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The Naked Scientists Podcast

The Naked Scientists Podcast

The Naked Scientists flagship science show brings you a lighthearted look at the latest scientific breakthroughs, interviews with the world's top scientists, answers to your science questions and science experiments to try at home.

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Science Pub Quiz!

This week, pull up a chair, a drink, and get your pens and paper ready, because it's time for The Naked Scientists science pub quiz! Playing along are climate scientist Ella Gilbert from the British Antarctic Survey, animal behaviour scientist Eleanor Drinkwater, plants and pollinators researcher Hamish Symington and physiologist Sam Virtue... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-05-05
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COVID-19: Beyond the Virus

This week, we're looking at the impacts of coronavirus beyond the virus: how is it hitting economies, universities and our mental wellbeing? Plus, researchers come up with a way out of the lockdown, how people who've recovered from coronavirus can help save the lives of those infected with it, and how the lockdown is offering one scientist a unique mass participation research opportunity... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-04-28
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Eyes on the Skies

Welcome to a voyage of discovery using only the view from your window. From cloudspotting to birdwatching to stargazing, you're never going to look at the sky the same way again. Plus, news of how the world's poorest countries are bracing against the next wave of coronavirus, as well as a drug that could block the virus from getting into our cells... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-04-21
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Bubbles, Balloons and Blooms: April Q&A

Today, we're taking a step back from talking about coronavirus, to bring you a QnA show with a difference! We're answering some of the questions you've been sending in, and we're also getting stuck in to some kitchen science experiments which you can join in with at home, whether you're a big kid or a little one. Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-04-14
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The Rise of Radioactivity

This week, we are looking at radioactivity, from its uses in medicine to its uses in war. Plus, a sneak preview of a new film due out soon all about radioactivity pioneer Marie Curie. Plus, a new 90 minute test for coronavirus infection, how fast is the new coronavirus mutating, and evidence that humans are just like dogs - we eat much faster if there's someone else around! Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-04-07
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Boom! Naked Scientists LIVE!

This week - from genetics to geoscience, chemistry to komodo dragons, an explosive hour of science fun! Hear what went on at our live event recorded back on 11th March for the 2020 Cambridge Science Festival - one of the last events that went ahead before the rest of the festival was cancelled. Demos, anecdotes, questions, and booms with Giles Yeo, Ljiljana Fruk, Eleanor Drinkwater and David Rothery... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-03-31
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Audience Questions: Naked Scientists LIVE!

Here are a few extra bits from our live show as part of the Cambridge Science Festival, recorded back on 11th March 2020 before the rest of the festival was cancelled, that we couldn't fit into this week's episode, but that we thought you might enjoy, nonetheless. To remind you of our panel - there's geneticist Giles Yeo, chemist Ljiljana Fruk, animal behaviour expert Eleanor Drinkwater and planetary geoscientist David Rothery, and former Naked Scientist Dave Ansell. Presenting the show were Adam Murphy and Chris Smith... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-03-30
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Coronavirus Explained: How COVID-19 Works

We take a detailed look at the coronavirus pandemic that's sweeping the globe. How does it affect the lungs? What can doctors do about it? And meet some of the teams working on solutions, from new rapid tests for the virus to vaccines to stop it. Plus, in other news, evidence that solar storms can cause whales to beach themselves - and meet the ancient bird they call Wonderchicken... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-03-24
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Secrets of sustainable cities

With billions of people moving to cities in the next few decades we are looking at the secrets for making cities sustainable, from a virtual world to a World War 2 air raid shelter. Plus in the news, how the Amazon could disappear faster than we expect, what territorial gorillas can teach us about ourselves, and would you shop in a place that didn't have tills... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-03-17
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Q&A: COVID-19, Solar Storms & Ancient Teeth

What happens if you overwater a plant? How does gravity actually work? And should we be cancelling mass events to contain the coronavirus? It's Q&A time on the show, and this week Phil Sansom is joined by a brainy panel of experts: plant biologist Nadia Radzman, particle physicist Chris Rogers, bioarchaeologist Emma Pomeroy, and virologist and Naked Scientist Chris Smith. Prepare to have your curiosity satisfied... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-03-10
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Electric Cars: Worth the Charge?

