...more

  • Cool Science You May Have Missed in 2012

    Jan 22 2013

    A lot of cool science went down in 2012, but it's possible you missed some of these smaller stories amid all the Mars landing and Higgs searching. In this episode, Julie and Robert take you on a journey full of immortal jelly fish and solar tornados. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Big Science of 2012

    Jan 17 2013

    As you leave 2012 in the dust, join Julie and Robert as they take one last look in the rearview mirror at some of the truly mind blowing science that went down in the past year. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Willpower

    Jan 15 2013

    Temptation is all around us and as humans we only have so much willpower in the tank to fight it. In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss the science behind willpower, how we deplete this exhaustible resource and what you can do to boost your resolve. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Labyrinths

    Jan 10 2013

    Having escaped from the confusion of the Minoan maze, it's time to walk the serene, calming paths of the Chartres Labyrinth. Why is this experience so different? Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the calming effects that labyrinths have on the mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mazes

    Jan 08 2013

    Enter the Minoan maze and wander its endless halls. Feel your heart race. Feel your limbs quiver as the minotaur's roar echoes through the walls. Join Robert and Julie as they explore the world of mazes and how they affect the brains of humans and rats. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • I Was a Teenage Teen: The Science of Teen Angst

    Jan 03 2013

    The teenage brain is a wonderful thing, full of intense rewiring and rapid shifts in priority. In this episode, Robert and Julie reminisce about the teenagers they were and just what was going on in their brains to fuel all that odd, erratic behavior. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • New Year's Life Hacks

    Jan 01 2013

    New Year's Life Hacks: Want improved focus this year? A better creative flow or stronger decision-making skills? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie run through some simple, scientifically-backed ways to maximize your new year. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Shaman and the Scientist: Hallucination

    Dec 27 2012

    The Shaman and the Scientist: Hallucination: Join Robert and Julie as they continue their discussion of the overlap between shamanism and cognitive neuroscience. What sort of experiences do substances like DMT, psilocybin and salvia grant users? Why do human bodies have trace elements of DMT? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Shaman and the Scientist: My Egoic Mind

    Dec 21 2012

    The Shaman and the Scientist: My Egoic Mind: A shaman consumes a psychedelic mushroom and visits the spirit world. Meanwhile, a scientist studies the effects of psilocybin on depression and conceptions of self. In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss the common ground shared by these disciplines. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Nutmeg: The Scary Spice

    Dec 20 2012

    Sure, you sprinkle nutmeg indifferently on your eggnog, but do you know its bloody history and psychotropic properties? In this episode, Julie and Robert discuss the weird side of an everyday spice and why you should use it sparingly but often. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Gremlins and Mogwai

    Dec 18 2012

    The Science of Gremlins and Mogwai: Mogwai and Gremlins might seem the most unrealistic monsters of the 1980s, but nothing could be further from the truth. Join Robert and Julie as they dissect Gremlin/Mogwai biology and show you these creatures compare to the rest of the animal kingdom. Be sure to check out "How Mogwai and Gremlins Work" for all the info discussed in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Dark Side of Creativity

    Dec 13 2012

    Creative minds make our favorite art and develop unique solutions to real-world problems. But is there a dark side? Are creative minds more prone to madness and deception? In this episode, Julie and Robert turn the tables on innovation. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Parasite Got Your Tongue?

    Dec 11 2012

    Organisms do what they can to get ahead and sometimes that means crawling inside a fish head and chewing out a niche. In this episode, Robert and Julie get to know Cymothoa exigua, the horrifying and ingenious parasite that replaces a fish's tongue. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Killing Joke

    Dec 06 2012

    Modern minds likely turn to Monty Python when the notion of lethal comedy arises, but accounts of death by laughter date back to ancient times. Can a joke really kill a person? In this episode, Robert and Julie explore the dark side of laughter. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Healing Power of Laughter

    Dec 04 2012

    They say laughter is the best medicine, but is there any science to back that up? In this episode, Julie and Robert discuss what laughter does to us physically and neurologically. And maybe, just maybe, Julie will grow to love laughter yoga. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Why Fingerprints?

    Nov 29 2012

    Why do we have fingerprints? Why are the human versions generally more complex than those of other animals? Join Robert and Julie as they delve into whorls and swirls, exploring the theories behind why we have these strange patterns on our fingertips. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Jive Turkey

    Nov 27 2012

    Jive Turkey: As another Turkey Day dawns on the United States, Julie and Robert stop to consider the great bird itself. Join them as they dive into the ancient history of this North American avian native, discuss the origins of its name and how humans continues to bend the creature to their Thanksgiving desires. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Comfort

    Nov 22 2012

    What does comfort mean to you? Thanksgiving dinner? A cup of tomato soup and a warm blanket? In this episode, Julie and Robert examine the particulars of comfort, why we crave it and what happens when we have too much of a good thing. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • We Are All Scientists

    Nov 20 2012

    While it might not feel like it, humans were born to crunch numbers, engineer solutions and scientifically evaluate the world. Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the research on our inborn abilities and how science is ultimately a part of who we are. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How to Think Like a Child

    Nov 15 2012

    Sure, a kid's unique perspective allows him or her to see Puff the Magic Dragon and say the darndest things. But, as Julie and Robert discover, children are born scientists and their way of viewing the world serves as a fine example to adults. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Consider the Packrat

    Nov 13 2012

    It's true: the word "packrat" is more than slang for hoarders and collectors. Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the pint-size rodent's love of decoration and den-building. Plus how do their toilets aid cowboys and archeologists? Tune in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Hammer of the Witches

    Nov 08 2012

    Witchcraft trials are a part of our history, but what truly went on during the 1400s? Join Robert and Julie as they explore compelling theories about the nature of superstitious religious persecution. What went wrong? Is it still going wrong today? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Anthropocene: The Age of Man

    Nov 06 2012

    When viewed from the standpoint of geologic time, what is humanity's ultimate contribution? Have we founded an Age of Man with agriculture, industrialism and war? Join Robert and Julie as they ask hard questions about humanity's relationship with Earth. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ordovician Waters: Life in the Age of Trilobites

    Nov 01 2012

    Prepare to explore an alien Earth as Stuff to Blow Your Mind takes you back to the Ordovician Period, when invertebrates thrived in primal seas that covered most of the super continent Gondwana. Join Julie and Robert as they explore this age of change. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Light as a Feather, Stiff as a Board

    Oct 31 2012

    Ever reach out to the spirit world with an ouija board? Or stare into a dark mirror for Bloody Mary? Perhaps peer-assisted levitation was more your style. In this episode, Robert and Julie bust through the fantasy of these paranormal parlor tricks and examine the underlying science. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Haunted Houses

    Oct 25 2012

    There's a lot more going on at your local haunted attraction than costumes and chainsaws. In this episode, Robert and Julie venture to Atlanta's Netherworld Haunted House to learn about the science and art behind the ghoulish shenanigans. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How do Animals Map the World?

    Oct 23 2012

    Humans aren't the only map masters on the planet. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Julie and Robert explore the amazing ways that animals turn space into place and navigate the world around them. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cartocacoethes: Map Mania!

    Oct 18 2012

    Do you see a Thailand-shaped birthmark on Gorbachev's forehead? Do clouds remind you of Australia and Indonesia? You may have cartocacoethes, the compulsion to see maps everywhere.Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the past, present and future of maps. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Map-addled Brain

    Oct 16 2012

    Maps show us familiar places as well as far-flung locales that quietly beckon, intertwining the past, present and future. Join Julie and Robert as they explore how our brains work on maps, from neurons to the role of memory and storytelling in mapmaking. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ig Nobel: Strange Science Part 2

    Oct 11 2012

    In part two of their 2012 Ig Nobel Prize coverage, Robert and Julie take listeners through some of the more amazing winners at this year's awards ceremony. From monkey butts to exploding colonoscopies, first you'll laugh and then you'll think. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ig Nobel: Strange Science, Part 1

    Oct 09 2012

    Yes, scientists have a sense of humor - and they have to if their big invention is a bra that doubles as a gas mask. Join Julie and Robert as they explore the Ig Nobel prizes - plus some of the strange studies honored at the 2012 awards ceremony. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cat People

    Oct 04 2012

    Whether you prefer cats, dogs or snakes, you have to admit that humanity's relationship with felines is mysterious. Why do we live with these super predators? What does "meow" mean? Are they really our friends? Join Julie and Robert as they investigate. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Song of the Bat

    Oct 02 2012

    Bats live in a sonic universe. They call out into the night and construct the world from their song. They listen to the sounds of prey, predator and the social squeaking of other bats. In this episode, Robert and Julie listen in on the song of the bat. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Wild World of Bats

    Sep 27 2012

    Is the bat the most successful mammal on the planet? Quite possibly! In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Julie and Robert explore the insect-munching, fruit-drinking, blood-lapping world of these amazing winged sound warriors. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fire Walk With Me

    Sep 25 2012

    In 2012, Tony Robbins marched thousands of barefoot followers through the coals, injuring under two dozen of them. What was going on in their minds (and in their feet)? Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the physics and mindset of the firewalker. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Life in the Plastic Palace

    Sep 20 2012

    How much of your environment is made out of plastic? Where does it come from? Where does it go? How does plastic affect your iPhone's weight? Join Julie and Robert as they discuss humanity's relationship with plastic and the great Pacific garbage patch. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sleep No More

    Sep 18 2012

    What if you could skip a night's sleep without any side effects? It may sound impossible, but the age of sleep replacement drugs is just around the corner. Join Julie and Robert as they discuss the DARPA-funded meds that might let us dodge those 40 winks. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • City Creatures

    Sep 13 2012

    City Creatures: Does a crowded street make you care less about your fellow man? Population density manipulates organisms in subtle and shocking ways. Join Robert and Julie as they look at how animals and humans respond to cramped conditions and depleted resources. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Mind of the Kraken

    Sep 11 2012

    What strange thoughts fill the brains of cephalopods? Do they ponder mysteries in their lightless lairs? Join Julie and Robert as they dive into the fascinating world of cephalopod intelligence, from the crafty octopus to the social cuttlefish and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The King-sized World of Gigantism

