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Brian Cox and Robin Ince host a witty, irreverent look at the world through scientists' eyes.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2022-09-03 19:15:00

How to Teach Maths (p0cpdxtp.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Sara Pascoe and the very numerate Prof Hannah Fry, maths comedian Matt Parker and statistician Prof David Spiegelhalter for a unique maths class. Are some of us just innately bad at maths or can everyone get to grips with algebra and calculus? What do our panel wish they'd been taught at school, and what is the key to a life-long love of numbers? Get your calculators ready! Executive Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2022-08-27 19:15:00

Brains (p0cpdtwz.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Alan Davies and neuroscientists Prof Uta Frith and Prof Sophie Scott. They discover the secret to why humans are such social creatures and why two brains are definitely better than one. Our brains are wired to learn from and mimic other brains we come into contact with, even though most of the time we don't even realise that is what they/we are doing. The subtle cues we get from other people and the information in their brains, affects our own wiring and experience of the world. With this incredible complexity, might we ever be able to create an artificial brain that mimics our own and the human experience? Executive Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2022-08-20 19:15:00

Astronauts (p0cn02dr.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince look back at Planet Earth from the unique perspective of space with the help of astronauts Nicole Stott and Chris Hadfield, Space scientist Carolyn Porco and comedian and author Katy Brand. What can we learn about our own planet by looking back at it from space? The panel talk about the emotional response of looking back on earth, either from the ISS or via amazing photographs like Voyager's Pale Blue Dot, and the importance of realising our own place and significance in the vast cosmos. Executive Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2022-08-13 19:15:00

Black Holes (p0clmdsd.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by Monty Python's Eric Idle, and cosmologists Dr Netta Engelhardt and Dr Janna Levin as they tackle one of the biggest challenges in cosmology. What happens when you throw something (Robin!) into a black hole? Is the information about Robin lost forever, or is there a chance, sometime in the far future, a super intelligent alien civilisation could piece back some key information to discover proof he ever existed? Are Robin and his cardigans lost for all eternity? Executive Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2022-08-06 19:15:00

The Wood Wide Web (p0ckhfn8.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by Ted Lasso's Brendan Hunt, Professor of forest ecology and author of "The Mother Tree", Suzanne Simard and botanist Mark Spencer to discover how trees and plants communicate and what they are saying. Suzanne's incredible discovery that trees form a wood wide web of communication has changed our entire understanding of forests and how they work. With the help of amazing fungi, this incredible network of communication allows the trees and plants in a forest to pass information backwards and forwards to help protect themselves against predators and optimize resource. Incredibly, this could even be viewed as a form of intelligence. Brian and Robin find out how this should change the way we look at all plants, and in particular how we manage our forests and discover some of the secrets of those whispering trees. Executive Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2022-07-30 19:15:00

Exploring the Deep (p0cj5rxt.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian and musician Tim Minchin and oceanographers Diva Amon and Jon Copley to uncover what mysteries still lie at the bottom of our oceans. It is often said that we know more about the surface of the Moon then we do about our own ocean floor, but is that really true? What have modern-day explorers such as Diva and Jon discovered during their many expeditions to the deepest points of our oceans, and can they persuade Tim to join them on their next voyage? From extraordinary life forms with incredible survival strategies, to the gruesome sex life of the angler fish, the panel discuss some of the greatest discoveries of the last few years, and what questions they still hope to answer. Executive Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2022-07-23 19:15:00

Bats v Flies (p0cgz9ym.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince kick off the new series by tackling one of the greatest questions ever posed by science: which are better, bats or flies? Joining them for this unusual version of animal Top Trumps are a bat expert (Prof Kate Jones), a fly expert (Dr Erica McAlister) and Dave Gorman. Pitching arguably two of the least-lovable groups of creatures against each other, the battle for victory explores why we should favour flies or find bats beautiful. Although both are much maligned thanks to their association with some nasty diseases, Erica and Kate battle furiously to show why their respective species should be loved not loathed and how our planet would simply not be the same without them. Dave Gorman joins the panel in an attempt to help adjudicate. Executive Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2022-06-25 19:10:00

The Infinite Monkey Cage is Back (p0ch09xc.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are back with a new series of The Infinite Monkey Cage. Looking for the new episode? It will be available everywhere from the 23rd of July. But if you can’t wait to hear it and are in the UK, listen on BBC Sounds today where new episodes are available first - 28 days before other podcast apps.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2021-03-10 10:19:00

Introducing Robin Ince’s Laws That Aren’t Laws (p09976d8.mp3)

