SGU Episode 806
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|SGU Episode 806|
|December 19th 2020|
|SGU 805||SGU 807|
|S: Steven Novella|
|Quote of the Week|
|The need to reduce dissonance is a universal mental mechanism, but that doesn’t mean we are doomed to be controlled by it. Human beings may not be eager to change, but we have the ability to change, and the fact that many of our self-protective delusions and blind spots are built into the way the brain works is no justification for not trying.|
|Mistakes Were Made (but Not by Me) by Carol Tavris & Elliot Aronson|
Voiceover: You're listening to the Skeptics' Guide to the Universe, your escape to reality.
COVID-19 Update ()
- Vaccine and Home Testing
(laughs) (laughter) (applause) [inaudible]
Arecibo Telescope ()
AI Predicting Weather ()
Manipulated by Robots ()
Genetically Engineered Pigs ()
Asteroid Sample Return ()
Who's That Noisy? ()
- Answer to last week’s Noisy: _brief_description_perhaps_with_link_
New Noisy ()
_consider_using_block_quotes_for_emails_read_aloud_in_this_segment_ with_reduced_spacing_for_long_chunks –
Email #1: Historicity of Jesus ()
Science or Fiction ()
|Fiction||code like language|
|Science||older galaxies exist|
|Science||exoplanet radio signal|
|Jay||older galaxies exist|
|Cara||code like language|
|Evan||code like language|
|Bob||code like language|
Voiceover: It's time for Science or Fiction.
Item #1: Neuroscientists find that reading computer code heavily involves language processing areas of the brain, and is therefore similar to a language.
Item #2: A study of the most distant known object in the universe, galaxy GN-z11, which is 13.4 billion light years from Earth, contains heavier elements, which means there are older galaxies still.
Item #3: Astronomers report the first possible radio signal coming from an exoplanet. 
Steve Explains Item #3
Steve Explains Item #2
Steve Explains Item #1
Skeptical Quote of the Week ()
The need to reduce dissonance is a universal mental mechanism, but that doesn’t mean we are doomed to be controlled by it. Human beings may not be eager to change, but we have the ability to change, and the fact that many of our self-protective delusions and blind spots are built into the way the brain works is no justification for not trying.
– Mistakes Were Made (but Not by Me) (2007) by social psychologists Carol Tavris & Elliot Aronson
S: —and until next week, this is your Skeptics' Guide to the Universe.
S: Skeptics' Guide to the Universe is produced by SGU Productions, dedicated to promoting science and critical thinking. For more information, visit us at theskepticsguide.org. Send your questions to email@example.com. And, if you would like to support the show and all the work that we do, go to patreon.com/SkepticsGuide and consider becoming a patron and becoming part of the SGU community. Our listeners and supporters are what make SGU possible.
Today I Learned
- Fact/Description, possibly with an article reference
- ScienceNews: Here are 10 of Arecibo’s coolest achievements
- ScienceDaily: AI model shows promise to generate faster, more accurate weather forecasts
- Neurologica: Being Manipulated by Robots
- The Verge: FDA approves genetically engineered pigs
- ZME Science: Japanese researchers open up the Hayabusa 2 capsule — and it’s full of asteroid samples
- MIT News: To the brain, reading computer code is not the same as reading language
- Carnegie Science: Most-Distant Galaxy Helps Elucidate The Early Universe
- ScienceDaily: Astronomers detect possible radio emission from exoplanet
- [url_for_TIL publication: title]