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American Innovations

Wondery

History, Science, Kids & Family, Education For Kids, Steven Johnson

4.64.1K Ratings

Overview

DNA science. Artificial intelligence. Smartphones and 3D printers. Science and technology have transformed the world we live in. But how did we get here? It wasn’t by accident. Well, sometimes it was. It was also the result of hard work, teamwork, and competition. And incredibly surprising moments.

Hosted by bestselling author Steven Johnson (“How We Got To Now”), American Innovations uses immersive scenes to tell the stories of the scientists, engineers, and ordinary people behind the greatest discoveries of the past century.

You can binge all episodes of American Innovations exclusively and ad-free on Wondery+. Find Wondery+ in the Wondery App or on Apple Podcasts.

194 Episodes

Listen Now: The Big Flop

The Wing was supposed to be a model for feminist social clubs, built on activism, inclusion, and self-care. But instead, The Wing became a glaring example of toxic girlboss culture and workplace discrimination. On each episode of Wondery’s podcast The Big Flop, comedians join host Misha Brown to chronicle one of the biggest pop-culture fails of all time and try to answer the age-old question: who thought THIS was a good idea?This is just a preview of The Big Flop. Listen to the full episode wherever you get your podcasts, or at wondery.fm/the-big-flop.For more deep dive and daily business content listen to Wondery – the destination for business podcasts. With shows like How I Built This, Business Wars, The Best One Yet, Business Movers and many more, Wondery Means Business.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 2 April 2024

Listen Now: Alternate Routes with Trey Wingo and Kevin Frazier

What if the NBA never vetoed the Chris Paul trade to the Lakers? What if the Seahawks ran the ball on the one yard line in the Super Bowl? Could a coin flip have landed Magic in Chicago, Michael in LA and made Charles Barkley the first Black President? Wait, what?!! Questions like these have broken the brains of sports fans since the beginning of time. Enter Wondery’s newest sports show, Alternate Routes, a weekly leap into the sports multiverse where former SportsCenter anchors, Trey Wingo and Kevin Frazier pry open the sliding doors of a different “what if'' moment from the world of sports. In these alternate sports realities, dynasties will fall! Legacies will change forever! New GOATs will emerge! Join Trey and Kevin every week as they travel every path, go down every rabbit hole and follow every alternate route, no matter how far-flung or far-fetched. Enjoy Alternate Routes with Trey Wingo and Kevin Frazier wherever you get your podcasts: https://wondery.fm/AltRoutesxWondery See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 18 March 2024

Listen Now: The Cat in the Hat Cast

Hold on tight and prepare to be whisked away on a weekly adventure with Dr. Seuss’s The Cat in the Hat! In a world full of delightful mix-ups and exhilarating mayhem, the mischievous Cat takes the reins and enlightens the ever-cautious Fish on the art of hosting a perfectly poised podcast. Featuring alphabet song sing-a-longs, tremendous tongue-twisters, and wondrous wordplay, you'll be left guessing what surprises The Cat will pull out of his hat next. Listen to new episodes of The Cat in the Hat Cast here.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 4 March 2024

Listen Now: Even the Royals

For real life royals, the crown jewels can be more like shiny handcuffs. There are expectations and rules – and if you break them, the consequences are big, and very public. And no, we’re not just talking about Harry and Meghan. There are royal families and wild royal tales from around the world and throughout history that you have never heard before. From Wondery comes the latest from Even the Rich co-hosts Brooke Siffrinn and Aricia Skidmore-Williams. Even the Royals takes us inside the cloistered world of royal families, past and present, where wealth and status often come at the expense of your freedom – and maybe even your life. In these stories, very human emotions, like jealousy, love, disgust, have the power to reshape the world.  This is just a preview of Even the Royals. Listen to the full episode wherever you get your podcasts, or at wondery.fm/eventheroyals.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 8 January 2024

