Science... sort of
Conversations about things that are science, things that are sort of science, and things that wish they were science. A member of the Brachiolope Media Network.
 

00:00:00 - We first learn that Ben is not great at telling stories, but also that there was a guy Fermi who is known for one thing when he really did many thing. The thing he's known for is asking where all the aliens are, and while there are some pretty interesting potential answers to his questions (including Dyson Spheres as discussed on The Titanium Physicists), this week we're focusing on the new addition to the mythos: what if no one is out there because the zombies got them first?

 

00:30:06 - Zombies don't appear to be affected by alcohol, but living humans are and in a healthy amount we can even enjoy it. Abe kicks back an Anchor California Lager. Ben enjoys a Coco Rico, which causes Abe and Ryan to act very strange. And Ryan inevitably has The Last Word.

 

00:35:58 - Viruses, are they alive or what? Who knows, maybe The Weekly Weinersmith does. What we do know is that we found some viruses frozen in Siberia for 30,000 years and the best solution seemed to be to thaw them out and bring them back to life. What could possibly go wrong? In reality, almost nothing, they're not infectious to humans. Still a cool story though.

 

00:50:09 - PaleoPOWs are a lot like viruses; they probably serve a purpose but oftentimes just make you feel sick. Abe is happy to announce a new recurring donation from Logan S., who really liked Troll Hunter and wanted to know if we ever ended up seeing it after doing the trailer. You'll never guess our answer! Also, if you want to bribe Ben into doing more episodes, consider supporting him on Patreon. Ben comments on an article Nazhuret left on our Facebook page about Canada's increasingly poor handling of science. Boo hiss, Candada. Ryan finishes up with another donation from Liam T., who asks that people go fill out a survey about sexual and gender identity as it relates to mental health. It's open to all and will help him complete his graduate work, so consider donating a bit of time to that cause. Any questions can be addressed to him directly via e-mail.

 

 

Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!

 

 

Music for this week's show:

Walking Contradiction - Green Day

Sink - Big City Rock

Come Back Around - Feeder

Direct download: Ep_212_Science..._sort_of_-_Dead_and_Alive.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:09pm PDT

It's time again for our annual Thanksgiving show! That means all feedback this week, all from PaleoPosse who have been kind enough to give us a bit of their hard-earned cash to help us keep producing this podcast for y'all.

 

 00:00:00 - Our first PaleoPOW of the week comes from Joshua W., who is worried that microbes might be out there causing mass extinctions. We do our best to comfort him with cold hard science, so maybe not actually that comforting after all.

 

00:12:35 - One form of comfort is having a drink with your friends, so let's try that. This segment is actually brought to us by Clay the Human, who has started a recurring donation specifically to support the drinking segment. Thanks, Clay! Patrick sups some fine Basil Hayden bourbon, and gets a bit defensive about his use of an ice cube. Ryan, having recently returned from Sweden, has a sampling of various liquors of which Charlie suggests one of the aquavits. He drinks out of it from a shotglass sent in to our mailing address by superfan and donor Morgan M. Skol, Morgan! Since it was in a tiny airplane bottle, a beer is in order. Since Thanksgiving is the biggest meal of the year, Ryan has the biggest beer in his fridge a 5 Monks Quintupel Ale by Avery coming in at a whopping 19.39%. Charlie has an Emissary Imperial Stout in his Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association mug, because he likes some fish with his beer. 

 

00:28:17  - Clay the Human also had a question basically wanting us to discuss how on Earth we're going to continue surviving as a species... on Earth. We each have our own takes, leading Charlie to get philosophical about things. No great shock. We end with a voicemail from David who wants to wish up a happy Thanksgiving and gives us a truly wonderful gift. 

 

 

Don't forget to check out our Winter Solstice Gift Guide for 2014! Thanks for listening, and a special thanks to everyone who supports the show! Be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!

 

 

Music for this week's show:

It's the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) - R.E.M.

Helen går - Traditional Swedish Drinking Song 

Direct download: Ep_211_Science..._sort_of_-_Giving_Thanks_V.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:48am PDT

0:00:00 - Abe and Ryan are joined by Vanessa Knutson, who studies nudibranchs at the California Academy of Sciences (where we've recorded before). She recently described a few new species of these beautiful citters, and published those results for anyone to read right here. We chat with her about the process of finding and describing a new invertebrate, as well as opportunities for women in science. Contribute directly to women in science by visiting the crowdfunding site Instrumentl.

 

00:38:42 - Living underwater means drinking basically all the time, but for us on the land drinking is an event worth sharing. This week Abe is drinking a 120 Minute IPA by Dogfish Head. Vanessa enjoys some Dihydrogen Monoxide to highlight California's recent and ongoing troubles with keeping the populace hydrated. Ryan stalls his way through eating some hákarl and washes it down with the brennivín in true Icelandic fashion.

