274 episodes

Named after Charles Babbage, a 19th-century polymath and grandfather of computing, Babbage is a weekly podcast on science and technology. Host Kenneth Cukier talks to our correspondents about the innovations, discoveries and gadgetry making the news. Published every Wednesday on Economist Radio.

Babbage from Economist Radio The Economist

    • Tech News
    • 4.9, 68 Ratings

Named after Charles Babbage, a 19th-century polymath and grandfather of computing, Babbage is a weekly podcast on science and technology. Host Kenneth Cukier talks to our correspondents about the innovations, discoveries and gadgetry making the news. Published every Wednesday on Economist Radio.

    Babbage: WeFight

    Babbage: WeFight

    For Chinese users, WeChat does far more than just messaging. What are the implications of America’s proposed ban on the Chinese “super app”? Also, Canada’s last full Arctic shelf has collapsed, and climate change is to blame. And a sizzling solution to indoor barbeque pollution. Tom Standage hosts 


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    • 19 min
    Babbage: Put to the test

    Babbage: Put to the test

    A shortage of covid-19 tests around the world has hampered efforts to contain it. Could "pool sampling" be a solution? Also, the promise of million-mile electric car batteries? And, Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz, a developmental biologist at the University of Cambridge and Caltech, on the mysteries of life after conception. Kenneth Cukier hosts 
     
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    • 25 min
    Babbage: Life on Mars?

    Babbage: Life on Mars?

    Three nations set out on separate missions to shed light on a question that astronomers have been asking for centuries—is there life on Mars? Alok Jha asks leading scientists about how their missions will search for signs of life on the red planet. And, why those investigating it should avoid irreversible damage to a potentially pristine ecosystem.


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    • 32 min
    Babbage: A punt on the Oxford vaccine

    Babbage: A punt on the Oxford vaccine

    Oxford University is ahead in the race to develop a covid-19 vaccine that could halt the pandemic. Yet lead researcher, Professor Sarah Gilbert, says some trial results may be delayed owing to changing virus transmissions in different countries. Also, navigating the sky with diamonds. And, why sewage can help census-takers. Kenneth Cukier hosts.
     
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    • 24 min
    Babbage: Something in the air

    Babbage: Something in the air

    As governments consider loosening lockdowns, troubling evidence suggests that the virus behind covid-19 lingers in the air, making it more communicable than previously thought. Lidia Morawska, of the International Laboratory for Air Quality and Health in Queensland, argues for better indoor ventilation. Also, Dr Vivian Lee from Verily, on how she would fix the American healthcare system. And, the “illuminating” technology revealing archaeological secrets. Kenneth Cukier hosts 


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    • 26 min
    Babbage: The forgotten pandemic

    Babbage: The forgotten pandemic

    With attention diverted to covid-19, access to HIV medications has been disrupted. Host Kenneth Cukier talks to Meg Doherty, director of HIV programmes at the World Health Organisation, about the fight against the other pandemic. Also, hydrogen power has had many false starts. Could it be about to take off? And, scientist Ainissa Ramirez on the ways technology changes how people live, act, and think. 
     


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    • 25 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
68 Ratings

68 Ratings

Daniel R Parry ,

Pithy and Erudite

I love this podcast.

Not too chatty; not too nerdy; not all pretentious; not too long. Very interesting and humourously presented.

Squeeze it in your day somehow!

Ozzie Mac ,

Technology presented seriously and Informative

Having a science degree I have always been interested in many areas of science and technology. A very interesting and wide ranging coverage of science and technology that is not all "gee wiz", it explains the relevance. Like the rest of The Economist, excellent journalism.

bellbird59 ,

Super

Succinct, witty, timely

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