A weekly feature on The Leonard Lopate Show; airs every Friday at noon
In Please Explain, we set aside time every Friday afternoon to get to the bottom of one complex issue. Ever wonder how New York City's water system works? Or how the US became so polarized politically? We'll back up and review the basic facts and principles of complicated issues across a broad range of topics — history, politics, science, you name it.
Recently in Please Explain
Friday, September 26, 2008
Friday, September 19, 2008
What a week it’s been in the markets. Find out what’s behind the recent financial crisis of the past few days, and what the credit woes could lead to. Greg Ip
is U.S. Economics Editor for the Economist
; Andrew Caplin
is an Economics Professor at NYU.
Friday, September 12, 2008
Happy 50th birthday to the microchip! On Please Explain
, find out how microchips work, what they do for us in our everyday lives, and how far they’ve come since they were first introduced 50 years ago. Dr. Simha Sethumadhavan
is Assistant Professor of Computer Science & Director of ...
Friday, September 05, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
New York City generates about fifty thousand tons of garbage every day. Find out what's in New York City’s trash, how it gets taken out of the city, and where it's dumped! Benjamin Miller
is a Senior Fellow at the CUNY Institute for Urban Systems and author of Fat ...
Friday, August 22, 2008
From Spain to New York, jellyfish are becoming more numerous, and they’re showing up in places where they have rarely been seen before. Scientists say this explosion can be attributed to a combination of overfishing, rising sea temperatures, and pollution. Find out all about jellyfish, why they’re thriving, and whether ...
Friday, August 08, 2008
Most Americans can’t see the Milky Way in the night sky…and here in New York, we’re lucky if we can see any stars at all! Find out why light pollution is a growing problem, and how it may even endanger your health. Leonard talks to Pete Strasser
Friday, August 01, 2008
is all about muscles! Find out how they function, how to strengthen them, and how they can break down. Dr. E. Todd Schroeder
teaches clinical exercise physiology at the University of Southern California.
Friday, July 18, 2008
Everything you ever wanted to know about BBQ!
Friday, July 11, 2008
is all about America's favorite sandwich - the hamburger! Find out how German hamburg steak became a classic meal all over the world. We'll also hear about the best burgers available, from fast food versions to grass-fed beef on brioche buns. George Motz
has been called America's foremost ...
Friday, June 27, 2008
With the price of oil going higher and higher, alternative sources of energy like solar power are becoming much more attractive! Find out how solar power works, and whether it could help solve our energy problems.
Stephen A. Hammer is Director of the Urban Energy Project at Columbia University's
Friday, June 06, 2008
What can you find out about a friend, a colleague, a lover, or yourself by inspecting everyday objects? Snoopology is the study of what the stuff we own reveals about our psychological truths. Sam Gosling
is Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin and author of ...
Friday, May 23, 2008
During Hot Dog Season – from Memorial Day to Labor Day – Americans typically consume 7 billion hot dogs. That’s 818 hot dogs consumed every second during that period! And New Yorkers consume more hot dogs than people in any other city. Find out about the history of hot dogs, ...
Friday, May 16, 2008
As gas prices rise, more consumers are turning to hybrid cars like the Toyota Prius. Find out how hybrid cars work, which ones are the most efficient, the potential risks to the owner and to pedestrians, and the future of hybrid cars -- especially the 100mpg hybrid plug-in vehicles. John ...
Friday, May 09, 2008
Find out how farm subsidies work, who gets them, and how they affect the prices of the food that reaches our tables. Dan Morgan
is an investigative reporter for the Washington Post
and co-author of Harvesting Cash
, a year-long series on waste and abuse in the farm-subsidy program ...
Friday, May 02, 2008
Malaria kills more than 1 million people each year, many of them children. Yet the disease is preventable. Find out how malaria spreads, why it’s so devastating in Africa, and how it can be stopped. Nobel laureate Dr. Peter Agre
is director of the Johns Hopkins Malaria Research ...
Friday, April 25, 2008
DNA testing has been in the news lately, thanks to the raid on the FLDS compound in Eldorado, Texas where authorities don’t know which children belong to which parents. We find out what DNA is, how it defines us, and how DNA testing works. Dr. Timothy Bestor
is Professor of ...
Friday, April 18, 2008
It’s virtually impossible to get through the day without using plastic, but it’s only been widely available to consumers for about 100 years. We find out what plastic is, why it’s so useful, and whether we should be concerned about its widespread use. Dr. Mark Michalovic
is Educational Consultant with ...