Robin explores the origins of laws that seem to govern our everyday lives but which aren’t really laws at all. You can hear all five episodes of the series in the Scientifically podcast where you can also find other great science programmes from Radio 4.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2021-02-15 16:30:00

A History of Rock (p096t815.mp3)

A History of Rock Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by rock enthusiasts Ross Noble, paleontologist Susie Maidment and geologist Chris Jackson to look at the history of rock. Unfortunately for Ross, this turns out to mean actual rolling stones, rather than THE Rolling Stones. We hear what secrets the study of rock reveals about the very birth of our planet, to the incredible creatures that walked the Earth many millions of years ago, preserved in our ancient stones. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2021-02-08 16:30:00

The Fundamentals of Reality (p095xyr0.mp3)

The Fundamentals of Reality Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by Nobel prize winning physicist Frank Wilczek, cosmologist Janna Levin, and comedians Eric Idle and Sara Pascoe to look at what physics has revealed about the reality of our universe. From Einstein's equations more than 100 years ago through to the amazing discoveries we've made in the last few years about black holes and gravitational waves, the universe we think we see is not necessarily the true fundamental reality that physics has uncovered. What is real and what is not? All will be revealed. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2021-02-01 16:30:00

The Science of Cooking (p0957xxk.mp3)

The Science of Cooking Brian Cox and Robin Ince get their chef's hats on as they look at the science of cooking. They are joined by comedian Katy Brand, author and food critic Grace Dent, material scientist Mark Miodownik and science writer Harold McGee, whose seminal book on the science of the kitchen launched the craze for molecular gastronomy. They look at some of the lores of the kitchen are backed up by the science, and ask whether a truly delicious dinner is really a science or an art. Is cooking just chemistry? Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2021-01-25 16:30:00

Neanderthals (p094p63f.mp3)

The Neanderthals Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by hominids Alan Davies, Neanderthal expert and author Rebecca Wragg Sykes, and paleontologist and woolly mammoth expert Tori Herridge and learn just how misunderstood our ancestors have been. The image of the lumbering, ape like, simple, grunting Neanderthal has been turned on its head with the discovery that we are far more related to Neanderthals then we ever thought possible. Nearly all Europeans will have around 2% Neanderthal DNA, and the revelation of widespread interbreeding between Neanderthals and modern humans has turned the idea of our exceptionalism on its head. It seems that what defines us may have defined the Neanderthals as well, and we are not so different after all. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2021-01-18 16:30:00

Under our Night Sky (p093zwcp.mp3)

Under The Night Sky Brian Cox and Robin Ince discover the importance of the night sky to human history and how our relationship with the stars has changed over the centuries. They are joined by star-gazer Jon Culshaw, astronaut Tim Peake, astrophysicist Lisa Harvey-Smith and astronomy writer Stuart Clark as they chart the changing nature of our relationship with the sky above us. They discuss ancient cave paintings depicting Orion's belt, the astronomical revolution that came with our understanding of how planets orbit the Sun, and how astronauts like Tim who have "touched the sky" have seen the stars in a totally unique way. Has our ever expanding knowledge about the stars twinkling above us removed some of the magic, or have modern missions and the incredible images of space we now see brought us closer, quite literally, to the sky above us? Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2021-01-11 16:30:00

In Praise of Flies (p0936lm5.mp3)

In Praise of Flies Brian Cox and Robin Ince kick off a new series of Infinite Monkey Cage with a look at probably the least revered or liked group of insects, the flies. They are joined by fly sceptic David Baddiel , fly enthusiast and champion Dr Erica McAlister and maggot expert Matthew Cobb to discover why a life without flies would be no life at all. Can Erica and Matthew persuade David to put his fly gun down and learn to love those pesky pests, or is their reputation for being disgusting and annoying justified? What would a planet without flies look like? Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-08-26 16:18:00

Does Time Exist? (p08ppft9.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by actor and writer Mark Gatiss, theoretical physicists Carlo Rovelli and Fay Dowker to ask timely questions about time. Is time real, does it exist in the fundamental laws of physics, and if it doesn't, why do we experience the sensation of time passing? They look at the idea of the block universe, where our future is as real as our past, which worryingly leads to Robin's favourite question about free will...is that an illusion too? A timely look at the question of time and hopefully just in time... Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-07-20 17:16:00

What is Life? (p08lcbs5.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedians Jo Brand and Ross Noble, alongside Nobel Prize winner Sir Paul Nurse and geneticist Prof Aoife McLysaght to ask the biggest question of all, what is life and how did it start? They look at the amazing feat of nature that has somehow created all of life from just four fundamental units of simple chemistry. From chickens to butterflies to yeast, we are all far more closely related then we think. But how did the spark of life occur and what has any of this got to do with Ewoks? Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-06-29 09:00:00

