Wednesday, November 25, 2015

How long to continue?

I never want to see the Unseen Podcast become an institution - something that continues on indefinitely for its own sake. It should always serve some purpose, and when either it fails to serve that purpose, or energies, time and funds can better serve the same purpose in other ways, then we close the book and move on. We should always be able to justify the time and energy we put into the podcast, as well as the hour or more each week that we ask of you to listen to us talking.

I communicated to the team yesterday that I intend to make a decision in a few months about whether to continue with the Unseen Podcast, and the set of criteria I expect to consider in making that decision. The decision will be to either commit to continue for about one more year before again reconsidering, or to announce the final episode and be done - not a sad, sputtering, fade but a definitive closing.

To boil it down, the decision will revolve around clear progress toward building a committed, open community around a steadily improving podcast that remains true to its values.

If you enjoy listening to the podcast, and would like to see it continue to episode 100 and beyond, here are some of the things you can do.
  1. Join the panel pool, or encourage someone else to join. Once in the panel pool, consider becoming a host, or even a producer. Commit to being on a panel a least once a year, and engage with the topics threads as they come up.
  2. Engage with us on our listener community, our subreddit, on Twitter, our Facebook page, or this blog. Ask your questions, make comments or suggestions, tell us when we got our facts wrong, or recommend topics or a special guest for the show.
  3. Share episode links on social media to help us find our audience.
  4. Help defray our costs by pledging a small monthly amount at Patreon.

Monday, November 23, 2015

One week break

There will be no show recorded this week, as it's a holiday in the US. The next recording session will be December 6th 2015, and the podcast will probably be out that same day. Feel free, however, to keep the conversation going about the content of the episodes to date (click on "Episodes" just below the banner to get a complete list), or future episodes and guests.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Episode 34 - Where's My Flying Car?

Recorded: 20 November 2015
Released: 21 November 2015
Duration: 90 minutes, 4 seconds

download the .mp3 audio file

Host Paul Carr and the panel talk about the near term future of transport: Hyperloop, Autonomous Cars, and what about flying cars?


Questions about Asteroid Mining

Hyperloop Tech
The Race to Create Elon Musk's Hyperloop

The Trolley Problem
SMBC: The Trolley Problem


Adam Smith: Emily Lakdawalla's Blog
Marsha Barnhart: Blade Runner
Mateusz Macias: iRobot (film)
Mike Bohler: Conspiracy Theorists Lie
Nick Nielsen: Life as a Condition of Cosmology
Paul Carr: Project Archivist


Host and Producer: Paul Carr
Panelists: Adam Smith, Marsha Barnhart, Mike Bohler, Nick Nielsen, Mateusz Macias
Music: DJ Spooky

Friday, November 13, 2015

Episode 33 - Extract the Resource

Recorded: 13 November 2015
Released: 14 November 2015
Duration: 90 minutes, 4 seconds

download the .mp3 audio file

Host Paul Carr welcomes panelists Buck Field, James Garrison and Mike Mongo. Mike brings along surprise special guest Jim Muncy to talk about the recent law passed by the U.S. Senate that supports ownership of resources extracted from celestial bodies. From there, we talk about what we will need to be able to find and mine the richest, most accessible asteroids.


James Muncy
Senate Votes to Legalize Space Mining
Space Law and Space Resources
Martin Elvis on Asteroid Mining
How Many Ore Bearing Asteroids?
Asteroid Initiatives
The International Space Station's 3D Printer


Dan Dennett
Mike Mongo: The Mechanical by Ian Tregellis
Buck Field: The Void Trilogy by Peter F. Hamilton
James Garrison: Improvised Star Trek
Paul Carr: Intuition Pumps and Other Tools for Thinking


Host and Producer: Paul Carr
Panel: Mike Mongo, James Garrison, Buck Field
Surprise Guest: James Muncy
Music: DJ Spooky

Friday, November 6, 2015

Episode 32 - The Science Fiction Sessions

Recorded: 6 November 2015
Released: 7 November 2015
Duration: 104 minutes, 28 seconds

download the .mp3 audio file

Host Paul Carr welcomes David Grigg, Patrick Festa, James Garrison and Nick Nielsen to talk about
Science Fiction: what is it, what does it mean to each of us personally, and what is it good for? What is ti bad at? Among other things, we promise to do a Douglas Adams episode closer to Towel Day.


David Grigg on The Narratorium
An Exploration of Science Fiction

Big History: Why We Need to Teach the Modern Origin Story
The Problems with Big History and Turning Science into a Myth

Ursula K. LeGuin's The Left Hand of Darkness

Akira at IMDb

Nick Nielsen's blog post about the episode

Nick Lane: The Vital Question
Wadada Leo Smith
Scott Sigler's Alive
Wadada Leo Smith: Ten Freedom Summers


Host and Producer: Paul Carr
Panelists: David Grigg, Patrick Festa, James Garrison, Nick Nielsen
Music: DJ Spooky
Communications Platform: Google Hangouts on Air
Hardware: Shure, ART, Behringer, Apple
Software: Reaper, Soundflower, LineIn

The Unseen Podcast is distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike license.