    Sep 06 2012

    Finally, a podcast about Andre the Giant, dinosaurs and Nuralagus rex the bunny king. In this episode, Julie and Robert discuss gigantism. What causes some humans to become giants? Why are island ecosystems like Wonderland? Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Hear The Mermaids Singing

    Sep 04 2012

    Hear The Mermaids Singing: Humans have dreamed of mermaids for ages, but is there any substance to these myths? Is the aquatic ape theory more than just a tale for lonely sailors? Join Robert and Julie as they cast their science net and reel in something half-human and half-fish. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mother's Milk

    Aug 30 2012

    Mother's Milk: Milk isn't just an infant-sustaining breast beverage. Join Julie and Robert as they explore the world of lactation. How does milk strengthen our bodies against infection? When did humans mutate into cross-species milk guzzlers? Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Personhood: The Animal and Robot Edition

    Aug 28 2012

    What exactly is personhood? Over time, the term "person" has evolved to include numerous concepts. In this episode, Julie and Robert explore the nature of personhood and sticky concept of consciousness as applied to animals and robots. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Personhood: The Human Edition

    Aug 23 2012

    What exactly is personhood? Over time, the term "person" has evolved to include numerous concepts. In this episode, Julie and Robert explore the nature of personhood, why corporations are considered meta-people and the sticky concept of consciousness. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • It's Performance Art: Challenging Human Nature

    Aug 21 2012

    A woman in a museum stares into your soul. A man implants a cybernetic ear on his arm. A dog starves. In this episode, Robert and Julie dive into the world of performance art, discussing the works of such notable artists as Marina Abramovi? and Stelarc. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Amazing Minds of Infants

    Aug 16 2012

    What goes on inside the minds of babes? Quite a lot, as it turns out. In this episode, Julie and Robert peer inside the infant brain to learn about their enhanced state of consciousness. Plus find out what baby brains have to do with alien abductions. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Portrait of the Artist as a Young Robot

    Aug 14 2012

    When it comes making art, most of us operate under a set of rules. So what happens when you feed machines code for churning out art? Plenty, as it turns out. And if creativity is the seat of the soul, what does that say about our uniqueness? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Penis Episode, Part Two

    Aug 09 2012

    Sure, the penis is a rather ridonkulous organ, but it's also a marvel of design. Join Robert and Julie for the second part of the penis episode, in which they investigate some of the strangest genitalia in the animal kingdom (and more). Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Penis Episode, Part One

    Aug 07 2012

    Sure, the penis is a rather ridonkulous organ, but it's also a marvel of design. In this episode, Robert and Julie explore a cornucopia of wanger-related topics. What do penises and earthworms have in common? Can you break your penis? Tune in for more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • I Scream, You Scream

    Aug 02 2012

    From screaming infants to cinematic scream queens, there's no denying the universal language of yelling. But why do we do it? What are we communicating? In this episode, Julie and Robert explain how a little screaming can do you a world of good. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fecal Fossils: The Cave of Forgotten Poops

    Jul 31 2012

    You can learn a lot from an animal's scat, even if that animal hasn't walked the Earth since prehistoric times. In this episode, Robert and Julie explore the fascinating world of coprolite and ponder just what ancient humans and creatures ate. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • There Once Was a Boson Named Higgs

    Jul 26 2012

    If you're tired of hearing about the Higgs "don't-call-me-a-god-particle" Boson but still want to know what it is, then this is the podcast episode for you. In this episode, Robert and Julie recount our hunt for the Higgs and what it means for science. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Yoga, Sex and Magic

    Jul 24 2012

    Sure, you're no stranger to yoga, but how much do you know about its ancient origins in magical ritual and tantric sex? In this episode, Julie and Robert peer into yoga's sensual past and consult modern science on what yoga can do for your sex life. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Downward Dog

    Jul 19 2012

    About 20 million people in the U.S. practice some form of yoga. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind Julie and Robert suss out the claims and revelations -- could it really be a telomere fountain of youth? And what poses should a newbie never do? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Eliminating River Blindness

    Jul 17 2012

    The parasitic worm onchocerciasis carries uses a bacterial cloaking device to colonize the human body, causing tremendous suffering and even blindness. Luckily, the Carter Center is waging a campaign against the parasite. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Magicology: The Science of Magic

    Jul 12 2012

    Illusionists merely engage a fiction of sorcery, but there's a rich foundation of neuroscience beneath the smoke and mirrors. In this episode, Julie and Robert explore the ways in which magicians manipulate our senses and the inner workings of our minds. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Art and Science of Camouflage

    Jul 10 2012

    There's far more to military camouflage than painting a tank green. As Robert and Julie discuss in this episode, camouflage design incorporates both the neuroscience of how we perceive the world and the art of cubism and textile design. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Life in the Weightless Void

    Jul 05 2012

    We all know the potentially dangerous effects of microgravity, but what are the long-term effects? Join Robert and Julie as they wonder what life will be like if evolution continues in space. Imagine the plants and the strange humans who will tend them. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • An Internet that Spans the Stars

    Jul 03 2012

    The Internet continues to spread its roots through our world, and soon it will launch cosmic seeds, spreading digital humanity into space. How will it all happen? In this episode, Julie and Robert contemplate the future of an interplanetary Internet. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Meet Your Bacterial Masters

    Jun 28 2012

    " Humans have mapped the microbiome and changed our understanding of the bacterial worlds thriving inside us. How will this affect our war on bacteria and the state of modern medicine? Julie and Robert discuss all of these questions in this episode." Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Search for a New Earth

    Jun 26 2012

    Armed with state-of-the-art telescopes and other high-tech tools, astronomers are spotting new worlds at an astonishing rate. Could any of these planets support life? In this episode, Robert and Julie explore the continuing search for habitable planets elsewhere in the universe. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of 'Prometheus'

    Jun 21 2012

    In this episode, Robert and Julie suit up and venture into the dark and Gigery heart of 'Prometheus.' They’ll examine the film’s futuristic science as well as some of its themes. And fear not! You’ll only encounter spoilers after the commercial break. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fiction: Reality's Secret Master

    Jun 19 2012

    " Don't underestimate the power of the storyteller. His tale may begin with whimsy, but by the end of it he'll have changed the world you live in. He might even change who you are. In this episode, Julie and Robert examine fiction's effect on reality. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Horror

    Jun 14 2012

    The Horror: Why do we enjoy scary movies or a stroll through a haunted house? How is our response colored by our genes, evolution and culture? In this episode, Julie and Robert take a close look at what scares us and why we're so addicted to terror. Image: Doug Gray/© Illustration Works/Corbis Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Bad Seed

    Jun 12 2012

    Tales of the enfant terrible have been with us for ages, terrifying us with the notion that strangeness in children portends something darker. But what does science have to say on the matter? Can children be psychopaths? If so, is there any hope for them? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Sound Aquatic

    Jun 07 2012

    Underwater operas? Submerged speaker systems? Mysterious deep sea noises and the monsters who make them? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the rich world of underwater sound. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Asteroid Gold Rush

    Jun 05 2012

    Is there really gold in them there asteroids? Yes, and one private space company already has a three-step plan to suck them dry. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie explore the near and long-term future of asteroid mining. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Centaur with Two Hearts

    May 31 2012

    The mythical centaur represented man's dual nature -- and as one biologist points out, the creature would also need two hearts. In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss all things centaur, from the creature's symbolic meaning to its fictional anatomy. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Summer Reading List

    May 29 2012

    Need new ideas for your summer reading? In this episode, Julie and Robert share their favorite books as well as a heads-up on what they intend to read this summer. Tune in to learn more about mind-blowing science fiction, non-fiction and literary fiction. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mitochondrial Eve

    May 24 2012

    There's something awe-inspiring about the prospect of a primordial mother figure. Scientists actually discovered such a woman - and her ghost resides in the genetics of every living human. In this episode, Julie and Robert get to know Mitochondrial Eve. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Skin We Live In

    May 22 2012

    Our outer layer of flesh is beautiful, disgusting, painful and erotic. But what is it, exactly? What role does it play in anatomy and how will we change it in the future? In this episode, Robert and Julie take a close look at the skin we live in. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Nebula in a Box

    May 17 2012

    We've all heard about panspermia, in which the building blocks of life theoretically travel to Earth from elsewhere. But from where, exactly? In this episode, Julie and Robert glimpse inside the nebulae of creation. Also, Robert talks about "The Blob." Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Three Minutes Till Impact

    May 15 2012

    Sure, your chances of going down in a plane crash are pretty slim -- but what if it actually happens? Without a parachute, how can you hope to survive a deadly drop to Earth's surface? In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss your survival plan. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Touching the Void: Psychedelics and Death

    May 10 2012

    Can psychedelic drugs help prepare terminal patients for death? Can MDMA ease the pain of dying through the ultimate transcendent experience? In this episode, Julie and Robert discuss what some researchers believe may be the future of end-of-life care. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Walls

    May 08 2012

    Civilizations surround themselves in walls. They raise walls against enemies, against the environment and against the spirit world. In this episode, Robert and Julie examine walls, from Ming Dynasty battlements to the galactic borders of our universe. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Hibernation: The Ultimate Suspended Animation!

    May 03 2012

    What is hibernation exactly? Is it the opposite of sleep? Is it the future of manned space exploration? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Julie and Robert enter the hibernacula and discuss this perplexing biologic state. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Space Junk in the Trunk

    May 01 2012

    How much junk can we accumulate in Earth's orbit before we seal off our world? Before we cut the planet off from the cosmos and doom civilization to a new dark age? In this episode, Robert and Julie look skyward to space exploration's garbage. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Contact Lenses of the Gods

    Apr 26 2012

    Imagine a contact lens that displays data against your eyeball, delivering everything from sports scores to soap operas. Contact lens display technology may make this a reality. In this episode, Robert and Julie explore this future augmented reality. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Oh the Lucid Dreams we Weave ...

