The Unseen Podcast

This is the unscripted, unedited, open participation, Creative Commons spinoff of the Wow! Signal. What to do you want to talk about?
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The Unseen Podcast





All Episodes
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The show notes here at Libsyn are only a rough draft. For the most refined and complete set of show notes, please go to . Thanks for listening.

Sep 3, 2016

Recorded: 2 September 2016

Released: 3 September 2016

Duration: 77 minutes, 12 seconds


Host Paul Carr welcomes panelists Chris Prophet, Sam Lichtenstein, and James Garrison talk about what's real, what's commercializable, and what's not in nuclear fusion.  Then we turn our attention to the ostensiblly grave dangers of AI.



The Unseen Podcast Blog


The National Ignition Facility

Lawrencville Plasma Physics

Not Even Wrong - Fusion Energy at Lawrenecville Plasma Physics

RationalWiki: Fusion Woo

Eric Lerner: The Big Bang Never Happened





Chris Prophet - Iain Banks

James Garrison - Scott Sigler Generations Trilogy

Sam Lichtenstein - Uluru in Austraila

Paul Carr - Frank Zappa and Captain Beefheart: Bongo Fury



Host and Producer: Paul Carr

Panelists: James Garrison, Chris Prophet, Sam Lichtenstein

Music: DJ Spooky


Aug 22, 2016

Recorded: 19 August 2016

Released: 23 August 2016

Duration:65 minutes


Host David Grigg welcomes Chris Prophet, Patrick Festa, and (eventually) Nick Nielsen to talk about the future of humanity.


Producer's Note: about 1 minute of content-free technical difficulty was edited out.



Technologies of Life Extension
Dyson Dots and Geoengineering
A Cost/Benefit Analysis of the End of Civilization as we Know It
Making Silent Stones Speak


Host: David Grigg
Panelists: Chris Prophet, Patrick Festa, Nick Nielsen
Producer: Paul Carr
Music: DJ Spooky


Jul 16, 2016

Recorded: 15 July 2016

Released: 16 July 2016

Duration:97 minutes


It's our Summer hiatus, so we just had a free from conversation hosted by Paul with Mike Mongo, Nick Nielsen, and Patrick Festa. James Garrison was with us in spirit.



George Clinton

Sun Ra

Bernie Worrell

Big Lebowski

Episode 54

Daniela De Paulis

Sarah Jane Pell

Nick Nielsen: The Spoor Of Civilizations

Astronaut instruction Manual

Natalie Cabrol's new paper on SETI


Host and Producer: Paul Carr

Panelists: Mike Mongo, Nick Nielsen, Patrick Festa

Music: DJ Spooky

Jul 4, 2016

Recorded: 4 July 2016

Released: 4 July 2016

Duration: 74 minutes, 44 seconds


Host Paul Carr welcomes panelists Adam Smith, Gita Jaisinghani, and Daniela De Paulis (our first completely non-American and majority female panel), to talk about the relationship between art and science, SETI, and METI.

  • Encouragement to contribute to "Earthling's Quest" kickstarter.
  • Daniela's work to unite art and science
  • Confusion about art - should art be explained?
  • Daniela has published papers about hert work.
  • Visual Moonbounce
  • Daniela's technical team
  • METI and Breakthrough Messaging and the artist's role.
  • METI as a human exercise
  • Should we put our best foot forward in the ET message or tell the ugly truth?
  • Is any advanced ET highly evolved? Do they have a violent past?
  • DO we know that alien consciousness would be like ours?
  • Advanced civilizations likely to be long lived.
  • Is ET leaving us alone for a good reason?
  • The terms in the Drake Equation and the fourth term in particular
  • Martian life?
  • Communicating with technological ET - is there a universal?
  • Technological progress not correlated with language complexity
  • Consciousness and SETI do we need to understand consciousness better?
  • Past human conceptual revolutions
  • Philosophers plugged into science and vice versa?
  • Morality and science - are there questions science shouldn't ask?
  • Resistance to science in the US
  • The evolution of scientific ethics in recent generations
  • The importance of ethics
  • Human sex differences should be researched?
  • There will always be ethics "cheaters."
  • Wrapup
  • Recruiting, nagging, promoting
  • Goodbye




Daniela De Paulis

The Earthling's Quest Kickstarter

METI International

The Pioneer Plaque

The Drake Arecibo Message

Carrie Peterson

The Day the Earth Stood Still

The Drake Equation

Shadow Biosphere

Wights on Game of Thrones

The Tuskeegee Syphilis Study



Host and Producer: Paul Carr

Panelists: Adam Smith, Gita Jaisinghani, Daniela De Paulis

Music: DJ Spooky

Hardware: Shure, ART, Focusrite, Apple

Software: Loopback, Reaper, OS X Yosemite




Jun 11, 2016

Recorded: 10 June 2016

Released: 11 june 2016

Duration: 98 minutes, 44 seconds


Host Paul Carr is joined by panelists Adam Smith, Marsha Barnhart, and Nick Nielsen to talk about the future of human conflict.


  • Cyber warfare
  • Snowden and the NSA information
  • Snowden hero or traitor?
  • Drawing the line where cyberwar starts
  • Defining warfare
  • The cold war and limited war
  • War in low Earth orbit and cyber warfare
  • Easy and cheap to bring down big expensive satellites
  • Anti satellite weapons
  • Kessler syndorme
  • Weather satellites and the military value of weather data
  • Warfighting platforms in space
  • GPS and their military value
  • Boots on the Ground in space.