This week, we're talking electric cars: we get someone to drive one for a few days to find out how easy the switch to electric might be. And news of the brainy computer that's made a breakthrough against superbugs, and, on Mars, why the little green men are quaking in their boots... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-03-03
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Artificial intelligence in medicine

For many, the term Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a phrase straight out of sci-fi, conjuring up visions of utopias or dystopias, from films ranging from the Terminator to I Robot. But what was previously sci-fi is now increasingly becoming reality. AI technology exists, and there's a brand new frontier where it's being applied to the world of healthcare. AI is helping to diagnose cancer, design new medicines, and even predict a person's medical future. In this programme, in partnership with Microsoft, we explore where AI technology is taking us... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-02-27
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Time: It's all relative

With the leap year upon us, and the rare appearance of Feb 29th, we're "marking time" to find out how time works: from why time seems to go faster when we're older, to the mind-bending warping of time around black holes. Plus, in the news, scientists develop a way to produce electricity from thin air, how old mattresses are feeding refugees, and why bringing back beavers might solve some of our flooding problems... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-02-25
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Prostate Cancer: Detection and Diagnosis

This week we delve into the disease that accounts for a quarter of all cancer diagnoses in men: prostate cancer. We'll be finding out how it's picked up and diagnosed, as well as speaking to someone who lives with the condition. Plus, in the news: our update on the coronavirus, from life in quarantine to developing a vaccine; cutting aircraft emissions by flying just a bit higher; and how scientists can take a dinosaur's temperature from its fossilised eggs... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-02-18
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Eat, Sleep, Repeat: Body Clock Science

This week - tick tock! We're talking body clock science! Whether it's eating, sleeping, or coming down with something - we're taking a look at the biology of our daily rhythms. Plus in the news, doctors begin testing gene editing to treat cancer, and what have honeybees and love hearts got in common? Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-02-11
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Q&A: Soy, Slingshots and Cyanide

What's a white hole? Why don't we use brain scans to diagnose mental health and why was cyanide Agatha Christie's poison of choice? All this and more as our panel of experts answer your questions. Joining Chris Smith this time are: Astronomy specialist Matt Bothwell, forensic toxicologist Lorna Nisbet, neuroscientist Camilla Nord and physiologist Sam Virtue... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-02-04
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A Burns Night Celebration of Science

This week we're donning our kilts and raising our whisky bottles to celebrate Burns Night! The two-century-old Scottish holiday honours the memory of the great poet Robbie Burns, and in this episode we're hosting our very own Burns Supper - but with a special twist of science. We've got haggis, history, and a live science ceilidh! Plus in the news, an update on China's virus outbreak, the Earth's oldest meteor crater, and scientists recreate the voice of a 3000-year-old Egyptian Mummy.... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-01-28
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Food Waste: Slimmer Waste-line

This week: food waste. Worldwide, a third of the food we buy ends up in the bin. Why? And what can science do to help? Plus - will 2020 be another climate record-breaker, and what are the climate-change consequences for future food production here? A new way to treat type 1 diabetes. And why, nutritionally-speaking, packed lunches for many children leave a lot to be desired... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-01-21
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Know When to Fold 'Em: Origami Science

This week we're unraveling the science behind the ancient art of origami - paper folding - and how scientists are even doing it now with DNA. The new virus that's appeared in China, news of the Australian bush fires, and why running a marathon can take years off the age of your arteries... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-01-14
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Lottery Numbers and Banana Skins

It's Q&A time! We've picked a selection of the best science questions from listeners, like: are lottery numbers really random? Is there still a hole in the ozone layer? And crucially - why do some bananas peel into three sections and some into four? Here to answer them is our expert panel: tech journalist Tim Revell, geneticist Hannah Thompson, climate scientist Ella Gilbert, and physicist Jess Wade... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2020-01-07
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A Year of Naked Science!

In this week's special episode, Katie Haylor, Adam Murphy and Phil Sansom take a trip down memory lane, month by month, reflecting on some of our favourite moments from a whole year's worth of sensational science sought out by The Naked Scientists office in 2019... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-12-31
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Get Gaming: Naked Scientists Christmas 2019

Merry Christmas! In this special edition of the show, discover how many presents are really coming your way on the 12th day, hear which medical specialists are most likely to get caught speeding, and help us track down the real Santa using stats! Plus, Naked Gamers Chris Berrow and Leigh Milner bring us up to date with what's hot in the gaming world this Christmas... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-12-23
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Fly Me to the Moon

NASA have stated that they are heading back to the Moon in 2024. This week we're finding out why, and what's in store for us as we head up there. Plus, in the news, cave paintings dated to 40,000 years ago, the strange magnetic fields found around the Sun, and the 3-D printed rabbit with its own DNA... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-12-17
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How to survive an avalanche

This week we're exploring a terrifying force of nature: avalanches. Why do they happen? How do you avoid them? And if you encounter one, how could you survive it? We speak to Lawrence Jones, who 20 years ago was caught in an avalanche - and lived to tell the tale. Plus, in the news: measles cases triple, we ask whether physicists have really discovered a new fundamental force, and the scientifically-proven solution to hangovers (sort of) - we've tested the recipe... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-12-10
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Why Do I Stress Eat?

