264: Doing Things In Phases And Making Your World Bigger

Welcome to episode 264, with a return to our roots of the host discussing a topic or two, along with a stream of consciousness. This one involves breaking things down into parts, or phases, and what it takes to make your world bigger.

Your world is the stuff right around you, whether it be your table, or your vehicle, or the energy around you. Adjusting these items can come from a focus on them, and this concept is discussed in the episode.

263: Shane O’Mara | Walking, Its Benefits, And The Mind Connection, From “In Praise Of Walking”

There are few things more valuable than regular walking and activity in this pandemical time of 2020, and neuroscientist Professor Shane O’Mara brings us the value and basis of walking in episode 263. We discuss his latest book In Praise Of Walking: The New Science of how We Walk, and why Its Good for Us.

Professor O’Mara is Professor of Experimental Brain Research at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland. He explores brain systems, memory, cognition, behavior, and organizations. He got his DPhil from the University of Oxford, and currently does work for the Institute of Neuroscience at Trinity. He has also written past books Why Torture Doesn’t Work, and A Brain for Business.

Show notes:

  • how Professor O’Mara got into the field of brain research
  • brain regions, and specifically the subiculum, and how each one can be relevant to the brain as a whole
  • the value of walking, and what it brings to the table for personal health
  • the way that we are walking minds, with the body connected below the brain heading the whole framework
  • impact on creativity that comes from walking times, whether during or after
  • some cities that have good walkability, and what walking value means for cities and their further development
  • our mental map of where we are and where we are going, through the activity of walking, or even for planning out our life
  • the value of journaling, and how it can put our time together into a map
  • how walking doesn’t lead to the same kinds of damage that regular running does
  • some researchers Professor O’Mara has liked, included Dr. Robert Sapolsky

Glad to have Shane on the show – you can check out his material on his website, his article in The Guardian, or his latest book on Amazon.

262: Matthew Cobb | The Past And Future Of Neuroscience In “The Idea Of The Brain”

Welcome Professor Matthew Cobb of the University of Manchester, author of The Idea of the Brain: The Past and Future of Neuroscience, to episode 262 of the show. His latest book is about the history of neuroscience, and its recent roots, and how that develops the idea of the brain, while our current understanding of the brain is still very limited. Inspirations come from other researchers, as well as Danish scientist Nicolas Steno of the 17th century.

Professor Cobb is is Professor of Zoology at the University of Manchester, and got his Ph.D. in Psychology and Genetics from the University of Sheffield in England. He had a postdoctoral position at the Institute of Psychiatry in London. Others books of his include The Egg & Sperm Race and Life’s Greatest Secret: The Race to Crack the Genetic Code. He has studied animal behavior, human psychology, science history, and more.

Show notes:

  • how Professor Cobb got into the study of the mind, neuroscience, and fly larvae growth and processes
  • the way that Nicolas Steno informed the way Professor Cobb looks at the mind
  • the reductionist view, and how it does not allow for picking up on information regarding detailed nuance
  • his upcoming book on smell, and how that relates to the virus of our current pandemic, with its attachment to smell receptors
  • how one structure of the brain is not alone in processing information, separate from other regions of the brain
  • Eve Marder, and her study on the small number of neurons in the lobster’s stomach, with associated models of these neurons
  • research in the field done in Manchester and the UK region
  • fly maggots and their neurons, as well as the priorities that their narrow neural system requires
  • how maggots have biological clocks in the same light as humans and other animals
  • replacement of neurons and memories in small animals
  • being skeptical of science that has come before, versus going with the research that has been read (question inspired by Professor Cobb’s recent interview with past interviewee Michael Shermer)
  • a message for all

It was good to have Professor Cobb on the show. You can check out The Idea of the Brain on Amazon, his upcoming book Smell with Oxford University Press, follow on Twitter @MatthewCobb, or look at his academic biography.

