People & Society

Out of fascination and need, people have always studied other people. When scientific methods are applied to those observations, the studies help characterize and analyze our behavior, social and political institutions, family and community structures and our economies. Scientific studies of people and society help answer age-old human contemplations.

Breaking summer records

In episode 60, Charlie and Jordan return from summer break to investigate the future of summers. According to NSF-funded research at NCAR, in 50 years, summers across most of the globe could be hotter than any other experienced by people, ever.

Bilingual and monolingual baby brains differ in response to language

Before they can even speak, the brains of bilingual babies show differences in how they respond to language sounds compared to monolingual babies. The study used the brain-recording technique called magnetoencephalography (MEG) to measure brain responses in 11-month-old babies.

NSF Science Now: Episode 43

In this week's episode, we follow a construction site drone, examine tunable window technology, learn how words are represented in the brain and, finally, we examine 240 million-year-old fossils.

Fish-enomics

In episode 48, Jordan and Charlie discuss the economic benefits of regulating mercury pollution. Researchers at MIT were able to translate the estimated health impacts of mercury pollution for US populations into economic benefits.

'Go Baby Go!' Mobility for kids with disabilities

The exploration experiences that children have at an early age play an important role in cognitive development. A research team from the University of Delaware, led by physical therapy professor Cole Galloway, is working on ways to help infants with walking and crawling issues have those kinds of experiences.

Computers that see, hear and think like humans

A multidisciplinary research and education center at the University of Maryland is developing computer systems that can replicate human sensory skills like eyesight, hearing and perception.

2015 editor's pick: enormous underwater fossil graveyard found

In January 2015, anthropologists and paleontologists uncovered what could be the largest single collection of lemur remains ever found. The remains were hidden in a series of underwater caves in a remote desert region of Madagascar. Described as a "lemur graveyard," the discovery of hundreds of potentially 1,000-year-old skeletons make it one of the most unique animal gravesites in the world. This discovery could be important for understanding animal and human ancestry, and result in a new era for underwater paleontology.

Automony in robots

Researchers are investigating autonomy in robotics that includes action recognition. At the heart of this technique lies a novel active tracking and segmentation method that monitors the changes in appearance and topological structure of manipulated objects.

Beyond the classroom and into the future

This video visually explains the Stark State College project's approach to broadening science, technology, engineering and math participation. Through addressing the root causes of the problem, a perpetual solution has been created that will impact the entire community.

Self-control

In (Thanksgiving-inspired) episode 34, Charlie and Jordan explore how your ability to exercise self-control may depend on how quickly your brain factors healthfullness into food choices.