10.20.14: The Star Wars Universe & What Your Browser History Says About You

Nov 18, 2014

Credit Tom Simpson via flickr Creative Commons

The first Star Wars film may have been released 37 years ago, but its hold on the popular imagination remains as strong as Darth Vader’s death-grip. On today’s show, a look at the role fandom has played in the success of the Star Wars franchise.

Plus, from data collection to the latest internet tracking technology, online advertisers go to great lengths to find out who we are and what we like. We’ll enter the world of intelligent marketing to find out just how much, or little, they really know about us.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

Star Wars Rules the Universe

  • Chris Taylor is the deputy editor at Mashable and his new book How Star Wars Conquered the Universe is a diligently researched history of all things Star Wars. We discuss the role fandom has played and continues to play in shaping the franchise.

NPR's Star Wars Radio Play

  • In 1981, NPR produced and aired a 13 part series called Star Wars: A New Hope, inspired by the original film. With a John Williams score, Mark Hamill playing Luke Skywalker, and Anthony Daniels reprising his role as C-3PO, the radio drama further elaborated on the story told in the film.
  • You can buy the whole series at Amazon.com

Dressing in Costume for a Good Cause: The 501st Legion

Unbored Games

Game Changer

  • Last year 26.3 million people tuned into watch the NBA finals, but basketball wasn’t always as fast-paced and exciting. Roman Mars of 99% Invisible and producer Eric Mennell brings us a story about two seemingly minor tweaks that forever impacted the world of basketball.
  • You can listen to this story at this link: Game Changer

You Are Not Your Browser History

  • Jer Thorp is an adjunct professor at NYU, and co-founder of the Office for Creative Research, where he and a team of colleagues have been working on a web browser extension called Floodwatch – which basically collects, monitors and analyzes your web advertising history.
  • Jer wrote an article about his experiment, you can read it here: You Are Not Your Browser History