Listen Now: 'Tis The Grinch Holiday Talk Show

Cuddly as a cactus and charming as an eel, he’s your new favorite snarky talk show host. Join The Grinch (and his faithful dog Max) each week as he rants against Christmas cheer and roasts celebrity guests like chestnuts on an open fire. Starring Saturday Night Live’s James Austin Johnson as the notorious curmudgeon and broadcasting straight from Who-Ville, will The Grinch send these famous folks back down Mt. Crumpit, or will they soften his stance against Christmas and grow his heart three sizes? Grab your hot cocoa and cozy slippers and listen along to find out! Follow 'Tis The Grinch Holiday Talk Show on the Wondery App or wherever you get your podcasts. You can listen to episodes of 'Tis The Grinch Holiday Talk Show early and ad-free right now by joining Wondery Plus. Listen now: Wondery.fm/GrinchSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 20 November 2023

Listen Now: The Daily Stoic

For centuries, all sorts of people—generals and politicians, athletes and coaches, writers and leaders—have looked to the teachings of Stoicism to help guide their lives. Each day, author and speaker Ryan Holiday brings you a new lesson about life, inspired by the thoughts and writings of great Stoic thinkers like Marcus Aurelius and Seneca the Younger, as well as insightful conversations with thought leaders on how they’ve used the practice and values of stoicism in their own lives.On The Daily Stoic, you can learn how to bring the values of stoicism into your own life, one day at a time. Listen Now: ​​Wondery.fm/IFD_TDSSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 6 November 2023

Listen Now: MrBallen’s Medical Mysteries

Follow MrBallen’s Medical Mysteries wherever you get your podcasts. You can binge the first 8 episodes, early and ad-free on Amazon Music. Download the Amazon Music app today. The human body is a miracle. But when it’s not working, it can be the stuff of nightmares. On this new series from master storyteller MrBallen, we’re sharing medical horror stories and diagnostic mysteries that are surgically calibrated to make your blood run cold.  From bizarre, unheard-of diseases and miraculous recoveries to strange medical mishaps and unexplainable deaths — you’ll never hear the phrase “heart-stopping” in the same way again. MrBallen’s Medical Mysteries is a first-of-its-kind collaboration between MrBallen and Wondery, the award-winning company behind Dr. Death. Listen Now: Wondery.fm/MBMM See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 23 October 2023

Listen Now: Six Trophies with Shea Serrano and Jason Concepcion

Shea Serrano and Jason Concepcion are back! And this time they’re combing through all the NBA news from the past week and handing out six pop culture-themed trophies to six basketball-related activities. Every week, superlatives will reign down on basketball culture like Steph Curry threes when Jason and Shea dish out hoops honors like they’re Stockton to Malone running a pick & roll. Was that too many analogies for one sentence? Hell yes, but get used to it!On this new NBA pop culture show from Wondery, the guys will honor the most magical and messy moments from the NBA and beyond by handing out hardware like  “The Step Brothers Catalina Wine Mixer” Trophy for the matchup they’re most excited about. Or “The Liam Neeson ‘I Have a Very Particular Set of Skills’ Trophy given to an aging player who proves they still got it. And on and on. Till the break of dawn.Enjoy Six Trophies with Shea Serrano and Jason Concepcion wherever you get your podcasts: Wondery.fm/SIX See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 11 October 2023

Listen Now: Sports Explains the World

Sports Explains the World unveils some of the wildest and most surprising sports stories you’ve never heard - And they’re all true. From the teenager who wrote a Wikipedia page that got a young athlete signed to a million-dollar deal - to the Ugandan National basketball coach who was really an undercover agent for the CIA, these stories will amaze and move you at every turn. Reported by award-winning journalists across the globe, Sports Explains the World reveals the human side of athletics in provocative and unexpected ways. You’ll never view sports the same way again.Enjoy Sports Explains the World on the Wondery App or wherever you get your podcasts: wondery.fm/setw_ipYou can binge the first 9 episodes of Sports Explains the World right now ad-free on Wondery Plus. Get started with your free trial at Wondery.com/plus.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 28 August 2023

Wondery Presents: Don’t Panic with Anthony Atamanuik

Staying alive in the most ridiculous situations keeps comedian Anthony Atamanuik up at night. If you’re attacked by a swarm of killer bees, do you lay on the ground and play dead? Climb up a tree? Jump into the nearest body of water with a little straw poking out as a breathing apparatus? We could find ourselves caught in a million wild situations, and if you don’t know what to do, you might not make it out alive! On Don’t Panic, Wondery’s new comedy show, super-worrier Anthony Atamanuik brings to life our most irrational fears and anxieties with some of the funniest people on the planet. Along the way, guests will also share what keeps them doom scrolling on their phones, and learn what to do in every ridiculous, worst-case scenario situation that couldn’t possibly happen in real life. Or could it? Enjoy Don’t Panic on the Wondery App or wherever you get your podcasts. You can listen to Don’t Panic early and ad-free on Wondery Plus. Join Wondery Plus in the Wondery App or on Apple Podcasts: http://wondery.fm/Dont_Panic See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 14 August 2023

