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Brain Candy

All Things Considered

To Make A Spacecraft That Folds And Unfolds, Try Origami

Thursday, July 17, 2014

The traditional Japanese art of folding paper is now adding grace and ease to the deployment of fragile solar panels, seismometers and other vital instruments in outer space.

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The Most Astonishing Wave-Tracking Experiment Ever

Sunday, July 13, 2014

What if I told you that an ordinary-looking wave hitting your beach had traveled, intact, halfway across the planet? Would you believe me? Well, believe this.

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A Tough Little Droplet Fights To Stick Around

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

It's just a drop of water. It's about to fall. And when it does, a story begins. What happens next may feel oddly familiar. Maybe it's telling you — about you.

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All Things Considered

NPR Listeners Show A Keen Ear For Temperature

Sunday, July 06, 2014

NPR conducted an online poll asking listeners if they could hear the difference between cold and hot water simply by listening to the sound of the water being poured. Most listeners were spot-on.

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All Things Considered

What Does Cold Sound Like? See If Your Ear Can Tell Temperature

Saturday, July 05, 2014

More than 80 percent of our poll participants were able to tell the difference between hot and cold water just by listening to the sound of the liquid pouring.

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TED Radio Hour

Where Do Good Ideas Come From?

Friday, June 27, 2014

People often credit their ideas to individual "Eureka!" moments. But writer Steven Johnson shows how history tells a different story.

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TED Radio Hour

Is Everything A Remix?

Friday, June 27, 2014

Filmmaker Kirby Ferguson says nothing is original and that our most celebrated creators steal ideas — and transform them into something new.

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TED Radio Hour

Why Would More Than 500 Artists Sample The Same Song?

Friday, June 27, 2014

Sampling music isn't about "hijacking nostalgia wholesale," says DJ Mark Ronson. It's about inserting yourself into the narrative of a song while pushing that story forward.

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TED Radio Hour

Does Copying In Fashion Keep It Fresh?

Friday, June 27, 2014

Copyright law barely touches fashion — and the industry benefits in innovation and sales, says Johanna Blakley. She explains what all creative industries can learn from fashion's free culture.

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All Things Considered

What Kids Can Learn From A Water Balloon Fight

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Rough-and-tumble play is a vital part of growing up ... and a really fun part of parenting.

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Man Floats Free In Hotel Corridor

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Hotel hallways are cramped and narrow, like cages. But Storyboard P won't be trapped. Watch this Brooklyn dancer float toward a fire extinguisher — beauty in tight places.

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Wrong! Deconstructing 5 Famous History Stories

Friday, June 20, 2014

You don't question them. You don't doubt them. You hear them so often, you wouldn't know they are lies. Here are five historical "facts" that aren't true. Never were. And now you'll know.

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TED Radio Hour

Where's The Line Between Cheating A Little and Cheating A Lot?

Friday, June 20, 2014

Behavioral economist Dan Ariely explains the hidden reasons we think it's okay to cheat or steal. He says we're predictably irrational — and can be influenced in ways we don't even realize.

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TED Radio Hour

How Do Magicians Manufacture Reality?

Friday, June 20, 2014

The power of the placebo has been consistently proven in medicine. Magician Eric Mead extends that idea to magic, pulling off a gruesome trick that's so convincing, you'll cringe.

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TED Radio Hour

Why Do We Believe In Unbelievable Things?

Friday, June 20, 2014

Michael Shermer says the human tendency to believe strange things boils down to two of the brain's most basic, hard-wired survival skills.

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TED Radio Hour

Can You Learn To Spot A Liar?

Friday, June 20, 2014

We're surrounded by deception: in politics and pop culture, in the workplace and on social media. Pamela Meyer points out manners and cues that can help us suss out a lie.

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TED Radio Hour

Does Technology Make Us More Honest?

Friday, June 20, 2014

Who hasn't sent a text message saying "I'm on my way" when it wasn't true? But some technology might actually force us to be more honest, says psychologist Jeff Hancock.

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Lights, Lights, Lights, Action! A Crazy New Light Projector

Monday, June 16, 2014

What if you could turn your finger into a paintbrush and, in real time, draw anything on any surface (even in the air), then turn your creation into a moving figure? No, don't imagine. Watch this.

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Translating The Web With Millions: Luis Von Ahn Answers Your Questions

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Computer programmer Luis von Ahn answers listener's questions about the potential of crowdsourcing.

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Big Moments Get Less Weighty: Whatever Happened To Stiff Paper?

Sunday, June 08, 2014

It had weight. It lasted. It got punched, torn, reused. It got us into ballparks, airplanes, buses, theaters. I'm talking about stiff paper — and it's vanishing.

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