 

00:48:50 - Moving on to vertebrates, we discuss why a certain group of sea snakes evolved smaller than expected heads. You'll have to listen to find out the answer.

 

01:15:31 - PaleoPOWs are a lot like sea snakes; they're pretty, but deadly. Abe presents a recurring donation from Jacob H. Thanks Jacob! You're literally the reason we keep doing the show. Ryan has a simple but delightful e-mail from Robin M. We're also giving away a copy of the indie game Incredipede on Steam to any donor who'd like it. Come get yours!

 

 

Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!

 

 

Music for this week's show:

The Spanish Dancer - Abraham Padilla (he played it live, so there's no link)

Rotting - Green Day

All The Small Things - blink-182

Direct download: Ep_210_Science..._sort_of_-_Life_is_the_Bubbles.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:47pm PDT

00:00:00 - Patrick and Ryan are joined by Jasper Akerboom and Jason Osborne, who collaborated to make a beer with yeast harvested from fossils. The beer, Bone Dusters from Lost Rhino Brewing Company, involved diving into swamps for fossils, swabbing protocetids for cultures, and dealing with all the trials and tribulations of a yeast strain cultivated from a bone. It's a good story, and by all accounts a good beer. 

 

00:21:14 - Speaking of beers, we're all having some. Jasper is having an Elder Wright, appropriately made by the aforementioned Lost Rhino. Jason was having a vodka tonic, but all our beer talk forced him to switch to an cellared Bone Dusters. Patrick is fighting a sore throat with the help of a hot toddy. And Ryan tries to keep everything thematic with a Mikkeller's Beer Geek Brunch Weasel.

 

00:29:25 - The second segment is all about what Jason and Jasper do when they're not busy brewing. Jason helps run PaleoQuest, a non-profit organization dedicated to espousing the value of geology and paleontology to the general public. Jasper runs JasperYeast, a company dedicated to providing brewers with really good yeast, which is also very important, as far as we're concerned. 

 

00:54:17 - PaleoPOWs are a lot like collaboration beers: they both take multiple parties working together to complete, and everyone hopes they turn out at least OK. Patrick starts things off by thanking a former recurring donor Leonard A. Leonard gave us some cash each month for a bit, but for whatever reason had to quit. No hard feelings, Leonard; we appreciate the support while you were able to do so, and that holds true for everyone else who gave for awhile but then had to stop. Thanks everyone! And especially Leonard! Ryan presents a most impressive offering from none other than Kevin Kelly, who was kind enough to mention us in his latest book Cool Tools: A Catalog of Possibilities which is really awesome and we're honored to be included. The book has other stuff besides us, so it's definitely worth checking out. Finally, this week's game giveaway is Deadlight, an awesome zombie platformer set in 1980's Seattle. If you're a donor e-mail in to get the Steam code!

 

 

This week's episode was brought to you by Downcast, a podcasting app for people who are fed up with terrible ones. Not only are they sponsoring the show, but they gave us some promo codes to give away! If you want the app, e-mail us and say so; you'll be happy you did! Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!

 

 

Music for this week's show:

Bag of Bones - Pokey Lafarge

Lost in You - Sugarcult

My Bones Are Gonna Rise Again - Pine Hill Haints

Direct download: Ep_209_Science..._sort_of_-_Yeast_from_a_Beast.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:50am PDT

00:00:00 - Arthur C. Clarke wrote in 2010: Odyssey Two that the center of Jupiter was one giant diamond. He probably never expected to be right... sort of. A new model suggests that conditions on Jupiter and Saturn may be right to have diamonds forming in the atmosphere and raining down from above. Pretty trippy stuff, science.

 

00:23:00 - Most drinks don't cause a trip, but there's only one way to find out for sure: drinking them. Jacob insults Ryan by daring to bring a pre-mixed Zombie cocktail from Bacardi on the show. Tsk tsk. Abe enjoys a Dunkel from Prost Brewing Company. And Ryan gets weird with a Tangerine Dreamsicle collaboration beer from Terrapin Beer Company and Green Flash Brewing Company.

 

00:31:40 - Jacob hasn't been on the show much lately, so Abe and Ryan demand some answers. Turns out he's been teaching children science as part of Club Scientific. I guess teaching the next generation is an OK excuse...

 

00:59:49 - PaleoPOWs are a lot like summer camp, you develop very strong bonds and then don't talk for a year. Ryan presents a new recurring donation from Bonnie D. Thanks, Bonnie! Jacob ponders an e-mail on mosquito control techniques inspired by Episode 154 from Mark G. And finally Abe has a new 5-star iTunes review from a user whose name I'd rather not type. Sorry, guy, but thanks for the kind words!  