Listen Now - Think Twice: Michael Jackson

More than a decade since Michael Jackson’s death, his legacy remains complicated and unresolved. Think Twice: Michael Jackson is an exploration of the King of Pop’s life and impact – and an investigation into why his global influence continues to endure, despite the disturbing allegations against him. In this ten-part series, journalists Leon Neyfakh and Jay Smooth bring you a new perspective on the Michael Jackson story, based on dozens of original interviews with people who watched it unfold from up close.Listen wherever you listen to podcasts. You can binge all ten episodes of Think Twice: Michael Jackson, ad-free on the Amazon Music or Audible: Wondery.fm/Think_TwiceSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 25 July 2023

Wondery Presents: Diss and Tell

Wondery’s new podcast Diss and Tell is hosted by comedians Matt Bellassai and Sydney Battle, where in each episode they unpack one of pop culture’s most iconic celebrity feuds, and what our obsession with them says about us. The first season is packed with some messy pop culture drama, like the conflict between Blac Chyna and The Kardashians. It starts with Chyna befriending Kim, and then Chyna’s fiancé Tyga leaving her for Kylie. But that rivalry is soon followed by an all-out war with the entire Kardashian Jenner clan that involves physical fights, revenge porn, and multiple lawsuits, with more than 100 million dollars on the line. This is just a preview of Diss and Tell. You can listen to the full episode wherever you get your podcasts, or at wondery.fm/diss_and_tell. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 3 July 2023

Rubber: The Miracle Material | Bouncing Ideas | 1

You can binge all episodes of American Innovations exclusively and ad-free on Wondery+. Find Wondery+ in the Wondery App or on Apple PodcastsIn a world where materials were limited to wood, leather, metal, and cloth, rubber was something new: a substance that was strong, soft, flexible, and waterproof—but completely undependable. Then along came a 33 year-old hardware merchant named Charles Goodyear, who made it his personal mission to conquer rubber at any cost. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 3 July 2023

Conquering Pain | The Frolic | 1

For decades, Americans resigned themselves to gritting their teeth through the agony of surgery. And then along came an eminent surgeon, a charming swindler and his hapless mark and changed everything.Support this show by supporting our sponsors!Wix - Create your very own professional website today at wix.comSimplisafe - Protect your home and family today at simplisafe.com/innovationsSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 3 July 2023

Virtual Reality I The Sword of Damocles | 1

You can binge all episodes of American Innovations exclusively and ad-free on Wondery+. Find Wondery+ in the Wondery App or on Apple PodcastsIn the 1960s a group of scientists and engineers had a vision: that one day people could put on a pair of goggles and enter a whole new world.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 3 July 2023

Preventing Paralysis | Marching Towards a Cure | 1

You can binge all episodes of American Innovations exclusively and ad-free on Wondery+. Find Wondery+ in the Wondery App or on Apple PodcastsBy the middle of the last century Americans lived in fear of one disease: polio. The story of the polio vaccine is not just a scientific story- it’s a political and financial one, too. One that would pave the way for medical research fundraising campaigns that followed. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 3 July 2023

Nuclear Energy | E = MC Squared | 1

You can binge all episodes of American Innovations exclusively and ad-free on Wondery+. Find Wondery+ in the Wondery App or on Apple PodcastsIn 1958, President Dwight Eisenhower went on national television introducing a new kind of power plant, one that will transform the world. Nuclear energy and the Atomic Age took America by storm, but this misunderstood technology’s potential has always been in question.Last series we looked at the building blocks of life, DNA. This time we’re turning to atoms, and specifically to the energy that comes from splitting atoms. We’ll take you to one of the most powerful and controversial energy sources on earth: nuclear energy. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 3 July 2023