261: Emma Rose Bienvenu | Predictions Of Coronavirus Impacts On Work, Automation, Medicine, And More

Welcome Emma Rose Bienvenu, attorney, L.L.M., and Master of Finance and Economics, to episode 261 of the show. I came upon Emma through her article on Medium’s Marker business subsection, entitled “7 Predictions for a Post-Coronavirus World“. The article details the path that our world can take in upcoming months and years, based on the pandemic, and provides insight into elements we can all benefit from examining.

In her own work, Emma is focused on international trade, commerce, finance, and technology. She has worked in global asset management, public and private mergers and acquisitions, and international arbitration. She has an L.L.M. from U Penn Law and Wharton, a J.D. from McGill, and a Master of Economics and Finance from Sciences Po in Paris. Her experiences have taken her through many regions, including Hong Kong, London, France, and her current region of Quebec. She brings her depth and expertise to the table in our discussion.

Show notes:

  • Emma’s background, and some of her career accomplishments
  • how Emma has ended up more in the legal field, from a family of lawyers, and where she contributes in the category of law
  • what Emma wrote about international arbitration, which was included in a multi-page international law textbook excerpt, along with an example
  • places lived in by Emma, including France, Hong Kong, London, and more
  • her article “7 Predictions for a Post-Coronavirus World”
  • how e-commerce, delivery, and related services will take off following the pandemic (“bits and boxes”, as put succinctly by Emma)
  • where Esports will go based on the momentary push into the virtual world
  • the way that some work will be unable to go remote, whereas those tasks that could be done remotely will be impelled to that direction
  • changes to manufacturing that have room to develop
  • how time is being saved through the non-commute and lack of unsubstantiated work time
  • where seminars and online learning can go, or what the default may become
  • impact on supply chains globally, and how there is a balance between efficiency and resiliency
  • how countries benefit by relying on each other
  • the ways that surveillance will increase, with its publicity based on protecting people and their health
  • depth of cooperation between nations that can be established in coming years, as required to have a functional response
  • illumination of societal dynamics, and Quebec’s quick ability to unite for a common goal
  • relevance of placing value on experts, as opposed to those not as apt in a field
  • risk-taking, as associated with business in relation to government
  • value of being bilingual, and its connection to personality or growth
  • qualities that Emma finds to be valuable in colleagues, and a message to all people about their own ability

It was wonderful to have Emma on the show, and you can follow her on social such as Medium, Twitter, or LinkedIn. Feel free to check out her article at 7 Predictions for a Post-Coronavirus World. To more great content~.

260: Claire Bidwell Smith | Grief Therapist On Handling The Passing Of Others In “Anxiety: The Missing Stage of Grief”

Handling the stages of grief after a loss is challenging, but grief therapist and author Claire Bidwell Smith brings her knowledge and experience to the table in this category with her latest book Anxiety: The Missing Stage of Grief. In it, Claire details how one can handle the anxiety that is associated with a loss. She lost her mother and father to cancer by the time she had turned 25, bringing about a level of understanding normally reserved for those at a much later time in their lives.

Claire has written multiple books, including The Rules of Inheritance and After This: When Life Is Over, Where Do We Go? As an author, speaker, and grief expert, she has written for the New York Times, Washington Post, The Guardian, and many more publications. She has a Master’s Degree from Antioch University.

Show notes:

  • how to deal with the loss of loved ones, whether from family or friends
  • why anxiety is one of the key stages of grief to be addressed
  • some of Claire’s story regarding how she got to be a grief therapist
  • what kinds of issues she normally helps clients with
  • what people are currently facing in New York and other regions due to the epidemic, and how they can better handle end-of-life management
  • the way to prepare for a loss prior to it being a huge issue

You can check out Claire on her website, Instagram @clairebidwellsmith, or on Amazon for her book. Glad to have her on~.

259: Katherine Mangu-Ward | Editor-in-chief Of Reason Magazine On Pandemic Impacts And Internet Expansion

Welcome guest Katherine Mangu-Ward, editor-in-chief of Reason Magazine, to episode 259 of the show. I found Katherine from her article contribution about coronavirus impacts, where she discussed the changes barriers to moving our lives online.

