Technology

Word of Mouth
2:00 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

12.22.14: Let The Online Buyer Beware, Overlooked Books: 2014, & Cuba's Last Tycoon

Sale signs on sale in a shop that sells sale signs.
Credit the justified sinner via flickr Creative Commons / https://flic.kr/p/4NKfhs

With the countdown to Christmas now measured in hours instead of days, the online holiday deals you may have shrugged off a few weeks ago are now looking downright clickable. On today’s show we’ll discuss why those offers are often too-good-to-be-true.

Plus, a literary wrap up of 2014. We’ll venture off the best-seller list for a sampling of the best overlooked books of the year.

And a glimpse of pre-revolutionary Cuba through the story of Julian Lobo, a sugar trader and financier, considered to be Cuba’s last tycoon.

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Word of Mouth
1:52 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

12.16.14: The Best Of What's New & Hollywood's Pretty Little Secret

Gorilla brand clear repair tape.
Credit Via Popular Science / bestofwhatsnew.popsci.com

For the past 27 years the editors of Popular Science have identified products and technologies designed to change our world. On today’s show we’ll review some of 2014’s groundbreaking technology.

Then, we’ve come to accept retouched images on magazine covers and billboard ads, but now the practice has moved to movies and television. We’ll take a look at the latest advancement in digital-alteration: frame-by-frame beauty work.

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Word of Mouth
1:50 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

12.14.14: Unruly Presidential Kids, Pitfalls Of Public Wi-Fi, & What's In Your OJ?

Colorado's Mount Sopris serves as the W's backdrop this week.
Credit Logan Shannon / NHPR

Last week, a GOP staffer resigned after political Facebook faux-pas - criticizing President Obama’s daughters for dressing like teenagers. On today’s show, we’ll take a look back at the long and fraught history of judging the President’s kids.

Then, these days just about every coffee shop, bookstore, and restaurant touts a free Wi-Fi hotspot – but at what cost? We’ll find out the hidden dangers of public Wi-Fi.

Plus, the industry secret behind the robust flavor of orange juice.

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Thu December 4, 2014

Smartphone Searches And Free Speech On Facebook: Interpreting The Constitution In The Digital Age

Even the U.S. Constitution has a Facebook page
Credit via Facebook

Our legal system seems to be struggling with how to interpret the Constitution when it comes to today’s technology -- from threats made on social media to whether police need a warrant to search a smartphone. We’ll look at the debate over how to apply principles established more than two centuries ago to our high-tech society. 

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Word of Mouth
1:52 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

12.2.14: The Mental Impact Of Space Travel & The Cruise Ship Of The Future

Virgin Galactic's Sir Richard Branson shows off his White Knight Two aircraft that will carry Spaceship Two into sub-orbital space.
Credit David Malkoff via flickr Creative Commons

The recent disintegration and crash of a Virgin Galactic suborbital space plane raised questions about the safety and viability of space tourism. On today’s show, we consider another issue for commercial spaceflight: the psychological effects of leaving earth.

Then, touted as the world’s most advanced ship, Royal Caribbean’s cruise-liner Quantum of the Seas is outfitted with virtual balconies, robot bartenders, Bladerunner-esque elevators, and smart apps. While the ship’s technology is impressive, we’ll find out where it all falls short.

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

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Word of Mouth
12:30 pm
Fri November 28, 2014

11.30.14: Nuclear Tourism, Computers That Deceive, & M.C. Escher

Credit mbeo via flickr Creative Commons

Some people spend their vacations relaxing on a beach, others visit museums and fine restaurants. On today’s show we go off the beaten path to look into nuclear tourism. A science writer visits the site of the Chernobyl disaster, and finds it not the wasteland you may expect.

Plus, from walk sign buttons that don’t reflect reality to digital signs over-estimating wait times at amusement parks, we’ll consider why technology is sometimes designed to give us the illusion of control.

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Mon November 24, 2014

Women In Gaming And Tech

Credit John / Flickr/CC

While just as many females as males play, the gaming world has a reputation as a less-than-welcoming community for women, with some extreme harassment in a recent controversy dubbed Gamergate. We’ll look at the conversation since Gamergate, from why gaming culture has these elements, to the challenges women face in the tech industry.