Wondery Presents: I Love My Kid, But…

This is a safe place for parents to get away from it all. It’s a cliche that having kids is both the most rewarding and the hardest thing you’ll ever do. And it never ends: just when you’ve figured out how a newborn works, the kid becomes a toddler, then a tween, a teenager and beyond. And kids don’t come with an instruction manual or an off switch. Sure, you love your kids, best thing that ever happened to you blah blah blah, BUT… Welcome to I Love My Kid, But… a weekly escape where comedians Megan Gailey, Kurt Braunohler, Chris Garcia and guests unload about the joys and challenges of being a parent, all the hell their kids put them through, and how they might reclaim some of the glory of their pre-parenting life. You might learn a few things about how to be a better parent along the way, but it’s more important that you get to laugh and enjoy three very funny people vent about parenthood with other moms and dads who “get it.” No child psychologists here, no educators, or noted experts… just three comedians embracing all the L’s they take on a daily basis and celebrating all the small victories that make it all worth it. And if one of them lets slip that they might’ve sent their kid to school without lunch because they stayed out the night before with their college friends WAY too late, that’s ok too. No judgment here. Listen to I Love My Kid, But: Wondery.fm/ILMKB_AISee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 19 June 2023

Listen Now: Spellcaster: The Fall of Sam Bankman-Fried

From Wondery and Bloomberg, the makers of The Shrink Next Door, comes a new story of incredible wealth, betrayal, and what happens when “doing good” goes really, really bad.When nerdy gamer Sam Bankman-Fried rocketed to fame as the world’s richest 29-year-old, he pledged to donate his billions to good causes. But when Sam's crypto exchange FTX collapsed, billions of dollars went missing, and Sam was in handcuffs, those who knew him were left wondering — who was Sam really? A well-meaning billionaire who made a mistake? Or a calculated con man? Listen to Spellcaster: Wondery.fm/SC_AISee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 5 June 2023

Introducing: Reign of Error

James Dolan was born into immense privilege. He could have done anything with his life. But he chose the family business — a cable television empire that came to include ownership of the New York Knicks, one of the most beloved franchises on earth. What happened from there is a tragedy of Shakespearean proportions. Dolan didn’t just lead the Knicks to disaster (and the worst record in the NBA in the 21st Century); he also built a laboratory of shame, dysfunction, and, well, unintentional hilarity.Join host David Greene as he unpacks this trainwreck, over 5 riveting episodes, while chasing the answer to one elusive question: Why the hell won’t James Dolan just sell the team? From SmartLess Media, and Campside Media, Reign of Error is the series James Dolan doesn’t want you to hear.Listen to Reign of Error wherever you get your podcasts: Wondery.fm/ROE_AIHey Prime Members you can listen to Reign of Error early and ad-free on Amazon Music. Download the Amazon Music app today. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 15 May 2023

Wondery Presents - Flipping The Bird: Elon vs Twitter

When Elon Musk posted a video of himself arriving at Twitter HQ carrying a white sink along with the message “let that sink in!” It marked the end of a dramatic takeover. Musk had gone from Twitter critic to “Chief Twit” in the space of just a few months but his arrival didn’t put an end to questions about his motives. Musk had earned a reputation as a business maverick. From PayPal to Tesla to SpaceX, his name was synonymous with big, earth-shattering ideas. So, what did he want with a social media platform? And was this all really in the name of free speech...or was this all in the name of Elon Musk?  From Wondery, the makers of WeCrashed and In God We Lust, comes the wild story of how the richest man alive took charge of the world’s “digital public square.” Listen to Flipping The Bird: Wondery.fm/FTB_AISee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 1 May 2023

Wondery Presents Against the Odds: Alaska Bear Attack

What would you do if you were attacked by a bear? The odds of survival are almost zero. For an unfortunate few, this became their reality – but they weren’t ready to give up.AGAINST THE ODDS is a podcast from Wondery that tells some of the most unbelievable true stories of survival in history. Told from the point of view of the survivors, you’ll feel first-hand what it was like for them to fight to stay alive. Like the Alaska Bear Attack, which chronicles the incredible events of an experienced backcountry skier who found himself fighting to stay alive after stumbling on a bear’s den in the mountains of Alaska. This is just a preview of Against the Odds, but you can listen to the full episode at Wondery.fm/AI_ATO.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 24 March 2023