    Apr 24 2012

    Whether awake or dreaming, our neocortex is always shuffling about data and creating stories. But what if you could enter your dream and become the master of your fate? Join Julie and Robert as they weave a tale about how and why we lucid dream. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Voyager and the Scale of our Solar System

    Apr 19 2012

    The Voyager probes continue their journey toward the edge of our solar system, but how much distance have they covered? In this episode, Julie and Robert wrestle with the scale of our solar system, from the atomic fires of our sun to the Ooort cloud. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Odorous Language of Plants

    Apr 17 2012

    Do you speak the language of the carrots? From the screams of grass blades to the stink songs of carnivorous plants, the green kingdom is abuzz with the silent voices of plants. In this episode, Robert and Julie bend their ear to whispers in the leaves. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Illusions and Light

    Apr 13 2012

    The optical world we perceive is cast in illusion - and the properties of light itself dictate that reality. In this episode, Robert and Julie spin off a discussion of blue skies, sunlight and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Seven Deadlies: Sloth

    Apr 10 2012

    Sloth: When does mere laziness become moral failure? When does apathy descend into sloth? In this episode, Julie and Robert tackle one final deadly sin, traveling through both Dante's purgatory and the neural pathways of the human mind. Painting by Jacques de Backer (Luciano Pedicini/© Alinari Archives/CORBIS) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cat Parasites Conquer the World

    Apr 05 2012

    The most successful organisms hide in the shadows. The parasite Toxoplasma gondii is just such a puppet master, and its marionettes include rodents, cats and human beings. In this episode, Julie and Robert uncover Toxo's neural-hijacking scheme. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Seven Deadlies: Wrath

    Apr 03 2012

    Wrath: Where does wrath arise from in the human brain and why do we malign it as one of the seven deadly sins? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie continue the buffet of vice in an examination of human anger. Painting by Jacques de Backer (Luciano Pedicini/© Alinari Archives/CORBIS) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Virtual Sex and Linked Dreaming

    Mar 29 2012

    Imagine a future in which astronauts engage in virtual encounters with Earth-bound spouses. What sort of technology will make this possible? In this episode, Julie and Robert discuss computer-mitigated sexual experiences and linked dreaming. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Seven Deadlies: Lust!

    Mar 27 2012

    Lust: Are we slaves to our desire? Can we resist our passions, or should we go full-satyr and embrace the inner goat? Join Robert and Julie as they journey through the maelstroms of Dante's Inferno and into a scientific discussion of the ""sin"" called lust. Painting by Jacques de Backer (Luciano Pedicini/© Alinari Archives/CORBIS) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Organisms: Heavyweight Division

    Mar 22 2012

    Just how big can an Earth organism get? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Julie and Robert look at some of the heavyweight contenders for the largest life form on the planet - and the answer isn't "blue whale." What is it? Tune in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Godzilla vs. Kong vs. Barbie

    Mar 20 2012

    Godzilla vs. Kong vs. Barbie: Are you terrified of giant monster attacks? Well, this is the episode for you. Join Robert and Julie as they calm your fears with a healthy dose of science. Listen in as they examine the morphological limitations of gigantic creatures (and more). Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Stendhal Syndrome: Kicked in the Brain by Art

    Mar 15 2012

    Imagine a work of art so beautiful that it causes heart palpitations and hallucinations. This Stuff to Blow Your Mind episode dives into the surreal world of Stendhal syndrome. What's the science behind this psychosomatic illness? Tune in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Seven Deadlies: Grasping Greed

    Mar 13 2012

    Greed: Would you like more money? Sure, we all would. But how does greed break down in the mind? Where's the line between appreciating wealth and complete corruption? In this episode, Julie and Robert dive into the world of Scrooge McDuck, King Midas and more. Painting by Jacques de Backer (Luciano Pedicini/© Alinari Archives/CORBIS) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Novelty Junkies

    Mar 08 2012

    Do you love new experiences and fresh ideas? Join Julie and Robert as they examine neophilia, the love of novelty. How can this swell-sounding human attribute lead one person down the road to ruin and another through a life of success? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Seven Deadlies: Glutton Chops

    Mar 06 2012

    Gluttony: When does appetite transform into disorder? What are we to make of competitive eating? Join Robert and Julie as they continue their science-guided tour of hell, chatting with gluttons in the Inferno's third circle and considering modern forms of gluttony. Painting by Jacques de Backer (Luciano Pedicini/© Alinari Archives/CORBIS) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tidally Locked Perpetual Darkness

    Mar 01 2012

    Why do we never see the moon's backside? What would the Earth be like if one side always faced the sun? In this episode, Robert and Julie contemplate tidally locked planets and moons, where one side of the globe burns while the other freezes in darkness. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Seven Deadlies: Green With Envy

    Feb 28 2012

    Envy: Guided by science, Julie and Robert continue their journey through the pleasures and perils of the seven deadly sins. This time the vice of choice is envy, so prepare to discover the neuroscience behind schadenfreude in this episode. Painting by Jacques de Backer (Luciano Pedicini/© Alinari Archives/CORBIS) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Fantastic Voyage of Endoscopic Cameras

    Feb 23 2012

    You no longer have to turn yourself inside out to travel through your digestive track. Just swallow a camera-bot, grab some pop corn, and watch the kernels traverse your guts. Join Robert and Julie as they look into the world of capsule endoscopy. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Seven Deadlies: Pride Cometh Before the Brain

    Feb 21 2012

    Pride: What is pride, and why is it considered such a bad thing? Is pride actually an evolutionary virtue? Join Julie and Robert as they take listeners on a guided tour of the so-called seven deadly sins. Tune in for a look at the science behind pride.Painting by Jacques de Backer (Luciano Pedicini/© Alinari Archives/CORBIS) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Absolute Disgust

    Feb 16 2012

    There's plenty of stuff in this world to summon your disgust. But why do we feel this way? Is there logic behind repulsion, and if so what is your brain trying to say? In this episode, Robert and Julie enter a world of hacking coughs, dog feces and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Monogamy Shamogamy

    Feb 14 2012

    From black vultures to angler fish, the Earth is home to many monogamous species. Humans, however, don't quite make the list. In this episode, Julie and Robert explore why humans have a hard time with the concept of monogamy. Are we hard wired to stray? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • In the Lair of the Rat King

    Feb 07 2012

    In medieval Germany it was a dire omen of plague-ridden doom. Today, it remains more of a grotesque cultural reference. Join Robert and Julie as they enter the lair of the rat king, and prepare to be shocked by the reality of microbial rat kings. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Virgin Galactic: $200,000 Ticket to Ride

    Feb 02 2012

    Want to blast into space with celebrities? Virgin Galactic might just be your ticket to ride. Join Julie and Robert as they discuss the landmark space tourism venture and the future of space travel. Plus what might happen if Kanye ventured into space? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Existential Horror of the Humanzee

    Jan 31 2012

    A Russian program to breed human/chimpanzee hybrids? Prisoners injected with animal testes? These grotesque tales shed light on the line between humans and chimpanzees. In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss humanity's attempts to create a humanzee. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • We Are Stardust

    Jan 26 2012

    The atoms in your heart once burned in the fires of a dead star. Does this constitute an almost-spiritual connection to the cosmos or is it mere chemistry? In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss the billion-year-old carbon inside us. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Hug it Out

    Jan 24 2012

    Just what sort of hugger are you? Do you squeeze random strangers? Do you grapple your pals in a bear hug or go for the side-hug? In this episode, Julie and Robert discuss the science of hugging it out. Plus, you'll learn about Robert's most awkward hugs. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Arguing

    Jan 19 2012

    Why do we argue? How much bickering is ego sparring and to what extent our evolutionary heritage involved? Join Julie and Robert as they dive into the science behind arguing, from the argumentative theory of reasoning to the health benefits of squabbling. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Magic Eight Ball of Your Existence

    Jan 17 2012

    The Magic Eight Ball of Your Existence: Imagine a computer model of the entire world, one on which world leaders can test their decisions and gauge the ripple effect of their actions. Is such a simulation possible? In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss plans for a Living Earth Simulator. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Would You Rather: Bug Diet vs. Bacteria Diet

    Jan 12 2012

    So which would you choose: an exclusive diet of bugs for the rest of your life, or an endless string of fermented feasts? In this "Would You Rather?" episode, Julie and Robert present the facts and let you decide which diet you'd choose. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Black Blizzards of the Dust Bowl

    Jan 10 2012

    Just what was the Dust Bowl? In this episode, Robert and Julie travel back to the ruined farms and black blizzards of the Great Depression. How did we plant trees to combat ecological damage, and how do we hope to defeat the Gobi Desert today? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cheating in the Name of

    Jan 05 2012

    Have you ever cheated on a test? You're not alone. But what goes on in a student's mind when they reach for the cheat sheet and how does it play out in various cultures? In this episode, Robert and Julie look at what science has to say about cheating. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Way of the Sword

    Jan 03 2012

    From samurai blades to claymores, the sword is one of humanity's most iconic inventions, and they've cut a bloody swath across history. In this episode, Robert and Julie consider the way of the sword, from their manufacture to their use in film and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Anatomy of a Hangover

    Dec 29 2011

    Anatomy of a Hangover: Before your next New Year's hangover, let's explore what creates that splitting headache and the realization that you're wearing half a gorilla costume. Join Julie and Robert as they lead you through the effects of drinking and tips to cure the condition. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Newton: The Chuck Norris of Science

    Dec 27 2011

    You are unprepared for the awesomeness of Sir Isaac Newton. Sure, he contributed to science, but a deeper look into his life shows just how Chuck Norrisy the man was. Plug in your headphones and prepare to enter the obsessive mind of a scientific master. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sunken Dangers

    Dec 22 2011

    What mysteries rest at the bottom of the sea? Which embody nature's diversity? Which tell the tale of humanity's darker side? In this episode, Robert and Julie look to the vessels lost beneath the waves, and the things that linger in their rusting hearts. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Spontaneous Human Combustion

    Dec 20 2011

    Do people really just go up in flames? Do grannies really flare up like roman candles in their rockers and is there anything in science that explains why a middle-aged bachelor might burn down to his sneakers without warning? In this episode, Julie and Robert enter the dubious world of spontaneous human combustion. Where does the science end and the nonsense begin? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Santa Claus Machine

    Dec 15 2011

    The Santa Claus Machine: How does Santa Claus make so many gifts? Clearly his elves have harnessed the power of nanomanufacturing. But what does this mean for the planet? In this episode, Robert and Julie consider the possibilities of limitless custom manufacturing. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Give the Gift of a Mystery Box

    Dec 13 2011

    Give the Gift of a Mystery Box: Why are mystery packages so appealing? How do they improve our mental faculties and fuel our creativity? In this episode, Julie and Robert share tales of sealed envelopes, quantum thought experiments, virginity boxes and things Pandora should never have opened. You might even score a gift idea or two. To learn more about the illustration, visit Art Spotlight: Arthur Rackham's Pandora. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers...more

  • Nanohealthcare: The Tiny Doctors Inside Me

    Dec 08 2011

    Imagine a future in which replacement organs grow in magnetic fields and smart pills work for months. Thanks to advances in nanotechnology, this age of super medicine is nearly here. In this episode, Robert and Julie explore the world of nanohealthcare. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Pyromania: What's Your Relationship with Fire?

