TWiV 277: My podcast Vinny

March 23, 2014

Hosts: Glenn Rall, Ann Skalka, and Vincent Racaniello

Glenn and Ann meet up with Vincent to talk about his career in science and science communication.

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TWiV 277

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3 comments on “TWiV 277: My podcast Vinny

  1. Joseph Coco Apr 2, 2014

    It was a great show. There doesn’t need to be a complex problem or mystery discussed for the show to be entertaining and informative. Here’s to many more years of TWiVMP and any future science outreach endeavors you pick up.

    • Thanks Joseph! Glad you enjoyed it. And I do have several more podcasts incubating at the moment.

  2. jim12311 Apr 5, 2014

    Your comments about wanting to work with kids kicked off a mind storm for some reason that centered on what’s the best way to reach kids. Lots of thoughts, but no great answers; however, here’s what did pop up. Here’s the link to “Science Matters” ( that Dr Racaniello mentions.

    Here’s a link to “20 Amazing Chemical Reactions” which kids would like to see live:

    Here’s a link to a TED talk about the size of the universe that riveted my attention just past the 2:40 min mark when it showed the relatively small distance our radio waves have traveled: .

    Here’s a TED Ed item my two grandsons (5 and 7) liked about venom vs poison: . Reminds me of several children books (for boys) about body functions, etc.

    Here’s a link to a crowdfunded robot kids use to learn programming: .

    Vincents your web sites can be used as test beds where you offer videos, apps, or games for kids, perhaps something like the visual aids used in this YouTube video:“W8LlvI8&utm_source=WhatCounts+Publicaster+Edition&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=JHM+Science+News%3a+March+2014&utm_content=Watch+here to see what attracts the most attention, or ideas.

    And you work with people who explain things like why teeth feel furry (Dr Schmidt in TWIM 75) who can be asked how in “The Adventures of Viroid Boy” (Vincent the Viroid Boy?) Vinny, who can shrink to a size ten times that of a mimi virus by reducing the nuclear forces in his body to shrink his atoms, can move about in air or a body on his nano cart or nanomobile (powered by normal batteries shrunk to nano scale while retaining the same amount of power?!). A Tom Swift approach that forces adults to deal with and explain forces at the level of a virus to kids who already live in small worlds. (One problem is that the mass of such a shrunk boy should remain the same, so need a way to reduce it or kid would be like a tiny black hole. Also, would his cell phone work? Alternate solutions on cards, like Monopoly discover cards?)

    Ok, the last thing is a group of viruses made with a 3D printer and antibodies that can be attached like a key and cause the virus to fall apart, or fly apart. Don’t name the virus, but put names on the antibodies, like HINI, polio. Might make antibodies that have to be assembled, or manipulated (levo – dextro) before they fit a virus. Could do the same for viruses (a flu kit!) (Bright colors and names on components.) (Can this be related to Minecraft? Does anyone know if the Minecraft creators are interested in STEM?)

    I can’t see how comic books would work, though Viroid Boy can be done that way. Bazooka Bubble Gum had tiny comic strips wrapped about each piece… CrackerJax had toys or gimmicks (virus parts?). Potato Head and Cooties were toys made of parts, like Tinker Toys and Legos. Several online games devoted to science and related topics, like crime scenes, are around, but I don’t hear how well they are accepted or used.
    Anyone else want to comment? Is this the place for it?
    Thanks for the interview, Dr Racaniello.
    Anyone have any other ideas.

    Jim in Smithfield, VA