When the Monkeys Met the Chimps (p08j3sj4.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by Dr Jane Goodall DBE, comedian Bill Bailey and primatologist Dr Cat Hobaiter to find out what we've learnt in the 60 years since Jane first discovered the chimpanzees of Gombe. From tool use, to language and even to culture, her revolutionary work has transformed our understanding of our great ape cousins, and ourselves. The panel chat about how far our understanding has come in that time, and talk about their own unique close-up experiences of chimpanzees, macaques and baboons, and Bill gets a masterclass in how to speak Chimp from a true expert! Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-06-22 15:56:00

The Sun (p08hplh4.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by a dazzling panel of sun worshippers from actor, comedian and musician Tim Minchin to solar scientist Professor Lucie Green and biologist Professor Steve Jones. They look at how the evolution of life was only possible because of our position relative to the sun and its possibly unique behaviour, and how rare that situation might be across the rest of the universe. They also look at how the sun makes you feel and its vital importance to all creatures, especially snails. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-06-15 10:58:00

An Astronaut's Guide to Isolation (p08gttck.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by a stellar panel of space travellers as they get tips on surviving isolation from a group with a truly unique insight. They are joined by astronauts Helen Sharman, Chris Hadfield, Nicole Stott and Apollo 9's Rusty Schweickart to talk Space X, the future of space travel and how a trip to Mars will be the ultimate test of our ability to survive isolation.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-06-08 10:51:00

Space Archaeology (p08gh3ls.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian and writer Sara Pascoe, biological anthropologist Alice Roberts and space archaeologist Sarah Parcak. They look at how archaeology today looks far more Star Wars than Indiana Jones, as an archaeologist's list of kit can now include satellites and lasers. They discover how searching for clues from space has led to the discovery of several ancient lost Egyptian cities and how the study of ancient DNA and artefacts reveals our similarities, not differences, with our ancient forebears. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-06-01 08:45:00

Black Holes (p08fjt3f.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince look at the weird and wacky world of black holes as they ask a question that has been troubling scientists for years: What happens if you push Matt Lucas into a black hole? They are joined by the very game Matt Lucas, alongside cosmologist Sean Carroll and astrophysicist Janna Levin to discover just how strange things might get for our intrepid volunteer, as he ventures into the interior of a black hole. From holograms to spagettification. it turns out science fact is far more bizarre than anything that science fiction could possibly imagine. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-05-25 09:00:00

The End of the Universe (p08dxct4.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are back for new series, for now at least, as they take an upbeat look at all the different ways our Universe might end. They are joined by legendary comedians Steve Martin and Eric Idle, alongside astrophysicist Katie Mack and cosmologist Brian Greene, to find out which end the panel might prefer. Will we go with the Big Rip or possibly the Big Crunch, or even death by giant bubble that expands so rapidly it wipes out our universe almost instantly? On that cheery note the panel vote for their favourite apocalyptic ending and wonder what they might be doing and what they hope to have achieved when the final moment comes. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-02-12 06:40:00

UFO special (p082zh3w.mp3)

UFO SPECIAL Brian Cox and Robin Ince host a close encounter of the 1st kind with comedian Lucy Beaumont, astronomer Maggie Aderin-Pocock, Director of Jodrell Bank Professor Tim O’Brien, and science presenter Dallas Campbell to ask if UFOs and aliens have visited Earth? They explore why Lucy's home city of Hull appears to have had more than its fair share of alien visitations, as well as learning about the genuine scientific effort to look for intelligent life elsewhere in our universe. This episode is also available to watch, so you can see our truly out of this world panel in full technicolour glory. Just look for The Infinite Monkey Cage UFO TV Special on BBC iplayer. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-02-12 06:35:00

Lucy Beaumont's Close Encounters (p0830by3.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince send comedian Lucy Beaumont to investigate UFO sightings in the extra-terrestrial hotspot of... Hull! Lucy is joined by her mum GIll Adams who claims to have experienced a number of close encounters of the third kind and they return to Longhill Estate where a UFO was reported in the 1960s. Local historian Mike Covell takes Lucy through the documented accounts of prolific UFO sightings in and around the East Yorkshire area.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-02-10 16:30:00

Quantum Worlds (p082hq19.mp3)

Quantum Worlds Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Katy Brand, and physicists Sean Carroll and Jim Al-Khalili as they enter the strange and bizarre world of quantum mechanics. Schroedinger's famous thought experiment stuck a cat in a box and asked if it is dead or alive. Quantum physics says the cat is both dead and alive, until we open the box. This mind-bending idea may seem the realm of philosophy, but is actually the science that underpins most of modern life as we know it. Once the panel have dealt with the controversial issues surrounding cats in boxes, they explore whether quantum physics is really an accurate description of reality, and if it is, are there, as the theory suggests, infinite copies of you, me and everything in our universe all existing in every possible combination of ways of existing? If that is the strange but true reality of existence, will we ever be able to prove it?