    Dec 06 2011

    When does an appreciation for fire turn into an obsession with the flickering, golden god? Who are firebugs, and what drives them to burn? In this episode, Julie and Robert slip into their best burn suits and hide the matches as they explore pyromania. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Hashtag Heard Round the World

    Dec 01 2011

    Waves of protest continue across the globe, but modern protesters benefit from social media technology. In this episode, Julie and Robert discuss history's largest protests, the Arab Spring, Occupy Wall Street and the future of protest. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Why do we protest?

    Nov 29 2011

    Humans rarely seem to agree, but when we do the results can be staggering. How does the phenomenon called protesting actually work? In this episode, Robert and Julie examine the world of protest and share a few tips for surviving your next rally. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Future of Stink

    Nov 24 2011

    Will smell-o-vision make a comeback? Will our zombie movies smell like rotten flesh and our video games reek of voided bowels and fear? In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss the history of scented media and the emerging technology of printable smells. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Living with Robots: Can we build a better bot?

    Nov 22 2011

    Our cohabitation with robotic servants is pretty much guaranteed. So what are we doing today to make sure these are the sort of robot we can tolerate? In this episode, Julie and Robert discuss how our robotic caretakers are shaping up. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Smells to Blow Your Mind

    Nov 17 2011

    Did you know that smell is the only one of your senses with a direct connection to your brain? Or that fancy cheese and David Beckham's foot odor share the same molecular smells? In this episode, Robert and Julie break down the amazing science of smell. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Living With Robots: Worst Roomates Ever

    Nov 15 2011

    The robot invasion of our homes has begun, and the future is bright with robotic caregivers. But how to we plan to keep this cohabitation from feeling creepy? In this episode, Julie and Robert discuss "robot skin," thought-anticipating machines and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Martyrdom: Transcendence on the Rack

    Nov 10 2011

    We've all seen images of saints and martyrs rising above their torments, but is it really possible to find transcendence on the rack? In this episode, Robert and Julie look into the connections between physical pain and religious experience. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • This is Your Brain on Art

    Nov 08 2011

    Julie and Robert examine the neurological side of your trip to the museum. What happens when we lose ourselves in Mona Lisa's smile or the nightmare worlds of Hieronymus Bosch? Were artists the first neuroscientists? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Sports Fandom

    Nov 03 2011

    Why do humans devote so much time to organized sports? As it turns out, the roots of sports run deep. In this episode, Julie and Robert explore the evolutionary, tribal and neurological reasons to cheer on the Cornish Hens against the Fighting Cloacae. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Humanity's Love Affair with an Apocalypse

    Nov 01 2011

    Apocalyptic Love Affair: Human beings are in love with the end. Ruined cities fill our dreams, and fears steers our thoughts through landscapes of bones and zombie hordes. In this episode, Robert and Julie examine the cognitive science behind our apocalyptic love affair. Image: From Bruegel the Elder's "The Triumph of Death." (Imagno/Getty Images) Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Frankenstein's Monster

    Oct 27 2011

    Frankenstein's Monster: What are the ramifications of mad science? Frankenstein's tortured creation has become an avatar for scientific horror. Join Robert and Julie as they explore the roots of Frankenstein's monster. Learn more about the past and future of science-gone-wrong. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What's in a witches brew?

    Oct 25 2011

    Gather round the cauldron with Julie and Robert as they ladle out hefty servings of magical thinking, medieval psychedelics, feminist history and the power of ritual. Just what was old-school witchery all about? This episode has the answers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Candy Corn Menace

    Oct 20 2011

    Whether scarfing down gummy worms or pouring an endless cascade of sugar into their breakfast cereal, children's appetite for sweets seems insatiable. In this episode, Julie and Robert break down the science of childhood sugar madness. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Creepy Cool World of Imaginary Friends

    Oct 18 2011

    Why do kids chat with invisible friends? Those creepy encounters are just part of how the human brain works. Even the average adult brain engages in something very similar. Join Robert and Julie as they enter the world of imaginary friendship. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Hulking Out With Hysterical Strength

    Oct 13 2011

    Can a grieving mother summon the strength of 12 Hulk Hogans and lift a full-sized automobile up off the ground to save her son? In this episode, Robert and Julie take on the subject of hysterical strength and discuss the science behind hulking out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Evolution and the Orgasm Wars

    Oct 11 2011

    What would aliens make of the human orgasm? After all, science still hasn't figured out exactly what the female orgasm is all about. In this episode, Julie and Robert examine the two warring factions in the debate over female orgasm evolution. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Bystander Effect and You

    Oct 06 2011

    The next time your car breaks down, count the number of vehicles that pass you by. That's the bystander effect in action. But why do people in crowds tend not to help those in need? Tune in to learn more about crowd apathy and what it says about humans. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Lucky Pants

    Oct 04 2011

    What do psychologists think about your lucky rabbit's foot? In this episode, Robert and Julie break down the science of good luck rituals and charms. They look at what luck reveals about the human mind, as well as whether any of it actually works. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Splendid Isolation

    Sep 29 2011

    Do you ever want to live alone in the desert, or does an afternoon alone give you the chills? Either way, isolation can have a profound influence on our health. In this episode, Robert and Julie wade into their isolation chambers to sort it all out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Science of Pet Peeves

    Sep 27 2011

    Can science explain why other people's phone calls are so annoying? Or why Julie hates fake lavender scents and Robert flies into a rage over turn signals? In this episode your hosts discuss why everything is the worst and what we can do to cope. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Interview: Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson

    Sep 22 2011

    In this episode, Robert and Julie interview astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. What does the planet's leading science communicator have to say about the future of space travel, mind-blowing cosmology and the science in America? Listen in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Misophonia: Why Your Brain Hates the Sound of Gum Chewing

    Sep 20 2011

    Does the sound of someone smacking gum drive you crazy? It's possible you're just a cranky jerk, but science presents another possibility: misophonia. Tune in to learn more about the mysterious condition that makes some noises so difficult to cope with. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Is free will an illusion?

    Sep 15 2011

    Your life is filled with choices and first steps down - or is it? According to many neuroscientists, free will is a sham. In this episode, Julie and Robert have no choice but to take a sobering look at decision making and the unconscious brain. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What if Earth was a cube?

    Sep 13 2011

    Imagine life on a cubed Earth. How would this alter our experience of gravity? How would it affect global climate? In this episode, Robert and Julie step foot on the impossibly square planet to better understand our world's shape and properties. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Decision Fatigue: Death by 1,000 Choices

    Sep 08 2011

    Could fretting over insignificant choices decrease your decision making effectiveness later in the day? Join Robert and Julie as they look at the causes -- and effects -- of decision fatigue. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Procrastinating Brain

    Sep 06 2011

    Why do we procrastinate? Why do we put off dreaded tasks and long-held ambitions for short-term pleasures? In this episode, Robert and Julie break down procrastination. Listen in and learn more about what you can do to cut down on procrastination. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of False Memories

    Sep 01 2011

    We're the recorded information of all the experiences that came before the present moment. So how do we deal with the knowledge that some of the memories that compose us are fraudulent? Join Robert and Julie as they examine the world of false memories. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Don't Eat The Panda

    Aug 30 2011

    Humans have a complex relationship with other animals. Some are friends, and some are delicious. So why do we feel closer to some animals, while others are lunch? In this episode, Robert and Julie take a look at the world of eating and loving animals. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Big Sting: Wasps vs. Bees

    Aug 25 2011

    Bees and wasps share a long history, and they've evolved into distinct forms. One hunts while the other farms. But which group would win in a war? Join Robert and Julie as they chronicle the battle between the honey masters and the sultans of sting. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Can my nightmares kill me?

