All Summaries for Stuff You Should Know

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If you've ever wanted to know about champagne, satanism, the Stonewall Uprising, chaos theory, LSD, El Nino, true crime and Rosa Parks, then look no further. Josh and Chuck have you covered.

Parasocial Relationships: That Podcaster is Your Friend!
Parasocial relationships are fascinating and it turns out Chuck knows what it's like from both sides. Listen in today to your old friends. See for privacy information.
Tue, October 10, 2023
Selects: How Motion Sickness Works
Motion sickness is the worst and hits about 25 to 40 percent of humans when they ride in cars, boats, or simply watch the wrong 3-D movie. Join us as we break down the science behind this nausea-inducing affliction in this classic episode.See for privacy information.
Sat, October 7, 2023
How Andy Warhol Worked
You know Andy Warhol from his quip on being famous for 15 minutes and paintings of soup cans, but even as far as artists go he was an eccentric and misunderstood person. See for privacy information.
Thu, October 5, 2023
Short Stuff: Rhodium
Rhodium is one of the most valuable precious metals on Earth, though it has dropped in value by about 80% in the last year. Learn why by clicking play.See for privacy information.
Wed, October 4, 2023
Night of the Grizzlies
Grizzly bears had never killed a person in Glacier National Park until the night of August 12, 1967. That's when everything changed for National Parks moving forward.See for privacy information.
Tue, October 3, 2023
Selects: Social Security Numbers: Less Boring Than You'd Think
Do you know that up until July 2011 an ambitious hacker with a good software program could deduce your social security number based on your date and place of birth? In this classic episode, the boys examine some of the lesser-known details of the Social Security system in the U.S.See for privacy information.
Sat, September 30, 2023
Revenge: Bitter, Not Sweet
Someone cuts you off in traffic or makes fun of your friend and all you can think of is how to get back at them and then some. But wait! Research has found that taking revenge actually makes you feel worse in the long run. Learn about what to do instead.See for privacy information.
Thu, September 28, 2023
Short Stuff: The Dakota
The Dakota is one of New York City's great buildings. And its backstory is pretty great to boot. See for privacy information.
Wed, September 27, 2023
The Amazing Life of Christine Granville
Christine Granville was about as James Bond as it gets. Stories of her life as a spy during World War II are legendary. Today we'll tell her story. See for privacy information.
Tue, September 26, 2023
Selects: Cockney Rhyming Slang: Beautiful Gibberish
What is Cockney Rhyming Slang? It's complicated and its origins are unclear. Learn everything we know about it today in this classic episode.See for privacy information.
Sat, September 23, 2023
Kombucha: Fizzy Goodness
Kombucha is pretty popular right now. But what is it exactly and where did it come from? The answers await you!See for privacy information.
Thu, September 21, 2023
Short Stuff: Origin of Math Signs
Have you ever stopped mid-pencil mark and realized to your astonishment where the plus sign came from? Then this one’s for you.See for privacy information.
Wed, September 20, 2023
10ish Worst Business Decisions Ever
It’s easy (and kind of fun) to laugh at the misfortune of CEOs and other high up business types when they bring it on themselves – so let’s do that now. Herein lies some of the worst business decisions ever made, hindsight being 20/20, of course.See for privacy information.
Tue, September 19, 2023
Selects: How Floods Work
Floods happen when more water is introduced to an area than can be quickly removed. That's about it, but there's more to floods, what causes them and the havoc they can wreak. Join Josh and Chuck in this super-saturated classic episode of Stuff You Should Know.See for privacy information.
Sat, September 16, 2023
The Hyatt Regency Skywalk Disaster
In 1981 America suffered the worst accidental structural collapse in its history. Listen in today to the tragic story of the fast-tracked building disaster that stills haunts Kansas City. See for privacy information.
Thu, September 14, 2023
Short Stuff: Why Spilling Salt is Unlucky
Face it, when you spill salt your life goes totally off the rails, maybe even forever. Fortunately, we humans stumbled upon the one reliable way to counteract that bad luck by tossing some over our left shoulder.See for privacy information.