Wondery Presents: Stolen Hearts

Sergeant Jill Evans is a small town cop in Wales with an impressive record in her job, and a less than impressive record in her love life. After three engagements, two divorces and one affair, she’s beginning to worry that love is only true in fairy tales. That is until she meets: Dean. He’s a wealthy beauty entrepreneur with his own range of toiletries.Girl meets boy. Boy meets girl. They kiss and fall in love. Roll credits.But that would be boring, wouldn’t it? Instead, this is a love story like no other. It’s all going so well for Jill and Dean, until Halloween night, when Dean disappears. And Sgt. Jill is left to pick up the pieces.From Wondery and Novel, comes a new series. Hosted by Kerry Godliman.Follow Stolen Hearts on Amazon Music of wherever you get your podcasts. You can listen early and ad-free by subscribing to Wondery+ in Apple Podcasts or the Wondery App.  Listen to Stolen Hearts: Wondery.fm/SH_AISee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 8 February 2023

Wondery Presents: Frozen Head

Hosted by Ash Kelley and Alaina Urquhart from the hit show Morbid.When 90-year-old Laurence Pilgeram drops dead on the sidewalk outside his condo, you might think that’s the end of his story. But, really, it’s just the beginning. Because Laurence and others like him have signed up to be frozen and brought back to life in the future. And that belief will pull multiple generations of the Pilgeram family into a cryonics soap opera filled with dead pets, gold coins, grenades, fist fights, mysterious packages, family feuds, Hall of Fame baseball legends, and frozen heads — lots of frozen heads. From Wondery, comes a story about life, death, and what comes next.Follow Frozen Head on Amazon Music or wherever you get your podcasts. Binge early and ad-free by subscribing to Wondery+ in Apple Podcasts or the Wondery App. Listen to Frozen Head: Wondery.fm/FH_AISee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 23 January 2023

Introducing: History Daily

On History Daily, we do history, daily. Every weekday, host Lindsay Graham (American Scandal, American History Tellers) takes you back in time to explore a momentous event that happened ‘on this day’ in history. Whether it’s to remember the tragedy of December 7th, 1941, the day “that will live in infamy,” or to celebrate that 20th day in July, 1969, when mankind reached the moon, History Daily is there to tell you the true stories of the people and events that shaped our world—one day at a time. So if you’re stuck in traffic, bored at work—wherever you are, listen to History Daily to remind yourself that something incredible happened to make that day historic.Hey Prime Members, you can listen to HISTORY DAILY wherever you get your podcasts or ad-free on Amazon Music. Download the Amazon Music app today: Wondery.lnk.to/AI_HistoryDaily See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 11 January 2023

Tech’s Next Big Waves | 3

For our last episode before American Innovations goes on hiatus, we look to the future of new technology from artificial intelligence and virtual reality to carbon capture and the electrification of mobility. Steven talks about these innovations and more with friend of the podcast Clive Thompson, a journalist who writes about science and technology and the author of Coders: The Making of a New Tribe and the Remaking of the World. Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 30 December 2021

The Mystery of Stuxnet | All The President’s Malware | 2

Experts at Symantec have finally discovered that the virus Stuxnet is designed to target nuclear facilities in Iran. But many questions remain. Who is responsible for the virus? How did it get out? As veteran New York Times reporter David Sanger delves into the origins of Stuxnet, he worries that it represents a new kind of cyber warfare, one without defined rules of engagement, that could have dire consequences for global cybersecurity.Peloton- New members can try Peloton classes FREE for the rest of the year at onepeloton.com! See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 23 December 2021

The Mystery of Stuxnet | Cracking the Code | 1

In the summer of 2010, a mysterious computer virus called Stuxnet lands on the desk of Symantec cybersecurity analyst Liam O’Murchu. Stuxnet is unlike anything O’Murchu has ever seen: a highly sophisticated piece of malware that serves no obvious purpose. O’Murchu and his colleagues are determined to figure out how it works and who’s behind it -- but soon, it becomes clear that Stuxnet might be more than they bargained for.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 16 December 2021