Reason is a libertarian magazine running for nearly half a century, with over 50000 monthly readers, with the theme of “free minds and free markets”. Katherine is editor-in-chief of the magazine, has a degree in philosophy and political science from Yale, and currently resides in Washington, DC. We discussed her career, topics presented in her article about coronavirus impacts, and more.

Show notes:

  • how Katherine got to her current position at Reason Magazine
  • what it means to be a libertarian, and how the magazine suits her
  • the way that the coronavirus is impacting readership of Reason Magazine and other online publications
  • the effort required to do successful investigative journalism
  • a bit about a round-table that Katherine does with other co-hosts
  • information about the subscribers of Reason, and how they are spread out around the country
  • how the barriers to schooling and other industries moving online will fall or change due to this moment
  • what parents see as important with regards to school
  • how liberty is currently being impacted, and how it will look after this pandemic
  • the element of polarization, as it relates to Reason and its feedback
  • where people find the ideas that are important to them
  • how science fiction brings up the concept of “what if” for life scenarios
  • a message for all the people

You can check out Katherine on Twitter at @kmanguward, look at her author bio on Reason, or check out her latest articles.

258: Shan Rizvi | Technology Startup Founder Of “Just Ads” And “Pencil News” On Mindset And The Current Moment

From founding Just Ads to Pencil News, technology startup founder Shan Rizvi has made his way through the entrepreneurial landscape. Like myself, he is inclined toward a variety of topics and fields, like philosophy, neuroscience, art, music, and technology. He joins on episode 258 of the show to discuss the current moment, and joins me on points related to mindset, society as a whole, his travels along his path, and more.

I originally met Shan and his wife Maryam, along with other great individuals, at a hosted gathering by Dr. Azra Raza in the great state of New York. That is where they reside, and discussion of the regional impacts due to the virus were include in this episode. There continues to be much value connected to group functions with curious and warm individuals from different backgrounds, habits, lifestyles, and perspectives.

Show notes:

  • Shan as a technology startup founder, and what he has worked on, including Pencil News and Just Ads
  • how using and performing remote work for years can lead to a smoother transition to the current moment
  • how we met, and how he met his wife Maryam, who is a doctor currently responding to the epidemic directly, working with patients
  • a way to think about how parts of the brain are experts of their own domain, mentioning the key items from their part
  • if meditation is connected to showcasing those elements
  • the value that deep breathing can bring to you
  • why group meetings can be very valuable for creative and curious individuals, and what Shan connects with in such meetings
  • countries that Shan has been to, what pulled him to them, and his progression through those various countries
  • the value to studying abroad, and the total transformation that took place in his self-perspective due to it
  • how Shan could see himself from his original region of Pakistan in the perspective of people in the new places he went to (Finland, Sweden, etc.)
  • noticing different customs that challenge your prior ones
  • Shan’s thoughts on the concept of “mental health”, and how it takes into account philosophy, self-awareness, and more, as compared with commonly related to some type of illness
  • the way we will get to a clearer view of what our minds do
  • getting to a point of seeing 10X clearer scans of our minds
  • a message about the current moment in time, and how we as people can think about the impacts to countries that are in a developing stage
  • broader-scale thinking of people

Thanks goes to Shan for coming through on the show. You can check him out on his website at ShanRizvi.com or on Twitter at @ShanRizvi.

257: Peter T. Coleman | Social Psychologist Navigating Conflict Resolution Dynamics Toward Sustainable Peace

Social psychologist and Professor of Psychology and Education at Columbia University Dr. Peter T. Coleman joins on episode 257 of the show, bringing forth his expertise on conflicts and their peaceful and productive resolution. He has been the director of Deutsch International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution for over 20 years, and is author of the 2004 book Making Conflict Work: Harnessing the Power of Disagreement, as well as upcoming 2021 book The Way Out: How to Overcome Toxic Polarization.

Similar to Dr. Raza of episode 249, Professor Coleman works at Columbia University in New York, and we spoke about the impacts of the pandemic in the region, as well as potential outcomes that manage future conflict related to it. He had written a message about the situation in this Politico article, and we explored that and more. Through his experience with many levels of conflict management and understanding, whether of the base form, or of a governmental size, Dr. Coleman is able to get to the meaning behind what people could be opposing each other for.