Wed, September 13, 2023
Axolotls: The Smiling Salamander from Mexico
It’s a listener request! Axolotls are one of the more amazing animals roaming the planet right now – they can regenerate parts of their brains, can fight off tumors, are found in the wild only in one single lake? And did we mention they smile all the time?See for privacy information.
Tue, September 12, 2023
Selects: How Space Stations Work
It seems like we largely take it for granted these days, but the fact that we have humans living in space is the realization of a scientific dream a century old. Visit the space stations orbiting Earth past, present and future in this classic episode.See for privacy information.
Sat, September 9, 2023
Native American Reservations
Today we dive into the history and current state of Native American reservations. This serves as a nice follow-up to the Trail of Tears double-ep from 2017. See for privacy information.
Thu, September 7, 2023
Short Stuff: History of OK
Is OK the best word? It's certainly one of the most versatile. Check the interesting history of this weird contraction.See for privacy information.
Wed, September 6, 2023
The Made-up Disease of Syndrome K
In WWII, Italy went through its own Jewish Holocaust, terrible at first then horrific as the Nazis took over the country. In Rome, a group of doctors hid Jewish refugees in plain sight in their hospital by giving them a highly contagious, highly fictitious disease.  See for privacy information.
Tue, September 5, 2023
Selects: Body Odor: You Stink
Chuck and Josh end up making reduxes of past episodes on things like sweating and deodorant in this all-new episode on the science beneath what makes people smell. Learn all about your odor in this classic episode.See for privacy information.
Sat, September 2, 2023
Laurens Hammond: The Non-Musical Genius Who Changed Popular Music
Laurens Hammond invented the Hammond organ and in the process changed music history. But he was much more than that. See for privacy information.
Thu, August 31, 2023
Short Stuff: Evil Eye
You've seen the evil eye. Many Middle Eastern cultures have a long history with it. Learn how to thwart this curse today. See for privacy information.
Wed, August 30, 2023
Fordlandia: Brazil Isn't Michigan
Henry Ford tried to build a Midwestern American town in the Amazon rainforest in the 1920s. It's true. And yes, Chuck will say this should be a movie. See for privacy information.
Tue, August 29, 2023
Selects: How Toy Testing Works
It's every kid's dream - a job playing with toys that pays in toys. It's a real thing and has been around for a long time. Then there's the other side of the testing process, companies who ensure that toys are safe. It takes both of these testing techniques to successfully bring a toy to market these days. Dive into the ball pit with us today and learn all about toy testing in this classic episode.See for privacy information.
Sat, August 26, 2023
Plant Migration
Climate change is having sweeping effects on our climate and this is changing the world, not just for humans and other animals, but plants too. Will the Earth’s flora manage to find safe refuge in time?    See for privacy information.
Thu, August 24, 2023
Short Stuff: Saturn's Rings
Friends, treasure Saturn’s rings while they are young. They won’t be around forever.See for privacy information.
Wed, August 23, 2023
Farmer's Almanac: Literature to Poop To
The Farmer's Almanac has a long rich history that is more than just moon phases and long-term weather patterns. Tune in to learn all about it. See for privacy information.
Tue, August 22, 2023
Selects: How Music Sampling Works
Today music sampling is a common practice, especially in electronic or hip-hop music. But how does it work? After all, other artists made the original music, and most of them would presumably like to be paid. Tune in to this classic episode to learn more about music sampling.See for privacy information.
Sat, August 19, 2023
The Mysterious Disappearance of the Franklin Expedition
One of the great Arctic mysteries was the disappearance of the ill-fated Franklin Expedition in search of a northwest passage between the Atlantic and Pacific. Not one man survived the trip, and they left precious little behind in the way of clues.See for privacy information.
Thu, August 17, 2023
Short Stuff: Edward Mordake
In the 19th century news spread of an unfortunate man who was born with an evil second face on the back of his head that spoke to him. The real story is that people keep falling for it.See for privacy information.
Wed, August 16, 2023
How We’re Learning to Talk to Animals
If we could talk with the animals, grunt and squeak and squawk with the animals, what would we say? We’d better start thinking of something good because researchers are learning to speak sperm whale, prairie dog, and a bunch of other species' languages.See for privacy information.
