The truth about panda sex

Zoologist Lucy Cooke explains why humans are totally wrong about panda sex, and why captive breeding backfires.

  • We humans love to hear about how utterly useless pandas are at sex. 'They won't breed to save their species!' Except that's not true at all, says zoologist Lucy Cooke.
  • Wild pandas are extremely virile — their sperm is 10 to 100 times more dense than human sperm — and pandas in the wild have been observed having sex 40 times in a single afternoon.
  • In this comprehensive and fascinating talk, Cooke explains the panda mating ritual ("a sort of urinary Olympics"), why captive breeding has created a second kind of panda that struggles to survive in the wild, and she reveals what humans can really do help: stop micromanaging pandas' sex lives.
Keep reading Show less

Why practicing empathy matters, and how VR can help

VR's coolest feature? Boosting compassion and empathy.

  • Virtual reality fills us with awe and adrenaline — and the technology is only at a crude stage, explains VR filmmaker Danfung Dennis. It's capable of inspiring something much greater in us: empathy.
  • With coming technological advancements in pixel display, haptics, and sound tracking, VR users will finally be able to know what it's like to really take another person's perspective. Empathy is inherent in humans (and other animal species), but just as it can be squashed, it must be practiced in order to develop.
  • "This ability to improve ourselves to become a more empathetic and compassionate society is what I hope we will use this technology for," Dennis says.
Keep reading Show less

Courageous Collaborations: Whatever we agree on, we can make happen

Sponsored by the Charles Koch Foundation

Keep reading Show less

Drug prevention advice for parents

How to talk to kids responsibly about drugs.

  • The majority of kids are going to experiment with drugs at some point in their lives, mostly in their teens and early 20s.
  • While many parents might balk at allowing their children to experiment, it's important to remember that not all drugs are the same.
  • There are some warning signs, however. Neuroscience journalist Maia Szalavitz walks us through some of the signs to look out for.

Keep reading Show less

Why you should tolerate intolerable ideas

Just because you disagree with something doesn't mean that it isn't true for someone else.

  • Former ACLU president Nadine Strossen argues that without freedom of expression we don't have freedom of speech.
  • With some major college campuses disavowing "dangerous ideas" from certain speakers on campus, this can lead to a slippery slope wherein ideas—and even ways of life—can be marginalized entirely.
  • The Charles Koch Foundation is committed to understanding what drives intolerance and the best ways to cure it. The foundation supports interdisciplinary research to overcome intolerance, new models for peaceful interactions, and experiments that can heal fractured communities. For more information, visit charleskochfoundation.org/courageous-collaborations.
  • The opinions expressed in this video do not necessarily reflect the views of the Charles Koch Foundation, which encourages the expression of diverse viewpoints within a culture of civil discourse and mutual respect.
Keep reading Show less