Encore: The Modern Ambulance | 1

Today when you dial 9-1-1, a squad of trained medical professionals arrives, often within minutes. But just 55 years ago, emergency calls were generally dispatched to funeral homes, simply because their vehicles were suited to transporting bodies. You’d be lucky if the person transporting you had any first aid training at all. Throughout the 1960s, volunteer rescue squads emerged. But it would take the ambitious vision of a community organizer in Pittsburgh to spin a medical revolution into being. Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors! Peloton- Learn more atonepeloton.com. New members can try Peloton classes free for 30 days atonepeloton.com/app. Terms apply. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 9 December 2021

Man with No Memory | The Observer | 4

In losing his ability to form memories, Henry Molaison also lost the ability to learn new skills, retain information and form relationships. He became a kind of time traveler, living forever in the present moment. In this episode, Steven talks with John Gabrieli, a cognitive neuroscientist who worked directly with Molaison aka “Patient H.M.” in the 1980s. Gabrieli shares more about the new discoveries of how memory works that were built on studying this very special patient.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 2 December 2021

Man with No Memory | Henry's Final Flight | 3

Henry Molaison has now lived over half his life unable to form new memories. And with the passing of his parents -- the one constant in his life -- he descends into despair. With no one else to turn to, he forms a close emotional bond with the lead neuroscientist on his case, Suzanne Corkin, who blurs the lines between professional and personal as she tries to help Henry live out his last years with dignity. Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors!Peloton- Learn more atonepeloton.com. New members can try Peloton classes free for 30 days atonepeloton.com/app. Terms apply. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 25 November 2021

Man with No Memory | The Permanent Now | 2

Without a functioning memory, Henry Molaison struggles to cope with everyday life. He loses his job, and becomes totally dependent on his overwhelmed parents. Meanwhile, neuroscientist Brenda Milner realizes that Henry’s tragic case can solve some profound mysteries about how memory works in our brains—and might even reveal whole new aspects of memory that previously went undetected.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 18 November 2021

Man with No Memory | The Accident | 1

Even as recently as the early 1950s, we didn’t understand that there were different types of memory, or how the brain processed and stored memories. Then, in 1953, a radical surgery by a reckless doctor gave us tremendous insights into how human memory works. Those scientific gains came at a terrible cost, however. The surgery left the patient, Henry Molaison, a profound amnesiac -- completely incapable of forming new memories. This is his story.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors!Better Help - Visit betterhelp.com/AI to get 10% off your first monthPeloton- Learn more atonepeloton.com. New members can try Peloton classes free for 30 days atonepeloton.com/app. Terms apply. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 11 November 2021

Predator Drone | In The Pilot’s Seat | 4

The Predator drone made a dramatic transformation from unarmed reconnaissance vehicle to lethal weapon in 2001, just after 9/11. On this episode, Steven talks to retired Air Force officer and pilot Scott Swanson, who was part of the team tasked with using the Predator to hunt down Osama Bin Laden and other terrorist leaders in Afghanistan. Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors!Zip Recruiter - Go to ziprecruiter.com/AI to try Zip recruiter for free. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 4 November 2021

Predator Drone | Lethal Weapon | 3

In post 9/11 Afghanistan, the Predator drone proves wildly successful for the military, helping kill a key Al Qaeda leader, and aiding in the rescue of Army Rangers trapped on a mountainside. It's the start of a new era in aerial warfare, as the Predator gains widespread acceptance. But in the years to come, mounting civilian casualties from U.S. drone strikes provoke an outcry from the world... and the Obama Administration faces a moral reckoning.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors!Peloton- Learn more atonepeloton.com. New members can try Peloton classes free for 30 days atonepeloton.com/app. Terms apply.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 28 October 2021

Predator Drone | Hellfire | 2

The Predator proves its value as a “spy in the sky” for the U.S. military in Bosnia in the mid-90s. But it's not until the Predator is handed over to the Air Force that it reaches its full potential. Aided by a covert Air Force group, and a genius scientist known as “The Man With Two Brains,” the Predator is reborn as a lethal killing machine, with a new enemy to hunt: Osama Bin Laden.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors!BetterHelp - Listeners of American Innovations get 10% off their first month at betterhelp.com/AI.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 21 October 2021

Predator Drone | From Albatross to Amber | 1

What if you could design a spy plane that could be flown remotely and hover in the sky for hours, providing reconnaissance for troops on the ground? In the early 1980s, the visionary inventor Abe Karem begins building drones out of his L.A. garage. Soon, the Pentagon and the CIA take notice. Though he faces many challenges, Karem is on the forefront of a revolution that will change the face of modern aerial warfare. Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 14 October 2021

