It’s The Birthday Of The Jukebox, The Old-School System For On-Demand Music (Cool Weird Awesome 425)

Today in 1889, inventor Louis Glass moved his "nickel-in-a-slot" into a saloon in San Francisco, beginning the age of the jukebox and giving the generations without smartphones and streaming services the chance to push a button and listen to a song. Plus: Chris Nikic has just become the first person with Down syndrome to finish an Ironman triathlon.

2020-11-23T08:35:53-05:00November 23rd, 2020|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , , |

Before The Lightbulb, Thomas Edison Invented A Voting Machine – And Congress Said No (Cool Weird Awesome 411)

On this Election Day, here’s a story about an early and not-too-well-known effort to help count votes that came from none other than Thomas Edison. Plus: photographer Ryan Donnell has been documenting some of the most unusual polling places in the country.

2020-11-03T07:24:40-05:00November 3rd, 2020|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

This Wearable Exosuit Brings Us A Little Closer To Being Iron Man (Cool Weird Awesome 402)

Millions of people have back pain that just plain makes things harder to do. A team at Vanderbilt University has developed an exosuit that may ease all that back strain. Plus: how do you let an economist know he's won the Nobel Prize when you don't have his phone number? Have his fellow winner knock on his door in the middle of the night, of course.

2020-10-14T07:36:23-04:00October 14th, 2020|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

These Biodegradable Shoes Have An Expiration Date (Cool Weird Awesome 398)

Shoes only last for so long, but they're made from materials that last seemingly forever. Designer Shahar Asor has an alternate idea: shoes for kids with an expiration date. Plus: a pizza place in Brooklyn is letting customers order "comforting words" along with their food.

2020-10-08T08:09:58-04:00October 8th, 2020|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , |

Why Shave With A Razor When You Can Use X-Rays? (Cool Weird Awesome 389)

Shaving dates back tens of thousands of years, and it's gone in and out of fashion more times than we can count. And for a time in 1945, there was an idea to replace razors with a series of hair treatments involving X-rays (!) Plus: Hannah Grace is a makeup artist in the UK who has won lots of fans by turning herself into optical illusions.

2020-09-25T07:49:32-04:00September 25th, 2020|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , , , , |

Now We Have Nano-Refrigerators (Cool Weird Awesome 387)

UCLA scientists have made little thermoelectric coolers that are only 100 nanometers wide, so small the eye can't see them on its own. They're not quite refrigerators yet, but if you have little sodas or bags of grapes, maybe reach out anyway. Plus: on the International Day of Sign Languages, we celebrate the amazing world of sign language interpreters at heavy metal concerts.

2020-09-23T07:49:12-04:00September 23rd, 2020|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , |

It’s The Birthday Of The Shopping Cart (Cool Weird Awesome 313)

Many of us are getting ready for our weekly shopping trips over the weekend, figuring out what we want to put in our carts. Those carts, by the way, are all due to a guy in Oklahoma who, on this day in 1937, decided to take the shopping basket and give it wheels. Plus: on National Cheese Day we pay tribute to the hardest, chewiest cheese in the world: churrpi!

2020-06-04T08:07:25-04:00June 4th, 2020|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , |

The Canadian Town That Built A Landing Pad For UFOs (Cool Weird Awesome 312)

Today in 1967, the town of St. Paul, Alberta officially opened the world’s first UFO landing pad. So why is there a UFO landing pad in east central Alberta? Plus: on this date in 1941, a man called Richard Burgess received a patent for exercise wings - but don't worry, they weren't intended to get their users to fly.

2020-06-03T07:55:57-04:00June 3rd, 2020|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , |
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