The Future And You
Ideas and opinion about the future based on verifiable facts of today.
 

Nathan P. Butler (a professional educator with eight years of teaching experience) is today's featured guest.

Topics: trends in teaching in public schools; how one problem student can prevent an entire class from learning; whether or not smarter kids are being ignored to help slower kids; as well as trends in teacher's unions, merit pay, voucher systems and No Child Left Behind.

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the September 30, 2009 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 43 minutes]

Nathan P. Butler holds a 'Masters in Education with a Specialization in Integrating Technology in the Classroom.' He is also a groundbreaking podcaster, having been a podcaster years before podcasting had a name or a standardized means of distribution. He is also a mover and shaker in Star Wars Fandom through his work in with ChronoRadio and StarWarsFanworks, and for having written an exhaustive thousand-page-long chronology of the Star Wars universe which is titled 'Star Wars Timeline Gold.'

 

Direct download: TFAY_2009_9_30.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:01 AM

Three Biotech Researchers (two geneticists and one agronomist) are today's featured guests.

Topics: problems involved in engineering a virus to kill a specific race or sex of human beings; genetics involved in regrowing human limbs for amputees; how we've made corn fields increase their yield ten-fold since the 1940s; exactly why US Stimulus Package money is so slow at get into research; why the Malthusian theory, in which exponential population growth produces mass starvation, has lost its validity; why some of our crops have become clones without a natural genetic diversity; how some crops have become dependant on us for survival; and how the Monsanto corporation has grown to dominate American agriculture.

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the September 23, 2009 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 44 minutes] (This discussion panel was recorded in front of a live audience on July 11, 2009 at LiberyCon in Chattanooga Tennessee.)

Dr. Diane Mucci, formerly with the National Institute of Health (NIH), is currently a full time professor of biotechnology, and has a Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics, Biochemistry, and Microbiology. Cathy Smith is an insect molecular geneticist with the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). And Gary Shelton is an agronomist with the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).

 

Direct download: TFAY_2009_9_23.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:01 AM

Three Biotech Researchers (two geneticists and one agronomist) are today's featured guests.

Dr. Diane Mucci, formerly with the National Institute of Health (NIH), is currently a full time professor of biotechnology and has a Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics, Biochemistry, and Microbiology. Cathy Smith is an insect molecular geneticist with the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). And Gary Shelton is an agronomist with the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Topics: the future of our food supply; genetically modified crops; the good and bad trends in pest control; genetic and other methods used to increase crop production per acre and the trade offs involved in each; why organic farming methods cannot be scaled up to industrial levels sufficient to feed the world; ongoing research in the genetic control of insects and specifically how genetic methods are used to control insect pests; why insects have no blood; safety measures used in genetics labs; why a gene gun resembles a shot gun; transgenic plants; the future of neutracuticals; and how the human genome project is being expanded to include other species useful to our survival.

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the September 16, 2009 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 45 minutes] (This discussion panel was recorded in front of a live audience on July 11, 2009 at LiberyCon in Chattanooga Tennessee.)

BTW: An ethanol re-education class is mentioned repeatedly--with a great deal of sarcasm. This does not refer to Alcoholics Anonymous but to the push that was going on within the US government to promote the idea of using ethanol made from corn to replace or supplement gasoline in automobiles. This is the notorious project that forced the price of corn around the world to double, producing an unexpected amount of hunger among people who rely on corn-based foods, such as tortillas, as their prime sustenance. Public sentiment has since shifted away from this idea.

 

Direct download: TFAY_2009_9_16.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:01 AM

Stephanie Osborn (author and former NASA payload flight controller) is today's featured guest.

Topics: Space Shuttle flights and the International Space Station; her work in astronaut training, and what it is that a payload flight controller does; Space Camp--the actual camp (where she herself taught) and how the real thing differs from the movie of the same name; her friend, the astronaut Kalpana Chawla; the technical side of what happened to cause seven astronauts to die in the Space Shuttle Columbia Disaster; and a little about her novels (such as Burnout) which are based on her experience in the space program.

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the September 9, 2009 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 48 minutes] (This interview was recorded on July 11, 2009 at LiberyCon in Chattanooga Tennessee.)

Stephanie Osborn is a former payload flight controller, with over twenty years experience in civilian and military space programs. She has worked on numerous Space Shuttle flights and the International Space Station. As part of her work, she trained astronauts, and one of those astronauts was Kalpana Chawla (known to her friends by her initials: K.C.). Kalpana Chawla was one of the seven astronauts who died in 2003 when the Space Shuttle Columbia disintegrated over Texas during reentry from earth orbit. Today, Stephanie is retired from space work. She tutors students in math and science from elementary school through college and writes science fiction mysteries based on her knowledge, experience and travels.

 

Direct download: TFAY_2009_9_9.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:01 AM

Dr. Ben Bova (author of more than 115 books about science and science fiction) is today's featured guest.

Topics: his work advising Woody Allen for the movie Sleeper; anecdotes about his friends Arthur C. Clarke, Harlan Ellison, and Gene Roddenberry; his writing an episode of Land of the Lost; his work with George Lucas; and the time he was on Good Morning America with Jim Henson, Kermit the frog and (first baseman for the Dodgers) Steve Garvey.

He also describes Joseph Stalin's insistence on building the world's first big rockets (big enough to carry the early nuclear weapons to the other side of the world); how this prompted John F. Kennedy to proclaim the famous Missile Gap; and lead to General Bernard Schriever's involvement in space, and the growing renown of Wernher von Braun. He also talks about high-powered gas dynamic lasers as defencive weapons against incoming nuclear missiles; how solar power satellites can solve humanity's energy needs; his own expectations of robots in war and in peace; the polarization of American politics; the future of space business, tourism and colonization; and the 1973 TV show The Starlost.

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the September 2, 2009 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 48 minutes] This is the second half of the interview with Dr. Bova recorded on July 12, 2009.

Ben Bova is an award-winning author of more than 115 books of fiction and nonfiction. He has been involved in science and technology since the birth if the space age, and has worked with film makers and television producers such as Woody Allen, George Lucas, and Gene Roddenberry. He is President Emeritus of the National Space Society and a past president of the Science Fiction Writers of America. He was editor of Analog Science Fiction magazine for seven years.  After leaving Analog, he went on to edit Omni Magazine. He has been the science analyst on CBS Morning News, and has appeared frequently on Good Morning America and The Today Show.

 

Direct download: TFAY_2009_9_2.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:01 AM