News & Information

Internet Lava Lamps, Tiniest Babies, Tree Hibernation, No Bland Tomatoes

Constant Wonder
  • Jun 5, 2019 8:00 pm
  • 1:40:39

Lava Lamps are Hard at Work Protecting Your Data From Hackers Guest: Nick Sullivan, Head of Cryptography, Cloudflare A wall of colorful lava lamps in San Francisco has been secretly encrypting around 10 percent of the whole internet. Tiniest Babies Registry Guest: Edward Bell, MD, Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Iowa, and curator, Tiniest Babies Registry Last month a baby nicknamed Saybie made headlines when she was released from a San Diego hospital. She had arrived in this world weighing just more than a half pound. A half pound, that’s how much two sticks of butter weigh, or a couple oranges. Babies that size often don’t survive. But Saybie made it, and she was discharged weighing five healthy pounds. Many of us will never see a baby that small in person, but Dr. Bell is quite familiar with these tiny survivors.  How to write about the life and legacy of someone you’ve never met? Guest: Adam Bernstein, Obituary Editor, The Washington Post, and President, The Society of Professional Obituary Writers Gary Vaynerchuk once wrote “please think about your legacy because you are writing it every day.” In the smash Broadway musical "Hamilton," Alexander Hamilton says that a legacy is “planting seeds in a garden you never get to see.” But how do you go about literally writing a legacy, especially if it's not your own? There is an art to writing about someone’s life after their death. Forest Hibernation Guest: Troy Magney, Research Scientist, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and California Institute of Technology  Understanding how our forests work is important to recognizing changes in our world. Researchers at NASA have recently discovered a better way to track evergreen forests' carbon consumption, in order to better care for the Earth.  Most Store-Bought Tomatoes are Actually Missing the “Flavor Gene” Present in Wild Tomatoes Guest: Professor James Giovannoni, Molecular Biologist, USDA, and Professor, Boyce Thompson Institute, Cornell University There’s a rare “flavor gene” in wild tomatoes called TomLoxC that’s actually missing in most modern, domesticated tomatoes.  No wonder store-bought tomatoes are less flavorful! Can we get back the flavor gene?