Show notes:

  • Dr. Coleman and his experience with conflict management and resolution
  • how he got into his current position, and what he does as director of the Deutsch International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution
  • how conflicts are different at different levels of society and age
  • what it takes to resolve issues for people of a younger age group, such as in their 20s, and how that differs from managing the interests of older folks
  • an example of tensions or conflict from a time period at Columbia University
  • how it is relevant to allow all parties to voice their concerns in a conflict, so as to resolve it in some form for all
  • many examples of where Dr. Coleman has been brought in to assist
  • how value differences can be the source of much conflict
  • a relation between conflict management, and neurological frameworks of decision-making and energy conservation
  • how the long-term conflicts we have seen in the world are much more detailed and nuanced than Team 1 versus Team 2
  • a small example of conflict I bring up from the basketball courts
  • instrumental violence versus expressive violence
  • how the pandemic has led to some types of conflict in terms of how it is perceived, due to polarization
  • the way that times of global struggle can bring groups together which would not have prior, due to the previous battle not making sense in the time of heightened danger/risk
  • the quote “never let a good crisis go to waste”, which I heavily identify with
  • Dr. Coleman’s progression through his writing and books
  • the way that certain conflicts have elements which keep them in place, and what it takes to look at removing the holds on their clearance
  • a message about how to view conflicts

I was glad to have Professor Coleman on the show. He represents well for Columbia Unviersity, and has messages and experience to help people manage their differences better. You can check out his faculty page, Wikipedia, and his listing of books on Amazon.

256: Daniel James Smith & Krystall Schott | Music And Creativity With The Band “Untitled Social Experiment”, Known As “USE”

Welcome to April of 2020 and episode 256 of the show, with the guest duo of Daniel James Smith and Krystall Schott, who make up the band “Untitled Social Experiment”, also known as “USE”. With songs like “Sugar Rush” and “Psycho“, this pairing has brought solid production quality into the content they put out, with messages to understand underneath.

Daniel has been making music for some years under the moniker of T.O.L.D, and brings his experience and skills to Untitled Social Experiment. Krystall has done painting, sang in choir early on, and after modeling in recent years, she made her return to music when teaming up with Daniel to form creative art. Synths and melodies and singing tones abound in the music made by USE.

Show notes:

  • how the group and duo originated, and who they are inspired by
  • the production of art in a light nature, but keeping a focus on content creation
  • how introductions and key moments in life can seem blurry
  • what it takes to get along with someone, based on similarities
  • some bands the group would work with or like to emulate in some form
  • the pandemic and quarantine, and where it leaves each person to self-process, and looking toward how it leaves society
  • what age the members started doing music at, and what types of instruments or singing they have done
  • how support at the right time in life can lead to quicker results
  • switching from one goal to another once it seems too readily available, versus sticking to one thing at a time
  • the way that the members complement one another for production
  • a book called “The Dao of Capital” being read at the current time, and what it represents for temporal understanding
  • the qualities that each band members looks for in others
  • the song Adam & Eve Meet Snake, Say No to apple, Stay in Paradise Forever mentioned in the episode
  • other types of content being put out, whether on Tik Tok or elsewhere
  • periods of flow and lack of flow, and how to think about them
  • a couple of questions back to me about me and my show
  • messages from each member about life

Glad to have Daniel and Krystall on the show~. You can check out their content on Spotify and other audio platforms online, along with some of their content featured on T.O.L.D. You can also check them out on Instagram at @untitledsocialexperiment.

255: Michael Wilt | Discussing Education And Society With A Mathematician And Professor

When it comes to applied mathematics, guest Michael Wilt is both a teacher and interested in its usage. He professes math to the youth, and joins us on episode 255 of the show, discussing his career, people-based elements of society, and more.

Michael got his Masters in Applied Math at California State University of Los Angeles, and has taught various levels of math to high school students, high-risk students, middle school students, and community college students. He also has his own product line of merchandise called “Unicorns and Stuff”.

