Western Science Speaks
Henry Standage hosts the Western Science Speaks podcast; a short format interview show exploring interesting and important work produced by Faculty of Science at Western University. The show covers a wide range of topics in Science relevant to a broad spectrum of listeners.
Check us out on
WSS S3E8: Rolling the Dye: Synthetic Technology in Electricity
This week, Western Science Speaks brings you the magic of synthetic chemistry – mixing molecules to create new materials!
Chemists never rest on their laurels. 159 years after the invention of the periodic table, they are still looking to find revolutionary ways to apply and organize elements. This episode of Western Science Speaks focuses on the dexterous ways in which Western chemists are manipulating the element Phosphorus, in order to create a brighter, greener future for our planet.
With a population in the millions of trillions, Parasites are able to evolve at a faster pace than just about anything on Earth. Through this extreme and rapid evolution, parasites are able to come up with increasingly innovative ways to attach to a host species; whether it be in the sky, or down on the ground. Beth MacDougall-Shackleton, a professor at the Western faculty of Biology, studies the way in which parasites evolve in order to find hosts. She brings her expertise to the Western Science Speaks Podcast to explain how parasitism became the most popular lifestyle choice on Earth.
On this episode of the Western Science Speaks podcast we explore why attributes such as kindness and selflessness have triumphed over some less altruistic traits in evolution. Geoff Wild from the Department of Applied Mathematics stops by the podcast for a discussion ranging from the evolutionary benefits of "niceness" to how to the incorporation of social media into our daily lives has changed our perceptions of one another.
DNA is our biological signature. If our DNA changes, naturally so do we. So what causes these changes? Listen to this episode of Western Science Speaks to have Kathleen Hill from the Department of Biology break down how DNA is the thread that joins us to our ancestors, plus a conversation about the biological impacts of modern life.
There's nothing better than losing yourself for a couple hours in a foreign, thought-provoking virtual land. Those experienced in video games will know this typically ends with an irrational rant at a bunch of animated characters on a TV screen, and on truly antagonizing days, a broken controller to boot. So how do video games manage to create a sense of real-world importance? On this episode of Western Science Speaks we hear from Michael Katchabaw of the Computer Science department at Western University. He discusses how his lab develops hyper-realistic methods for creating believable online landscapes, how online multiplayer has changed the industry, and where video game technology is heading.
Few would argue the magnetism of space and its mysterious nature. An endless puzzle looming over us, begging to be solved. At the heart of our extra-terrestrial conundrum are black holes; an irresistible juggernaut, seemingly capable of so much - yet barely understood. Western Science Speaks hosts Western's resident black hole expert,
Western Canada is one of the world's largest oil manufacturing regions, but in the last half-decade the industry has experienced a significant
We rely on metal to power our daily lives. The good news is, Canada is one of the world’s largest producers of this vital material. However, balancing that productivity with the obligation to protect our increasingly fragile environment is a challenge that leaves Canadian miners and environmentalists grappling. Professor Kim Baines from the Department of Chemistry joins Western Science Speaks to discuss metal’s national importance, the common mining and separation techniques, and how chemists approach the obstacle of assembling an environmentally friendlier mining process.
Are you concerned about the impact rapidly advancing AI technology on your privacy, wealth and our democracy? If so, you need to hear from
Meeting someone special is an undeniably worthwhile and necessary part of life. Unfortunately, it can often be awkward, flustering and at the worst of times, cringe-inducing. Determining how much of our success (or failure) in that domain is dictated by free will, rather than deep-rooted peculiarities is a question that fascinates researchers of behaviour. Amanda Moehring, from the Department of Biology, joins the podcast to break down the role genetics play in our courtship and mating process.
When you live in a fish-eat-fish world, the complexity of your environment and how you use it to survive and thrive is of critical importance. Neff Lab researcher, Chris Therrien joins us for part two in a series about the revival of Atlantic Salmon in The Great Lakes.
Western students, professors and staff create a social community of over 30,000 people on Western's campus every day. Understanding why we are comfortable or not in these social spaces is a topic of great importance for behavioural researchers. Western Science Speaks sits down with Dr Anne Simon of Western’s Department of Biology, to explore the
Our world is supporting less natural life forms than ever before. How do we revive a once thriving species, that perished at the hands of man? Western Science Speaks talks to Nicole Zathey, who is working to restore the previously native Atlantic Salmon back into Ontario waters.
Western Science Speaks takes a tour of the Advanced Facility for Avian Research. This cutting-edge research facility has it's own wind tunnel and is able to simulate almost any environmental condition. We talk with Jeff Martin who's looking how climate change is affecting birds in Canada.
Sustainability, alternative energy, profitability and competitiveness; concepts that considered together provide a thought-provoking discussion with Western University’s