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Preview: Radio NZ - This Way Up with Simon Morton

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This Way Up - slices of life for curious minds


Social cooling: toning down online behaviour

Sat, 22 Jul 2017 12:40:00 +1200

When the world wide web spread its tendrils into our homes a few decades ago, observers and sociologists noticed people becoming disinhibited in these virtual spaces: you could say and do what you wanted, stuff you would probably never dream of doing in 'real life'. Fast forward to today, and technology critic Tijmen Schep reckons we're seeing another online behavioural phonomenon he calls 'social cooling'. This happens when we tend to sanitise and self-censor our views, and avoid saying the wrong thing or offending anyone in case this jeopardises our online reputation and those all-important ratings!

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The massive business of scientific publishing

Sat, 22 Jul 2017 12:25:00 +1200

While mainstream media and the publishing industry are grappling with the challenges of the digital age, the hugely profitable business of scientific publishing seems to be going from strength to strength. With more than more than 28,000 science journals published today, the industry brings in total global revenues of more than $30 billion. That puts the industry between the music and film industries in total size, but what is the real cost to science? Stephen Buranyi has written about the business of science publishing for The Guardian, amid questions over the current commercial model.

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Directional highs: the future of marijuana?

Sat, 22 Jul 2017 12:15:00 +1200

Recreational marijuana use has been legalised in 8 US states and there's a boom in consumer pot products. Now you can choose exactly how you want to feel in advance: directional highs allow you to select the specific effects of what you're inhaling. Sold under names like Sleep, Bliss, Relief and Passion, producers are selling precisely measured dosages in carefully calibrated formulas inhaled through a vape pen, giving you control over how alert, active, and sociable you want to be. Mary H. K. Choi has been sampling the products of one producer.

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This Way Up for Saturday 22 July 2017

Sat, 22 Jul 2017 12:01:00 +1200

Directional highs: the future of marijuana? The scientific publishing business, social cooling, and an inflatable balloon to help the world lose weight.

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The best way to wash your hands

Sat, 15 Jul 2017 12:55:00 +1200

Don't bother turning on the hot tap next time you wash your hands. According to new research, warm water doesn't do the job any better. Professor Donald Schaffner of Rutgers University tells us why.

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How a balloon could help the world lose weight

Sat, 15 Jul 2017 12:50:00 +1200

Surgeries designed to promote weight loss by restricting the stomach's capacity, like the gastric bypass or gastric banding, have become a common treatment to help chronically obese patients lose weight fast. They seem to work really well, but as with any surgery there are some risks and they cost around $20,000 apiece. With an increasing number of these surgeries funded under the public health system (the Ministry of Health has spent more than $30 million on bariatric surgery on around 2000 patients over the past 5 years) could there be a cheaper option? Shantanu Gaur is the co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Allurion Technologies, makers of a temporary balloon that you can swallow and then fill with water before excreting it some 16 weeks later.

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Anti-virus: could computers kill real life viruses?

Sat, 15 Jul 2017 12:45:00 +1200

We know that computers can defeat virtual viruses with antivirus software, but could they also be used to kill the viruses that affect our bodies? Some scientists are doing just that, says biochemist Ian Haydon.

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How 3D printing can transform surfing

Sat, 15 Jul 2017 12:35:00 +1200

Surfing is a massive global business estimated to be worth close to NZ$10 billion annually. Serious surfers are prepared to spend up large on boards, wetsuits, and living the surfing lifestyle. Professor Marc in het Panhuis of the University of Wollongong in Australia is a materials scientist, and he's also a keen surfer. He thinks 3D printing could be a transformative technology for surfing, and foresees a world where local surf shops have 3D printers that can quickly and cheaply customise your board and how it's set up while you wait.

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Seaweed: can it boost health?

Sat, 15 Jul 2017 12:25:00 +1200

Eating seaweed can help people suffering from metabolic disorders, pre-diabetes and skin diseases, says Australian seaweed scientist and entrepreneur Pia Winberg.

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Swab and Send: discovering new antibiotics

Sat, 15 Jul 2017 12:15:00 +1200

Antibiotic resistance is a major threat to public health worldwide, and microbiologist Adam Roberts is one of the scientists getting creative on the hunt for the next penicillin. He's put a call out for people to send him swabs from the grubby surfaces we encounter every day.

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This Way Up for Saturday 15 July 2017

Sat, 15 Jul 2017 12:01:00 +1200

Finding new antibiotics, seaweed diet, how 3D printing can transform surfing, anti virus software, and the best way to wash your hands.

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Biopaints: coating cells to control them

Sat, 08 Jul 2017 12:45:00 +1200

A cure for cancer isn't that far away, reckons engineering professor Steve Henry. His local tech outfit has developed a way to change the appearance of cancer cells so that the immune system can recognise them and kill them.

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Weather bugs: microbes making rain

Sat, 08 Jul 2017 12:35:00 +1200

Microbes inhabit every nook and cranny from the depths of the ocean to your small intestine, but could these tiny organisms also be playing a part in the weather?

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Selfie Nation

Sat, 08 Jul 2017 12:25:00 +1200

The struggle to keep up with all those perfect lives that hijack social media feeds is leaving us self-obsessed and unhappy, says Will Storr, author of the new book Selfie.

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Pet poo problems

Sat, 08 Jul 2017 12:15:00 +1200

Our pets are experiencing an epidemic of undiagnosed and chronic digestive distress, according to microbial ecologist Holly Ganz. She's sampling piles of posted pet poop in order to explore new treatments.