Show notes:

  • how Michael progressed through the development of his career
  • the kind of teaching that Michael does, and what he hopes to impart on his students
  • development of a curriculum, and how that is the key element of education, with a blueprint for the students
  • the feel around the pandemic before it was a situated item here in Los Angeles, and discussion about the numbers behind it
  • why it is good to understand exponential growth and other graph-based concepts
  • the difference between small and big picture view
  • how Los Angeles and San Francisco differ in status-related mindset
  • energy transfer between people to others who they interact with
  • how people view people in terms of pretty or smart
  • a great singing rendition from Michael, along with an attempt on my end, as well as rapping on both of our parts
  • where Michael is working now, and how it is going with students who are labeled as Twice Exceptional
  • working with students who have ADHD or Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • comments on rolled-up sleeves and sense of fashion
  • a bit of reverse interview from Michael to me
  • a mug-plug by Michael about his mug and merchandise brand

This episode was recorded earlier in the month, prior to mass spreading of COVID-19. You can check out Michael’s merchandise at Unicorns and Stuff. Glad to have him on~.

254: John Marzluff | Birds, Farms, And Food Detailed “In Search Of Meadowlarks”

Welcome Dr. John Marzluff, Professor of Wildlife Sciences at the College of the Environment at the University of Washington in Seattle, to episode 254 of The Armen Show. Dr. Marzluff “studies how humans affect birds through habitat fragmentation and increased urbanization, as well as the challenges of conserving birds on islands.

Most of his focus is on ravens, crows, and jays, which are in the bird grouping known as “corvids”, and he looks at how birds affect people, such as with our art or language. Many of his books have focused on birds, including his latest book In Search of Meadowlarks: Birds, Farms, and Food in Harmony with the Land.

“In recognition of his work, he has been awarded the H.R. Painton Awards from the Cooper Ornithological Society, as well as the Washington State Book Award for general non-fiction.” In this episode, we discuss his latest non-fiction piece.

Show notes:

  • the current moment, with the world slowing down due to the pandemic
  • the career trajectory that Dr. Marzluff took to getting into decades of ornithological work
  • how we can take a look around our world with a relaxed pace, so as to maintain our Earth in good condition
  • the kind of research that Dr. Marzluff does, and places he has performed bird analysis at
  • what birds can represent about the impact that humans have had
  • the impact of corn and soybean subsidies, and what the farmland in the US would look like without those subsidies
  • why meadowlarks were chosen for the title of the book
  • farming as related to water consumption and planning
  • a closing message

Thanks to Dr. Marzluff for joining on this episode. You can check out In Search of Meadowlarks on Amazon, or take a look at his faculty page.

253: A Response To The Current Moment Of Global Alteration

With the world in a state of rapid adaptation due to health concerns, I discuss some of the elements connected to the scenario in episode 253.

There are the straightforward health concerns, along with financial impacts, social impacts, relationship-based impacts, and impacts between countries. Though it has been a bit disturbing to see the current moment arising from a couple of months ago, based on much I had read from scientists I follow, it is worth knowing how it will go.

Show notes:

  • the current viral scenario, and what it means for the globe
  • how rapidly it is changing, and what adaptation to the moment really means
  • some of the global impacts of a virus that has no current cure, and transfers readily, silently, and with a lagging period of symptoms
  • the social impacts of such a virus, and how it can affect creation of new relationships
  • the direction of our global society over the next couple months
  • the power of resilience and character in these key months, separating people by power-of-will
  • how the good and bad of preparation before such an event are both amplified once the event arises
  • and more

Glad to have you check out this episode. The virus has thrown off a lot of the routine of the world, but we as people are resilient and respond to whatever comes our way. To more.

252: Allan Ropper | Mental Illness, Syphilis, And Hysteria In “How The Brain Lost Its Mind”

As Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School, Dr. Allan Ropper is able to relayed his decades of neurology experience to students, and as deputy editor of the New England Journal of Medicine, he is able to help edit, guide, and shape the selection of articles that meet the criteria for one of the top science journals of our time. He is also lead editor for one of the top neurology textbooks of current time, Principles of Neurology, now in its 11th edition.