 

 

Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts, and be sure to come to our live show in San Francisco as part of the Bay Area Science Festival’s Nerd Nite Block Party next week on Oct 24th!  

 

The video game giveaway this week is Bioshock 2! First donor to e-mail us and ask for it gets a free Steam copy, enjoy!

 

 

Music for this week's show:

Diamonds Are Forever - Shirley Bassey

Sweet Tangerine - The Hush Sound

Kids - Childish Gambino (from the album Camp)

Direct download: Ep_208_Science..._sort_of_-_Camping_on_a_Diamond_Sea.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:29pm PDT

00:00:00 - Dr. Robert McAfee joins Ryan to discuss all things sltohs! Finally, Ryan gets to just cut loose. First up on the docket, were giant ground sloths sneaking meat meals in between the leaves? There's some evidence to suggest that they were, but do these two slothologists believe it?

 

00:29:29 - No good sloth discussion happens without beer. Robert enjoys his Easter Bunny Vs Unicorn wheat wine as it warms. Ryan, failing to find anything from Ohio, settles for a There Went the Neighborhood by Black Bottle Brewery.

 

00:36:11 - Robert has found that when people find out he studies sloths, the typically ask about Sid the Sloth from the Ice Age movie series. A discussion of the first two movies, with particular emphasis on xenarthran representation, ensues.

 

01:14:24 - PaleoPOWs are a lot like ice ages, they come on ya fast, and they leave ya fast. (The accuracy of the previous statement has not been verified in any way.) Only one this week, but it's a goodie from Maria Q. all about SLOTHS from her homeland of Costa Rica. She sent some amazing photos and pronunciation corrections for Ryan which he admits to purposefully ignoring because... muppets. Finally, be sure to check out Robert's website, Sloth Search, dedicated to all the sloth research out there he can manage to catalog.

 

 

Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts, and be sure to come to our live show in San Francisco as part of the Bay Area Science Festival's Nerd Nite Block Party next week on Oct 24th!

 

 

Music for this week's show:

Sloths - SNL Digital Short

Warm Beer and Cold Women - Tom Waits

Send Me On My Way - Rusted Root

Direct download: Ep_207_Science..._sort_of_-_Drop_Bears_from_South_America.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:30pm PDT

00:00:00 - Ryan is join by J. Leighton Reid to talk about birds, forests, and conservation. The first paper discussed is about how forest restoration in the tropics benefits birds. 

 

00:24:34 - Speaking of feeling restored, how about beer? Leighton pulls off something that few guests or even co-hosts have ever accomplished: he has a beer Ryan hasn't heard of, namely a Alphadelic IPA by Hop Valley Brewing Company. Ryan also has a beer hailing from Oregon, a Class of '88 Belgian Style Ale from Deschutes Brewery et al. 

 

00:26:05 - Next up we cover this new technique of applied nucleation, where you plant small patches of trees instead of trying to replant the whole forest. Fewer trees but better results? Talk about a win-win! If you want to know more about the project, you can read about it here and if you'd like to donate directly, you can do so here!

 

00:55:38 - PaleoPOWs are a lot like forest restoration, we're not quite sure how its done but we're really hoping it works out. Since Ryan is flying is solo this week there's only one entry to be had, but it's a good one. Clifford E. has started a recurring donation, which is hugely awesome for us and for you because it makes the show that much better, so thanks, Cliff! We're also excited to announce that we'll performing a live show in San Francisco as part of the 2014 Bay Area Science Festival in conjunction with the Nerd Nite Block Party. Check the link for details and please stop by if you can! Last up, we're trying to give some games away to donors, if you would like the really cool Indie puzzle game The Bridge and have ever donated to the show, e-mail Ryan for your free copy! 

 

 

Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!

 

 

Music for this week's show:

Prettiest Tree on the Mountain - Ben Sollee

The Oregon Trail - Burt Ives

Four New Trees - The Mountain Goats

Direct download: Ep_206_Science..._sort_of_-_Keeping_the_Rica_in_Costa.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:13pm PDT

00:00:00 - Chad Jones, host of The Collapsed Wavefunction, joins us because apparently a story about chemicals was a better fit for here than his own show. That's fine, we're happy to have him. The story is about a new chemical that may help catalyze carbon fixation reactions. Don't worry, we make Chad explain all of that with small, easy to understand words.

 

00:13:25 - Drinks often contain carbon, but does drinking them catalyze fixation? I have no idea. Ryan guesses that Patrick is having a Sweetwater 420 based on one clue. It's a very sad waste of talen. Chad enjoys a Diet Cherry Dr. Pepper, but we can't tell if it has 24 flavors or just one. And Ryan succumds to a Hellhound On My Ale lemon beer from Dogfish Head so he has an excuse to sing some blues at the crossroads.