    Aug 23 2011

    Can nightmares scare us to death? Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the CDC's investigation of sleep deaths - deaths that inspired Wes Craven to create the "Nightmare on Elm Street" franchise. Tune in to learn more about Brugada syndrome. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Science of Brain Wiping

    Aug 18 2011

    Imagine if you could choose to erase a particularly agonizing or embarrassing memory with a quick injection or a handy pill. Sounds nifty, but could this ever happen in real life? Join Robert and Julie as they explore brain wiping techniques. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Brood 13: Emergence of the Cicadas

    Aug 16 2011

    It might sound like the title of a horror movie, but make no mistake: Brood 13 is real. In this episode, Robert and Julie explore the bizarre life of the periodical cicada, insects that emerge from the ground every 13 or 17 years. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Extreme Sleep: Parasomnia

    Aug 11 2011

    Parasomnia: Most of us take sleep for granted, but there's a world of bizarre slumbers out there that only parasomniacs understand. Enter the world of sleep walking, eating, paralysis, violence and snoregasms. Join Robert and Julie to learn more about extreme sleep. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Lying Game

    Aug 09 2011

    Is a lie mere deception, an occasional un-truth or something deeper? Join Robert and Julie as they plunge into the cognitive depths of lies to examine our abilities to linguistically warp perception. Tune in to learn more about lying. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Into the Dyson Sphere

    Aug 04 2011

    When it's not showing up in episodes of "Star Trek" or imprisoning Necron Star Gods, Dyson spheres are the brainchild of physicist Freeman Dyson. But what exactly are they are? Join Robert and Julie as they break down the nature of Dyson spheres. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Cognitive Dissonance of Exorcisms

    Aug 02 2011

    Priests in horror flicks drive demons out of innocent victims. But what's really happening in these apparent showdowns between good and evil? Join Robert and Julie as they look at this exorcism through the lens of cognitive dissonance and personification. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Sharks in Space

    Jul 28 2011

    Although there's no such thing as a shark in space (yet), sharks have provided invaluable information to NASA. In this episode, Robert and Julie take you from the ocean to outer space as they examine the relationship between NASA, science and sharks. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Electronic Music

    Jul 26 2011

    From Intelligent Dance Music to Auto Tune, electronic music is everywhere, but what's really happening in the musical space shared by humans and machines? Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the authenticity, creativity and future of electronic music. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Bugs, Twinkies and Ancient Foods

    Jul 21 2011

    You are what you eat, which poses an interesting conundrum for omnivores. In this episode, Robert and Julie take a fascinating look at humanity's earliest meals. How did we learn which berries could kill us? When did fire enter the picture? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Pooping Duck: When Robots Digest

    Jul 19 2011

    Jacques de Vaucanson's fabulous digesting duck was a clockwork miracle capable of reproducing the processes of ingestion, digestion and defecation. Join Robert and Julie to learn more about robotic digestion from the pooping duck to the modern day. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Walt Disney the Futurist

    Jul 14 2011

    When you hear Walt Disney's name, chances are you think of cartoons and theme parks. But do you know about Walt Disney the futurist? Join Robert and Julie as they examine Disney's dreams for the future and his "conditional optimism" for the human race. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Microdrone Soup

    Jul 12 2011

    What's that buzzing around the room? A bird? A plane? Nope, it's just a robotic insect sent by some shadow government. Join Robert and Julie as they check in on drone technology, the rise of biomimetic bird-bots and just how the future may shake out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Funny or Die

    Jul 07 2011

    We all know "funny" when we encounter it, but what's going on inside the human mind when we feel amused? Join Robert and Julie as they discuss long-standing -- and more recent -- theories about humor's evolutionary purpose. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Gimme That Old Time Space Religion

    Jul 05 2011

    Space Religion: Will humans leave religion behind when they become an interplanetary species? Not hardly. Join Robert and Julie as they discuss how belief systems may change as a result of space exploration, on off-world colonization or extraterrestrial contact. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Math, Music and Mayhem

    Jun 30 2011

    Whether it's Art Garfunkel's mathematics degree or the structure of the chromatic scale, it's easy to correlate music and math. But why are so many musical minds also well suited for number crunching? Tune in to learn more about music and math. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Poking Einstein's Brain

    Jun 28 2011

    How did Albert Einstein's brain wind up on a road trip to hang with the author of "Naked Lunch?" In this episode, Robert and Julie give Einstein's head cheese a serious poking to discuss the secrets of all the brain matter inside that skull of yours. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Welcome to the Memory Palace

    Jun 23 2011

    Stroll into the memory palace, an imagined location that just might expand your brain power. In this podcast, Robert and Julie discuss the Method of Loci, a mnemonic device that allows mental athletes to perform astounding acts of recall. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Do-it-yourself Organs

    Jun 21 2011

    We'd all like to replace our failing organs with spare guts, but when will it be possible? Join Robert and Julie as they explain why the day is fast approaching. Tune in to learn how stem cells and organ scaffolding may change the future of medicine. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fathers of the Wild: The Good, Bad and the Ugly

    Jun 16 2011

    What makes a dog a lousy father and a wolf a stellar patriarch? Join Robert and Julie as they anthropomorphize the animal kingdom in an effort to find out why some species are more like Cliff Huxtable while some are more like Darth Vader. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Are you ready for a neo-evolution?

    Jun 14 2011

    Humans have spent ages evolving into the charming specimens we are today. But what if we could accelerate the pace of evolution, giving our future progeny super-human attributes? Join Julie and Robert as they discuss if evolution as we know it is over. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Invasion of the iPod People

    Jun 09 2011

    What happens when we plug into our gadgets and tune out the rest of the world? In this episode, Robert and Julie discuss the so-called Walkman Effect and the manner in which our precious music and personal electronics alter the reality we live in. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Brilliant and Terrifying Future of Toilets

    Jun 07 2011

    Although the subject makes some people very uncomfortable, sanitation is enormously important. But what kind of technology will we find in the toilets of the future? Join Robert and Julie as they investigate the future of sanitation. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Night of the Platypus

    Jun 02 2011

    With a duck's head and a beaver's body, the duck-billed platypus is often the butt of jokes. Yet this oddity helps us understand how creatures evolve. Join Robert and Julie as they investigate the unique anatomy of the platypus. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Technology of the Ancients

    May 31 2011

    The notion of Vedic nuclear weapons is a more than a bit far-fetched. Yet from the Antikythera mechanism to Archimedes' death ray, people are fascinated by the idea of ancient advanced technology. Join Robert and Julie as they separate fact from fiction. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Day of the Dolphin

    May 26 2011

    Day of the Dolphin: In 1973, moviegoers watched dolphins carry out assassination plots in "The Day of the Dolphin," part of the dolphin fever stirred up by John C. Lilly. But just how smart are these mammals? Join Robert and Julie as they enter the world of the Dolphin. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • This is Your Brain on Meditation

    May 24 2011

    People around the world practice meditation, but what exactly is it, and how does it affect our brains? Join Robert and Julie as they look at the science behind meditation. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Machines, Morality and Sexbots

    May 19 2011

    Can robots be programmed to behave ethically? It's possible that future robots may possess emotions like empathy or guilt. Join Robert and Julie as they interview Dr. Ronald Arkin, a leading expert on the study of robotic consciousness modeling. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Is math a human invention or a human discovery?

    May 17 2011

    In this episode, Robert and Julie take a sweeping look at math, addressing several important questions. For example: What is math? Where does math come from? What mathematical skills are we born with and how much can we understand? Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • 999 Birthday Candles

    May 12 2011

    The Hayflick limit posits that we can live for 120 years. But recent research suggests we could live to for 1,000 years. Enter maverick biogerontologist Aubrey de Grey, who has pulled the rug out from under his entire field. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Atomic Bomb Parties and Nuclear Fallout

    May 10 2011

    In the 1950s, residents of Las Vegas partied hard, and their booze-fueled parties sometimes included a special treat -- the observation of nuclear tests. So what happened next? Tune in as Robert and Julie breakdown the science behind nuclear fallout. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Crimes of Paleontology

    May 05 2011

    It's no secret that the history of paleontology is replete with hoaxes and incorrect conclusions -- but how many can be chalked up to honest mistakes, and how many were scams? Tune in to learn more about the storied, sketchy history of paleontology. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Placebo Effect: Brain Over Pain

    May 03 2011

    A placebo is a fake medicine included in drug trials to show, through contrast, the benefits of the real medicine. Yet sometimes the patients taking the placebo still experience improvements -- why? Tune in to learn more about the placebo effect. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Change Your Mind the Hard Way

    Apr 28 2011

    When an iron rod shot through Phineas Gage's head, it destroyed the majority of his left frontal lobe. He survived, but his personality and behavior changed -- why? Tune in as Robert and Julie explore the relationship between the brain and the mind. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tyrannosaurus Sex

    Apr 26 2011

    Although scientists still aren't sure exactly how dinosaurs reproduced, fascinating (and surprising) conjectures abound. Join Robert and Julie as they explore the procedures experts use to recreate the lives of dinosaurs, from the fossil record to DNA. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Quest for Cyberimmortality

    Apr 21 2011

    Is it possible that human evolution is on the verge of transcending its organic roots? And, if it is possible, how could it actually occur? Join Robert and Julie as they explore the mind-blowing concept of cyberimmortality. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Is privacy an illusion?

    Apr 19 2011

    Are computers approaching singularity? Join Robert and Julie as they discuss the quest for cyberimmortality. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Five-fingered Evolutionary Discount

    Apr 14 2011

    Mickey Mouse gets along just fine with four digits on each hand, so why do humans have five of these digits? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie ask why so many creatures evolved with a five-fingered discount. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Neuromyths: What You Think You Know About Your Brain

    Apr 12 2011

    We all know the myth that we use only 10% of our brains, but how we know it's a myth in the first place? In this episode, Robert and Julie interview neurosurgeon Dr. T. Glenn Pait and learn how neuroscience is changing the way we think about our brains. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Does your dog really love you?

    Apr 07 2011

    It's often said that dogs are man's best friend -- but does science support this claim? In this episode, Robert and Julie examine the science behind human-canine relationships. Tune in to learn whether or not your pooch is sincere. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Lying Robots and the Lies They Tell

    Apr 05 2011

    Will robots of the future eventually surpass the intellectual plane of humanity? This event (which, as far as we know, hasn't happened yet) is known as the robot singularity. Listen in to learn more about the growing role of robotics in society. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Why Your Brain Likes Conspiracy

    Mar 31 2011

    The human brain strives to organize and classify sensory information. But what happens when new information conflicts with pre-existing data? Tune in as Julie and guest host Ben explore the fascinating phenomenon known as cognitive dissonance. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Pope on a Cosmic Rope

    Mar 29 2011

    Should extraterrestrials be converted to Catholicism, or are they somehow free from sin? In this episode, Julie and Robert contemplate the Vatican's current stance on the cosmos and what it means for the future of belief on planet Earth. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Germ-free Dirty Hippies

    Mar 24 2011

    It's been said that cleanliness is close to godliness, but is it possible for a person to be too clean? In this episode, Julie and Robert analyze the relationship between hygiene, bacteria and health. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Symbiosis: My So-Called Parasitic Life

    Mar 22 2011

    In the process known as symbiosis, two organisms of different species exist in close physical contact to the benefit of both organisms. But how does that work? Listen in to learn more about the process of symbiosis, and how it can affect human beings. Plus learn all about fecal transplants and why they're promising, but not a good DIY option. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • To Terraform or Not to Terraform?