This week: Is fat worse than sugar? Can you die of a broken heart? Is the universe really expanding? We've assembled a panel of experts to take on your science questions: diet and genetics guru Giles Yeo, immunologist and wine expert Clare Bryant, physicist Francesca Chadha-Day, and cardiologist James Rudd. Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-12-03
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Print me a new liver!

This week, artificial organs! How close are we to growing life-saving hearts, kidneys and livers in the lab? Plus in the news, how hospital computer systems can save lives by spotting subtle signs doctors haven't picked up on yet; also the nano-coating to keep your toilet squeaky clean, and most importantly using half the amount of water! Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-11-26
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Custard unflustered

This week, the deadly serious science of custard, including the chemistry of eggs, sports bra tehcnology, custard powder explosions, and that most important question of them all: is custard better hot or cold? Plus, in the news, a revolution in solar panel science, did hiccups evolve to help babies learn, 3d TV coming to a screen near you, and sex in the city: why urban living means dad might not be dad at all... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-11-19
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Phenomics: A Medical Revolution

This week, we're looking at the future of medicine, phenomics! Including the toilet that analyses what you put down it! And in the news, sending wine to space, new insights into the origin of life, and why a lack of sleep gives you food cravings! Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-11-12
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Computer Models: Welcome to the catwalk

Computer models are everywhere and we use them to gain an understanding of the world and make predictions about the future, such as the spread of diseases, whether a rocket will get into orbit, and even whether it will rain tomorrow. In this special documentary, Adam Murphy discovers what a model is and why we need them, how scientists develop models in the first place, and how computer scientists can help to strip out the bugs to make them work better, faster and more efficiently... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-11-11
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Eggs, eyes and quantum - November QnA

This week - How do glow worms glow, and can they do so indefinitely? Why don't birds fall out of trees when they sleep? And space tourism: when can I book my ticket to orbit? We've assembled an expert panel to answer your science questions - Richard Hollingham, space and science journalist; Keziah Latham, optometrist; Peter Cowley, tech investor, and Sophie Mowles, behavioural ecologist. Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-11-05
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Does recycling work?

This week we're diving into the bins and sorting through the rubbish to figure out: what's going on with recycling? Many countries like the UK produce far more recyclable waste than they can deal with, and ever since China stopped importing most types of rubbish last year, we've seen crisp packets and margarine tubs piling up in illegal dumps abroad. So is our recycling system still working, and what does the future hold? Plus, in the news, a new drug that tricks the flu, and the artificial leaf that can turn carbon dioxide into fuel... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-10-29
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Blood Under a Microscope

This week, we're taking a look at blood, from regenerating blood vessels, to one of our team going to their first blood donation! Plus in the news, concerns that Ebola might be back with a vengeance in future: 60% more often and with 4 times the impact; plus NASA's first all-female spacewalk: we hear from one of the astronauts involved... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-10-22
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Sport Special

The Rugby World Cup is taking place in Japan, and FIFA 20 has just been released, so this month it's a sport special! Including Virtual Reality Go Karting... yes really. And we meet the author who was inspired to write poetry by playing Super Mario! New reviews include Mario Kart Tour, Trine 4 and Untitled Goose Game. For Retro Revival it's Darksiders 2 on the Nintendo Switch and Apple Arcade. With Chris Berrow and Leigh Milner. Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-10-21
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Inclusive Computing

This week, computers are supposedly there to help us - but how easy are they to use and programme if you're disabled? We're looking at how to make computing as inclusive as it can be. Plus, news of the Nobel Prizes announced this week, a new test to find out whether chemotherapy will work for your individual cancer, and the whales that whisper to their young! Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-10-15
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Quadrillions: Sequencing the UK Biobank

Half a million genomes. That's how many the UK Biobank has, stored as blood samples in freezers up in Manchester. And in September 2019 they announced a project to sequence every single one of them. It's the obvious next step for the UK Biobank, the research study that began in 2006 and now consists of an enormous biological database: the personal and medical information of its 500,000 volunteers. That data is available to any researcher who applies to use it. But how is this, the biggest whole-genome sequencing project ever, going to work? Who's coughing up the hundreds of millions of pounds... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-10-14
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October Q&A

It's Q&A time! This week - is AI a threat to humanity? What's a panic attack? And why does being scared make your legs wobble? We're answering your questions about science, technology, and medicine with our panel of experts. We've got university of Cambridge AI specialist Beth Singler; Naked Scientist and host of Naked Genetics Phil Sansom; Olivia Remes to chat to us about anxiety and mental health; and physiologist Sam Virtue, also from the University of Cambridge. Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-10-08
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Getting to Grips with Gene Therapy

