06/26/2015

Autonomous Trucks, Overgrown Goldfish, and an Edible Scientific Feud

12:16 minutes

With more than 30,000 fatal car crashes in the U.S. each year, is it time to let robots take the wheel? Ready or not, autonomous cars and trucks have left the parking lot. Google’s self-driving car is cruising down the streets of Mountain View, California. And last month, Freightliner’s new semi-truck got a license to drive itself on Nevada’s public highways.

In this week’s episode of Good Thing/Bad Thing, Evan Ackerman, robot enthusiast and contributing editor for IEEE Spectrum, helps us navigate through the peaks and potholes of autonomous vehicles.

Plus, Washington Post science blogger Rachel Feltman shares her top science stories from the week including discarded pet goldfish that are finding their way into Canadian lakes and growing to the size of dinner plates. And there’s a scientific feud that may have ended up on the table of unlucky diners in France.

Segment Guests

Rachel Feltman

Rachel Feltman is author of Been There, Done That: A Rousing History of Sex, and is executive editor at Popular Science in New York, New York.

Evan Ackerman

Evan Ackerman is a contributing editor at IEEE Spectrum based in Bethesda, Maryland.

Meet the Producers and Host

About Alexa Lim

Alexa Lim was a senior producer for Science Friday. Her favorite stories involve space, sound, and strange animal discoveries.

About Christopher Intagliata

Christopher Intagliata was Science Friday’s senior producer. He once served as a prop in an optical illusion and speaks passable Ira Flatowese.

About Elah Feder

Elah Feder is a senior producer for podcasts at Science Friday. She produces the Science Diction podcast, and co-hosted and produced the Undiscovered podcast.