    Mar 17 2011

    Think of terraforming as a planet-wide renovation project: By creating a more Earth-like atmosphere on Mars, some scientists hope to make more space for Earth's burgeoning population. But could we really do it? Tune in to learn more about terraforming. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • (Kick)Astrobiology

    Mar 15 2011

    Astrobiology is a lot more than sitting around wondering what aliens look like -- instead, this discipline draws on multiple fields to study the basic building blocks of life in space or on other worlds. Join Robert and Julie as they explore astrobiology. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Woolly Mammoths For Sale

    Mar 10 2011

    You haven't misread the title; rest assured that woolly mammoths are still extinct. However, there are several scientists trying revive mammoths -- and they might just succeed. Tune in to learn more about mammoth cloning. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Musical Hallucinations Gone Wild

    Mar 08 2011

    Have you ever had a musical hallucination? Not a song stuck in your head - but a genuine hallucination, real enough to completely fool your senses? Join Robert and Julie as they explore the causes of musical hallucinations. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Attack of the Creative Brain

    Mar 03 2011

    Creativity is one of humanity's most crucial skills, and it is also one of the least-understood. In this episode, Robert and Julian explore the science, myths and theories surrounding creativity. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Eat Popcorn. Eat Popcorn. Eat Popcorn.

    Mar 01 2011

    Subliminal messaging dates back to 1957, when James Vicary slipped images of popcorn and soda into films at a New Jersey theater. It spooks some consumers, but does it actually work? Tune in to learn more about the science behind subliminal messaging. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Planet Neanderthal

    Feb 24 2011

    For 200,000 years Neanderthals roamed Eurasia, yet over time the population dwindled and disappeared. In this podcast, Julie and Robert explore the story of Neanderthals, comparing them to modern humans and dispelling some popular myths along the way. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Defeat Your Doppelgangers

    Feb 22 2011

    Most people are familiar with the idea of a doppelganger -- some mysterious copy or clone of another human being -- but what's the science behind this phenomenon? Tune in as Julie and Robert take a closer look at doppelgangers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Are you smarter than an ant swarm?

    Feb 17 2011

    A single ant might not be Mensa material, but a colony of ants can produce some amazingly clever decisions. Tune in as Robert and Julie explore the study of swarm intelligence -- and how it compares to human intelligence. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Children of Tomorrow, Raised by Machines

    Feb 15 2011

    Will tomorrow's school systems be dominated by infallible robotic instructors? Tune in as Julie and Robert explore the bounds of education, artificial intelligence and human-robot relationships in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Love, Hate and Robots

    Feb 10 2011

    Will the hopeless romantics of the future fall in love with robots? In this episode, Robert and Julie explore the line between love and hate -- and what a world of beautiful robots may mean for the future. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Scientists in Love

    Feb 08 2011

    Regardless of how brilliant they may be in the lab, scientists are still only human. With Valentine's Day on the horizon, Robert and Julie recount the interactions between love and science. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Underground Robotic Highways

    Feb 03 2011

    As cars become increasingly sophisticated, more and more experts are contemplating the possibility of self-driving vehicles on automated highways. But how close are we to actually achieving this futuristic dream? The answer might surprise you. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • You're Such a Tool (User)

    Feb 01 2011

    Tool use isn't unique to human beings -- many other organisms have proven capable of learning to use tools in both wild and captive environments. In this episode, Julie and Robert take a closer look at Earth's tool using life forms. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Werewolf Principle: Adapting Humans for Space

    Jan 27 2011

    The Werewolf Principle: Will astronauts of the future be able to adapt their physiology for long-term space travel and life on other planets? In this classic STBYM episode, Robert and Julie explore the ideal physical modifications that could theoretically create the world's best astronaut. 'The Werewolf Principle' cover image by artist Ian Miller Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Are computer viruses alive?

    Jan 25 2011

    Computer viruses can permanently damage the files of unprepared computer users, but does their behavior mean that they are living entities? Join Robert and Julie as they explore the similarities between organic life and the behavior of computer viruses. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Life Aquatic

    Jan 20 2011

    The oceans cover the majority of Earth's surface -- that's quite a bit of potential real estate. But what would it be like to live as an underwater denizen? Can people even do it safely? Tune in as Julie and Robert fill you in on life beneath the waves. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Future of Pain

    Jan 18 2011

    Pain is a fundamental sensation. While it is by no means pleasant, it is certainly useful. In this podcast, Robert and Julie look at the newest scientific research and experimentation designed to exploit the biological responses to pain. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Inception: I Dream of Science

    Jan 13 2011

    Modern science still hasn't completely figured out what purpose dreams. In this podcast, Julie and Robert tackle the mysterious realm of dreams. Tune in to learn more about the nature of dreams and the way dreams relate to your waking life. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Junkies of the Animal Kingdom

    Jan 11 2011

    Human beings aren't the only organisms with a predilection for mind-altering substances. In fact, the natural world is filled with bingers and boozers. Listen in and learn more about junkie animals. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Solar Sail Hobos Ride the Laser

    Jan 06 2011

    NASA has been experimenting with solar sails that could become the future of spaceflight. But how do they work, exactly? Tune in as Julie and Robert break down the science of solar sails in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Beyond Human: Accessorize!

    Jan 04 2011

    It's no secret that humanity's strong suit is making tools -- we certainly don't have the best physical adaptations for swimming or flying. But could we use technology to mimic the superior traits of other organisms? Tune in and find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Is your gut a genius?

    Dec 30 2010

    Each week, you can count on Robert and Julie to blow your mind with the latest -- and strangest -- stories from the world of science. Tune in and learn more in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fine Young Cannibals

    Dec 28 2010

    Each week, you can count on Robert and Julie to blow your mind with the latest -- and strangest -- stories from the world of science. Tune in and learn more in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Life on the 500th Floor

    Dec 23 2010

    By 2050, experts believe approximately two-thirds of the world's population will live in cities. How will this urbanization change life for individuals, and how will it affect the world? Listen in and learn more about life on the 500th floor. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Rock Star Weirdo Lives of Scientists

    Dec 21 2010

    It's no secret that genius and eccentricity are related, but scientists can be downright weird. In this episode, Julie and Robert explore the bizarre lives of history's greatest scientists. Tune in to learn more about clairvoyant dwarves, Tesla and more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Ladies' Night on Planet Earth

    Dec 16 2010

    James Brown said that "it's a man's world," but he may have changed his tune if he'd seen the recent studies on gender and evolution. In this podcast, Julie and Robert ask what makes a person male or female -- and why the days of males may be numbered. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Overview Effect: Tripping Out in Space

    Dec 14 2010

    Does life in space permanently alter an astronaut's mind? Join Robert and Julie as they analyze the physical and mental changes human beings experience in outer space, including the overview effect. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • If a tree falls in a forest, does it make a sound?

    Dec 09 2010

    If a tree falls in an empty forest, does it make a sound? Originally this question was made for meditative purposes, but answering the question incorporates several fascinating ideas about human perception and psychology. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Probing Questions About Alien Abduction

    Dec 07 2010

    Why are so many people convinced that they were abducted by aliens? In this episode, Julie and Robert explore the history of alleged abductions, along with the scientific explanations for the experiences of the witnesses. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Can music rebuild my brain?

    Dec 02 2010

    It's been said that music has the power to soothe savage beasts, but what scientific impact does music have on humans? In this episode, Julie and Robert explore the influence of music on human brain cells -- and whether it can actually rebuild your brain. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Evolutionary Hangover

    Nov 30 2010

    Evolutionary Hangover: Vestigial traits are common in animals across the globe, but why? In this episode, Julie and Robert take a look at the genetic leftovers that lost their usefulness during evolution. Tune in to learn more about evolution, atavism and vestigial traits. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Stuff to Literally Blow Your Mind

    Nov 25 2010

    Each week, Robert and Julie bring you fascinating, mind-blowing stories about the strangest things in the natural world -- but how could your mind literally be blown? Tune in and learn more in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Has science explained life after death?

    Nov 23 2010

    Humans have believed in the soul for millennia, and the evolution of science hasn't stopped the search for ghosts and the soul. In fact, modern scientists still search for proof of life after death. Tune in to learn more about the latest research. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • You're So Vain, Earthlings

    Nov 19 2010

    How do individuals relate to reality? How has humanity attempted to interpret its position in the universe? From navel-gazing to the geocentric universe and beyond, the search for humanity's place has become a long -- and mind-blowing -- enterprise. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Alien Etiquette 101

    Nov 16 2010

    People from different cultures often interpret gestures and etiquette differently, and this can lead to serious misunderstandings. So how should humans interact with extraterrestrials? Tune in as Julie and Robert explore the nuances of alien etiquette. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Podcast that Turns People Inside Out

    Nov 11 2010

    Inspired by Robert's childhood fear of being turned completely inside out, our podcasters attempt to answer the age-old question: Can people really be turned inside out? Listen in and learn more in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Shush! The Creatures are Sleeping

    Nov 09 2010

    Not all animals need the same amount of sleep. Some people get by on five hours a day, while other animals (cats, for instance) can easily sleep upward of ten hours a day. So what is sleep, and why don't animals need the same amount? Tune in to find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Man Vs. Flu

    Nov 04 2010

    Influenza is a virus that causes the flu, and it shares a long, lethal history with the human race. In this episode, Robert and Allison explore what's made the flu such a successful disease, and what you can do to avoid an infection. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Cuddling up to the Cuttlefish

    Nov 02 2010

    Would you like a pet that can change its appearance and create decoys from ink? What if it also shot through the water via jet propulsion? Then the cuttlefish is the pet for you. Listen in as Robert and Allison take a closer look at the cuttlefish. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Into the Graveyard

    Oct 28 2010

    Many people find graveyards creepy, but what makes them so unsettling and spooky? In this special Halloween episode, Robert and Allison take you into the graveyard as they explore our cultural fears about cemetaries and share a little graveyard science. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Hanging with Hawking

    Oct 26 2010

    Stephen Hawking is one of the world's most famous physicists, but why is he so famous? In this episode, Allison and Robert take a closer look at the fascinating career of Stephen Hawking. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mad Scientists: Frankenstein and the Fly

    Oct 21 2010

    Today mad scientists are common in fiction, and they appear in everything from comedies to science fiction. But they're also relatively recent. What made them so popular? Tune in and learn more about mad scientists in the public consciousness. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How Military Snipers Work

    Oct 19 2010

    Military snipers use sophisticated technology and specialized techniques to wreak tremendous damage on enemy forces. But how do they work? In this episode, Robert and Allison break down the science behind snipers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • We Love the Periodic Table

    Oct 14 2010

    The periodic table is an invaluable tool for scientists across the planet -- but how does it work? In this episode, Allison and Robert explore the creation of the periodic table. Tune in to learn more about the history and structure of the periodic table. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Science vs. Monsters!

