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144 – Flying from Aircraft Carriers

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(average: 4.15)
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This is the long-awaited episode on flying from aircraft carriers. Our guest is Scotty Bates who flew from US carriers in the 70s. We discuss all aspects of carrier aviation including training, cat shots, arrested landing, pattern work and how all of it changes at night or in bad weather.

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143 – Collision Avoidance with FLARM

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(average: 4.43)
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In this episode we talk with Gerhard Wesp, Development Manager Avionics at Flarm Technology GmbH about FLARM, a collision avoidance system for gliders and general aviation. We talk about the history of the FLARM system as well as about newer developments such as the PowerFlarm. Mostly, however, we talk about how FLARM works and how PowerFlarm integrates with Transponders and ADS-B systems.

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142 – Making Ayreon’s Music

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(average: 4.81)
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In this episode we talk with Arjen Anthony Lucassen, the man behind Ayreon about his music. We discuss about composition, instruments, recording, editing, mastering, as well as about some other random relating to his music and the music business. The episode also contains some of his songs to give non-Ayreon fans the necessary background. We also included parts of those songs Arjen cited as influences or used as examples for classical sounds.

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140 – Self-Driving Cars

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(average: 4.55)
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This episode is about autonomous vehicles (aka self-driving cars). Our guest is Jonathan Sprinkle, assistant professor at the department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Arizona. We talk about the topic mainly from the perspective of (software and systems) engineering, but also address legal and societal questions.

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135 – High-Energy Neutrinos and the IceCube Neutrino Observatory

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(average: 4.73)
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This episode covers the discovery (strictly speaking, “strong evidence”) for high-energy (astrophysical) neutrinos. The discovery was announced on 22 November 2013. In this episode we talk with DESY‘s Markus Ackermann about the the evidence for astrophysical neutrinos and why they are important. We also discuss how the the IceCube Neutrino Observatory works, which opened up this new field of astronomy. We conclude with a brief conversation about traveling to, and living at the south pole, where IceCube is located.

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133 – The Space Shuttle (Part 2, Operations)

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(average: 4.83)
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This is the second of two episodes on the the Space Shuttle’s systems and operations. We talk to Davide Sivolella, an aerospace engineer who has written a quite technical book on the shuttle. In this episode we talk about some of the shuttle’s operations, including launch, landing and proximity operations in space.

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132 – The Space Shuttle (Part 1, Systems)

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(average: 4.83)
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This is the first of two episodes on the the Space Shuttle’s systems and operations. We talk to Davide Sivolella, an aerospace engineer who has written a quite technical book on the shuttle. In this episode we talk about some of the shuttle’s systems, including the structure, the engines, the boosters and the thermal protection system.

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130 – Violin Physics

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(average: 4.67)
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In this episode we investigate the physics of the violin in a conversation with Jim Woodhouse of Cambridge University. We discuss the way the bow interacts with the strings, the different vibration modes of the body and how they influence the sound and the playability of the violin as well as how scientific methods (can) help with understanding existing and creating new violins.

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127 – Wolfram Alpha

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(average: 4.28)
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This episode covers Wolfram|Alpha, Wolfram‘s computational knowledge engine and the backend of Siri. Our guest is Michael Trott, the chief scientist of Wolfram|Alpha. In the episode we discuss how Wolfram|Alpha works, including aspects of language processing, ontologies and semantics as well as presentation of results to the user.

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126 – Mathematica

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(average: 4.56)
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In this episode we discuss Mathematica, Wolfram Research’s technical computing system. With our guest, kernel developer Daniel Lichtblau, we discuss Mathematica’s capabilities for symbolic, numeric and other forms of computation, and we can do and how it works internally.