(Photo: Science Friction, ABC)

You already know that we love all podcasts, but we tend to always come back to a certain genre as our go to genre which we will call "our interesting world". These types of podcasts often tell stories with a scientific feel and examine the world around us uncovering things we didn't know existed, even if we encounter those things on the daily! Good examples of this type of podcast are the greats such as Freakonomics, Revisionist History 99% invisible and Radiolab. However, this last week we found two GREAT Australian podcasts produced by the ABC to add to "our interesting world" genre. We're already in binge mode and think you will be too! Here, have a taste:

#1. Science Friction hosted by Natasha Mitchell

We stumbled across the episode entitled Wildfires with wild numbers: fact checking a catastrophe yesterday while looking to digest something interesting at the gym. With the bushfire crisis here in Australia finally subsiding, this podcast episode seemed like a good choice. If you care about knowing what actually happened during those terrifying months of smoke and flames, then in this podcast you're be given the insiders scoop. Natasha interviews Inspector Ben Shepherd of the NSW fire service. They discuss the NSW fire notification system's live tracking and why it was sometimes flakey or showed strange geometric fire patterns. They get into how successful the notification system was insofar as reducing the number of human deaths. Then Natasha talks to Dr Mark Parrington,

Senior scientist at Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS) & Professor Chris Dickman from the University of Sydney. They discuss the media's statistics regarding the staggering pollution released & the amount of animals that were killed by the wildfires--the numbers published, such as 1 billion animal deaths were far lower than the actual situation due to what was included in the counts. Prof. Dickman says the number is estimated to actually be MANY times over a billion animal deaths. Have a listen to get the stats and details: Wildfires with wild numbers: fact checking a catastrophe

#2. The Science show hosted by Robyn Williams

Mushrooms are all the rage lately. Following a recent study by Johns Hopkins University everyone, especially in the podcast world (see Paul Stamets on the Joe Ragan Podcast and Sam Harris on his podcast Making Sense) is talking about Mushrooms and their ability to cure depression & PTSD. Mushrooms (the kind that get you high, of course) are also being micro-dosed in silicon valley to help with creativity.

In this episode of the Science Show Podcast: Magic Mushrooms: Can their mycelia give us safer plastic replacements? The discussion focuses on the ability of mushrooms to help fix our environmental waste problems. Can you imagine if all plastics could be REPLACED with durable, but bio-degradable mushroom products!?! It could happen! The guests discuss all the amazing use cases and properties of mycelium (or fungi in general); it is acoustic insulating, fire retardant and naturally recyclable, detoxifying, negates heavy metals and so on... The guests opine that mainstream society has neglected fungi even though many of our medicines are derived from fungi, but are now scientists are starting to perform "bio-prospecting" in small but meaningful ways to cure cancers. There is lots to learn in this jam-packed podcast check it out. You'll learn that there is fungi growing all around you, even right now: Magic Mushrooms: Can their mycelia give us safer plastic replacements?

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