Pushing Painkillers | An Untapped Market | 1

Doctors once shied away from using opioids to treat chronic pain, citing the risk of addiction. But in the 1970s, a new generation of doctors started to argue that opioids should be reconsidered, and that allowing terminal patients to suffer in agony is torturous. As the palliative care movement grows, Purdue Frederick, a small pharmaceutical company, sees an opportunity to bring opioids out of the shadows and to the masses...to devastating effect.You can binge all episodes of American Innovations exclusively and ad-free on Wondery+. Find Wondery+ in the Wondery App or on Apple Podcasts.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 7 October 2021

Encore: Organ Transplant | A Short History of Living Longer | 4

In the past 100 years, we’ve doubled life expectancy. It might be the single greatest achievement of the modern era. So why haven’t we done more to celebrate it?On this episode, Rufus Griscom, host of Wondery’s “The Next Big Idea,” turns the tables and puts Steven Johnson in the interviewee’s seat. They’ll discuss Steven’s book and PBS series “Extra Life: A Short History of Living Longer,” about the many breakthroughs, large and small, that led to our increased longevity.To learn more about “Extra Life,” visit https://stevenberlinjohnson.com/.To hear more episodes of Next Big Idea, follow or subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Amazon, the Wondery app, or wherever you get your podcasts.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors!Vionic Shoes - Enjoy free shipping at vionicshoes.com with promo code INNOVATIONSBetter Help - Visit betterhelp.com/AI to get 10% off your first monthSee Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 30 September 2021

Encore: Organ Transplant | The Heart Race | 3

In 1967, an unlikely surgeon performs the first human heart transplant – and shocks the world. As others race to replicate his achievement, one surgical team makes a mistake that could spell the end of organ transplants in the United States.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors!Zip Recruiter - Go to ziprecruiter.com/AI to try Zip recruiter for free.Monday.com - Visit monday.com/podcast for your free two week trial.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 23 September 2021

Encore: Organ Transplant | A Matter of Life and Death | 2

By the early 1960s, surgeons have proven that it's possible to transplant kidneys and lungs. Now, with heart disease still the leading cause of death, they've set their sights on performing the first human heart transplant. But first, they've got to overcome the ethical, legal, and surgical challenges of removing a donor's heart before it stops beating for good.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors! Monday.com - Visit monday.com/podcast for your free two-week trial. Peloton - Learn more at onepeloton.com. New members can try Peloton classes free for 30 days at onepeloton.com/app. Terms apply.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 16 September 2021

Encore: Organ Transplant | The Kidney Twins | 1

A century ago, organ transplants were the stuff of science fiction. But a handful of experimental surgeons believed that transplants were not just possible – they had the potential to save thousands of lives. Then, in 1954, a man agreed to donate his kidney to his twin brother – and one surgeon finally got his chance to prove the doubters wrong.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors!Public Rec - Go to PublicRec.com/INNOVATIONS to get 10% off.Vionic Shoes - Enjoy FREE SHIPPING at vionicshoes.com with promo code: INNOVATIONS.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 9 September 2021

Social Media | Interview: #DearInternet | 4

Facebook, Friendster and MySpace weren’t the only companies that pioneered social media. In 2006, a new company turned the act of “tweeting” into an opportunity for wide-ranging commentary, and made your number of “followers” a status symbol. On this episode, Steven talks to Twitter co-founder Biz Stone, who also co-founded Medium.com and wrote the memoir Things a Little Bird Told Me.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors!Monday.com - Visit Monday.com/podcast for your free two-week trial.ZipRecruiter - Go to ziprecruiter.com/AI, to try ZipRecruiter for free.Nord VPN - Go to NordVPN.com/innovations, or use code innovations to get 73% off your 2-year plan plus 4 bonus months for free. Be quick because this offer is for a limited time only. Plus, there’s a 30-Day Money back guarantee if NordVPN is not for you so there’s no risk.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 2 September 2021

