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Preview: Radio NZ - This Way Up with Simon Morton

RNZ: This Way Up

This Way Up - slices of life for curious minds


Science news: pandas in peril & detecting prostate cancer

Sat, 10 Dec 2016 12:50:00 +1300

Some regions earmarked for panda conservation are too small to sustain them and clinical trials on a new biomarker for finding and eliminating prostate cancer begin next year.

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Drone repellent

Sat, 10 Dec 2016 12:40:00 +1300

An Australian tech company called DroneShield develops technology to identify drones and then take them down. No shots are actually fired, but its drone detection system uses high-powered microphones to pick up the distinctive sounds that drones make, and then target them up to a kilometre away. Oleg Vornik of DroneShield is selling the technology to law enforcement agencies and the military.

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Robotic rubbish rescue: cleaning our seas

Sat, 10 Dec 2016 12:35:00 +1300

One way to keep birds and other animals safe from plastic rubbish is to collect it before they have a chance to eat it. The Waste Shark is a car-sized robotic catamaran that collects rubbish in a net between its twin hulls and then takes it to a dock where it can be disposed of. Richard Hardiman came up with the idea, and has been trialling the technology at the giant port of Rotterdam.

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Why are our seabirds eating plastic?

Sat, 10 Dec 2016 12:25:00 +1300

Loads of plastic rubbish finds its way into the sea every year and seabirds are hunting it out and eating it, fooled into thinking it's food by the way it smells. Matt Savoca of the University of California Davis was on the team that did the research.

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Infomercial products: do they work?

Sat, 10 Dec 2016 12:15:00 +1300

George Block has been testing the claims of three 'as seen on TV' products offering easier ways to paint your home, water the garden, and chop up your garlic.

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This Way Up for Saturday 10 December 2016

Sat, 10 Dec 2016 12:01:00 +1300

Infomercial products: do they work? Then why seabirds are eating plastic and robotic rubbish rescue offers a new way to clean up our seas. Also drone repellent technology and science news (pandas in peril & detecting prostate cancer).

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Death by selfie

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 12:55:00 +1300

More and more people are dying taking photos of themselves every year. So where are the most dangerous locations, and could an app save lives in the future? Ponnurangam Kumaraguru of IIITD in Delhi is on a team of researchers looking at more than 130 selfie-related deaths since 2014.

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Tech news: Netflix downloads and mobile wallets

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 12:45:00 +1300

Peter Griffin on the news that Netflix is now offering a downloading option (and not just streaming) for some shows. Also things are heating up with mobile wallets, with the BNZ announcing that it will become the first local bank to offer Android Pay.

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Mapping natural disasters with digital technology

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 12:30:00 +1300

Patrick Meier uses a blend of publicly available data, eyewitness accounts. social media posts and drone technology to build up detailed pictures of places after earthquake, tsunami or other natural disasters strike. It's called 'crisis mapping' and basically involves using technology to get help as quickly as possible to the people who need it most.

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A real tree this Christmas?

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 12:15:00 +1300

Monica and Paul Mallinson aren't scared of needles: they grow real Christmas trees in rural Wairarapa. Every year they sell nearly 1000 pines, spruces, cedars and firs all grown on their 4-acre section.

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This Way Up for Saturday 3 December 2016

Sat, 03 Dec 2016 12:01:00 +1300

Growing Christmas trees, 'crisis mapping' after natural disasters, downloading from Netflix, and studying death by selfies.

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The Great Trail: Crossing Canada

Sat, 26 Nov 2016 12:50:00 +1300

A 24,000 kilometre long trail for trampers, cyclists and paddlers in Canada is nearly complete. The Great Trail's been nearly 25 years in the planning but when all the work is done, hopefully next year to coincide with Canada's 150th anniversary, it will become the longest recreational trail in the world.

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Are your gut microbes making you fat?

Sat, 26 Nov 2016 12:40:00 +1300

Eating high-calorie foods causes changes to the the bacteria living inside your gut which can hamper weight loss and contribute to yo-yo dieting, according to a new study.

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Barbecues: a buyer's guide

Sat, 26 Nov 2016 12:30:00 +1300

George Block of has been putting the latest barbecue models to the test, from portables to 4-burner behemoths. He's measured how well they're made, how easy they are to use, and how well they cook steak, sausages, chicken wings, and a whole chicken. With one manufacturer dominating the results, good budget options are hard to find.

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Earthquake alert! How seismic sensing works

Sat, 26 Nov 2016 12:15:00 +1300

Since the big Kaikoura earthquake last week there have already been well over 5000 aftershocks, all logged and recorded by GeoNet, the earthquake and volcano monitoring system that sends alerts to smartphones, and is made available on the web. So how does the movement of the earth's crust get recorded and then broadcast as an alert to your phone within seconds? To discover how the information moves from a fault line in the South Island to your digital device we headed out with some of the team from GeoNet.