This week - gene therapy. We talk to researchers using DNA technology to prevent blindness, halt muscular dystrophy, and even potentially cure HIV. Plus, what climate change means for the state of the world's oceans, a new satellite to take the Earth's temperature, and scientists discover the world's first baby bottles - and the milk that was in them - from thousands of years ago... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-10-01
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Astronauts, geese and realistic retinas

This month, doctors doing U-turns: the medical practices without much evidence to prop them up, wind-tunnel experiments reveal how geese fly at extreme altitudes, why mating makes bees go blind, stress remodelling the brain's myelin, and what goes on during a stint aboard the International Space Station? Join Chris Smith for a look inside the latest papers in eLife... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-09-26
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Crystal Clear About Glass

This week, we're taking a look through the window, or rather, at the window: we're looking at glass! Coming up, how do you make glass, how does stained glass work, and is bullet-proof glass really bulletproof? And in the news: Why birds are in big trouble, swimming the channel, scratching an itch, and treating tinnitus... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-09-24
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Code Making and Breaking

We're making codes and breaking ciphers this week as we look at the world of cryptography! Coming up, Cold War spy rings, and how does your computer keep your data secure? Plus in the news, why it's hard to keep the weight off when you get older, and seagulls are stealing more than our chips, they're stealing our superbugs... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-09-17
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Creepy crawlies, quarks and counting

This week: How long can someone hold their breath and can you train for this? Who are fitter - footballers or rugby players? And what's the most intelligent insect? We've assembled an expert panel to take on your science questions - University of York animal behaviour scientist Eleanor Drinkwater, exercise physiologist Dan Gordon from Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge University physicist Fran Day, and Cambridge University mathematician and University Challenge icon Bobby Seagull! Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-09-10
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Stripping down STIs

We're stripping down sexual health and sexually transmitted infections! Coming up, will we soon have a vaccine for chlamydia? And what happens in a sexual health check up? And in the news, the fires in the Amazon rainforest, and a new weapon against malaria... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-09-03
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Are You Safe Online?

This week: How does the internet affect us? What does it mean for our security, our wallets, and ourselves. We're taking a deep dive into the world of all things cyber... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-08-27
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Marvellous Materials in Medicine

This week, Chris Smith and Izzie Clarke explore the helpful materials that keep us healthy. How are dental implants made and fitted? Bacteria-resistant plastic coatings; and what hip implants have in common with plastic bags. Plus, in the latest science news, why pancreatic cancer is so aggressive - and how we might stop it, signs that something ten times the size of the Earth slammed into Jupiter, and more... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-08-20
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QnA: Fridges and impossible food

In this month's QnA show we're asking: why are fridges harder to open again after you just closed them? What's the best way to wipe the memory of a smart phone? And what might climate change mean for chocolate? We're answering your questions with the help of an expert panel - neuroscientist Duncan Astle, techxpert Peter Cowley, food security expert Nadia Radzman and engineer Livia Souza... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-08-13
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A Spin Around the Electron

This week we're taking a spin around the electron! How does a fridge magnet stay stuck? And how can quantum physics help us in battling cancer? We'll find out. Plus in the news, the chemistry of breaking down microplastics, exploring bacterial infections resistant to last line antibiotics, and we're going back to school P.E lessons! Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-08-06
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Flying into the Future

This week, The Naked Scientists are taking off into the future of aviation: will flights get faster? Could we see a fully electric plane? And can a Naked Scientist land a commercial aircraft? Izzie Clarke and Adam Murphy find out... Plus, in the news, a new way of disguising cancer drugs as fat, sharks are in danger, and how do you make a bad joke funnier? Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-07-29
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The Moon Landing: 50 Years Later

This week a special show celebrating 50 years since man first walked on the Moon! How did we get there, what happened on the Moon, and will we ever go back? Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-07-22
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Simulation Science: Living in The Matrix?

This week, could we be living in The Matrix? We're talking about the power of computer simulations, and we're asking are we all living in one! Plus, in the news  - making diabetes treatment smarter; diagnosis by an electronic doctor - would you be comfortable with that? And the world's first robot that picks lettuces... Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-07-15
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Alzheimers Disease: Facts and Fiction

This week, Alzheimer's Disease goes under the microscope: What is it? Why do people get it, and can we cure it? Plus in the news, why the planet needs more trees, a breakthrough in storing computer data, and the science of a good excuse! Like this podcast? Please help us by supporting the Naked Scientists
2019-07-09
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