This is me guest hosting my colleague/friend Meg O’Connell’s program, Bright Pods, on 2XX FM a few months ago. The show had a great format whereby a serious interview with an expert (a “bright pod”) is preceded by an elaborate, absurdist introduction.
I lined up an interview with my mate Mat McGann about chaos theory, which he studies as part of his physics PhD. The interview’s pretty good as a 20 minute digest of a cool topic in an irreverent manner (we’ve both worked as professional science communicators) but I’m particularly proud of the intro. It’s done as a live read with no mistakes, covering some pretty wordy content and is basically the apotheosis of my Micalef-inspired sense of humour; you might not think it’s funny but I do.
Even though we’re generally interested in experimenting science communication nerds can note a few classic techniques:
- me playing dumb about chaos theory to position myself with the audience;
- starting with a framing question rather than a direct one (like, what is chaos theory?); and
- only asking the expert about their particular speciality at the end because researchers are notoriously boring on their own work and better at the more general stuff (Mat excepted).