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Word of Mouth
4:55 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

11.16.14: Innovations That Made The Modern World, The Whiteness Project, & Bacterial Fingerprints

Credit Logan Shannon / NHPR

Among the things we take for granted in today’s America is knowing the time, which makes transportation, business and national events possible. This, however, was not always the case.

On today’s show, from building sewers to standardizing time, the invisible innovations that got us where we are today. And, protests in Ferguson, Missouri prompted calls for a national conversation about race and racism. A filmmaker asks: Can we have a productive discussion if the privileged majority can’t name what it means to be white?

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Word of Mouth
2:10 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

A Luminous Dress Inspired By The Firefly

Charlie Lemay

Biologists call it “signaling”, traits and behaviors that evolved because recipients respond to them in ways that benefit the signaler. Among humans, signals may not be quite as overt as the peacock fanning its tail:

or fireflies courting and sparking on a summer night:

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Wed October 22, 2014

Is There An Upside To Screen Time? The Research And Reality Of Setting Limits

Credit Brad Flickinger / Flickr/CC

As laptops, iPads, and smartphones become commonplace in kids’ lives at home and school, parents are increasingly uneasy about where to set limits, or even what counts as 'screen time.' We’ll talk about that, and then also another conundrum of the digital age: whether taking time to teach kids handwriting and cursive in school still has value.

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NH News
5:26 pm
Tue October 21, 2014

STEAM Ahead: Manchester Tech Companies Throw Coal In The Local K-12 Engine

The classroom of Rachel Belmont, who is tying world geography into paleolithic cave paintings and tool making.
Credit Ryan Lessard / NHPR

  About 60 9th grade students in Manchester High School West are participating in a new science-focused magnet program called STEAM Ahead, this year. The partnership between the school district and several local tech companies also involves state colleges. It aims to boost the local workforce and retain youth and talent.

It’s morning in biology teacher Christine Aspinwall’s class. The students are scrambling to fill beakers with pureed food.

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All Things Considered
4:22 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Granite Geek: Wearable, Flexible Tech The Next Big Electronic Frontier

Credit Press Release Finder via Flickr/CC - http://ow.ly/CL7zT

The next big digital frontier seems to be wearable technology. One example that comes to mind is the newly-announced Apple Watch, but what if the device in question wasn’t a device per se, but electronics built into what you’re already wearing?

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NH News
3:53 pm
Fri October 10, 2014

Boosted By Grant, Manchester Video Game Developer Workspace Readies For Launch

About 60 people attended their fifth monthly meet-up earlier this week at Joker's in Manchester.
Credit Ryan Lessard / NHPR

 A newly-formed group of independent video game developers in Manchester looks poised to open a game developers’ incubator in the city’s Millyard by the end of the year.

Local game developer David Carrigg is one of the founders of the state chapter of the International Game Developers Association, which is leading the creation of the incubator called Game Assembly.

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Word of Mouth
12:54 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

Cell Phone For The Super Rich

An orange phone we can support, an orange phone that can cost up to $10,000 is a stretch.
via vertu.com

We spoke to Gabriel Roth, who took the Aster for a test drive at one of Vertu’s upscale boutiques and wrote about the phone for Fast Company, "The Cadillac Bentley of Cell Phones." The Aster starts at a meager $6900 for the 'entry-level' calf leather model and rises to $9700 for a bright pink ostrich skin model.

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Word of Mouth
12:53 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

10.9.14: What Happens When You Survive A Lightning Strike & The Truth About Amazon Women

Credit Jeremy Weber via flickr Creative Commons

Tesla cars…Louis Vuitton luggage…Philippe Patek watches…luxury brands are selling well. How about a $10,000 cell phone? On today’s show, we’ll learn about the new handcrafted cell phone with optional concierge service that’s become a new symbol of conspicuous consumption.

Also today, from fierce fighters in the Trojan wars to Wonder Woman, Amazons have been described as figures of myth. A classics scholar sifts through new DNA evidence and other proof that these female warriors on horseback were real.

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