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-02-03 16:30:00

Fire (p081pvfd.mp3)

Fire! Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Ed Byrne, forensic chemist Niamh Nic Daeid and biologist Adam Rutherford, as they explore the science of fire and how it has impacted the evolution of life on earth. They also look at whether controlling fire is a uniquely human trait and how other species have evolved to use fire to their advantage. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-01-27 16:30:00

Coral Reefs (p0812ggp.mp3)

The Magic of Coral Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Marcus Brigstocke and marine biologists Professor Callum Roberts and Dr Heather Koldewey as they look at the amazing creatures that create and colonise coral reefs. Just two microscopic organisms are responsible for the creation of these incredible structures, structures so huge that they can be seen from outer-space. Brian, Robin and the panel talk about the vital yet delicate relationship between the coral polyp and and its tiny plant lodger, how they evolved to be so co-dependent, and how this unique partnership has lead to some of the most diverse ecosystems on the planet. They also look at the very real threat to our planet's reefs as our oceans warm, and what, if anything can be done. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-01-20 16:30:00

Conspiracy Theories (p080frmf.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Shazia Mirza, science writer and cancer researcher Dr David Robert Grimes and psychologist Prof Karen Douglas to look at the weird world of conspiracy theories. From Flat Earth believers to people who refuse to accept that humans have ever been to the moon, why is fiction often so much easier to believe than fact - and does it matter? They discuss the psychology and profile of people who are more likely to believe in conspiracies and the devastating effect some, like the anti-vaccine movement, have had on public health. They ask whether being irrational is our default setting and how to convince the most hard-core believers with the power of evidence and critical thinking. Although they would say that wouldnt' they? Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2020-01-13 16:30:00

Science of Laughter (p07ztlph.mp3)

The Science of Laughter Brian Cox and Robin Ince return for a new series of science/comedy chat. They are joined on stage, appropriately enough, by comedian Frank Skinner, as they look at the science of what makes us laugh, why we laugh at all, and whether humour and laughter are uniquely human traits. Joining the panel are experts in what makes us chuckle, Prof Sophie Scott and Professor Richard Wiseman. They look at why laughter is not only an ancient human trait that goes a long way to making us the social animal we are today, but that rats and apes also enjoy a good chuckle. They discover whether science can come up with the perfect joke and why a joke with the punchline "quack" is funnier than one with the punchline "moo". Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-10-14 16:30:00

Brits in Space (p07qfszl.mp3)

Brits in Space! Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by astronaut and author of "The Astronaut Selection Test Book", Tim Peake, first British astronaut Helen Sharman and comedian Mark Steel for a Brits in Space Special. Tim and Helen talk about their different experiences of training to be an astronaut and the challenges of life in space. They also look to the future as the panel talk about the various options being considered for long term space flight with planned future missions to the Moon and ultimately Mars.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-10-07 16:30:00

Anniversary of the Periodic Table (p07pzyc6.mp3)

The Periodic Table How well do you know your Fe from your Cu, and what the heck is Np?? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Katy Brand, Prof Polly Arnold and Prof Andrea Sella to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Dmitri Mendeleev's great achievement. They find out how scientists first realised that the elements that form the ingredients that make up our planet , are able to be organised in such a logical and ordered way, and whether its still a useful tool today. They also discover why one of the guests has been called the Free Solo equivalent of chemists because of the skill and danger involved in their work. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-09-30 16:30:00

Science of Dreaming (p07pcdkr.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Bridget Christie, neuroscientist Professor Penny Lewis and psychologist Richard Wiseman to explore the science of dreaming. Our dreams have fascinated humans for millennia and then Freud came along and told us they really did mean something, and mostly they were about sex and anger. Was he right? Why do we dream and can we find meaning in the content of our dreams? Can our dreams help us solve problems, give us new ideas, help us write a symphony, even if they can't predict the future? The panel also discuss what is going on in the brain whilst we sleep, and how memories are formed and consolidated while we snooze. It turns out the phrase "better to sleep on it" has a strong scientific argument. Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-09-23 16:30:00

Clever Creatures (p07ns73f.mp3)

