The Information Age

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Friday, May 06, 2011

On today’s show: James Gleick tells the history of humans and information—from the invention of writing five millennia ago to Wikipedia’s source code! Then, we’ll talk to the stars of the new hit Broadway musical “Catch Me If You Can.” Linda Grant discusses her latest novel, We Had It So Good. Plus, our latest Please Explain is all about bugs—the good, the bad and the very ugly!

James Gleick on The Information

James Gleick discusses how information has become the modern era’s defining quality and the vital principle of our world. The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood looks at how we got to the current information age and where we are heading. It tells the story of information, explains how information technologies have changed the nature of human consciousness, and he writes of the key figures in the development of our modern understanding of information.

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"Catch Me If You Can"

Aaron Tveit, who plays Frank Abagnale, Jr., and Tony Award nominee Tom Wopat, who plays Frank Abagnale, Sr., talk about the Broadway musical “Catch Me If You Can.” It’s based on the book and hit 2002 film of the same name directed by Stephen Spielberg, and tells the astonishing true story of Frank Abagnale, Jr., a world-class con artist who passed himself off as a doctor, a lawyer, and a jet pilot—all before the age of 21—and his pursuit by straight-arrow FBI agent Carl Hanratty.

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Linda Grant on Her Novel We Had It So Good

Novelist and journalist Linda Grant talks about her latest book, We Had It So Good, a novel spanning multiple generations. It opens in a fur storage house in Los Angeles with its American protagonist as a boy trying on Marilyn Monroe’s coat. The story follows him as he moves to England, marries, and raises a family.

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Please Explain: Bad Bugs

You may have noticed the first gnats, flies, and ticks of the season. Today’s Please Explain is about bad bugs—the dangerous, destructive, and poisonous creatures that are feared and sometimes misunderstood. Amy Stewart, author of Wicked Bugs joins us.

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Guest Picks: Tom Wopat

Tom Wopat is a fan of Bluegrass! Find out what else he told us after a recent appearance on The Leonard Lopate Show.

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Guest Picks: Aaron Tveit

Aaron Tveit from "Catch Me If You Can" on Broadway shares some of his favorite picks.


From Ants to Invasive Potato Beetles: More About Bugs

Today’s Please Explain is a look at bugs with Amy Stewart, author of Wicked Bugs. If you want to learn more about some specific insects—and some of the diseases they carry—here are some of our other insect-related Please Explains we've done in the past:

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