SGU Episode 244

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SGU Episode 244
March 18th 2010
(brief caption for the episode icon)

SGU 243                      SGU 245

Skeptical Rogues
S: Steven Novella

B: Bob Novella

R: Rebecca Watson

J: Jay Novella

E: Evan Bernstein

Quote of the Week

'To science, not even the bark of a tree or a drop of pond water is dull or a handful of dirt banal. They all arouse awe and wonder.'

Jane Jacobs

Download Podcast
Show Notes
Forum Discussion


You're listening to the Skeptics' Guide to the Universe, your escape to reality.

News Items ()[edit]

When Homeopaths Attack ()[edit]

Texas Textbook Hubbub ()[edit]

Bacterial Fingerprint ()[edit]

Chief Exorcist ()[edit]

Biggest Quantum State ()[edit]

Who's That Noisy ()[edit]

  • Answer to last week: Lawrence Krauss

Questions and E-mails ()[edit]

Question # 1 - Power Balance ()[edit]

With Special Guest - Richard Saunders Message: Hi guys! Thanks for the great show. I started listening to your show in June 2009, and I'm currently at episode 211. Some friends of mine, who plan on running the Oslo Marathon this summer, came across something called a Power Balance bracelet, which is supposed to increase strength and balance for the athlete wearing the bracelet. I don't know if you've discussed this on your show yet, but if not, you might find it interesting. As the product's website ( states: 'What is Power Balance? Power Balance is performance technology that uses holograms embedded with frequencies that react positively with your body’s natural energy field to improve balance, strength, and flexibility. ' This is just nonsense. Just silly new age terms, which sounds good to the uneducated, but makes no sense to a physicist. The problem is that many professional athletes are using these Power Balance items, as the website shows on the Press page. In Norway the bracelets are sold for about 90$. I hate to see people wasting their money on this crap, and athletes fronting this pseudo-science can have a large impact on younger athletes looking up to them. This youtube video shows a skeptic debunking the claimed effects: If you havent discussed the Power Balance bracelet yet, then it might make a fun segment on your show. Greetings from your fans in Norway, Jonathan Andersen Oslo, Norway

Interview with Greg Grunberg ()[edit]

Science or Fiction ()[edit]

Item # 1: Researchers find that non-coding sequences of DNA may be responsible for more variation among individuals than genes. Item #2: Researchers find a gene in humans that, if turned off, would allow for complete tissue regeneration, like in newts and salamanders. Item #3: A new genetic analysis indicates that domestic dogs likely first arose in the Americas, not Europe as previously thought.

Quote of the Week ()[edit]

'To science, not even the bark of a tree or a drop of pond water is dull or a handful of dirt banal. They all arouse awe and wonder.' - Jane Jacobs

S: The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe is produced by the New England Skeptical Society in association with the James Randi Educational Foundation and For more information on this and other episodes, please visit our website at For questions, suggestions, and other feedback, please use the "Contact Us" form on the website, or send an email to If you enjoyed this episode, then please help us spread the word by voting for us on Digg, or leaving us a review on iTunes. You can find links to these sites and others through our homepage. 'Theorem' is produced by Kineto, and is used with permission.


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