Those Clever Creatures Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian and author Danny Wallace, ornithologist Professor Tim Birkhead and marine biologist Helen Scales to look at animal intelligence. We have all heard about clever chimps that can count, and about how we can compare the intelligence of humans and the great apes - but have we underestimated many of the other animal species? It would seem so, with remarkable examples of cunning, smart behaviour from animals as diverse as birds, octopuses and even fish. So how do you test a guppies IQ and can a crow really outsmart a gorilla, or even a human...prepare to be amazed. Producer Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-09-16 16:30:00

Dinosaurs (p07n4xcd.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince return for a new series of their multi-award winning science/comedy show. They kick off with arguably any child's first interest in science - dinosaurs! They are joined by comedian Rufus Hound and palaeontologists Susannah Maidment from the Natural History Museum and Steve Brusatte from the University of Edinburgh to find out what the latest research and exciting fossil finds have revealed about these epic creatures. Are we in a new age of dinosaur discovery? What are the big questions that dinosaur hunters are hoping to uncover, and did they go extinct at all? Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-07-25 13:06:00

Astronaut Special (Repeat) (p07hbxfl.mp3)

In this episode from 2017, Brian Cox and Robin Ince transport the cage to the Starmus Festival in Trondheim, Norway, for an extraordinary gathering of astronauts. They are joined on stage by NASA astronauts Sandra Magnus and Terry Virts, ESA astronaut Claude Nicollier, and Apollo 16's Charlie Duke, one of the last people to have walked on the moon. They talk about their personal journeys to fulfill their long-held dreams, and literally reach for the stars. They hear from Charlie Duke about the extraordinary Apollo missions he was part of, including his role as Capsule Communicator for the very first moon landing, before taking his own first steps on the lunar surface as part of Apollo 16. They explore the different experience of astronauts from Charlie's era, and those who now become residents of space, spending months and months aboard the International Space Station, and the challenges each mission brings. And Claude Nicollier describes his epic spacewalk to repair the Hubble Telescope. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-07-20 11:00:00

The Infinite Moonkey Cage (p07hbdlh.mp3)

A special hour long episode of the hugely popular science/comedy show, celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo moon landings. Recorded at Cocoa Beach, Florida just down the road from Cape Canaveral, Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by some of the key players involved in landing the first people on the moon, on this day, 1969. Apollo 9 Astronaut Rusty Schweickart, Apollo flight director Gerry Griffin and Apollo children Jan and Andy Aldrin give their perspectives on arguably one of the greatest scientific and engineering achievements of all time. Keep listening for a very special guest appearance by Duran Duran's Nick Rhodes. Presenters: Brian Cox and Robin Ince Producer Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-04-18 12:41:00

Introducing The Curious Cases of Rutherford and Fry (p076vq89.mp3)

Hannah Fry and Adam Rutherford present highlights from their podcast which investigates questions sent in by listeners using the power of science.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-02-11 16:30:00

How We Measure the Universe (p070kt20.mp3)

How to Measure the Universe Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Jo Brand, and physicists Prof Jo Dunkley and Dr Adam Masters to look at how we go about measuring our universe, from measuring the contents of atmospheres of planets and moons at the outer edges of our solar system to looking far back in time to study the very earliest beginnings of the cosmos. Our ability to learn about phenomena and worlds that seem almost impossibly out of reach, now give us an incredible insight into the universe we occupy, and how we got here. Brian and Robin find out about some of the big new missions providing information into our own solar system and beyond, and find out what big questions in cosmology still remain a tantalising challenge? Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-02-04 16:30:00

How to Build a Bionic Human (p06zxg53.mp3)

How to Build a Bionic Human. Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by "supervet" Noel Fitzpatrick, Dr Kevin Fong and comedian Lucy Beaumont to learn how to build a bionic human. They'll be looking at the development of artificial limbs and organs that have been pioneered during times of war and at the extreme end of emergency medicine, and find out how Noel Fitzpatrick is developing new techniques and bionic devices at his veterinary practice, that could eventually be used on humans.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-01-28 16:30:00

Are humans still evolving? (p06zgsv6.mp3)

Are humans still evolving? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian and author David Baddiel, Professor of Evolutionary Genetics Aoife McLysaght, and geneticist and broadcaster Adam Rutherford to ask whether human beings are still evolving? Has the invention of modern medicine, and technology meant that survival of the fittest is a thing of the past or are humans evolving new adaptations that will help us cope and survive better in our ever changing world (better thumbs for texting anyone?). If evolution happens over 1000's of years, could we even tell if we were evolving as a species, or have humans reached peak human? Producer: Alexandra Feachem

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-01-21 16:30:00

Origin of Numbers (p06yp429.mp3)

