Deep in thought
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
1w ago
Brain implants have been sparking conversation about the future of humanity after Elon Musk's company Neuralink announced it has embedded a microchip in a human skull. It has fired up people's imaginations and led some to wonder whether these devices that connect to our brain could be a stepping stone towards the ideas more often found in sci-fi, and maybe even create a tool to read people's thoughts. Marnie Chesterton and the panel discuss whether our privacy is at risk or whether we are already an open book. They try to understand the concept of backing up our brains, and they meet Dr Michae ..read more
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How plankton made mountains
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
2w ago
This week, the world’s largest cruise ship set sail from Miami. Whilst a cruise holiday may be appealing to some, there is also a long history of disease spreading around the world via ships. Marnie and the panel take a look at the reasons why and the resulting impact on public health policies. It’s not just humans and microbes that are hitching a ride aboard sea vessels. Animals such as mussels can cling on to ship hulls, exposing previously pristine environments to potentially invasive species. We hear how scientists are tackling this problem with novel polymer lubricants. And we’re not done ..read more
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Populations of people, frogs and microbes
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
3w ago
This week on the show that brings you the science behind the news, we’re looking at news that China’s population has fallen for the second year running. Worrying news for China’s economy, but would a declining population be a good thing for the planet? The Unexpected Elements team on three continents meet the musical frogs who are having to climb a mountain to keep their populations stable, and dig deep to explore the earth’s declining microbiome and the hope scientists have for the future. As the Africa Cup of Nations continues, we’ll be wondering how you might date a footballer. Not in a rom ..read more
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Rulers and the rules of ageing
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
1M ago
As France's youthful new Prime Minister gets his feet under the desk, we examine how stress and strains can change the way we look. We also ask what the late nights and lack of sleep that go hand in hand with leadership can mean for the health of the human body and we hear how measuring intelligence in young people isn't as straightforward as it might seem ..read more
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Super corals and science diplomacy
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
1M ago
Could geopolitical tensions around the Red Sea affect research into the region’s heat-resistant super corals? Also on the program, what an ocean that used to lie under the Himalayas can tell us about evolution, the fruit chat continues with the latest chapter in the bananadine saga, and how looking to the past could help create the shipping of the future ..read more
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04/01/2024 GMT
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
1M ago
The news you know, the science you don’t. Unexpected Elements looks beyond everyday narratives to discover a goldmine of scientific stories and connections from around the globe. From Afronauts, to why we argue, to a deep dive on animal lifespans: see the world in a new way with Unexpected Elements ..read more
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The Best of Unexpected Elements
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
1M ago
Usually Unexpected Elements looks at the science behind the news, but this week Marnie Chesterton and Caroline Steel are looking back at some of the best bits from our first few months. We’ve got the best from our team of panellists across the globe, including what’s going on in your brain when you speak more than one language, the horrific mating ritual of the bedbug and the science behind our panellist Camilla’s terrible haircut decision. We look back at some of the brilliant scientists we’ve spoken to, with subjects as diverse as whale song, how the entire universe was once the size of a ma ..read more
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An Exploration of Empathy
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
2M ago
On the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration Of Human Rights, we look into the phenomenon of caring for things outside of ourselves – whether it’s human rights, the environment, or even odd sports ..read more
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Meetings with intelligent worms
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
2M ago
This week on the show that brings you the science behind the news, inspired by COP28, we’re talking about meetings. Honestly, it’s way more interesting than it sounds. Come to hear about blackworm blobs – a wormy meeting that only happens in stressful situations - and how scientists are taking inspiration from it to design robots. Stay for the stories from nature where species are missing crucial pollination meetings thanks to that global stressful situation that is climate change. And what’s better for the planet, a big meeting that everyone flies to or a telephone conference with no video? I ..read more
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All about cricket(s)
Unexpected Elements
by BBC World Service
3M ago
The cricket world cup has us looking at the science of spitting on cricket balls, particle accelerators, and insect sound engineers. Also on the program, how AI is breaking into e-commerce, why do we get in the middle of the night, and is a fat flightless parrot the world's greatest bird ..read more
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