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Unexplainable

Science

Unexplainable is a science show about everything we don’t know. Host Noam Hassenfeld is joined by an array of experts and Vox reporters each week to look at the most fascinating unanswered questions in science and the mind-bending ways scientists are trying to answer them. New episodes drop everyRead more

Popular episodes

Mind readers

Nov 17 • 33:10

Will scientists ever fully understand the human brain? In their quest for knowledge, they’ve tried knives, magnets, computers, blood, and even a good metaphor....

A brainless yellow goo that does math

Nov 10 • 26:13

Slime molds can navigate mazes, control robots, and make complicated decisions, all without a central nervous system. If this weird gooey blob can think, does that mean scientists are thinking about intelligence all wrong?...

Why whales get beached

Nov 3 • 22:36

Every year, thousands of marine mammals end up trapped on beaches, but it’s often hard to figure out why. It’s even harder to figure out how much humans are to blame....

Talking to ghosts

Oct 27 • 32:44

Why do so many people think they can see and hear ghosts, and what does that say about our conscious experience of the world?...

Honey, we shrunk the birds

Oct 20 • 28:19

A recent study of tens of thousands of birds has shown that birds are growing smaller over time. It could be due to climate change, and if so, we ought to consider: How else might humans be altering the literal shape of life on Earth — now and in the future?...

Nobel Prize 2.0

Oct 6 • 26:37

The Nobel Prize has rewarded some amazing discoveries. It’s also contributed to scientific tunnel vision. This week, how the Nobel impacted our understanding of an enormous cosmic mystery, and what a new and improved Nobel Prize could look like....

The James Webb Time Machine

Sep 29 • 29:30

To look into deep space is to look back in time. With the upcoming launch of the James Webb Space Telescope, scientists hope to see “cosmic dawn,” a period long ago when the first starlight transformed the universe. But what happened before cosmic dawn? The Webb can’t tell us, though future telescopes could....

The James Webb Space Telescope

Sep 22 • 27:28

After decades of planning, NASA is finally (finally!) set to launch the successor to the Hubble. The new Webb telescope will be a paradigm shift for astronomy, exploring places in the cosmos that have been completely invisible to us until now. But first, it has to safely reach a point nearly a million miles away from the Earth....

What causes Alzheimer’s?

Sep 15 • 31:10

For decades, Alzheimer’s researchers have been stubbornly pursuing a single theory, but they’re starting to wonder: is this narrow focus the reason we still don’t have a cure?...

Havana syndrome

Sep 1 • 29:23

Several years after US diplomats in Cuba claimed they were attacked by an invisible weapon, similar incidents continue to be reported around the world. Scientists haven’t been able to determine a definitive cause, but the possibilities point toward something just as mysterious as the illness itself: the inner workings of the human brain....

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