The origin of numbers and can fish count? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by mathematician Dr Hannah Fry, comedian Matt Parker and neuroscientist Prof Brian Butterworth to ask where numbers come from and can fish count? They'll be looking at the origin of numbers and whether counting is a uniquely human trait that actually started before the evolution of language.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-01-14 16:30:00

The Future of Humanity (p06xpfht.mp3)

The Future of Humanity Brian Cox and Robin Ince take on the entire future of our civilisation, as they are joined by Astronomer Royal and former head of the Royal Society Lord Rees, Baroness Cathy Ashton and comedian, actor and director Chris Addison. They'll be talking about the biggest challenges facing humanity at the moment, and whether science offers the solution to some of these great problems, from Climate Change to the rise of AI.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2019-01-07 16:30:00

Microbes: Secret Rulers of the World? (p06xdsxq.mp3)

Microbes: Secret Rulers of the World? Brian Cox and Robin Ince return for a new series of the hugely popular, award-winning science/comedy show. This week they are joined by comedian Ed Byrne, oceanographer Dr Jon Copley and planetary scientist Prof Monica Grady to ask whether the real master-race on planet Earth is not human but microbe. They'll be looking at how microbes are found in every extreme environment on the planet, how and when they first arrived on the Earth and why the hunt is on to find evidence of microbes in space.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-08-13 16:30:00

GCHQ (p06gh86d.mp3)

The Code Breakers Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Katy Brand, as they transport the cage of infinite proportions to the home of modern day cryptography and codebreaking., GCHQ. They'll be discovering how far we've come from the days of the humble code book and the birth of machines like Enigma. and how the new digital era has turned us all into modern day code breakers and cryptographers, without us even realising it. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-08-09 12:48:00

Special Bonus Edition (p06h01ds.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince reminisce about their favourite moments from 100 episodes of The Infinite Monkey Cage.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-08-06 16:30:00

The Human Voice (p06flmf3.mp3)

The Human Voice Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian and beatboxer Beardyman, acoustic engineer Prof Trevor Cox and neuroscientist Prof Sophie Scott to explore the amazing capabilities of the human voice. They chat about chatting, vocalise about voices and explore the extraordinary and unique way the human voice works from opera singing to laughter, and discovery why our voice has been so key to our success and survival as a species. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-07-30 16:30:00

Immune System (p06flkmw.mp3)

The Immune System Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Shappi Khorsandi, Prof Dan Davis and Prof Steve Jones to look at our amazingly complex and clever immune system. They look at how the human body fights disease, and why it has been so little understood until now. Fear not though, a new revolution in understanding is underway, with some extraordinary insights into the cunning of our little white cells. The panel look at how this new understanding is already leading to some real breakthroughs in treatment for diseases such as cancer, and Shappi reveals the crucial role she played in one such discovery. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-07-23 16:30:00

Invasion (p06fht0c.mp3)

Invasion! Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Phill Jupitus, bat expert and ecologist Professor Kate Jones and forensic botanist Dr Mark Spencer to look at the problems caused by alien invasions, although not of the little green men kind. They look at why such innocent and innocuous sounding plants such as floating pennywort strike terror and fear in the heart of environmentalists up and down the country, and how clever microbes and diseases are able to jump from animals such as bats to humans causing devastating consequences. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-07-16 16:30:00

Big Data (p06dk1x5.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by Danny Wallace, mathematician Hannah Fry and science writer Timandra Harkness. They'll be going big on Big Data, and asking just how big is it? They'll be looking at where Big Data comes from, should we be worried about it, and what mysteries are hidden within the seemingly endless amounts of information that is collected about us as we go about our daily lives.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-07-11 09:00:00

The Infinite Monkey Cage 100 (p06dd9t0.mp3)

Monkey Cage 100! Brian Cox and Robin Ince celebrate the 100th episode of the hit science/comedy show, by inviting some very well known monkey cage alumni to join them. Brian Blessed, Eric Idle, Katy Brand, Dave Gorman and Andy Hamilton (to name a few) take to the stage to consider what has been learnt since Episode 1, back in November 2009. Joining them on stage, will be science royalty, including Alice Roberts, American Astrophysicist Neil De Grasse Tyson, Professor Sue Black and Prof Fay Dowker, to look at the big scientific discoveries that have happened in the time since Brian and Robin first hit the airwaves, from the Higgs Boson, to Gravitational Waves, to our understanding of how human evolved. What epic discoveries might be made over the course of the next 100 episodes? For the first time, You can watch the 100th episode of The Infinite Monkey Cage, recorded live in the iconic BBC Radio Theatre, on BBC iPlayer for 30 days from Wednesday July 11th, and on the BBC Red Button at various times for 7 days from Monday 16th July. Producer: Alexandra Feachem Producer (Vision): Michael Gray.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-02-12 17:00:00