Dr. Ropper joins on episode 252 to discuss his recent book How the Brain Lost Its Mind: Sex, Hysteria, and the Riddle of Mental Illness. It covers a history of hysteria, syphilis, and conditions that represent the deviation between the brain and the mind. Our discussion includes topics in the book, Dr. Ropper’s career, neurology as a whole, and how past responses to mental illness have functioned.

Show notes:

  • how Dr. Ropper got to be in the field of neurology
  • how the mind and brain are connected, and why the book relates the two
  • the way that Dr. Ropper influenced the field of neurological intensive care
  • what it is like being an editor for the New England Journal of Medicine, including some details about the editing process
  • the field of research that is in its current moment, with an increase in research and published papers
  • how individuals would like to get control of their aging or life conditions, but how we have only come so far
  • the difference between neurology and neurosurgery, including some of the disorders of each
  • what separates a brain disorder from a mind disorder
  • the potential over-medicalization of every-day life
  • the issues of syphilis and hysteria as detailed in the book
  • how people come into the doctor with a broad description, and a neurologist has to reverse engineer the nervous system issue
  • what Moya Moya is, and the details of this specific condition
  • why many conditions of neurology do not have a known source
  • how so much is described as though A or B is wrong with a person
  • a message regarding the theme of the book and Dr. Ropper’s link of that to brain conditions

It was great to have Dr. Ropper on the show. He is an educating individual who is receptive and perceptive. You can check out How the Brain Lost Its Mind on Amazon.

251: Sir Peter Gluckman | Former Chief Science Advisor Details Unintended Consequences Of Innovation In “Ingenious”

From his start as a pediatrician, to serving as Chief Science Advisor to the Prime Minister of New Zealand for nearly a decade, Sir Peter Gluckman has represented category of science and society. He joins on this episode to discuss his career, along with his recently released book Ingenious: The Unintended Consequences of Human Innovation.

As President-elect of the International Science Council, Sir Gluckman will continue to provide value in the fields of science, health, global impacts, and more. His book Ingenious focuses on how our innovation has led to impacts we did not plan for, and how we can work with these consequences, and help to prevent unwanted future consequences.

Show notes:

  • how Sir Gluckman’s career has panned out over time, and how he started out as a pediatrician
  • his experience as Chief Science Advisor for the Prime Minister of New Zealand
  • what it means to be a “knowledge broker”, and how connecting people to the right people is an important skill
  • the ways that Sir Gluckman has written about or focused on reduction of obesity, as well as being co-chair of the Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity
  • partnering writing books with his co-author Mark Hanson, and what each brought to the table across the decades
  • how the early experience between parent and child affects so much of a person’s life
  • the important of psychological resilience, and how it separates segments of individuals
  • how evolutionary thinking is a unifying element of biology
  • the global impacts we are facing now, which we did not have in place 200 years ago
  • the belief or non-belief by citizens that their governments can help to take care of basic societal needs
  • dealing with misinformation that is released, and how governments or public companies can adapt
  • the level of research put out by smaller countries, versus the percentage put out by some of the larger countries, along with some specific examples
  • whether a centrally-situated response wins out against solutions around the world, to global issues
  • a message about how to cope with rapid environmental, social, and technological changes which are taking place

You can check out Sir Peter Gluckman’s Wikipedia page, University of Auckland page, or Ingenious on Amazon. Glad to have him on~.

250: As We Make Our Way Forward

Welcome to episode 250 of the show~. This returns to the style of me speaking by myself, doing some impressions, telling some story, and updating on recent content.

There is great material to cover in March, and we look towards continued growth and improvement.