    Oct 12 2010

    For thousands of years people across the world have frightened (and entertained) each other by swapping monster tales, but how do these monsters hold up in the eyes of science? In this podcast, Robert and Allison break down the science behind monsters. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Monarchs Head for the Border

    Oct 07 2010

    Each year, monarch butterflies fly south across North America, returning north in the spring. Normally the butterflies would never live long enough to complete the journey -- yet these are not normal times. Tune in to learn more about monarch butterflies. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Noise Pollution: Pipe Down, People!

    Oct 05 2010

    Like any other form of pollution, loud noises can seriously affect your health over time -- and that's just the beginning. As Robert and Allison break down the science behind noise, they also explain how noise pollution affects the natural world. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Flat Stanley Across the 11th Dimension

    Sep 30 2010

    The world famous globetrotter Flat Stanley is used to encourage literacy in children. Since Flat Stanley is two-dimensional, he's a perfect jumping-off point for Robert and Allison's exploration of string theory and our multidimensional universe. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Will California fall into the ocean?

    Sep 28 2010

    Earthquakes are an inevitable part of living on Earth, and some places are far more prone to earthquakes than others. In this episode, Robert and Allison tackle the idea that California might sink into the ocean due to the San Andreas fault. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Scientific Method

    Sep 23 2010

    Nowadays most people have heard of the scientific method, but what exactly is it? More importantly, how does it work? In the second segment of this two-part series, Robert and Allison explore the history (and application) of the scientific method. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • A Thing Called Science

    Sep 21 2010

    Civilization relies on science and couldn't exist without it -- but what exactly is science? In this episode, Allison and Robert explore the definition of science, from the questions it can tackle to the methods scientists use in their experiments. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Altruism is Alive and Well

    Sep 16 2010

    If a person helps someone else without receiving an award, then that person has committed an act of altruism. Or have they? In this episode, Robert and Allison explore the science behind altruism in humans and other animals. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What did that bacterium say?

    Sep 14 2010

    Bacterial life is one of the most hardy life forms on Earth. But the impressive talents of bacteria aren't limited to durability. Tune in to learn more about the strange bacterial ability to sense quorums and communicate with other bacteria. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Wow Signal

    Sep 09 2010

    In 1997, researchers at Ohio State University detected an extraordinary signal from space. Could it have been a message from another civilization? Tune in as Allison and Robert break down the science behind the search for extraterrestrial intelligence. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Packing for Mars with Mary Roach

    Sep 07 2010

    As a science writer, Mary Roach has penned books on everything from cadavers to astronauts. In this episode, Allison and Robert interview Mary Roach about the future of space exploration. Listen in to learn what you'll need to pack for a trip to Mars. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Emoticons Saved My Life

    Sep 02 2010

    An emoticon is a series of punctuation marks used to draw a picture and convey an emotion. But how did these emoticons come about, and why do they seem so universal? In this podcast, Robert and Allison explore the science behind facial expressions. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mulling over Maggots

    Aug 31 2010

    Maggots have a distinctive (and, some would say, repulsive) appearance. But throughout history doctors and healers have used maggots to treat ulcers and wounds. In this episode, Allison and Robert take a closer look at maggots and maggot therapy. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Latching on to Leeches

    Aug 26 2010

    There are hundreds of different leech species, but they're all built for one thing: sucking blood. Join Allison and Robert as they take a closer look at the leech's adaptations, and the role these parasites may play in modern medicine. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Drilling for Offshore Oil

    Aug 24 2010

    Last week, Robert and Allison broke down the science behind oil exploration. In the second segment of this series, the hosts explore the process of drilling for oil once a potential well is found. Tune in to learn more about drilling for oil. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • In Search of Offshore Oil

    Aug 19 2010

    In an economy driven by fossil fuels, oil exploration is big business -- but how do scientists actually find oil? In this podcast, Allison and Robert break down the techniques and technologies used to find offshore oil. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Are you mosquito bait?

    Aug 17 2010

    Why do mosquitoes love biting certain people (and ignore others)? In this podcast, Robert and Allison take a closer look at the science behind mosquito bait. Tune in and learn why insects love -- or loathe -- biting you. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Prehistoric Monsters of the Deep

    Aug 12 2010

    The Blue Whale is the largest living animal on Earth, but it isn't the first gigantic sea creature. In this podcast, Allison and Robert examine the prehistoric dinosaurs of the deep. Tune in to learn more about real-life sea monsters. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Are lefties better at sports?

    Aug 10 2010

    Roughly 10 percent of the human population is left-handed. This minority lives in a right-handed world, and many tools are made for right-handed people. But do left-handed people have any advantages over the righties? Tune in and find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Evolution in Action

    Aug 05 2010

    Charles Darwin's revolutionary study of evolution isn't even two hundred years old yet. In terms of evolutionary processes, this is a miniscule amount of time. Yet is is possible to observe evolution within our lifetimes? Tune in and find out. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Diamonds Are a Scientist's Best Friend

    Aug 03 2010

    Although diamonds are incredibly expensive, they're only lumps of concentrated carbon (one of the most common elements on earth). So how do these diamonds form -- and how big can they grow? Tune in and learn why the largest diamonds may be in space. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Smelly Science of Perfume

    Jul 29 2010

    Designed entirely to cater to the sense of smell, perfume occupies a unique position in fashion and society. But when we catch the whiff of a passing perfume enthusiast, what are we really smelling? Tune in and learn more about the science behind perfume. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Smells like Science

    Jul 27 2010

    Smells surround us: Astronauts say that space and the moon possess unique aromas, and many animals also have their own unmistakable odors. In this episode, Robert and Allison explore the science behind smells, from space to your local cow pasture. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Great Space Elevator

    Jul 22 2010

    It's no secret that space shuttles need a vast amount of fuel to escape the pull of gravity -- but are space elevators a better alternative? In this episode, Robert and Allison explore the merits of literally building an elevator from Earth into space. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Kardashev Scale

    Jul 20 2010

    When Nicolai Kardashev began searching the universe for intelligent life, he built an energy-based scale to measure the progress of any given civilization. Tune in to discover how this scale works -- and why humanity's place on the scale may surprise you. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What is the smart grid?

    Jul 15 2010

    Think of the U.S. power grid as one gigantic (and outdated) machine. This system works relatively well, but it has a lot of drawbacks. In this episode, Robert and Allison take a look at smart grid technology and how it may just save the U.S. power system. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Growing a Green Roof

    Jul 13 2010

    Are you stuck in the city, sweltering under the summer heat and missing the trees and grass of the natural world? Then why not transform the nearest rooftop into a garden or a park? Tune in and learn more about green roofs in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Prosthetic Limbs

    Jul 08 2010

    Prosthetic limbs have been around for thousands of years, but could they eventually become superior to organic appendages? In this episode, Allison and Robert break down the latest -- and future -- developments in prosthetic technology. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Predators, Reapers and Robotic War

    Jul 06 2010

    We know that robots are taking over more and more tasks traditionally performed by humans -- but assembling cars isn't the same thing as waging war. In this episode, Allison and Robert explore the current unmanned robots used by the U.S. military. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • World-Changing Science Experiments: Part Two

    Jul 01 2010

    In the second installment of Robert and Allison's two-part series on history's world-changing science experiments, your favorite science writers take a look at everything from primordial ooze to modern psychology. Tune in and learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • World-Changing Science Experiments: Part One

    Jun 29 2010

    Science experiments aren't just for high school students. In the first installment of this special two-part series, Allison and Robert take a look at some of history's most important science experiments. Tune in and learn more in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Science and Wine

    Jun 24 2010

    Is the sense of taste subjective? Why are some wines bad news for people with particular allergies? If you're anxious for the answers, never fear: In this episode, Allison and Robert take a look at science and wine. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Death on Ice

    Jun 22 2010

    Is it possible to freeze a body and bring it back to life? Through cryonics, scientists preserve bodies at extremely low temperatures, hoping to revive them in the future, when advanced technology may prolong their lives. Tune in and learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Time Travel: Hey, Grandpa

    Jun 17 2010

    In the second episode of this two-part series, Robert and Allison check out the possibilities of travelling into the past. From wormholes to the grandfather paradox, there are many arguments for -- and against -- time travel. Tune in and learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Time Travel: Hey, Future Self

    Jun 15 2010

    Everyone's familiar with the idea of time travel -- but how would it work? This week Robert and Allison explore time travel, and this episode focuses on traveling to the future. So tune in and learn why you should -- or shouldn't -- meet your future self. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Galactic Youngsters

    Jun 10 2010

    It's difficult -- some would say impossible -- to comprehend the sheer size of one galaxy, much less the universe. But how do these gargantuan galaxies form? Tune in as Allison and Robert break down the science behind the formation of galaxies. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Will aliens destroy us?