Volcanoes (p05xdwc1.mp3)

Volcano! Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Jo Brand and Volcano experts Professor Tamsin Mather and Professor Clive Oppenheimer. They look at the very latest technology that is used to predict the next big volcanic eruption, as well as the history and importance of volcanoes and volcanic activity on our planet. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-02-05 17:00:00

How Animals Behave (p05x4l0b.mp3)

How Animals Behave Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Rufus Hound, Zoologist and broadcaster Lucy Cooke and Professor Rory Wilson to discover how we learn about what animals are up to when we are not looking, and some of the hilarious mistakes we've made in the process of discovery. They'll be hearing about why the sex life of eels has remained so enigmatic, how the mystery of the wandering albatross has been solved, and why making underwear for frogs finally solved the riddle of how babies are made.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-01-29 16:30:00

Teenage Brain (p05w1mh4.mp3)

The Teenage Brain Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by impressionist Rory Bremner, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at UCL Sarah-Jayne Blakemore and Professor of Zoology at Manchester University Matthew Cobb to look at the working of the teenage brain, and why teenagers are so, well, teenagery. Stomping off to your bedroom, being embarrassed by your parents, wanting to fit in with your peers and a love of risky behaviour are all well known traits associated with our teenage years, exasperating parents through the ages. But new research into dynamic changes going on in the brain during these key years has revealed that it's not just hormones that are responsible for these behaviours. Could a better understanding of what is going on during these formative years not only help teenagers themselves, but inform our education system and even help prevent many of the mental health problems that often begin during adolescence?

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-01-22 16:30:00

Antibiotics (p05v9lqj.mp3)

Antibiotics Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Chris Addison, Chief Medical Officer, Dame Sally Davies, and Professor Martha Clokie to look at the history and future for antibiotics. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-01-15 16:30:00

The Secret Life of Birds (p05tj5qz.mp3)

The Secret Life of Birds Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by guests including Katy Brand, Steve Backshall and Professor Tim Birkhead to uncover the secret life of birds. They'll be looking at some of the extraordinary and cunning behaviour exhibited by many species of birds, both male and female, in an effort to attract a mate. They also get a special visit from Brann the Raven, who takes to the stage to demonstrate just how intelligent some species of birds can be. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2018-01-08 16:30:00

When Two Stars Collide (p05t5cmq.mp3)

When Two Stars Collide Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Dara O'Briain, Professor Sheila Rowan of Glasgow University and Professor Nils Andersson of Southampton University to look at last summer's spectacular discovery of gravitational waves from two colliding neutron stars. The observation of this huge cosmic event not only confirmed one of Einstein's great predictions, some 100 years ago, but also revealed the source of gold in our universe. Brian, Robin and guests look at how this momentous discovery brought together nearly 1/3 of the world's astronomers and astrophysicists as they raced to point their telescopes at the collision, but also confirmed the presence of gravitational waves, first predicted in Einstein's theory of general relativity back in 1915. They also discover why the source of our heavier elements such as gold and platinum has been so difficult to prove, until now. Producer: Alexandra Feachem The Infinite Monkey Cage book "How to Build A Universe (Part 1)" is out now and available to buy from all the usual places.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-12-25 16:30:00

Christmas Special: The Science of Magic (p05rpw6p.mp3)

The Infinite Monkey Cage Christmas Special: The Science of Magic The Infinite Monkeys bring their own brand of yule friendly science and comedy to the BBC Radio 4 Christmas schedule, and this year add an extra sprinkling of festive magic. Brian Cox and Robin Ince will be joined on stage by some very special guests to look at the science behind some of our best loved magic tricks and illusions. Actor, writer and illusionist Andy Nyman,actor and comedian Diane Morgan, Professor of Psychology and magician Richard Wiseman, and theologian and broadcaster Professor Francesca Stavrakopoulou will all be demonstrating how basic human psychology and evolution allow us to see and believe the seemingly impossible. They'll be exploring how some basic psychology can lead to some truly impressive deceptions, and ask how easy it is to trick the human mind, even a mind like Brian's. Prepare to be amazed. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-12-20 06:00:00

Stay Tuned... (p05qwc1q.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince look forward to the coming series of The Infinite Monkey Cage.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-08-07 16:30:00

The Mind v the Brain (p05bf8zv.mp3)