Tue, August 15, 2023
Selects: How Magnets Work
You can stick them to the fridge or use them to transpose sound to tape, whatever they are used for magnets are surprisingly interesting. And knowing just exactly how and why magnets work will make you more interesting, which is why you should listen to this classic episode of SYSK.See for privacy information.
Sat, August 12, 2023
Science is just realizing the extent of the tiny pollutants that have entered ecosystems across Earth and inside all humans. We call them xenobiotics – substances foreign to our bodies – and what effects they have on us we’re only starting to learn.See for privacy information.
Thu, August 10, 2023
Short Stuff: History of English
Who spoke English first and what was it like? Nothing like it is today. Listen in to learn all about it. See for privacy information.
Wed, August 9, 2023
Dear Diary...
Diaries have been around for a long time. There are many famous ones, and tens of millions that will never see the light of day. Learn about the history and benefits of journaling today.See for privacy information.
Tue, August 8, 2023
Selects: Rainbows: Delighting humanity since forever
Rainbows seem to defy nature, but they're really pretty simple when it comes down to it. Turns out it's just light reacting to water droplets in the air. But they sure do look cool. Learn all about how rainbows are formed in this classic episode.See for privacy information.
Sat, August 5, 2023
The Last Meal Ritual
The last meal of the executed is a longstanding tradition. Listen in today to learn about the dark history and modern practice of this culinary curiosity. See for privacy information.
Thu, August 3, 2023
Short Stuff: NATO Alphabet
Alpha, Bravo, Charlie. This is the NATO alphabet. But where did it come from?See for privacy information.
Wed, August 2, 2023
BPD: The Worst Disorder or Not a Disorder at All?
Borderline Personality Disorder has been described as emotional “third degree burns over ninety percent of your body.” It’s as close to a curse as a personality disorder can be: deep fear of being abandoned creates behaviors that end up driving people off.See for privacy information.
Tue, August 1, 2023
Selects: What's the deal with Stradivarius violins?
The Strad violin is noted for its tonal qualities and superior craftsmanship. And for its price tag. There are many theories why the Strad sounds so great, from the wood to the lacquer, to the simple fact that Antonio Stradivari was really good at what he did. Rosin up your bow and take a listen to this classic episode.See for privacy information.
Sat, July 29, 2023
MAD Magazine: A Tribute
Chuck and Josh grew up on MAD Magazine and we hope you did too. What started out as a comic book that spoofed comic books grew into the foundation of American satire and cultivated a healthy skepticism in generations of kids. Hail to the clods at MAD!See for privacy information.
Thu, July 27, 2023
Short Stuff: Blue Highway Signs
In the US those ubiquitous blue highway signs that tell you which direction you’ll find a Burger King have an interesting backstory. See for privacy information.
Wed, July 26, 2023
Learning a Foreign Language
Today, Chuck and Josh dive into the ins and outs of language learning. See for privacy information.
Tue, July 25, 2023
Selects: How Ocean Currents Work
It's easy to overlook the importance of ocean currents - they move along out at sea, while we stay mostly on land. But we are globally affected by them every day. Currents form the base of the food chain, drive weather and keep life as we know it going. Explore them with Josh and Chuck in this classic episode.See for privacy information.
Sat, June 24, 2023
How Afrofuturism Works
Black sci-fi writers were shut out of their genre in the 20th century so they created their own vision of the future. That sentiment spread to music and film and today it’s so engrained in pop culture it doesn't need its own label. See for privacy information.
Thu, June 22, 2023
Short Stuff: Chia Pet
It has arrived, the most important podcast episode in the history of the world. See for privacy information.
Wed, June 21, 2023
Large Language Models and You
There is a good chance that in March of 2023, humans crossed a threshold into a transformative new era when a new, smarter type of AI was let loose in the wild and an AI arms race began.  See for privacy information.
Tue, June 20, 2023
Selects: SYSK Live: Back When Ford Pintos Were Flaming Deathtraps
For this special live benefit episode recorded in Atlanta, Josh and Chuck go back to the 70s and look at the decidedly ungroovy course of events that led to Ford recalling its Pinto after people started burning up in them.See for privacy information.
Sat, June 17, 2023
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