Brian Cox and Robin Ince host a witty, irreverent look at the world through scientists' eyes.
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The Immune System Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Shappi Khorsandi, Prof Dan Davis and Prof Steve Jones to look at our amazingly complex and clever immune system. They look at how the human body fights disease, and why it has been so little understood until now. Fear not though, a new revolution in understanding is underway, with some extraordinary insights into the cunning of our little white cells. The panel look at how this new understanding is already leading to some real breakthroughs in treatment for diseases such as cancer, and Shappi reveals the crucial role she played in one such discovery. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.
Invasion! Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Phill Jupitus, bat expert and ecologist Professor Kate Jones and forensic botanist Dr Mark Spencer to look at the problems caused by alien invasions, although not of the little green men kind. They look at why such innocent and innocuous sounding plants such as floating pennywort strike terror and fear in the heart of environmentalists up and down the country, and how clever microbes and diseases are able to jump from animals such as bats to humans causing devastating consequences. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.
Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by Danny Wallace, mathematician Hannah Fry and science writer Timandra Harkness. They'll be going big on Big Data, and asking just how big is it? They'll be looking at where Big Data comes from, should we be worried about it, and what mysteries are hidden within the seemingly endless amounts of information that is collected about us as we go about our daily lives.
The Infinite Monkey Cage 100
Monkey Cage 100! Brian Cox and Robin Ince celebrate the 100th episode of the hit science/comedy show, by inviting some very well known monkey cage alumni to join them. Brian Blessed, Eric Idle, Katy Brand, Dave Gorman and Andy Hamilton (to name a few) take to the stage to consider what has been learnt since Episode 1, back in November 2009. Joining them on stage, will be science royalty, including Alice Roberts, American Astrophysicist Neil De Grasse Tyson, Professor Sue Black and Prof Fay Dowker, to look at the big scientific discoveries that have happened in the time since Brian and Robin first hit the airwaves, from the Higgs Boson, to Gravitational Waves, to our understanding of how human evolved. What epic discoveries might be made over the course of the next 100 episodes? For the first time, You can watch the 100th episode of The Infinite Monkey Cage, recorded live in the iconic BBC Radio Theatre, on BBC iPlayer for 30 days from Wednesday July 11th, and on the BBC Red Button at various times for 7 days from Monday 16th July. Producer: Alexandra Feachem Producer (Vision): Michael Gray.
Volcano! Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Jo Brand and Volcano experts Professor Tamsin Mather and Professor Clive Oppenheimer. They look at the very latest technology that is used to predict the next big volcanic eruption, as well as the history and importance of volcanoes and volcanic activity on our planet. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.
How Animals Behave
How Animals Behave Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Rufus Hound, Zoologist and broadcaster Lucy Cooke and Professor Rory Wilson to discover how we learn about what animals are up to when we are not looking, and some of the hilarious mistakes we've made in the process of discovery. They'll be hearing about why the sex life of eels has remained so enigmatic, how the mystery of the wandering albatross has been solved, and why making underwear for frogs finally solved the riddle of how babies are made.
The Teenage Brain Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by impressionist Rory Bremner, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at UCL Sarah-Jayne Blakemore and Professor of Zoology at Manchester University Matthew Cobb to look at the working of the teenage brain, and why teenagers are so, well, teenagery. Stomping off to your bedroom, being embarrassed by your parents, wanting to fit in with your peers and a love of risky behaviour are all well known traits associated with our teenage years, exasperating parents through the ages. But new research into dynamic changes going on in the brain during these key years has revealed that it's not just hormones that are responsible for these behaviours. Could a better understanding of what is going on during these formative years not only help teenagers themselves, but inform our education system and even help prevent many of the mental health problems that often begin during adolescence?
Antibiotics Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Chris Addison, Chief Medical Officer, Dame Sally Davies, and Professor Martha Clokie to look at the history and future for antibiotics. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.
