I Wonder...


Co-hosted by Daniel Tkacik and Ellis Robinson, two Ph.D. engineering students from Carnegie Mellon University, I Wonder… begins each episode with a question. When do we get our first memory? Why are whales so big? Are cities good or bad for the environment? Each question is the seed for a half-hour exploration on a topic that hopes to inspire curiosity, learning, and (you guessed it!) wonder.

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A radio program and podcast that explores big questions.
🇬🇧 English
last modified
2018-04-12 18:10
last episode published
2014-04-16 18:42
publication frequency
82.1 days
I Wonder... author  
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Date Thumb Title & Description Contributors

Episode 9: Is the world louder now than it used to be?

After repeatedly failing to find a room on the campus of Carnegie Mellon that is silent enough to record our podcast in, we asked ourselves this question. Because every little sound messing up our pristine recording—the spinning of computer fans, the c...
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Episode 8: What happens when you jump into a hole that goes through the center of the earth?

This week, we're traveling halfway around the globe using the most direct route we can think of-- through the center of the Earth. To help us along the way, we consult the mind of Professor Markus Deserno of the department of Physics at Carnegie Mell...
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Episode 7: Where is the highest point in Pittsburgh?

In this episode we ask: where is highest point on land in the city of Pittsburgh? In answering, we uncover the events that give our city both its unique topography, as well as the "gold mine" beneath our feet----the Marcellus Shale. To help us, we tal...
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Episode 6: Is there a cure for a hangover?

Many of us know the feeling— after a night of having a few too many, you wake up feeling miserable. One of the great enigmas of our time, hangovers have been affecting humans for thousands of years. There must be a cure, right? In this episode, we sea...
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Generation Anthropocene: Climate Geoengineering (Granger Morgan)

In our changing climate, wouldn’t life be simpler if we had a thermostat we could dial down the earth’s temperature with? It turns out we do, actually. And a few billion dollars is all it would take to deploy a version of solar-radiation management (S...
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Generation Anthropocene: Life In The PostNatural World

How much does a genetically-engineered tomato have in common with your dog? A lot more than you might think. Both are shining examples of PostNatural organisms, a term Rich Pell, assistant professor of Art at Carnegie Mellon, uses to describe living t...
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Episode 5: What makes a sad song sad?

Ever been listening to a sad song wondering why it sounds so darn sad? Happy, sad, peaceful or angry — there's just something about music that makes us feel a certain way. Apart from any lyrics, there seems to be much more to music than meets the ear. ...
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Episode 4: What does the brain do while reading?

As you’re reading this sentence, what is your brain doing? What’s actually going on as it turns a bunch of lines and circles into words that carry meaning? This week, I Wonder… explores the world of reading. During the program, we talk to some people...
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Episode 3: How has the internet changed us? (and how hasn't it)

This week, a caller ponders about something so prominent in many of our lives…the Internet. Is the internet radically reshaping society? Or is it just another tool to allow us to do things that we’ve always done? During our search for insight into thi...
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Episode 2: Are cities good or bad for the environment?

In our second episode of I Wonder..., a caller's asthma leads him to wonder whether cities are good or bad for the environment. We discuss this inquiry with an environmental historian, an atmospheric chemist, and random pedestrians to try to understand...
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Episode 1: When do we get our first memories?

A caller wonders if it's possible for her 30-something year old brother to actually recall a memory from when he was 4 years old. In trying to answer her question, we spoke with memory experts in the Pittsburgh area: Lynne Reder, CMU; Mark Wheeler, Pit...
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