Show notes:

  • the interconnection between guests and episodes
  • using Zoom for recordings, and how it has been
  • the Kobe memorial, and what he represents as related to what I do
  • the fun of getting books in the mail
  • made up stories
  • impressions of various podcast types

249: Azra Raza | Myelodysplastic Syndromes And Current Oncology In “The First Cell”

When it comes to cancer treatment, Dr. Azra Raza of the MDS Center at Columbia University has been working with patients for decades. She is an expert on myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), which are disorders caused by poorly formed or otherwise nonfunctional blood cells, and acute myeloid leukemia (AML), which affects 1/3 of MDS patients. This type of cancer, along with the stories of many patients and the progressions of their treatment, is detailed in Dr. Raza’s book The First Cell: And the Human Costs of Pursuing Cancer to the Last.

Dr. Azra Raza is the Chan Soon-Shiong Professor of Medicine and Director of Myelodysplastic Syndrome Center at Columbia University. She has previously held positions at the Roswell Park Cancer Institute, University of Cincinnati, Rush University, and the University of Massachusetts, and has been published in numerous notable journals like The New England Journal of Medicine, Nature, Blood, and Cancer.

One of the items I found most interesting was that Dr. Raza has collected a repository of over 50000 tissue samples from MDS and acute leukemia patients, beginning in the early 1980s. We talk about this in the episode, but I find a lot of value in being the firsthand resource in some specific category or field.

Show notes:

  • how Dr. Raza got into her career in the first place, and specifically into the field of MDS treatment
  • the 50000+ patient tissue samples that Dr. Raza has collected, and what they mean to potential research that can be done today
  • why mouse models do not provide a good representation of how a treatment will work in people
  • how Dr. Raza’s tissue sample data compare with the collection of samples presented in a Nature article/study of many types of cancer
  • the search for valid biomarkers that represent an issue or non-issue
  • how being the individual who does the most in one specific category makes you the prime source
  • what the reductionist philosophy can do if it is taken too far in responding to a health-disturbing pathogen
  • cancer not being of one type, but instead quickly altering generation by generation, leads to a variety of cancer cells showing up
  • why the first cell is the most important one in the production of cancer
  • the likelihood of treating an average cancer patient in 2020, and the associated mortality
  • how there is much value in early testing for cancers
  • the difference between something working in spite of something or because of something
  • some of the experience shared with fellow lab mate Siddhartha Mukherjee, and a message from his research insight
  • a great closing poem by Dr. Raza

It was wonderful to have Dr. Raza on the show. You can check out The First Cell on Amazon, Dr. Azra’s Columbia University page, or a talk she gave with fellow lab mate researcher Siddartha Mukherjee.

248: Nicholas P. Money | The Mycologist Leads Us Through The Potential Path For Humans

In the Department of Biology at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, Dr. Nicholas P. Money brings his expertise to teaching about the world of fungi/mushrooms, as well as related organisms like yeast and microbes.

In his book, The Selfish Ape: Human Nature and Our Path to Extinction, Dr. Money leads us through some of what has led humans to where they currently are, and as well, to our potential positive or negative paths down the line.

Show notes:

  • how Dr. Money got into mycology in the first place, and what kind of work he has done with fungi and mushrooms in recent decades
  • the way that fungi and mushrooms relate with the lives of humans, and what kinds of takeaways we can take from their evolution
  • what it means that food comes from entropy and ends with sugar
  • some of the evolution that has occurred in a non-linear fashion, along with features passed on for different future functions than original
  • information about some of the high-speed camera work Dr. Money worked on early on to see fungi releasing spores in slow detail
  • how we are more closely related to fungi than we are to plants or other animals
  • whether we have a potential good path out of upcoming extinction, due to global warming and related industrial pollution
  • what population growth means to the potential of human success on Earth
  • some of the scientists that Dr. Money liked or worked with

Glad to have Dr. Money on the show. You can check out his faculty page, personal page at The Mycologist, or The Selfish Ape on Amazon.

247: Lydia Denworth | How Life’s Fundamental Bond Develops And Matters For Well-Being In “Friendship”

Episode 247 is on the scene with science journal Lydia Denworth, author of Friendship: The Evolution, Biology, and Extraordinary Power of Life’s Fundamental Bond. It covers the basis behind why we as people become friends, and how it can be so powerful. Some of the greatest things done by people came from strong friendships.

