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Preview: Ockham's Razor

Ockham's Razor - Program podcast

William of Ockham was an English monk, philosopher, theologian, who provided the scientific method with its key principle 700 years ago. 'What can be done with fewer assumptions is done in vain with more,' he said. That is, in explaining any phenomenon, w

Copyright: Copyright 2016, Australian Broadcasting Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

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The ‘father of American biotechnology’ was never able to become an American citizen.Jokichi Takamine (Wikimedia Commons)

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Age shall not weary them

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Mythbusting superfoods

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With little or no research backing up the 'super' claims of the food industry, Dr Emma Beckett tells us why they could be doing more harm than good.Quinoa was called a 'superfood' and its popularity surged. (Flickr: I believe I can fry)

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The Lucky Country?

Sun, 02 Oct 2016 07:45:00 +1100

Is Australia truly a great nation, or has it all been luck so far? asks scientist and author, Ian Lowe.Is Australia really the lucky country? (Supplied: Tom Piotrowski)

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Bird brain

Sun, 25 Sep 2016 07:45:00 +1000

Research over the past decade has discovered that birds are smarter than we ever imagined, with cognitive skills in many ways closer to our primate relatives than to their reptilian ones.Gifted songbirds, such as mockingbirds, can produce some of the most acoustically complex and varied vocal sounds in nature. (Ryan Hagerty [Public Domain] via Wikimedia Commons)

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Intergenerational trauma

Sun, 18 Sep 2016 07:45:00 +1000

Psychiatrist Dr Murray Chapman says we are haunted by the actions and experiences of our ancestors.Young people feature predominantly in the Kimberley's Indigenous suicide rate, which is seven times the national average. (Ingetje Tadros via Getty Images)

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Christianity and Science

Sun, 11 Sep 2016 07:45:00 +1000

What must the church do in order to survive in the scientific age?A portion of 'Education,' by Louis Comfort Tiffany, depicting science and religion in harmony (Public Domain)

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Physics for the non-physicist

Sun, 04 Sep 2016 07:45:00 +1000

Busting the myth that physics is irrelevant, boring and too hard.Physics, despite its reputation as a dry field of research, is in fact beautiful, inspiring and enjoyable, says Ross Barrett. (NASA and the European Space Agency, Public Domain)

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Oliver Sacks: profile of a virtuoso

Sun, 28 Aug 2016 07:45:00 +1000

Roger Rees pays tribute to the British neurologist Oliver Sacks, ahead of the first anniversary of his death.Neurologist Dr Oliver Sacks (1933 - 2015) (Chris McGrath via Getty Images)

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The making of mind

Sun, 21 Aug 2016 07:45:00 +1000

We often take our minds for granted, but the human mind is not inevitable, and requires help from the social world to bring it to fruition.Simple games between a mother and a baby play a role in helping to bring the human mind to fruition. (Tara Moore via Getty Images)

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The changing world of fish

Sun, 14 Aug 2016 07:45:00 +1000

Fish have proved remarkably adaptable to changes in their environment, but will climate change be their ultimate undoing?Do fish have the capacity to adapt to the large-scale, rapid changes that are plaguing their habitats today? (Creative Commons)

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Sun, 07 Aug 2016 07:45:00 +1000

Breasts are a distinguishing characteristic of female homo sapiens, but how did they come to be? And why are men so besotted with them? Geoff Hudson is curious.Mammary glands develop after the first pregnancy in all mammals, bar one: Homo sapiens. (PhotoAlto/Frederic Cirou via Getty Images)

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The plight of post doc and graduate researchers

Sun, 31 Jul 2016 07:45:00 +1000

The dark side to the pursuit of academic perfection.Recent research carried out in Australia, the US and elsewhere over the last decade has clearly shown that large numbers of academics are exhausted, overloaded, demoralised, and depressed. (Getty Images)

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Scholarly misconduct in science

Sun, 24 Jul 2016 07:45:00 +1000

Intellectual dishonesty is a blight on contemporary scholarly endeavour.Often individuals who engage in scientific fraud are prominent in their discipline, but seek to be even more recognised for the pre-eminence of their scholarly contributions. (Creative Commons)

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Digital disruption in the age of FANG

Sun, 17 Jul 2016 07:45:00 +1000

How can Australia ensure that the process of digital disruption is done on our terms?Technology has been transforming the way we live and do business for centuries - so what makes the latest era of digital disruption so different? (Tom Werner/Getty Images)

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Citizen utilities: the future of solar?

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Could solar power decentralise the production of electricity and make the grid redundant?Rooftop solar photovoltaic panels (Getty Images/zstockphotos)

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Pondering the prospects of driverless cars

Sun, 03 Jul 2016 07:45:00 +1000

What does the future hold for autonomous automobiles? Engineer Frank Szanta talks about how they could change our lives, and looks at some of the policy implications.A Google self driving vehicle (Creative Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0)

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Medicine, the great nest, and the little business of being human

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 07:45:00 +1000

Dr Peter Underwood takes issue with ABC RN.Just another pill in them all. (Getty Images/Dimitri Otis)

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The Hitchhikers’ Guide to Fulfilment

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Oliver Strewe's photographs

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A photography student captures an historical event.Political demonstrations in East Timor (Supplied/Oliver Strewe)

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The man problem

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A century of healing

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Only by healing ourselves can we give the planet space and time to heal itself.Island in the sun (Getty Images/Jenco van Zalk)

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The Restless Clock

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Noisy Miners

Sun, 15 May 2016 07:45:00 +1000

Should we eliminate this native bird?Noisy Miners congregating (ABC RN/Ann Jones)

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Einstein's socks

Sun, 08 May 2016 07:45:00 +1000

What can Albert's footwear choices tell us about scientific progress?Renowned sock objector, Albert Einstein (Getty Images/Science Photo Library)

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Edith Cowan

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Telecommuting in the 21st century

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Geoff Hudson says we've seen telecommuting before—tried, tested and failed. But if we create better systems of implementation, Hudson says it's a technology that could allow many of us to live well outside Australia's major cities.Could the problem simply be that teleconferencing wasn't implemented properly? (Getty Images)

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Predictable and preventable

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Aboriginal people are over-represented in Australia's prison system.Incarceration is a most serious deprivation (Getty Images/Darrin Klimek)

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Getting rid of crown gall

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Two days with Terry (Day one)

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Science and its sceptics

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