    Jun 08 2010

    In science fiction, aliens are usually either incredibly benevolent or incomprehensibly evil -- but how would real extraterrestrials behave? Learn more about aliens -- and why Stephen Hawking thinks they may destroy us -- in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What's the dirt on composting?

    Jun 03 2010

    If you're concerned about generating waste in your household, why not start composting? Breaking solid waste down with some help from microorganisms is a sure-fire way to decrease your waste, and it's easier than you might assume. Tune in and learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Are robots alive?

    Jun 01 2010

    With each year, scientists are building increasingly complex robots, leading to one vital question: At what point does a robot become defined as a living thing, rather than a mechanical device? Tune in to learn more about living robots in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Road Trip: FIRST Robotics

    May 27 2010

    In this episode, Robert and Allison take a road trip to the Georgia Dome, where they grab an exclusive look at the FIRST Robotics competition. Tune in and learn more about the world's largest grade-school robotics competition. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Birth of a Planet

    May 25 2010

    To most people, planets are one of the most familiar of astronomical objects. After all, we do live on one. But how do these massive spheres get their start? Tune in to learn more about the birth of planets -- including our own -- in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • A Star is Born

    May 20 2010

    Like most things in the universe, stars begin as particles floating around in massive clouds of dust and gas. But what forces these particles to coalesce and form a star? Tune in and learn more about the birth of stars in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Why Science Fiction Matters

    May 18 2010

    Even people who don't care for science fiction know about the genre -- thousands of new science fiction stories come out every year. But why does science fiction matter? Tune in and learn the answer in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Toilets in Space

    May 13 2010

    Every astronaut knows that life in space requires numerous adjustments -- after all, things just aren't the same without gravity. So how exactly does a toilet work in space? Learn more about the science behind space's supertoilets in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Immunocontraception and You

    May 11 2010

    Immunocontraception is a humane type of birth control that's used to control wild animal populations. In this episode, Allison and Robert discuss the pros and cons of immunocontraceptives -- and whether they'll ever be used to control human reproduction. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Regenerate This!

    May 06 2010

    According to Richard J. Goss, "If there were no regeneration, there could be no life. If everything regenerated, then there could be no death." But how does this process work? Join Robert and Allison as they explore the science behind regeneration. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Save the Bats!

    May 04 2010

    As the only flying mammals, bats play unique roles in our world's ecology. Yet in caves across North America more than a million bats have fallen prey to a mysterious affliction known as white nose syndrome. Tune in and learn more in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Death By Volcano

    Apr 29 2010

    People often think of volcanoes as conical mountains erupting ash, smoke and lava into the air. But how do they work? Why are they so dangerous? Listen in to learn more about volcanoes (and all the ways they can kill an unlucky bystander) in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How old is that artifact in the window?

    Apr 27 2010

    Carbon dating is a way of determining the age of organic matter up to 50,000 years old. But how does it work? Listen in as Allison and Robert explore the uses of carbon dating, as well as the controversial artifacts dated by this method. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What drugs are astronauts on?

    Apr 22 2010

    Make no mistake: Space is a very hostile environment. Astronauts in orbit suffer from conditions caused by the lack of gravity, small living quarters and other factors. So how do these astronauts cope? Tune in to learn more about the drugs used in space. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • The Virtues of Venom

    Apr 20 2010

    Sure, venom could kill you -- but it could also cure you. The medicinal use of venom dates back thousands of years and continues to the present day. Tune in as Allison and Robert break down the science behind venom and medicine in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Tetris vs. PTSD

    Apr 15 2010

    Everyone knows that video games are entertaining -- but could they have therapeutical value? Tune in and learn how Tetris may help victims of post-traumatic stress syndrome. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Velociraptor Awareness Day

    Apr 13 2010

    Dinosaur appreciation days are few and far between -- but the Velociraptor is a special case. Listen in as Allison and Robert explore the amazing abilities and physiology of the Velociraptor in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Black Hole Bonanza

    Apr 08 2010

    A black hole forms when a star's core collapses, increasing in density until its gravitational pull becomes too powerful for light to escape. This creates a singularity -- and it happens in less than a second. Learn more about black holes in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Weapons that Changed the World

    Apr 06 2010

    Here's the crazy thing about war: It breeds innovation. Since the dawn of civilization, human beings have searched for ways to kill each other. Join Robert and Allison as they explore the weapons that changed the world, from the horse to nuclear weapons. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What can gravity do for you?

    Apr 01 2010

    Gravity is a pervasive and ambiguous force -- we still don't understand everything about it. Yet every physical act on our planet involves gravity. Join Allison and Robert as they explore exactly how gravity affects the average person in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Book Sniffers and You

    Mar 30 2010

    You can learn a lot from a book's smell. For example, the books of heavy smokers tend to smell of smoke. When you smell a book, you're encountering more than 200 individual components combining to produce an olfactory fingerprint. Tune in to learn more. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • 5 Strange Things Written in Your Genes

    Mar 25 2010

    Genetic polymorphism describes a basic fact of human life -- that every set of genes is unique. However, scientists have been able to detect many physical traits from genetic markers. Tune in to learn more about five fascinating genetic markers. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Weighing the Human Soul

    Mar 23 2010

    In the early 1900s, Duncan Macdougall set out to prove the existence of the soul. By placing consumption patients on a scale as they died, he tried to find a difference between the weight of a person before and after death. Learn more in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How To Get Lost in the Bermuda Triangle

    Mar 18 2010

    Stretching from Miami to Bermuda and Puerto Rico, the notorious Bermuda Triangle has a bad reputation for wrecking ships and planes. But how much of this legend is based on science? Tune in and learn more in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Are you smarter than a dolphin?

    Mar 11 2010

    Dolphins are one of Earth's smartest animals. In fact, scientists still aren't sure exactly how smart a dolphin is in relation to the average human being. Join Robert and Allison as they break down the science behind dolphin intelligence in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Why do whales beach themselves?

    Mar 09 2010

    When whales or other aquatic mammals wash onto the shore, they are usually unable to return to the sea without help. What exactly causes a whale to beach, and how can scientists prevent it? Tune in and learn more in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Running with Parasites

    Mar 04 2010

    Are you a fan of running outside without shoes? Many people enjoy walking barefoot, especially in warmer weather. Yet there's a dark side to the joy of a shoe-free life: parasites. Listen in and learn more about parasites in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How Hurricane Killing Works

    Mar 02 2010

    When hurricanes hit land, they can cause enormous damage over a short span of time -- but how can scientists stop these roving natural disasters? The answers may surprise you. Listen in and learn more in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Topsy Rides the Lighting

    Feb 25 2010

    What do Edison, Tesla and an unfortunate elephant named Topsy have in common? They were all involved in "The War of Currents," an ongoing battle over the standardization of electricity. Tune in and learn more about Topsy's fate in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Fight Fire with Fire

    Feb 23 2010

    We've all heard the saying "fight fire with fire," but could it actually work? Tune in as Robert and Allison break down the ways in which firefighters actually do use fire and explosives to fight fires in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Those Crazy Komodos

    Feb 18 2010

    Located in Indonesia, Komodo dragons are one of nature's fiercest living reptiles. They're also the world's largest lizard. Tune in as Robert and Allison investigate the unique lifestyle -- and brutal dining habits -- of the Komodo dragon. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How well do you know the T. Rex?

    Feb 16 2010

    The Tyrannosaurus rex is one of history's most well-known, feared and misunderstood dinosaurs. Children often learn that this dinosaur was a ferocious predator ... but this might not be the whole story. Listen in and learn more in this podcast. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What exactly is a gene bank?

    Feb 11 2010

    A gene bank is a repository used to preserve genetic material for the future. Gene banks are not a modern concept -- the idea dates back thousands of years. Tune in as Allison and Robert explore gene banks, from Noah's Ark to the Doomsday Vault. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • What can blood spatter tell us?

    Feb 09 2010

    To forensic scientists, a bloodstain is more than just a grisly ornament at a crime scene -- so what exactly do they do with it? Turn in and learn more about bloodstain pattern analysis in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Dinner in Space!

    Feb 04 2010

    Let's say you're an astronaut: Each day you wake up, conduct research and make adjustments to your orbit. Eventually you grab some chow -- but what kind of food do you eat, and why? Join Robert and Allison as they explore the science behind space food. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Do I live next to a Grow House?

    Feb 02 2010

    When drug dealers want to grow marijuana without getting caught, they often set up a "grow house." These buildings look like any other building, and they often fool bystanders. Tune in and learn how to tell if your neighbors are running a grow house. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Are we better off in the dark?

    Jan 28 2010

    Most city dwellers are familiar with contaminated water and smoggy air -- but have you heard of light pollution? Listen in as Allison and Robert explore the effects of light pollution -- and whether humans are better off in the dark. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Mining the Moon

    Jan 26 2010

    Since helium-3 can be used to power the fusion reactors of the future, it may be one of the world's most important fuel sources. It's rare on Earth, but experts believe the moon may have an abundant supply. Tune in and learn more about moon mining. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How Exploding Lakes Work

    Jan 21 2010

    During 1986, an unusual thing happened in Cameroon: Lake Nyos exploded, expelling a toxic cloud that killed roughly 1700 people. How could this happen? More importantly, could it happen again? Learn more about exploding lakes in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • How Fighting Asteroids Works

    Jan 12 2010

    Asteroid impacts are inevitable. As they hurtle toward Earth, experts race against the clock to build an effective asteroid deterrent. Will they succeed in time? Learn more about asteroid fighters -- and their plans to save the world -- in this episode. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers

  • Amazing Infestations!

    Jan 12 2010

    From hordes of caterpillars in Liberia to the Australian mice plagues, infestations can occur in almost any part of the world. Join Robert and Allison as they explore some of the world's largest -- and strangest -- infestations. Learn more about your ad-choices at https://news.iheart.com/podcast-advertisers