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Understanding the Atom with Prof Brian Cox
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The answer lies in quantum theory Well, the modern atom, the map of the atom as an atomic nucleus with electrons going around it, that was only discovered at the start of the 20th century in Manchester amongst other places: Ernest Rutherford famously discovered the atomic nucleus.  So this idea of the atom as a solar system is a 20th century idea.  If you...

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Science Book Club – Episode 20
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So the Victorian period is notable for this real flourishing of interest in folklore and fairies So some of this came out of my post graduate work, my PhD, which was on how 19th century children learned about science using everyday objects, so some of the early kitchen chemistry, using every day objects like candles and the famous Michael Faraday lectures, pieces of chalk...

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Predicting Climate Change
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With these kinds of tiny things you can contribute a lot. Our work helps modelling approaches or modellers that actually try to understand how current climate change is going to affect our society in the near future, or does already affect us.  For example, when we look to paleoclimate records, and it’s very well dated, we pretty much know when things happened, you can...

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Restarting Civilisation – Episode 17
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Richard Feynman once said: ‘If, in some cataclysm, all of scientific knowledge were to be destroyed, and only one sentence passed on to the next generation of creatures, what statement would contain the most information in the fewest words? I believe it is the atomic hypothesis that all things are made of atoms-little particles that that move around in perpetual motion, attracting each other...

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Improv in a MRI – Pt 2
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Earlier this year, Cosmic Genome host Robin Ince went along to take part in an experiment on brain activity being conducted at University College London.  The UCL team have been monitoring the brain’s activity during improvisation and playing a version of the BBC show ‘Just a Minute’ with a number of people, particularly comedians, to see how their brains work compared to ‘normal’ people. ...

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Science Book Club – Episode 19
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I so often get the question, do you at them yourself, and I say yes, sure. OK, so we produced the Insect Cookbook and in this book…it’s not just a cookbook but it has everything you want to know about sustainable food in terms of insects. And so we have in the book recipes and the description of how you prepare things and what...

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The Expanding Universe
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Professor Carlos Frenk asks the age old brain bender: If the universe is expanding, what is it expanding into? So that’s the same question as what was there before the Big Bang.  So let me tell you a story.  When I was about 13 years old, I don’t understand why I was there, I went to a lecture…I must have been a precocious child…I...

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Future Cancer Research
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I think that thats just a brilliant field of work My phD came under the umbrella of cancer research.   I was looking at it on a molecular level, I was looking at the pathways and at the genes that can go wrong and can cause cells to over divide, to not be able to regulate their cell division pathway. People often ask me,...

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QED Ask a Scientist – Jon Butterworth
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During this year’s QED Conference in Manchester the Cosmic Genome team gave attendees the chance to tweet in, ask us at The CG desk, or even ask on camera, a question to a select few scientists from the Cosmic Genome App.  Professor Jon Butterworth Question - Hi, my name’s James Lennox-Gordon [@JLennoxG on Twitter], and my question is: at school we’re taught that a...

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QED Ask a Scientist – Brenna Hassett
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During this year’s QED Conference in Manchester, the Cosmic Genome team gave attendees the chance to tweet in, ask us at the CG desk, or even ask on camera, a question to a select few scientists from the Cosmic Genome App.  Dr Brenna Hassett Question - Hello, I’m Jo from Oxford Skeptics in the Pub, I have a very simple but confusing question: why...

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QED Ask a Scientist – Susie Maidment
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During this year’s QED Conference in Manchester the Cosmic Genome team gave attendees the chance to tweet in, ask us at the CG desk, or even ask on camera, a question to a select few scientists from the Cosmic Genome App.  Dr Susie Maidment Question - Will the new Jurassic World movie help people get interested in dinosaurs, or is it more damaging because...

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QED Ask a Scientist – Francisco Diego
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During this year’s QED Conference in Manchester the Cosmic Genome team gave attendees the chance to tweet in, ask us at The CG desk, or even ask on camera, a question to a select few scientists from the Cosmic Genome App.  Dr Francisco Diego Question - Hi, my name’s Tom [@Askwho on Twitter] and my question is: which, as a percentage, is more empty,...

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Improv in an MRI
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Improv in an MRI

Apr 20, 2015

Earlier this year, Cosmic Genome host Robin Ince went along to take part in an experiment on brain activity being conducted at University College London.  The UCL team have been monitoring the brain’s activity during improvisation and playing a version of the BBC show ‘Just a Minute’ with a number of people, particularly comedians, to see how their brains work compared to ‘normal’ people. ...

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Memes
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Memes

Apr 20, 2015

What's not so obvious is they also behave as the basis for a Darwinian process I had occasion to look up the number of books that had been published recently containing the word meme in the title and it's more than 20.  I originally, in the last chapter of the first edition of 'The Selfish Gene’, coined the word meme really as a kind...

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Perceptions of Time
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Perceptions of Time

Apr 20, 2015

We look at time in two different ways. On writing on the perception of time Time Warped is a book about the subjective perception of time; I’m not talking about the physics of time here but about how we feel time passing and why it is that not all minutes feel the same as others.  So if you've got 20 minutes, say, to grab...

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Dealing with Quackery
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Dealing with Quackery

Apr 20, 2015

Quackery is a really interesting window onto how medicine and science sit in  contemporary culture. That’s actually one of the really interesting things about quackery; I feel quite relaxed about quackery generally, like I think it’s more interesting than evil, quackery is a really interesting window onto how medicine and science sit in contemporary culture.  Isn’t it amazing, really, that people are willing to...

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Heroes of Science – Episode 16
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I would say the unsung hero is Dr Lykoudis and it makes all of us, perhaps, keep our eyes open for quirky discoveries. You might say, ‘Well, if Helicobacter has infected nearly all humans for the past hundred thousand years there were probably other people who discovered that, or almost discovered that, helicobacter caused ulcers’, and one of the great unsung heroes in that...

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Chaos of Delight – Episode 19
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Charles Darwin wrote wonderful sentences, beautiful books and fabulous phrases and one of my favourite is when he describes his mind being a 'Chaos of Delight' after seeing many of the splendid lifeforms in a Brazilian forest.  And we have asked everyone who's been involved in this App when they experience that 'Chaos of Delight.' - Robin Ince I am interested in these fundamental...

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A Quantum Misunderstanding
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Back in 2014, self-help guru Deepak Chopra made claims on social media along the lines that science could not explain the Big Bang or what happened before it.  He was quickly corrected by many people who disagreed.  One of them was Professor Brian Cox.  There was a short brouhaha over the whole thing and it now seems Deepak might owe Brian a million dollars. ...

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Heroes of Science – Episode 15
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She would sit outside for hours and hours I would say my [hero] - and you might think she’s too known but at the time she wasn't - is Caroline Herschel.  She was the first, or one of the first, woman astronomers.  She would sit outside for hours and hours, she wasn't just a tea maker, she was the writer, she catalogued so much...

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Chaos of Delight – Episode 18
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Charles Darwin wrote wonderful sentences, beautiful books and fabulous phrases and one of my favourite is when he describes his mind being a 'Chaos of Delight' after seeing many of the splendid lifeforms in a Brazilian forest.  And we have asked everyone who's been involved in this App when they experience that 'Chaos of Delight.' - Robin Ince We’re realising how little we know...

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