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This Way Up for Saturday 26 November 2016

Sat, 26 Nov 2016 12:01:00 +1300

Earthquake alerts, BBQ buyer's guide, are your gut microbes making you fat? and Canada's Great Trail.

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Using VR to teach the surgeons of the future

Sat, 19 Nov 2016 12:50:00 +1300

The world's first virtual reality operation was streamed live from London recently to an audience in the tens of thousands in 140 countries.  

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Along a fractured highway

Sat, 19 Nov 2016 12:15:00 +1300

After the 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck at 12.02am on Monday 14th November near Hanmer Springs in the South Island of New Zealand, Simon Morton takes a trip by mountain bike north of Kaikoura to Blenheim along State Highway 1, seeing how locals and visitors are coping with the aftermath of the quake in some badly affected areas. 

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This Way Up - full episode

Sat, 19 Nov 2016 12:01:00 +1300

Along a fractured highway, and using VR to teach the surgeons of the future.

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Water, water, everywhere: the global thirst for bottled water

Sat, 12 Nov 2016 12:50:00 +1300

Birch water, canned water, electrolyte-enhanced water, children specific agua...the global market for H20 is going off! And even if you aren't thirsty the marketers will make sure there's a water to fit your lifestyle, and hydrate the inner You. According to journalist Sophie Elmhirst, bottled water has become the fastest growing drinks market in the world, with global sales already totalling NZ$200 billion, and projected to hit nearly NZ$400 billion by 2020.

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Google Maps for the human body

Sat, 12 Nov 2016 12:40:00 +1300

Professor Aviv Regev from MIT is one of the leaders of The Human Cell Atlas, an ambitious project that aims to map the 35 trillion cells in our body that make us who we are. It's been described as a Google Maps for the human body. Cataloguing every human cell, which will be done by an international team of labs, will provide a much better understanding of what we're actually made up of, and how diseases start and develop.

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Tech news: Amazon down under and the rise of the chatbot

Sat, 12 Nov 2016 12:25:00 +1300

This week, the giant retailer Amazon looks like it could be coming to Australia. Meanwhile, you might soon have to pay GST on all the goods you buy online, not just purchases of digital goods including music, software and films and TV shows. Yikes! Also the rise of the chatbot and how tech giants including Facebook are embracing this technology, using tailored chatbots to act as our personal assistants, and to sell us stuff.

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Tracking eyes to save lives

Sat, 12 Nov 2016 12:15:00 +1300

A local insurer is encouraging its customers to try in-vehicle eye tracking technology as a way of reducing road accidents. This Way Up looks at how this eye tracking technology works with Charles Dawson from Autosense and Ian Taylor from NZI Lumley.

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This Way Up for Saturday 12 November 2016

Sat, 12 Nov 2016 12:01:00 +1300

Tracking eyes to save lives, is Amazon heading Down Under?, a Google Maps for the human body and the global thirst for bottled water.

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Acrylamide in food: should we be worried?

Sat, 05 Nov 2016 12:50:00 +1300

Acrylamide's a chemical produced when starchy foods are cooked at high temperatures, so we ingest low doses of it in things like chips, toast, cereal and instant coffee. It's been in the news in Europe, where the European Union's just decided it won't go ahead with plans to restrict acrylamide levels in processed food, supposedly after some serious lobbying by the food industry. But does it need to be in our food at all, and should we be worried about it? Ian Shaw, Professor of Toxicology at The University of Canterbury, weighs up the evidence.

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SafariSeat: turning bike parts into an open-source wheelchair

Sat, 05 Nov 2016 12:45:00 +1300

Conventional wheelchairs aren't really an option in many parts of Africa; they're too expensive and they just can't handle the conditions. Janna Deeble grew up in Kenya and saw the problem for himself. His SafariSeat is a rugged, low cost wheelchair made from bicycle parts, that can be assembled by just about anyone using easy, open source plans.

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The doll doctor: repairing memories

Sat, 05 Nov 2016 12:25:00 +1300

Retired aircraft engineer Keith Martin and his wife Faith are doll doctors. Over the last 40 years they've saved about 10,000 dolls of all shapes and sizes.

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How video games are changing football

Sat, 05 Nov 2016 12:15:00 +1300

Popular video game titles like FIFA, Pro Evolution Soccer and Football Manager have sold hundreds of millions of copies worldwide. Now these games have become so realistic they have started influencing how players play the game, and even how the clubs assess transfer targets and recruit their staff. With Rory Smith of The New York Times.

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This Way Up for Saturday 5 November 2016

Sat, 05 Nov 2016 12:01:00 +1300

How video games are changing football, a visit to a doll hospital, using bike parts to build an open source wheelchair, and should we be worried about acrylamide in our food?

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