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Apple, Fantasy Football, Yawning, Marine Life, Lab on a Chip

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • Sep 14, 2015
  • 01:41:29

The Cult of Apple (1:02) Guest: Tim Bajarin, President of Creative Strategies, Inc. Recognized Consultants, Analysts and Futurists covering the field of personal computers and consumer technology.  If you’ve got a smartphone, and more than half of Americans do, there’s a 40% chance it’s an iPhone. Apple came out with a new version last week with something called 3D touch.  These Apple product launches inspire breathless anticipation. Devotees will soon be lining up at Apple Stores to get the latest iPhone. The fervor, the adoration, the loyalty Apple inspired is legendary. Why?  Fantasy Football (20:17) Guest: Grant Madsen, Ph.D., BYU History Professor  Pro-football is fully underway now, along with an increasingly popular side-culture in which some 30-million Americans pretend to be the owner of imaginary teams. It’s so ubiquitous, and it's likely a fantasy football player somewhere in your circle of family and friends. It’s become such a big deal that it’s now driving the NFL to record TV ratings.  Yawning and Psychopathy (36:04) Guest: Brian Rundle, Doctoral Student of Psychology and Neuroscience at Baylor University  Everybody knows yawning is contagious. Now, scientists have figured out the level of contagion in a yawn is tied to a person’s empathy. If you know or care about the yawner, you’re more likely to yawn when you see them doing it.   Conversely, if you are immune to contagious yawning, you just might be lacking on the empathy scale, and that just might mean you have the makings of a psychopath.  Reshuffling of Marine Life (50:56) Guest: Ben Halpern, Ph.D., Professor in UC Santa Barbara’s Bren School of Environmental Science & Management and an Associate at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS)  Raging wild fires in the West and shrinking ice caps at the poles are two of the more visible effects of a changing climate. But two-thirds of the Earth is underwater, and life there is changing, too.  A group of scientists affiliated with UC Santa Barbara’s National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) has set out to understand how. Their latest findings suggest that as ocean temperatures rise, marine life begins to search for more suitable conditions, which has consequences for biodiversity and for communities such as fishermen who live off the sea.  Parent Previews (1:07:23) Guests: Rod Gustafson of ParentPreviews.com  Faith-based films are all over the box-office rankings right now. Among them, "War Room" surprised a lot of people taking the top spot the first few weeks it was out. Another one that just came out over the weekend landed in the top ten—impressive on its own for movies with a religious film. It’s called “90 Minutes in Heaven” and it’s about a pastor who is pronounced dead after a terrible car accident. But while his family and friends pray over his loss, the pastor has an out-of-body experience.  Tech Transfer: Lab on a Chip (1:23:42) Guests: Aaron Hawkins, Ph.D, Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at BYU; Mike Alder, Director of BYU’s Technology Transfer office. More information about technology developed at BYU is available at techtransfer.byu.edu  A major hurdle in the fight to prevent disease outbreaks like Ebola—or the spread of drug-resistant bacteria—is the time it takes to identify the problem. The results of a blood test can take several days to come back, during which you might be taking an antibiotic that’s not helping because you’ve got bacteria resistant to that drug. In the case of Ebola, often by the time the virus is evident in a blood test, you’ve already got a serious problem on your hands.  And so, scientists are working to come up with faster, cheaper tests. BYU Micro Engineering professor Aaron Hawkins has spent ten years coming up with what amounts to a “lab on a chip.” Show More...

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