Herodotus

In Our Time | 23 September 2021 | 0h 52m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the Greek historian Herodotus (c484 to 425 BC or later) who wrote The Histories about the wars between the Greeks and Persians, inquiring into the deep background of the wars, seeking out the best evidence for past events and presenting the range of evidence for readers to assess.

Athena Aktipis on The Cheating Cell

Princeton UP Ideas Podcast | 22 September 2021 | 0h 58m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with Athena Aktipis about her book The Cheating Cell: How Evolution Helps Us Understand and Treat Cancer. Explains that cancer emerged when unicellular lifeforms became multicellular organisms, with some cells cheating, rather than cooperating, to replicate out of control. Argues that understanding cancer’s evolutionary origins opens the way for researchers to come up with more effective, revolutionary treatments for cancer.

Robert Axelrod on Why Being Nice, Forgiving, and Provokable are the Best Strategies for Life

People I (Mostly) Admire | 2 October 2021 | 0h 44m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with Robert Axelrod about the prisoner’s dilemma and the ways humans can cooperate, or betray each other, for their own benefit. Discusses the tournaments Axelrod ran to evaluate alternative strategies for playing iterated prisoner’s dilemma games and the implications for real-world situations. Draws from his book The Evolution of Cooperation.

Edward Watts – The Eternal Decline and Fall of Rome: The History of a Dangerous Idea

The Dissenter | 13 September 2021 | 1h 13m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with Edward Watts about his book The Eternal Decline and Fall of Rome: The History of a Dangerous Idea. Backgrounds the factors that played a role in the fall of Rome and discusses the long history of people theorising about the decline and fall of Rome and projecting that onto current issues.

Gamechangers: More than just a game

Gamechangers from The Economist | 16 August 2021 | 0h 38m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Describes how powerful graphics chips, developed to make video games more realistic, were used to speed up the mathematical calculations used in deep learning, a form of artificial intelligence, that powers voice assistants, facial recognition, music recommendations and underpins pioneering scientific research on how proteins fold.

Kathryn Paige Harden || Genetic Inequality, IQ, and Education

The Psychology Podcast | 30 September 2021 | 1h 22m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with Kathryn Paige Harden about her book The Genetic Lottery: Why DNA Matters for Social Equality. Explains what genetic information can and can’t illuminate and argues for the importance of taking account of genetics to improve social policy.

See also Kathryn Paige Harden on Genetics, Luck, and Fairness.

Herbert Gintis on Game Theory, Evolution, and Social Rationality

Sean Carroll’s Mindscape | 13 September 2021 | 1h 29m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with Herbert Gintis arguing that game theory, together with an expanded model of rational behaviour (that includes social as well as personally selfish interests) provides an understanding of human behaviour that integrates ideas from biology, economics, psychology, and sociology.

How Did the British Royals Survive WW1?

History Extra | 27 September 2021 | 1h 05m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with Heather Jones about her book For King and Country: The British Monarchy and the First World War. Explores the royal family’s role during the war, which they not only survived but were strengthened by, in contrast to the many European royal families that faced abdications and revolutions.