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This Way Up for Saturday 8 July 2017

Sat, 08 Jul 2017 12:01:00 +1200

Pet poo problems, Selfie Nation, are microbes making rain? Also controlling cells using 'biopaints'.

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Why women live longer than men

Sat, 01 Jul 2017 12:50:00 +1200

In NZ, the average life expectancy for a male born last year is 91 years, but a woman born in 2016 can expect to live to 93. Why is that? Science journalist Angela Saini tries to answer the question in her new book Inferior.

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Tech news: TVNZ live-streams, Google under scrutiny & another big cyber-attack

Sat, 01 Jul 2017 12:40:00 +1200

Could TVNZ live-streaming be the beginning of the end for Freeview, plus more EU scrutiny of Google and the big tech story of the week – hacking tools stolen from the NSA are again used in a major cyberattack

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Missing pieces in the code of life could play a role in cancer

Sat, 01 Jul 2017 12:30:00 +1200

The sequencing of an entire human genome in 2003 was hailed as a great victory, but in reality, it wasn't complete. The uncharted regions of the genome could play a role in cancer and autism, some scientists believe.

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Accuracy, power, and speed: practical shooting

Sat, 01 Jul 2017 12:15:00 +1200

'Diligentia, Vis, Celeritas' or accuracy, power, and speed; it's the motto of the International Practical Shooting Confederation, and the key qualities you'll need if you're going to succeed at practical shooting. We visit Rotorua Pistol Club to meet Don Perry, and the organisers and competitors at the King of Carbine competition.

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This Way Up for Saturday 1 July 2017

Sat, 01 Jul 2017 12:01:00 +1200

Practical shooting competiton, the missing pieces in the code of life, cyber attacks, and why women live longer than men.

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First-person shooter

Tue, 27 Jun 2017 10:15:00 +1200

Practical shooting is a gun sport where the emphasis is on moving quickly between targets against the clock. This Way Up's Simon Morton goes along to Rotorua Pistol Club to see how it's done.

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Where to with wearables?

Sat, 24 Jun 2017 12:50:00 +1200

The race is on to develop the next generation of wearable technologies that will make our lives better, easier and more productive... in theory. Professor Paul Lukowicz, who specialises in AI, talks about the latest in wearables design.

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News in bed: where do you get yours?

Sat, 24 Jun 2017 12:40:00 +1200

Tech news with Peter Griffin and UBER's CEO Travis Kalanick steps down after his controversial stint in the spotlight. And from renewing a passport to paying your speeding tickets; how often do you deal with the government online? Finally, fake news, the rise of the messaging app, and more of us are reading the news in bed than on our commutes! These are some of the key findings from the Reuters Institute Digital News Report 2017.

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Life at the young and old folks' home

Sat, 24 Jun 2017 12:30:00 +1200

Young Finnish people are moving into Helsinki's biggest state-run rest home as the country grapples with a housing crisis. 

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The tech transforming golf

Sat, 24 Jun 2017 12:15:00 +1200

Sports fans are a demanding lot. They want live action, instant replays and super slow mo, as well as perceptive commentary and insightful analysis supported by the latest data beamed live and direct from the field as well as from the players themselves. Animation Research in Dunedin brought you the graphical interpretation of the 1992 Americas Cup. Fast forward 25 years and we can all be yachting experts without any of us falling overboard or the sea spray and lifejackets: all you need today is a screen! Similar technology is now being used in televised coverage of golf so the spectator will know far more about how a player is performing than the golfer or their caddie out on the fairway. Ben Taylor is the golf operations manager at Animation Research. He's just been working on TV coverage of the 117th US Open golf championship at Erin Hills in Wisconsin.

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This Way Up for Saturday 24 June 2017

Sat, 24 Jun 2017 12:01:00 +1200

The tech transforming golf, young folks' home in Finland, news in bed, and where to with wearables?

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An upswing for golf watchers

Thu, 22 Jun 2017 13:35:00 +1200

Soon spectators at home will know far more about how a golfer is performing than the player or their caddie. Ben Taylor from Animation Research in Dunedin is helping develop the technology.

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Science news: Parkinson's may originate in the gut

Sat, 17 Jun 2017 12:50:00 +1200

Further evidence Parkinson's disease may be triggered in the intestine raises hopes for earlier diagnosis and scientists in South Africa discover the disease trajectory of tuberculosis.

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Cycling – the key to a happier & healthier old age?

Sat, 17 Jun 2017 12:35:00 +1200

Take one trishaw – a bit like a tricycle but with two wheels at the front – add two passengers and a volunteer driver, then get out in the fresh air for a pedal. That's the essence of Cycling Without Age.

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Tech news: cryptocurrency booms & the latest in gaming

Sat, 17 Jun 2017 12:25:00 +1200

Why the market for digital currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum is booming; the latest from LA gaming conference E3 2017; and Crash Override, the malware that can take down power grids.

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How healthy is your gut?

Sat, 17 Jun 2017 12:15:00 +1200

Author and science journalist Michael Mosley turns his attention to our insides in the new book The Clever Guts Diet.

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This Way Up for Saturday 17 June 2017

Sat, 17 Jun 2017 12:01:00 +1200

The Clever Guts Diet, the cryptocurrency boom, Cycling Without Age, and how Parkinson's invades your brain.

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