I recently had the pleasure of being interviewed by Canadian radio host Desiree Schell for her wildly-successful show, Skeptically Speaking. The episode on which yours truly appears can be accessed here.
Launched in March 2009, the show airs live on Sunday evenings at 6 pm Mountain Time on UStream where one can discuss the show and asks questions by live chat. The show also includes a previously recorded segment with another scientist and is then edited and distributed for rebroadcast to stations and networks across North America. The shorter pre-recorded segment where I appeared to speak about my most popular topic of the last two years on this blog, synthetic marijuana compounds.
Here’s how the Skeptically Speaking team describes the show:
With humour, enthusiasm and a lot of curiosity, Skeptically Speaking guides you through the fascinating world of science and critical thinking. We interview researchers, authors and experts to help listeners understand the evidence, arguments and science behind what’s in the news and on the shelves. A basic understanding of science, combined with a little bit of skepticism, goes a long way.
I’m not entirely guilty of self-promotion here because I primarily wanted to mention that the first two-thirds of the show – the live part – was an interview with my neuropharmacologist friend, Scicurious, author of The Scicurious Brain blog at the Scientific American blog network and Neurotic Physiology at Scientopia. Sci has a gift for offering laser-sharp science in a hip, conversational manner.
During her 40 minutes Sci gave a terrific primer on the classes of drugs commonly used, and abused, recreationally. My pre-recorded part was edited into the now-available podcast (Show #142, 27.5 MB) at around 41:10. But do download it and listen entirely to Sci’s part. Our segments ended up being quite complementary owing to the careful eyes and ears of host Desiree Schell and producer/editor K.O. Myers. Although I know Sci, I hadn’t known that she was to appear live until after my recording. I rarely like listening to my own voice (unlike many professors) but this one is a keeper primarily because it’s more for the general public rather than just us scientists.
In fact, Des tells me that she interviews from the standpoint of the listener she envisions driving home in their car. And for those of you attending ScienceOnline2012 here in North Carolina next month, you’ll get to meet Schell and hear her lead a morning session on Friday 20 January with Julia Galef of Rationally Speaking on the pros and cons of science podcasting.
Go to this page and you can listen presently or download and listen in the privacy of your own home, car, etc.
You can also subscribe to the podcast via iTunes.
Skeptically Speaking is a terrific example of how we can communicate science to the general public, making it more accessible by making it fun without compromising scientific integrity. They also commissioned a terrific rap as their theme song, synthesized by Edmonton writer/editor Omar Mouallem/rapper A.O.K. (for Assault of Knowledge).
If I wore a hat, it would be off to Desiree, K.O., and their team.