272 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

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    • 4.8, 276 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: 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
    Babbage: Predicting pandemics

    Babbage: Predicting pandemics

    As covid-19 continues to devastate the world and scientists race to develop therapeutics and vaccines, Alok Jha investigates how to get ahead of the curve and prevent the next pandemic. Scientists explain how studying the relationship between animals and humans, and finding and genetically sequencing the millions of as-yet-undiscovered animal viruses in the wild, could stop future disease outbreaks becoming global health catastrophes. 




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    • 24 min
    Babbage: Track and trace

    Babbage: Track and trace

    Contact tracing is one of the tools being used against covid-19, but in the age of the smartphone, technology presents a new way to improve the process. Kenneth Cukier explores why contact-tracing apps have not yet delivered on their promise, how they can preserve privacy and what today’s decisions mean for the future of technology in society.  


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    • 33 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
276 Ratings

276 Ratings

August Consumer ,

Very good show

I learned more about COVID 19 from your show than from US shows. Thank you for being thorough in providing important information.

Pmv10001 ,

Always great

Babbage is always informative and witty, but today's show on the medical effects of Covid-19 was great. I listen to Nature, Science, Guardian's science show, Naked Scientist, and other podcasts but Babbage outdid them all this time.

M Liu-S ,

Highly relevant and interesting topics!

Great interviewer and well picked interviewees

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