You've got 10 minutes with Einstein. What do you talk about? Black holes? Time travel?

Why not gambling? The Art of War? Contemporary parenting?

Each week, host Jason Gots surprises some of the world's brightest minds with ideas they're not at all prepared to discuss. Join us and special guests Neil Gaiman, Alan Alda, Salman Rushdie, Margaret Atwood, Richard Dawkins, Maria Popova, Mary-Louise Parker, Neil deGrasse Tyson and many more...

Manoush Zomorodi on how blockchain might save journalism. Maybe.

Why would two intelligent women running a hugely successful podcast at one of the most respected studios in the audio world quit to risk everything on a technology almost nobody understands?

Think Again Podcasts
  • Fake news, real risk, and the messy rise of blockchain media.
  • Why people police other people's voices
  • And much, much more.

Why would two intelligent women running a hugely successful podcast at one of the most respected studios in the audio world, quit to start a small journalism company built on blockchain, a technology very few people have ever heard of?

To quote someone on Twitter yesterday paraphrasing Bill Clinton sounding pretty harsh, actually: "It's the business model, stupid."

As we keep learning the hard way, as long as we get our journalism from Facebook and 24 hour cable news, we're suckers for infotainment, propaganda, and actual fake news—not the real news Trump is always calling fake, but the real fake news trolls cook up to polarize American culture. And in these raging digital waters, non-profits and public media struggle just to stay afloat.

There's got to be a better way, right?

Manoush Zomorodi and Jen Poyant thought so. Partners on the podcast Note to Self, they left to start Stable Genius Productions. It's part of Civil, a new blockchain journalism platform. For reasons we'll try to explain, blockchain has the potential to bring us better, more independent media. Better, more independent everything, maybe.

That's what Jen and Manoush were betting on, anyway. They document the twists and turns since that fateful decision with refreshing vulnerability on their podcast ZigZag. Its second season started on October 11th.

Surprise conversation starter clips in this episode:

Maria Konnikova on poker strategy

Derek Thompson on what makes a pop song addictive

3D printing might save your life one day. It's transforming medicine and health care.

What can 3D printing do for medicine? The "sky is the limit," says Northwell Health researcher Dr. Todd Goldstein.

Northwell Health
Sponsored by Northwell Health
  • Medical professionals are currently using 3D printers to create prosthetics and patient-specific organ models that doctors can use to prepare for surgery.
  • Eventually, scientists hope to print patient-specific organs that can be transplanted safely into the human body.
  • Northwell Health, New York State's largest health care provider, is pioneering 3D printing in medicine in three key ways.
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Health care: Information tech must catch up to medical marvels

Michael Dowling, Northwell Health's CEO, believes we're entering the age of smart medicine.

Photo: Tom Werner / Getty Images
Sponsored by Northwell Health
  • The United States health care system has much room for improvement, and big tech may be laying the foundation for those improvements.
  • Technological progress in medicine is coming from two fronts: medical technology and information technology.
  • As information technology develops, patients will become active participants in their health care, and value-based care may become a reality.
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Extraordinary machines – with neuroscientist Susan Hockfield

Convergence 2.0: Engineers are using the "natural genius" of biological systems to produce extraordinary machines—self-assembling batteries, cancer-detecting nanoparticles, super-efficient water filters made from proteins found in blood cells. Neuroscientist and MIT President Emerita Susan Hockfield and host Jason Gots discuss what all this could mean for our future.

Think Again Podcasts
  • "One of my tools as president was never to talk about change. People hate change. But at MIT no one could deny you the opportunity to do an experiment."
  • "If we can create these spaces for convening around our most important problems, We can make progress much faster than we can by insisting that people do the work on their own. And that's the power of the university at its best."
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Adam Gopnik on the rhinoceros of liberalism vs. the unicorns of everything else

Torn between absolutism on the left and the right, classical liberalism—with its core values of compassion and incremental progress whereby the once-radical becomes the mainstream—is in need of a good defense. And Adam Gopnik is its lawyer.

Think Again Podcasts
  • Liberalism as "radical pragmatism"
  • Intersectionality and civic discourse
  • How "a thousand small sanities" tackled drunk driving, normalized gay marriage, and could control gun violence
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Jared Diamond (historian) – Look inward, Nation

Personal crises and national crises have more than a few things in common. From Brexit to the partisan divide in America to Germany after World War II, Jared Diamond talks with host Jason Gots about how we get through them (or don't).

Think Again Podcasts
  • Nations that blame their problems on other nations (or particular groups) don't recover so well from crises.
  • The US is consuming at 32x the rate of most African countries. Even if Africa didn't exist, it would be unsustainable.
  • What Jared Diamond has learned about human nature from his neighborhood association.
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