Social Media | Move Fast and Break Things | 3

By 2007, Facebook finds itself at a crossroads. Its sole focus has been growing its users and traffic. Now, it needs to turn a profit. Luckily for Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook possesses an invaluable asset: deep knowledge of the personal data and habits of its users. But when Zuckerberg teams up with Sheryl Sandberg to monetize that data, it will create a host of issues that will mire Facebook in controversy.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors!Peloton - New members can try Peloton classes free for 30 days at onepeloton.com/app. Terms apply.Monday.com - Visit Monday.com/podcast for your free two-week trial. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 26 August 2021

Social Media | It's Complicated | 2

It’s the mid 2000s, and social media is mainstream. MySpace has eclipsed Friendster and been acquired by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation. Meanwhile, another company is quietly reinventing social media yet again, founded by a college sophomore with a rare combination of technical skill and strong business instincts. His name is Mark Zuckerberg, and his company, The Facebook, will soon challenge MySpace and its new corporate owner for control of the social media landscape.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors!See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 19 August 2021

Social Media | Find Your Friends | 1

Today social media is such a dominant part of our daily lives, it's hard to believe that only 20 years ago, it didn’t exist. Then a newly single tech entrepreneur named Jonathan Abrams wondered: What if you could use the internet to expand your network of real-life friends? His simple idea became Friendster, the first social media site, which would change not only how people interact online, but the very nature of human connection and friendship.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors! ZipRecruiter - Go to ziprecruiter.com/AI, to try ZipRecruiter for free.Nord VPN - Go to NordVPN.com/innovations, or use code innovations to get 73% off your 2-year plan plus 4 bonus months for free. Be quick because this offer is for a limited time only. Plus, there’s a 30-Day Money back guarantee if NordVPN is not for you so there’s no risk. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 12 August 2021

Fracking | Interview: The Price of Gas | 4

Families who leased their gas-rich land to fracking companies during the boom are still wrestling with the impact of that decision. On this episode, Steven talks to Eliza Griswold, an award-winning poet, writer and journalist. Her book, “Amity and Prosperity: One Family and the Fracturing of America,” won a Pulitzer Prize for its immersive, insightful look into the fracking boom and its effect on Appalachian coal country.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors! Public Rec - Go to publicrec.com/INNOVATIONS to get 10% off. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 5 August 2021

Fracking | Something in the Water | 3

As stories of water contamination and health issues become public, one of the largest grassroots environmental movements in decades emerges to protest fracking. The fracking industry, led by Chesapeake Energy CEO Aubrey McClendon, fights back with lobbyists, PR flacks, and an unlikely ally: the Sierra Club. The battle over fracking will pit neighbor against neighbor, as poor rural communities are torn between the promise of easy money and the desire to protect their land and water.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors! Nord VPN - Go to NordVPN.com/innovations, or use code innovations to get a 2-year plan plus a bonus gift with a huge discount!Monday.com - Visit Monday.com/podcast for your free two-week trial. See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 29 July 2021

Fracking | Land Grab | 2

By the early 2000s, fracking was seen as the most promising new energy industry technology in decades. And when a Penn State geologist discovered that the shale field sitting under Pennsylvania and Upstate New York held over 50 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, the race was on to bring fracking to the Northeast. But in the rush to frack the new field, accidents began to happen, making locals question just how safe this new technique really was.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations.Support us by supporting our sponsors!ZipRecruiter - Try ZipRecruiter for FREE at ziprecruiter.com/ai.Monday.com - Visit monday.com/podcast for your FREE two-week trial.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 22 July 2021

Fracking | The Source Rock | 1

In the late 1970s, oil and natural gas fields across the U.S. were drying up, making the country increasingly dependent on foreign oil. Then, a Texas energy magnate named George Mitchell decided to try extracting natural gas from shale, a layer of rock almost two miles beneath the surface, using a technique called hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. His innovation would kick off an energy revolution, and spur a massive environmental backlash.Listen to new episodes 1 week early and ad free, and access exclusive seasons of American Innovations with Wondery+. Join Wondery+ for exclusives, binges, early access, and ad free listening. Available in the Wondery App https://wondery.app.link/innovations. Support us by supporting our sponsors! Monday.com - Visit monday.com/podcast for your free two-week trial. Peloton - New members can try Peloton classes free for 30 days at onepeloton.com/app.See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Transcribed - Published: 15 July 2021

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