The Secret Life of Birds
The Secret Life of Birds Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by guests including Katy Brand, Steve Backshall and Professor Tim Birkhead to uncover the secret life of birds. They'll be looking at some of the extraordinary and cunning behaviour exhibited by many species of birds, both male and female, in an effort to attract a mate. They also get a special visit from Brann the Raven, who takes to the stage to demonstrate just how intelligent some species of birds can be. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.
When Two Stars Collide
When Two Stars Collide Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Dara O'Briain, Professor Sheila Rowan of Glasgow University and Professor Nils Andersson of Southampton University to look at last summer's spectacular discovery of gravitational waves from two colliding neutron stars. The observation of this huge cosmic event not only confirmed one of Einstein's great predictions, some 100 years ago, but also revealed the source of gold in our universe. Brian, Robin and guests look at how this momentous discovery brought together nearly 1/3 of the world's astronomers and astrophysicists as they raced to point their telescopes at the collision, but also confirmed the presence of gravitational waves, first predicted in Einstein's theory of general relativity back in 1915. They also discover why the source of our heavier elements such as gold and platinum has been so difficult to prove, until now. Producer: Alexandra Feachem The Infinite Monkey Cage book "How to Build A Universe (Part 1)" is out now and available to buy from all the usual places.
Christmas Special: The Science of Magic
The Infinite Monkey Cage Christmas Special: The Science of Magic The Infinite Monkeys bring their own brand of yule friendly science and comedy to the BBC Radio 4 Christmas schedule, and this year add an extra sprinkling of festive magic. Brian Cox and Robin Ince will be joined on stage by some very special guests to look at the science behind some of our best loved magic tricks and illusions. Actor, writer and illusionist Andy Nyman,actor and comedian Diane Morgan, Professor of Psychology and magician Richard Wiseman, and theologian and broadcaster Professor Francesca Stavrakopoulou will all be demonstrating how basic human psychology and evolution allow us to see and believe the seemingly impossible. They'll be exploring how some basic psychology can lead to some truly impressive deceptions, and ask how easy it is to trick the human mind, even a mind like Brian's. Prepare to be amazed. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.
Brian Cox and Robin Ince look forward to the coming series of The Infinite Monkey Cage.
The Mind v the Brain
The Mind V The Brain. It's one of the hardest problems in neuroscience. How do the chemical processes and electric signals produced by our brains result in the complex and varied experiences and sense of self that we might describe as our mind? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Katy Brand, and neuroscientists Professor Uta Frith and Professor Sophie Scott to ask whether the mind is simply a product of the biology of our brain, or is there more to it than that? Can you have a brain without a mind, and is the mind simply an unexpected consequence, an emergent property, of our highly evolved and sophisticated brain. They'll also be tackling the question of free will, and whether we really have any, and if you could in theory simulate a fully working brain, with all its signals and complexity, would a mind naturally emerge? Producer: Alexandra Feachem.
Are We Living in a Simulation?
Are we living in a simulation? Elon Musk thinks we definitely could be, and it seems he is not alone. The idea that we might simply be products of an advanced post-human civilisation, that are simply running a simulation of our universe and everything it contains, has taken hold over the last few years. Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Phill Jupitus, Philosopher Professor Nick Bostrom and Neuroscientist Professor Anil Seth to ask what the chances are that are living in some Matrix like, simulated world and more importantly, how would we ever know? Producer: Alexandra Feachem.
Will insects inherit the earth?
Will Insects Inherit the Earth? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Dave Gorman, zoologist Tim Cockerill and forensic entomologist Amoret Whitaker. They'll be discovering the joy of creepy crawlies, why the flea is the ultimate master of Darwinian evolution, and whether those pesky cockroaches will really have the last laugh if we are unlucky enough to be wiped out by a nuclear explosion. They'll be discovering how and why insects have been by far the most successful group of organisms during the history of life on planet earth, and why we simply couldn't do without them.