News & Information

Gay Wedding Cake Case, Lack of Innovation, Better Auto-Focus

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • Dec 5, 2017
  • 1:40:57

The Baker, The Gay Wedding and the Supreme Court Guest: Elizabeth Clark, JD, Professor of Law and Associate Director, International Center for Law and Religion Studies, Brigham Young University Tuesday, the high court will hear arguments in the case of Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission. Masterpiece Cakeshop is owned by a Christian baker who refused to design a custom wedding cake for a same-sex couple. That couple and the Colorado Civil Rights Commission say the baker can’t discriminate against customers based on sexual orientation because Colorado has a law against that. But the baker says being forced to design a cake for a gay wedding violates his First Amendment right to freedom of speech and religious expression. Lack of Innovation is an Empowerment Problem  Guest: David Lee, Vice President, Innovation, UPS Have you ever felt like life didn’t start until after you clocked out at 5 p.m.? For many of us, that is when our passion for doing things really comes out, when we aren’t at work. Innovation expert David Lee believes the thing American industry needs today is more jobs where people can bring their interests and passions. He talks about how unfortunate it is that we’re often our most creative, energetic selves on Saturday and, come Monday morning, we leave that person in the trunk of the car. David Lee's TED talk Predicting Rainfall During Climate Change Guest: Michael Bliss Singer, PhD, Researcher, Earth Research Institute, UC Santa Barbara and Lecturer, School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, Cardiff University All across the arid West, there are dry streambeds that are pretty much always dry. You’ve probably walked over them without noticing, if you’ve spent much time in Nevada or Arizona. But, if you’ve ever been caught in the desert during a summer thunderstorm, you know how fast that dry streambed can turn into a rush of water. These “runoff events” can cause lots of damage if there are homes nearby, but they’re also a critical part of the desert ecosystem and important for rivers downstream.  Hydrologists at UC Santa Barbara’s Earth Research Institute have been trying to understand how drought and climate change are affecting this thunderstorm-runoff equation in the American West. Parole and Prison’s Revolving Door Guest: Shawn Bushway, PhD, Professor, Public Administration and Policy, University of Albany, State University of New York Prison has a revolving door. More than half of people released from prison in a given year in the US will return within five years. Why is that? Are felons just criminal by nature and inclined to reoffend no matter what? Or is there something about going to prison that makes it harder to keep on the straight and narrow after release? Both are explanations sociologists have looked into. Now a group of them has come up with a different answer – the parole system that prisoners enter when they leave prison is what drives the revolving door back behind bars. Parent Previews: Darkest Hour Guest: Rod Gustafson, Host, Parent Previews Winston Churchill became the British Prime Minister during England's darkest hour. With World War II underway, the new political leader needed to decide how to deal with Hitler's threats. And the fate of the world depended on his choices. Parent Previews gives this movie a rare "A" grade. A Better Auto-Focus Guests: Matt Linford, PhD, Professor, Chemistry, Brigham Young University; Shiladitya Chaterjee, PhD Candidate, Chemistry, Brigham Young University; Dave Brown, Technology Transfer Office, Brigham Young University If it weren’t for the auto-focus on your phone camera, would you ever take a decent picture? Ever wondered how that works? The answer is algorithms. The answer to pretty much everything that works automatically in the digital world is algorithms.