 

00:19:25 - Several new studies have lead to the startling conclusion that sasquatches may actually be bears. The first uses DNA, as if that means anything. And the second uses maps, but they're fancy maps, so maybe they're on to something. We also learn that Chad runs @ChemFreeBear on Twitter, dedicated to clawing woo in the face. Ryan demands to know what everyone's favorite bear is. Patrick talks about the evolutionary history of Pokemon.

 

00:36:39 - PaleoPOWs are a lot like sasquatch, lots of people believe in them but you're just not sure. Patrick starts us off with a new recurring donation from Dan C. Thanks, Dan! Chad has an e-mail from Tyler V. about the connection between real ants and Ender's Game. A brief discussion of the movie ensues. Ryan has another donation, but this time with a story about a bus ride with a creationist from Deanna M. Thanks and good luck with public transportation in the future, Deanna! Ryan also announces that he's giving away a copy of the game Bioshock on Steam (where we have a group) to any donor that wants it! Just send him an e-mail. First come, first serve.

 

 

Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!

 

 

Music for this week's show:

Changes - Seu Jorge

Drunken Hearted Man - Robert Johnson

I Wanna Be A Bear - Descendents

Direct download: Ep_205_Science..._sort_of_-_Chemical_Free_Sasquatch.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:07am PDT

00:00: 00 - People love to focus on gigantic and impressive fossils, but tiny fossils of tiny parasites can also teach us a lot about our history of living with those critters that would take advantage of us. We begin the show with some  Schistosomiasis eggs found around the stomach region of a fossil human from Mesopotamia. Next up is a tick in amber with something that looks a whole lot like the bacteria for lyme disease inside of it, which you can vaccinate your dog for but not yourself.

00:26:40 - While blood may be appetizing for a tick, we humans prefer other sorts of beverages. Kelly is not yet off the  wagon, due to her status as a mammalian mother, so she enjoys a decaf latte with a cookie. A special cookie, but not the kind of special you might be thinking. This cookie is going to support a pretty great cause. Namely Project Sedna, helping to fund the exploration of our fast melting arctic via encouraging both native peoples and young women to take an active role in documenting ice loss. Ben has an Ice Capp from Tim Hortons. It's a thing up there, don't ask too many questions. Ryan explains a new favorite style of his, the Berliner Weisse, which he enjoys in the form of a Hopfentea from Perennial Artisan Ales.

00:26:40 - While they may munch on us from time to time, how often do we get back at parasites by eating them? Carl Zimmer collects some examples of our culinary relationship with parasites, including a favorite dish of former U.S. President George Washington. Have you ever eaten a parasite? Tell us about it in the comments!

00:57:51 - PaleoPOWs are a lot like parasites. They have a complex life cycle and can be quite draining over time. Just kidding, they're always a boost! Kelly presents a donation from Jesse O. Thanks for keeping the show going, Jesse! Ryan reads an e-mail from Joel S. in response to the weird ABV labeling of Panamanian beers in comparison to China and other exotic lands with strange labeling practices. And Ben finishes us off with a tweet from Arvind about whether or not U.S. scientists prefer the metric system or silly imperial units?

 

Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts

 

Music for this week's show:

Tick of Time - The Kooks

Java Jive - The Ink Spots

Eat It - Weird Al Yankovic

Direct download: Ep_204_Science..._sort_of_-_Parasite_Preserves.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:32am PDT

00:00:00 - This week is dedicated to an interview Ryan did with PhD student Zeka Kuspa, who studies environmental toxicology as it affects California condor restoration. The first part of the interview covers the basics of California condors, their conservation history, and the problems they face due to lead poisoning.

 

00:39:01 - It take us a little bit but we do finally get to the drinks. Zeka, per her policy of only drinking beers with animals on the label, is enjoying a Sculpin from Ballast Point Brewing. Ryan, thinking that raptors often have those cool little hoods on, has the Blindfold Black IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

 

00:43:17 - The secondpart of our interview focuses a bit about their project called Condor Watch which is part of Zooniverse and helps researchers get the public involved in analyzing the data from California condor camera traps. You, yes you, can sign up today to be a part of helping keep California's burgeoning condor population healthy and growing strong!

 

00:47:15 -PaleoPOWs are a lot like vultures, they scavenge the really tasty bits, and tend to live in groups. In the except that proves the rule, only one PaleoPOW this week in the form of a recurring donation from Francis D. Thanks for supporting the show, Francis!

 

 

Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!

 

 

Music for this week's show:

My Turtledove - Zeka Kuspa (definitely the first and probably only time a guest will provide the song for their interview)

Direct download: Ep_203_Science..._sort_of_-_Condor_or_Condont.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:37pm PDT