The Human Calculator

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May 22, 2015 - The Human Calculator

Scott Flansburg is in the Guinness Book of World Records as the “Fastest Human Calculator.” Flansburg correctly added a randomly selected two-digit number (38) to itself 36 times in 15 seconds without the use of a calculator. Flansburg shares his gift and love of math with children all around the world. He joins Chicago Tonight to put our own calculator to the test.

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The Robots are Coming!

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May 22, 2015 - The Robots are Coming!

Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry premieres a new national touring exhibit, Robot Revolution, that explores how robots, created by human ingenuity, will ultimately be our companions and colleagues, changing how we play, live, and work together. We get a preview from one of the exhibit’s creators.

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Scientific Chicago With Neil Shubin

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May 6, 2015 - Scientific Chicago With Neil Shubin

Scientist Neil Shubin is back to tell us why the U.S. Military is so interested in the bombardier beetle, why taking a hands-on approach is a better way to learn science, and why astronomers may want to avoid using the microwave when heating their lunch.

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The State of Chicago Trees

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April 30, 2015 - The State of Chicago Trees

One in five parkway trees in Chicago is threatened by the Emerald Ash Borer beetle. So what can people do to stop the shrinking of the region's tree canopy? The Morton Arboretum's CEO, Gerry Donnelly, joins us to talk about reversing tree loss.

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DeKalb & Ogle Counties Declared Disaster Areas

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Gov. Bruce Rauner declared DeKalb and Ogle counties state disaster areas after severe thunderstorms and tornadoes tore through the area Thursday. At least two people were reported dead in DeKalb County and dozens were injured.

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Battling Great Lakes' Invasive Species

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April 6, 2015 - Battling Great Lakes' Invasive Species

The EPA has awarded more than $8 million in grants to combat invasive species in the Great Lakes. We talk with the Shedd Aquarium's Phil Willink about the $100 million a year invasive species problem.

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Chicago's Urban Coyotes

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March 26, 2015 - Chicago's Urban Coyotes

Ohio State University biologist Stanley Gehrt has followed more than 800 coyotes in Chicago over the past 15 years using GPS tracker collars. Where they turn up might just surprise you. Gehrt joins us to discuss Chicago's thriving urban coyotes.

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Pluto's Assassin -- and Why He's Not Remorseful

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March 4, 2015 - Pluto's Assassin -- and Why He's Not Remorse

Caltech Astrophysicist Mike Brown was one of the scientists who, in 2006, led the successful crusade to get the former planet Pluto downgraded to the status of dwarf planet. He joins us to discuss what he's found far, far away in our solar system.

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Coldest February Ever?

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February 24, 2015 - Coldest February Ever?

It's cold. Really cold. WGN's Chief Meteorologist Tom Skilling tells us if we are heading towards record-breaking weather.

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Thinking Big About Sewage

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May 19, 2015-Thinking Big About Sewage

When it comes to treating our sewage, Chicago has a history of thinking big from reversing the flow of the Chicago River to the creation of Deep Tunnel. Jay Shefsky visits the Thornton Quarry and goes to the bottom of Deep Tunnel to see where the water will flow into the new reservoir later this year.    

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Nature Preserve Comes to Life

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May 4, 2015 - Nature Preserve Comes to Life

In 2011, the Chicago Park District bought 20 acres of land on the city's north side. The plot of land had sat unused and untended for many years. Nearly four years later, work on the nature preserve is moving quickly with a scheduled unveiling set for this summer. We get a preview.

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Scientific Chicago with Rabiah Mayas

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April 20, 2015 - Scientific Chicago with Rabiah Mayas

The 25th anniversary of the Hubble telescope is this month, scientists find a potential breakthrough in our understanding of Alzheimer's disease, and the likelihood of finding life on Mars just went up. Rabiah Mayas, Director of Science and Integrated Strategies at the Museum of Science and Industry, rounds up the top local and international science news.

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Energy Use in the Developing World

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April 9, 2015 - Energy Use in the Developing World

In advance of airing Power to the People tonight, we speak with Johan Norberg, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, about supplying energy to developing nations.

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Is E.T. Phoning Earth?

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April 6, 2015 - Is E.T. Phoning Earth?

An Adler Planetarium astronomer tells us whether earthlings may, at long last, be hearing from other intelligent life in the universe.

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"Galileo's Middle Finger" On Fights Between Science and Activism

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March 19, 2015-"Galileo's Middle Finger"

Historian Alice Dreger's new book, Galileo's Middle Finger: Heretics, Activists, and the Search for Justice in Science, is a funny, surprising story of Dreger's career as an activist, researcher, and advocate for evidence-based activism. She joins us.

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The International Race to Build a Breakthrough Battery

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February 26, 2015 - Breakthrough Battery

Author Steve Levine had fly-on-the-wall access for two years to "the battery guys" at Argonne National Laboratory -- America's team in an international competition to build a battery that will change the world. Levine joins us to talk about his new book, The Powerhouse.

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Bison are Back

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There are bison once again roaming Illinois prairies. It's been more than 175 years since the last wild bison died in this state, but as of October they are back, thanks to The Nature Conservancy project in western Illinois called Nachusa Grasslands. Chicago Tribune photographer Anthony Souffle has been covering the new Illinois bison and the restoration of the prairie on which they graze. When he returned recently to see their progress, Jay Shefsky tagged along.

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