Marsha: DARPA


Paul: Raging Bitch



Host and Producer: Paul Carr

Music: DJ Spooky

May 28, 2016


Recorded: 27 May 2016

Released: 28 May 2016

Duration: 94 minutes, 52 seconds


Host Paul Carr welcomes panelists Chris Prophet, David Grigg, Marsha Barnhart, and Patrick Festa, each of which brings their own topic:

  • Chris: SpaceX going to Mars and Chris Prophet's book on SpaceX
  • David: The validity of computer simulations
  • Marsha: CRISPR-cas9 gene editing
  • Patrick: Monument Probes for humanity


Chris Prophet: SpaceX from the Ground Up (USA)

Chris Prophet: SpaceX from the Ground Up (UK)

Active Shielding on Spacecraft

Effectiveness of Artificial Mini-Magnetospheres

Gregory Benford: The Martian Race

The Genesis Engine (article on CRISPR)

The Promise and Peril of Gene Editing

The Billion Year Pyramid

The Benfords: Messaging with Cost Optimized Interstellar Beacons


Chris Prophet: Interstellar Propulsion

David Grigg: The Lunar Men by Jenny Uglow and Age of Wonder by Richard Holmes

Marsha Barnhart: Orphan Black

Patrick Festa: Juno Mission

Paul Carr: Where's The Flux Kickstarter (please donate)


Host and Producer: Paul Carr

Music: DJ Spooky


The Unseen Podcast is distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-alike license.


Apr 30, 2016

Recorded: 29 April 2016

Released: 30 April 2016

Duration: 109 minutes, 48 seconds


Host Paul Carr welcomes panelists Sam Lichtenstein, Adam Smit, Patrick Festa, and Mike Bohler to talk about the human relationship with the near future: predictions, forecasts, predawn markets, and super forecasting. What do we get wrong, and what can we hope to get right? Our panelists offer their own forecasts.


For the most detailed show notes, please see, Episode 50.


Philip Tetlock on Rationally Speaking



Sam Lichtenstein: SpaceX to Mars

Paul Carr: SETI Detection

Adam Smith: UK Police with Face Recognition

Patrick Festa: Betelgeuse exploding by 2046

Mike Bohler: SpaceX on Mars before 2021



Host and Producer: Paul Carr

Music: DJ Spooky




Apr 16, 2016

Recorded: 15 April 2016

Released: 16 April 2016

Duration: 79 minutes, 8 seconds


Host Paul Carr welcomes panelists David Grigg, Marsha Barnhart, and Nick Nielsen to talk about preserving the artifacts of human culture and civilization of the very long term: why, what and how.



The Decipherment of Linear B

Murmurs of the Earth by Carl Sagan

The Corbis Photo Vault at Iron Mountain

The Swerve

The Star by Arthur C. Clarke

Corpus Juris Civlis

The Future of the Past

Svalbard Global Seed Vault


Douglas Vakoch, Director of Interstellar Message Composition


David: Murmures of Earth by Carl Sagan

Nick: Lectures of Alan B. MacNeil on Evolutionary Psychology I

Marsha: Silent Running

Paul Carr: Vikings


Host and Producer: Paul Carr

Music: DJ Spooky

Hardware: Shure, Pro Art, Focusrite, Apple, Sony

Software: Reaper, OS X Yosemite, Loopback

Hosting: Libsyn


Apr 3, 2016

Recorded: 1 April 2016

Released: 3 April 2016

Duration:82 minutes, 12 seconds


Host James Garrison welcomes Mike Mongo, Mike Bohler, and Marsha Barnhart to talk about hoaxes.

Erratum: It was the Stanford Prison Experiment, not Berkeley.

  • The Patterson Bigfoot footage
  • Piltdown Man and the Cardiff giant
  • P.T. Barnum
  • The Sokal Hoax 
  • Anthropogenic Climate Change - who is being misleading?
  • E-mail scams
  • Martin Gardner's book "Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science" on pseudoscience and furthering a political agenda
  • Pseudoscience on YouTube
  • Mike Mongo discusses a student's UFO experience - was he delusional? Marsha is not so sure.
  • Some scientists are religious
  • Giant spiders
  • Flat Earthers
  • Hollow moons? Nope.
  • Martian caves.
  • Johann Behringer hoaxed by his students.
  • Project Alpha, Randi and Banachek
  • Poetry hoax
  • Art hoaxes
  • Steve Allen's music hoaxes
  • more discussion of the Sokal hoax.
  • Cold Fusion
  • Randi exposed Uri Geller who fooled scientists
  • Stanford Prison Experiment
  • Fitting in with preconceived notions
  • Michael Cremo's cherry picking
  • More on P.T. Barnum
  • What is our current Freak Show? Donald Trump?
  • The Microsoft Tweetbot
  • Wrap Up and Recommendations



Project Alpha

The Ern Malley Poetry Hoax



David Grigg: Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science by Martin Gardner

Marsha Barnhart: practice discernment

Mike Mongo: Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

James Garrison: Skeptic's Guide to Conspiracy


Host: James Garrison

Producer: Paul Carr

Music: DJ Spooky


Mar 19, 2016

Recorded: 18 March 2016

Released: 19 March 2016

Duration: 103 minutes, 24 seconds


Host Paul Carr is joined by panelists James Garrison, Mike Bohler and Nick Nielsen, for a wide ranging discussion about science, society, and the messy process by which science gets the money it needs to move forward.



Jason Hessels on Fast Radio Bursts

Evidence Based Medicine Has Been Hijacked

Jim Bakker is Indicted on Federal Charges

The Ancient Tully Monster

Persiflagers' Infectious Disease Puscast

Nick Nielsen's Blog

Galaxy Zoo

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