Science

Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Fri March 28, 2014

Science Writer Carl Zimmer

Carl Zimmer has written thirteen books on a plethora of science topics, writes a column for the NY Times, an award-winning blog for National Geographic, and also covers science elsewhere like in Slate and The Atlantic. Some say he is the top science writer on genomic science and everything that relates to it. He’s here in Charlotte lecturing tonight about advances in genomic technology that have cut costs by billions, making research more affordable and increasing the likelihood of cutting-edge advances in future medical treatments. We meet him and learn a little about science.

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Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Thu January 30, 2014

Artificial Intelligence: Our Final Invention?

Artificial Intelligence - machines that work like the human brain - computers that can think. It's the stuff of science fiction, but it's also very real and developing faster than you may realize. Just this week, tech giant Google announced the purchase of an artificial intelligence firm - the company's ninth robotics oriented purchase in a little over a year. From asking your smart phone for directions to self-driving cars to robots programmed to act like humans, AI is everywhere and it's certainly uncharted territory. What does it mean when we create computers that are potentially smarter than people? Our guest today warns, if we don't tread lightly, it could mean the end of the human era. A panel of experts joins us to explain how artificial intelligence works and discuss the practical applications and ethical considerations of this controversial technology.


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Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Poet Ron Rash And NC Science Festival

Ron Rash

Part One: Ron Rash. Poet, short story writer and novelist Ron Rash is having a busy year - his latest book of short stories Nothing Gold Can Stay, set in Appalachia with stories that span from the Civil War to present day - was released in February. And his novel Serena is being made into a movie with Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper. It's set to hit theaters in December. North Carolina native Ron Rash is in town for CPCC's Sensoria Festival, and while he's here, we'll talk about his writing process, the different genres of writing that he works in, and about the experience of having one of his books made into a movie, when Charlotte Talks.

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Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Climate Convergence

We have discussed climate change many times on Charlotte Talks but there is a new science emerging in the study of our changing climate. Social scientists are being called upon more and more to study climate's effect on human culture. Entire societies are changing their traditions, the media is covering the issue differently and lawmakers are shaping policy based on our perception to climate change. One local social scientist has discovered fascinating social changes among native Alaskans. He'll share how those changes could affect policy here in our own region. (Note: This show was pre-recorded last week.)

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Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Wed April 10, 2013

Astrophysicist Sean Carroll

Sean Carroll with Mike Collins
Credit Erin Keever

Physicist Sean Carroll spends a lot of time researching theoretical aspects of cosmology, field theory, and gravitation. Recently, he’s been speaking out about the Higgs Boson, or "The God Particle" which is a particle of an atom. Without it, the atom could not exist. In his new book The Particle at the End of the Universe he talks about "The God Particle." He joins us to talk about his passion for physics and explains it in a language we can all understand, when Charlotte Talks.

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Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Fri March 29, 2013

Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria And Hospitals

Earlier this month, the Centers for Disease Control warned us about the spread of a deadly, antibiotic-resistant "nightmare bacteria." The strain called CRE has been on the rise for the past decade - tracked in at least 42 states, including North Carolina - and the CDC is urging hospitals to act now. In Charlotte, CRE has infected 18 patients since 2012; seven of them died. The threat has been compared to that of MRSA, a staph infection that has also shown resistance to antibiotics and is now considered a common hospital germ. We'll learn more about these rare but dangerous drug-resistant bacteria - what they are, how they spread, what makes them so strong and how our environment and use of antibiotics might be making them worse. We'll also talk with people on the front lines, dealing with these bacteria in hospitals about what they're doing to try and control them and what patients should know. The rise of superbugs and what to do about them, when Charlotte Talks.

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Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Searching For Alien Life

We have long wondered if we were alone in the universe. We’ve sent probes far out into space, landed on the moon and are now exploring Mars in detail. We may yet find signs of life on one of the planets in our solar system but nearly every day, scientists are finding planets around other suns in other parts of our galaxy and beyond. In fact, planets are becoming a dime a dozen but might any of them have life? Answering that riddle is the daily quest for Dr. Ray Jayawardhana. He joins us to talk about what he has found.

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Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Wed December 19, 2012

The History Of Emergency Medicine

We all have a story about a trip to the Emergency Room or know someone who does, but how much do we really know about emergency medicine? There is a history behind the creation and evolution of emergency medicine and the doctors, nurses and staff who run emergency rooms 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and every day of the year. An important figure in Emergency Medicine lived and worked in Charlotte and he passed away this summer. A documentary to honor his legacy and that of all of the founders of emergency medicine, is underway and we'll talk to several guests who not only practice emergency medicine but honor it's history. Tune in stat, when Charlotte Talks.

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Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Fri November 9, 2012

Mars Rover

High-Resolution Self-Portrait by Curiosity Rover Arm Camera
NASA

We have visited Mars several times in the past but perhaps no mission to the Red planet is as ambitious as the one underway right now. After months of interplanetary flight and a flawless landing, Mars Rover Curiosity has already begun to explore the planet’s surface. The aim of the mission; find signs of life on Mars. We’ll meet one of the principal members of the mission’s team, geobiologist Dawn Sumner, as we continue our geology conference series when Charlotte Talks.

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Charlotte Talks
12:00 am
Tue November 6, 2012

Climate Change And Public Policy

Credit NASA

One of the issues we’ve heard little about during this election campaign is climate change. But Hurricane Sandy has thrust the topic into the spotlight. It is a complex, challenging problem both scientifically and politically but on election day, we step away from the politics and focus on how scientists are communicating with those who make public policy to help them and citizens understand what is happening and the potential consequences.

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