On the Radio

Week of September 28, 2014

Image:theNickster Via:Flickr Creative Commons

Super Senses

September 28, 2014

From tapping our senses to heal from trauma, to using technology to create entirely new sensations, we're exploring the edges of our senses.

  1. Synesthesia, Then & Now

    Imagine if you could mix and match your senses... seeing music or hearing colors. That's a neurological condition called synesthesia. A few decades ago, science thought it was a myth, but neuroscientist David Eagleman says artists and synesthesia goes way back.

    Are you a synesthete? Take the test.

    No votes yet
  2. The Mystery of Tingles - ASMR

    What other sensory phenomena are out there, waiting to be discovered? A growing online community is watching and making videos to trigger a particular set of tingling sensations, and the calm euphoria that often follows them. Here's part of the story of ASMR...

    Who knows, maybe you have it to?

    Hear Stephanie talk about having ASMR.

    Listen in on Ilse's conversation about her experience of ASMR, and thebook she's working on.

    Average: 5 (1 vote)
  3. Cyborg Senses - Neil Harbisson

    There are all kinds of tools to amplify our senses, from hallucinogens to cochlear implants. A few people are taking it further, implanting devices in their bodies, to give them entirely new sensory experiences. 

    Artist Neil Harbisson is greyscale colour blind and he likes seeing only shades of black and white, but he wanted to experience colour. So he designed a new electronic body part that would help.

    And if you want to hear about the art Neil makes thanks to his new sense - and a whole lot more - here's his extended interview.

    Average: 4 (1 vote)
  4. Feeling Through Trauma - Bessel van der Kolk

    “In the culture people talk about trauma as an event that happened a long time ago. But what trauma is, is the imprints that event has left on your mind and in your sensations... the discomfort you feel and the agitation you feel and the rage and the helplessness you feel right now.”


    Psychiatrist Bessel van der Kolk is studying the healing power of helping people with post traumatic stress disorder focus less on telling their stories, and more on how their stories feel... how they sound, look, or smell.

    You can also hear van der Kolk's extended interview, including more on yoga and the neuroscience of trauma.

    Average: 5 (1 vote)
  5. Dangerous Idea: Hacking Laughter

    Filmmaker Albert Nerenberg's other Dangerous Idea? Laugh more. 

    You can also watch his laughter hack video.

    Average: 4.5 (2 votes)
  6. On Our Minds: Responding to Ebola

    With the international community sending doctors and resources to help stop Ebola's spread across West Africa, we turn to medical historian Gregg Mitman to help us understand the history behind how people there - and here - are responding to the outbreak. 

    He’s a professor of medical history, and he was in Liberia when the virus was first reported in the capital, Monrovia.

    Average: 5 (1 vote)
Image:waitscm via:Flickr Creative Commons

Pranks and Hoaxes (Updated)

September 28, 2014
(was 03.30.2014)

Everyone loves a good joke, right? Well, at least when it's not at your expense. We explore hoaxes throughout history, get in the mind of a prolific prankster, and hear from writer Walter Kirn about getting duped by a dangerous con man.

  1. Famous pranksters - Kembrew McLeod

    Pranks aren’t just for April Fool’s Day. Sometimes they can be powerful vehicles for political and social change.

    Average: 5 (1 vote)
  2. Art of the Hoax - Joey Skaggs

    Joey Skaggs is a master of the hoax. His elaborate pranks have been fooling media outlets since the 1960s.

    Average: 4.8 (4 votes)
  3. The Con - Walter Kirn

    For more than a decade, writer Walkter Kirn was friends with a wealthy eccentric named Clark Rockefeller. One day, he discovered the awful truth - the man he knew as Clark Rockefeller was a dangerous imposter.

    No votes yet
  4. Sonic Sidebar: The Showman and the Slave

    Legendary showman P.T. Barnum once owned a slave named Joice Heth. Barnum claimed she was 161 years old and a former nanny to George Washington. Benjamin Reiss tells the story in his book "The Showman and the Slave: Race, Death, and Memory in Barnum's America."

    No votes yet
  5. BookMark: Cheryl Strayed

    Cheryl Strayed bookmarks "Love & Terror on the Howling Plains of Nowhere" by Poe Ballantine.

    Average: 1.5 (2 votes)
  6. On Our Minds: Life With Harper Lee

    In 2001, reporter Marja Mills met the celebrated and notoriously private author of “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Harper Lee. The two struck up a friendship and, a few years after their first meeting, the two became neighbors. Mills writes about their friendship in her new memoir, “The Mockingbird Next Door.”

    No votes yet