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Explorations With Dr. Michio Kaku - July 24, 2001

Program Title:
Explorations With Dr. Michio Kaku - July 24, 2001
Series Title:
PRA Archive #: 
PZ0389.043
Description: 

Explorations with Dr. Michio Kaku, professor of theoretical physics at the City University of New York, science program. GUESTS: Dr. Michio Kaku invites FRANKLIN POTTER, retired Professor of Physics at the University of California at Irvine to discuss the myriad topics covered in his book "Mad about Physics: Braintwisters, Paradoxes, and Curiosities."[Potter is co-author,main author, Christopher Jargodzki] Specific topics addressed in the interview are: The physics of firewalking ; Physics and sports: - Physical aspects of baseball from a pitcher's and batter's perspective - Basketball and backspin at the free-throw line - Applying "English" on a ball in the game of pool. Questions about the moon: - How stable is it? - Why does it appear larger on the horizon? - Why do we not ever see the dark side of the moon? Antigravity and the weak force exhibited by the energy of a vacuum. The Coriolis Effect. The calibration of cannons in different hemispheres. Vanishing elephants in magic shows o Are women stronger than men? Why is the South Pile larger than the North Pole? Perpetual motion machines. Miscellaneous topics to be covered in a subsequent book entitled "Mad About Modern Physics" emphasizing questions derived in the 20th Century Other topics covered: Peaceful protesters numbered over 100 thousand, but they were overshadowed by violence spawned by fringe radicals and anarchists at the G8 Summit in Genoa, Italy. The message that "globalization requires accountability" was lost on representatives of the most powerful industrialized nations as their attention was turned to Molotov Cocktails, turned over cars, and police response with water cannons and tear gas. As a result, the question over who decides over worker's rights and the environment, and discussion over feedback mechanisms and checks and balances was not properly addressed. The Pentagon has claimed that a missile to missile test over the Pacific was a success, and thus further supports plans to deploy the National Missile Defense (NMD) program. After studying the results, harsh criticism has been raised by scientists about the scope of the test. Testers knew about the timing of the "enemy missile" and only one decoy was carried in the nosecone; a highly unrealistic scenario that does not sufficiently simulate an authentic ballistic missile attack. The warming of waters in the Gulf of Mexico has alarmed climatologists and meteorologists due to a known fact that hurricanes derive their strength from warm water. As a result, they have issued predictions for a greater number of hurricanes with higher destructive potency to manifest over the course of this next century. They estimate that the probability of a category 3 storm barraging the coastline will rise by a factor of 2.5. Golden lights in a "V" formation similar to observed phenomenon over Phoenix, Arizona, have been spotted in New Jersey by 15 people that include 2 police officers among them. The FAA has confirmed that there were no confirmed or planned military operations in the area, and no pilots reported seeing lights through the course of their travels. 99% of all sightings can be explained by natural phenomena, but there exist incidents that still remain a mystery to modern science. Michio addresses email he has received asking about the science behind the movie Jurassic Park II. He states that the chances of extracting useable DNA are remote and that degradation of millions of fragments makes the task even more daunting. He uses an example of reassembling an entire work of William Shakespeare given only a few sporadic lines to outline the challenges scientists would face tackling such endeavours. Though he stresses that even with today's animals it is extremely difficult to recreate organisms from scratch without previous blueprints, he remains open to the notion that in the distant future the promise may become more plausible.

Date Recorded on: 
July 24, 2001
Date Broadcast on: 
July 24, 2001
Item duration: 
60 min.
Keywords: 
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Distributor: 
Los Angeles, Pacifica Radio Archive, 2001
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