Lydia Denworth has contributed to Scientific American, and writes the ‘Brain Waves’ blog for Psychology Today. Her work is regularly across such publications as Scientific American Mind, Parents, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Bloomberg News. Regarding Friendship, Dr. Nicholas Christakis of episode 232 said “If you care about what really matters in life, read this fantastic natural history of human friendship.”

Show notes:

  • what led to Lydia getting into the field of science journalism
  • analyzing and discussing the concept of friendship
  • how science benefits from reaching out to other work in related fields
  • why friendship is the piece of the relationship story that was left out for a long time
  • where long-running research in field sites is done on animals like macaques to see their social patterns
  • how neuroscientists can see differences in brain activity in early years of a person’s life, representing rapid growth/adjustment
  • how empathy and theory-of-mind is developed at a certain age range
  • what macaques do to subjugate other ones, and how stress responses are a part of the social win/loss paradigm
  • the way that public speaking or math can be used to examine stress level
  • what loneliness represents about the person in that position, regarding their mental health
  • the lunch time that exists in middle school, and what it represents for socialization and internal battles
  • some of the illumination on women in science in the book, as well as one way that expanded a direction of research
  • the types of friendships that are more valuable in the long-term, and how many close friends the average person has
  • how there needs to be back-and-forth in a successful long-term friendship
  • what face-to-face interaction means for friendship and its growth

Having Lydia on the show was a nice opportunity to learn about friendship and its value. You can check out her TED Talk “The Science of Friendship”, her home page and updates, or look at Friendship on Amazon.

246: Larry Rogero | Building Sustainable Wind Power And Renewable Energy Solutions For Corporations

When it comes to sustainable energy solutions, Larry Rogero has been implementing them for corporations for decades. I first met Larry through his wife Christel, who is my friend and mother of episode 208 guest nutritionist Erika Stowe-Madison. Larry brings a focus and deliberation to what he does that is necessary for long-lasting results.

Larry is Chief Operating and Strategy Officer at Summit Inspection Services, and has worked in environmental affairs for decades. He got his Masters in Environment Management at Yale University, and his Bachelors in Biological Sciences from my institution of higher learning, UC Santa Barbara.

Show notes:

  • a superb intro by Christel
  • what led Larry into the field of environmental concern in the first place
  • how wind power has been used in recent years, and where it is going in coming years
  • the ways that Larry has contributed to his organization, and what it takes to get a wind power project in place and going
  • some of the issues with installing wind turbines in new places
  • environmental concerns in coming years, and the amount of renewable energy we currently have in place
  • a reverse interview with Larry asking me many questions about the show and my ideas behind it
  • books read by both of us, and people we both look to as representative people to check out or follow
  • and much more

It was great to have Larry on the show, and it was neat to explore his methodical nature that he has displayed in his field for decades.

245: Sarah Rose Cavanagh | Psychologist On Emotions, Collective Consciousness, And Emotional Regulation In “Hivemind”

We dive into the collective consciousness of humans on episode 245 with Dr. Sarah Rose Cavanagh, author of “Hivemind”. The book takes us through how group elements and stories spread among people, the ways that people can build each other up or tear each other down via the internet, vulnerabilities of certain groups of people, and lessons for people to take through their days.

Dr. Cavanagh is Associate Professor of Psychology at Assumption College, and got her PhD in Experimental Psychology from Tufts University. Her research is on how patterns of emotional reactivity illuminates trajectories of risk and resilience in individuals.

Show notes:

  • how Dr. Cavanagh got into psychology in the first place
  • the way that elements can spread from group to group
  • what the hivemind represents, and how we operate as a collective consciousness
  • the way that stories can propel a fiction or nonfiction from a small form to a societal belief
  • the impact that online frameworks have had on people, whether to build them up or tear them down
  • who is most vulnerable to manipulation due to their current life condition and physiology
  • how many are walking through life in the form of a constant form of minor fight-or-flight response
  • a lesson about how serendipity can be built or supported in one’s existence

Glad to have Dr. Cavanagh on the show, and you can check out her faculty page, Hivemind on Amazon, or follow her on Twitter.