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August 19, 2012 -- Why the Science of Matter Matters: Chemistry, Art, and You -- Guest: Mike Haaf
August 24, 2012 01:37 PM PDT
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What’s the first thing that pops into your mind when I say the words “organic chemistry”? I bet it’s not art! It’s probably something like “premed” or “long nights of studying,” but art is definitely not the first thing you think of in relation to organic chemistry. But they do indeed have some things in common. Like a chef needs to understand his ingredients, artists need to understand their materials – and that’s where chemistry comes into play. Mike Haaf, professor of chemistry at Ithaca College and co-instructor of a popular course called Chemistry and Art, joins host Jenny Nelson to talk about how he makes chemistry interesting and fun.

August 12, 2012 -- Putting the 'Fun' in Fungi -- Guest: Kathie Hodge
August 13, 2012 11:28 AM PDT
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One of my favorite guests I’ve had on this show is Kathie Hodge, Professor of Mycology in the Department of Plant Pathology & Plant-Microbe Biology at Cornell University, and she joins me again to talk about her favorite thing: fungi. She’s an expert on mushrooms and other members of the fungi kingdom, and her infectious curiosity about the world around us inspires students and regular folks alike.

August 5, 2012 -- Tell me a story! -- Guests: Eliud and Meredith Nieves
August 02, 2012 11:09 PM PDT

Storytelling is one of the oldest and most basic forms of communication and teaching. In the sciences, however, storytelling is often jettisoned for the cold, hard facts. What could scientists learn from storytellers, and how can the teaching of science be improved through the art of storytelling? Our guests today, here to help us explore these questions, are Eliud and Merideth Nieves, professional storytellers in the Ithaca area. Listen all the way to the end to hear one of Eliud's signature stories, The King of the Jungle!

June 24, 2012 -- The Art of Mixology -- Guest: Roland Coggin
August 03, 2012 02:39 PM PDT

For the last year, the live Science Cabaret that takes place in downtown Ithaca at Lot 10 on Cayuga Street has been graced by the amazing cocktail stylings of one Mr. Roland Coggin. For each event, he whips up a tasty topical beverage. He’s got catchy names for them, but he also goes above and beyond, researching the Science Cabaret topic and developing a drink that incorporates ingredients that relate to the science on display at the evening event. For instance, when Science Cabaret hosted an event about creative robots, Roland cooked up the HAL9000 cocktail and wrote a delightful introduction for imbibers. The ingredients in the HAL9000 playfully fit the acronym: Hendrick’s Gin, Aperol, and lemon juice, along with simple syrup, soda, and a hand-carved cucumber robot. Roland shares his philosophy on the art of tending bar, his favorite alcoholic concoctions, and the sensitive job of lending an ear to contemplative drinkers.

June 17, 2012 -- Slime! It's so much cooler than you think -- Guest: Andy Smith
June 15, 2012 01:11 PM PDT

Snails and slugs are perhaps best known for their slowness and their slime. Those silver trails snails leave all over your yard: that's slime. That sticky stuff that slugs have coating their body: that's slime. Snail and slug lime has some pretty amazing properties -- it's 97% water, and it can serve as either a lubricant for the slippery suckers to get from one place to another, or as a glue for them to hang out in one spot for a while. Slugs also use their slime as a defense mechanism, secreting buckets of it when attacked. The defensive slime is unusually sticky, and any predator that gets a mouthful of it may have trouble opening its mouth for some time. Andy Smith, Ithaca College professor of biology and self-professed snail lover, talks with host Jenny Nelson about why these slime machines are so interesting.

April 8, 2012 -- I <3 Hyenas -- Guest: Sarah Benson-Amram
April 08, 2012 12:59 PM PDT

One of the lessons we're learning during our month of focusing on sustainability is how important even the most deplored of creatures -- such as mosquitoes, or hyenas -- are to the health of our global ecosystem. We can also learn from the complex societies of hyenas about how humans evolved intelligence. Hyenas get a bad rap, but they're actually very interesting and, surprisingly, loving animals. Our guest, Sarah Benson-Amram, postdoctoral research in zoology and ecology at Michigan State University, studied hyenas for 2 years in the Masai Mara of Kenya, challenging them with "puzzles" to better understand how these highly social creatures figure out problems and learn from each other.

April 1, 2012 -- Caring for our gardens and trees in the face of climate change -- Guest: Nina Bassuk
April 08, 2012 12:46 PM PDT

April is Sustainability Month, and we're celebrating at Science Cabaret on Air with shows about topics related to sustainability -- which, luckily, spans a wide range of disciplines! -- every Sunday this month. Our first interview is with Nina Bassuk, professor of horticulture at Cornell University and program leader of the Urban Horticulture Institute at Cornell.

March 25, 2012 -- 12 in 12 for 12 -- Guest: Gabby Wild
April 08, 2012 12:48 PM PDT

March 11, 2012 -- Getting SMART Around the World -- Guests: Jenny Nelson, Hunter Gradie and Morgann Ross
March 25, 2012 09:32 AM PDT

CIIFAD's Student Multidisciplinary Applied Research Team (SMART) Program brings together teams of students and faculty from diverse disciplines and pairs them with firms, organizations, or community groups located in developing countries for short-term consulting projects. In this episode of Science Cabaret On Air, Jenny Nelson, the SMART Program Coordinator, and two former team members talk with host Joanna Drivalas about their experiences on their international adventures and what it means to bring that information back home.

February 19, 2012 -- Do You Belive in Magic? -- Guest: Alex Stone
February 21, 2012 09:00 AM PST

Magicians can make us see things that aren't there, and can hide things from us in plain view. How do they DO that? Are we so easily duped, or is there something truly supernatural in their abilities? Alex Stone, author of the new book Fooling Houdini: Magicians, Mentalists, Math Geeks and the Hidden Powers of the Mind, joins host Jenny Nelson to talk about how magicians learn the tricks of their trade, why magic is so addictive, and how he managed to get kicked out of his local chapter of the Society of American Magicians.

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