Episode #1224

Microbial Videogames & Singer Laura Cantrell

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Friday, June 17, 2011

Laura Cantrell offers a tribute to the 1950s “Queen of Country Music,” Kitty Wells. Laura Cantrell offers a tribute to the 1950s “Queen of Country Music,” Kitty Wells. (Jacob Blickenstaff)

When Laura Cantrell learned to play country, she started with the music of Kitty Wells. Cantrell’s new record is a tribute to the straight-talking 1950s “Queen of Country Music,” and she performs a few songs live in studio. We’ll check out the cutting edge of videogame design, with gameplay that lets players control living organisms. Stanford University professor Ingmar Reidel-Kruse lets us beta test his game Pacmecium, played with single-celled paramecia. And Apple sets the design world abuzz (again) but not with a hot gadget; this time it’s a new world headquarters — or is that just a shiny donut?

Apple’s Newest Update

Last week, Apple’s Steve Jobs made a design presentation — not to masses of swooning tech journalists, but to the Cupertino, California city council. What Jobs unveiled this time was Apple’s future corporate headquarters. The design, by celebrated architect Norman Foster, is shaped like a giant ...

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Microbial Videogames

Ingmar Riedel-Kruse runs a biophysics lab at Stanford University, but he spends about half his time tinkering with videogames. He’s not playing World of Warcraft. Reidel-Kruse creates his own videogames using living microbes. The most playable is Pacmecium, inspired by classic Pac-Man, in which the player guides a host of paramecia around obstacles and...

Video: Playing the microbial videogame Pacmecium

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Laura Cantrell Sings Kitty Wells

At 91 years of age, Kitty Wells is the oldest living member of the Country Music Hall of Fame. And she can still surprise unsuspecting listeners. Despite her demure gingham dresses and sweet plaintive melodies, Wells was a radical. Some of her songs all but declare infidelity and promiscuousness.  Laura Cantrell — a singer and songwriter, and a...

Video: Laura Cantrell performs “I Don't Claim to Be an Angel”

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Timothy Schaffert: Great Plains Gothic

Timothy Schaffert’s new book isn’t a typical mystery novel. It’s got an ominous crime set in a small town rife with intrigue, but the narrator isn’t a hardscrabble police detective or a noirish gumshoe. Instead, Schaffert’s story is told by an 83-year old grandmother — and obituary writer. Schaffert’s choice of the elderly Essie Myles as...

Listener Challenge: Write your own obituary

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(It's Hard to Ignore Those) Facebook Walls

How much time did you spend today on Facebook? Or, put another way, how much of your day has been irretrievably sucked away by Facebook? It’s easy to lose hours commenting and liking, friending and unfriending.  Studio 360’s resident folk singer Scott Blaszak has been spending...

Video: "(It's Hard to Ignore Those) Facebook Walls"

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