Season 8, Episode 37

Whether you’re building a business or a cathedral, execution is everything. We ask artists, scientists, and inventors how they turned ideas into reality. And we find out why it’s so hard for a group to get things done — and what you can do about it. To find out more, check out the podcast from […]

23andMe (and You, and Everyone Else) (Ep.378)

The revolution in home DNA testing is giving consumers important, possibly life-changing information. It’s also building a gigantic database that could lead to medical breakthroughs. But how will you deal with upsetting news? What if your privacy is compromised? And are you prepared to have your DNA monetized? We speak with Anne Wojcicki, founder and C.E.O. of 23andMe.

Season 8, Episode 36

Whether you’re mapping the universe, hosting a late-night talk show, or running a meeting, there are a lot of ways to up your idea game. Plus: the truth about brainstorming. To find out more, check out the podcast from which this hour was drawn: “Where Do Good Ideas Come From?”

The $1.5 Trillion Question: How to Fix Student-Loan Debt? (Ep. 377)

As the cost of college skyrocketed, it created a debt burden that’s putting a drag on the economy. One possible solution: shifting the risk of debt away from students and onto investors looking for a cut of the graduates’ earning power.

The Data-Driven Guide to Sane Parenting (Ep. 376)

Humans have been having kids forever, so why are modern parents so bewildered? The economist Emily Oster marshals the evidence on the most contentious topics — breastfeeding and sleep training, vaccines and screen time — and tells her fellow parents to calm the heck down.

Season 8, Episode 34

Daniel Ek, a 23-year-old Swede who grew up on pirated music, made the record labels an offer they couldn’t refuse: a legal platform to stream all the world’s music. Spotify reversed the labels’ fortunes, made Ek rich, and thrilled millions of music fans. But what has it done for all those musicians stuck in the […]

The Invisible Paw (Ep. 329 Rebroadcast)

Humans, it has long been thought, are the only animal to engage in economic activity. But what if we've had it exactly backward?

The Most Interesting Fruit in the World (Ep. 375)

The banana used to be a luxury good. Now it’s the most popular fruit in the U.S. and elsewhere. But the production efficiencies that made it so cheap have also made it vulnerable to a deadly fungus that may wipe out the one variety most of us eat. Scientists do have a way to save it — but will Big Banana let them?

Season 8, Episode 32

Global demand for beef, chicken, and pork continues to rise. So do concerns about environmental and other costs. Will reconciling these two forces be possible — or, even better, Impossible™? To find out more, check out the podcast from which this hour was drawn: “The Future of Meat.”

How Spotify Saved the Music Industry (But Not Necessarily Musicians) (Ep. 374)

Daniel Ek, a 23-year-old Swede who grew up on pirated music, made the record labels an offer they couldn’t refuse: a legal platform to stream all the world’s music. Spotify reversed the labels’ fortunes, made Ek rich, and thrilled millions of music fans. But what has it done for all those musicians stuck in the long tail?