The Mind V The Brain. It's one of the hardest problems in neuroscience. How do the chemical processes and electric signals produced by our brains result in the complex and varied experiences and sense of self that we might describe as our mind? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Katy Brand, and neuroscientists Professor Uta Frith and Professor Sophie Scott to ask whether the mind is simply a product of the biology of our brain, or is there more to it than that? Can you have a brain without a mind, and is the mind simply an unexpected consequence, an emergent property, of our highly evolved and sophisticated brain. They'll also be tackling the question of free will, and whether we really have any, and if you could in theory simulate a fully working brain, with all its signals and complexity, would a mind naturally emerge? Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-07-31 16:30:00

Are We Living in a Simulation? (p05b4q9q.mp3)

Are we living in a simulation? Elon Musk thinks we definitely could be, and it seems he is not alone. The idea that we might simply be products of an advanced post-human civilisation, that are simply running a simulation of our universe and everything it contains, has taken hold over the last few years. Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Phill Jupitus, Philosopher Professor Nick Bostrom and Neuroscientist Professor Anil Seth to ask what the chances are that are living in some Matrix like, simulated world and more importantly, how would we ever know? Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-07-24 16:30:00

Will insects inherit the earth? (p058xgrm.mp3)

Will Insects Inherit the Earth? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Dave Gorman, zoologist Tim Cockerill and forensic entomologist Amoret Whitaker. They'll be discovering the joy of creepy crawlies, why the flea is the ultimate master of Darwinian evolution, and whether those pesky cockroaches will really have the last laugh if we are unlucky enough to be wiped out by a nuclear explosion. They'll be discovering how and why insects have been by far the most successful group of organisms during the history of life on planet earth, and why we simply couldn't do without them.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-07-17 16:30:00

Oxygen: A Matter of Life and Death (p058k5fj.mp3)

Oxygen: a matter of life and death. Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by chemist Andrea Sella, science broadcaster and writer Gabrielle Walker and comedian Sara Pascoe to look at the life and death properties of oxygen. It's the molecule we simply can't live without, but as fate would have it, oxygen is also the molecule that eventually leads to our death. Hailed as an elixir of life, and foundation of the atmosphere, oxygen is the revolutionary element that quickens life and hastens death through its ferocious reactivity. It's the molecule our cells need, but is actually highly toxic to them, and is in the end what causes us to age. Brian and Robin get to grips with the chemistry of this contradictory molecule, and Andrea Sella tries not to cause too big an explosion by demonstrating oxygen's reactive nature using a digestive biscuit. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-07-10 16:30:00

Astronaut Special (p057wwvl.mp3)

Astronaut Special Brian Cox and Robin Ince transport the cage to Trondheim Norway, host of this year's Starmus Festival, for an extraordinary gathering of astronauts. They are joined on stage by NASA astronauts Sandra Magnus and Terry Virts, ESA astronaut Claude Nicollier, and Apollo 16's Charlie Duke, one of the last people to have walked on the moon. They talk about their personal journeys to fulfill their long-held dreams, and literally reach for the stars. They hear from Charlie Duke about the extraordinary Apollo missions he was part of, including his role as Capsule Communicator for the very first moon landing, before taking his own first steps on the lunar surface as part of Apollo 16. They explore the different experience of astronauts from Charlie's era, and those who now become residents of space, spending months and months aboard the International Space Station, and the challenges each mission brings. And Claude Nicollier describes his epic spacewalk to repair the Hubble Telescope. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-07-03 16:30:00

What Particles Remain to be Discovered? (p0578ffr.mp3)

"What Particles Remain to be Discovered?" Brian Cox and Robin Ince return for a new series of the hugely popular, multi-award winning science/comedy show. Over the series a variety of scientists and comedy science enthusiasts will take to the stage to discuss everything from the glory of insects to whether free will is just an illusion. They'll be joined by the usual eclectic selection of guests over the series, including comedian Sara Pascoe, Dane Baptiste, Katy Brand and Eric Idle, as well as astronauts Sandra Magnus and Apollo astronaut and moon walker Charlie Duke, for a space traveller special. The first show will see Python legend and Monkey Cage theme tune creator Eric Idle take to the stage alongside physicists Jonathan Butterworth and Catherine Heymans to ask "what particles remain to be discovered?" . They'll be looking at life beyond the Higgs Boson and asking whether a new, as yet undetected particle could answer arguably the greatest question in physics and finally uncover the mysterious unknown elements that make up the 95% of our Universe that are known as Dark Matter and Dark Energy.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-02-13 16:30:00

Making the Invisible Visible (p04stjy6.mp3)

Making the Invisible, Visible Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Katy Brand, Cosmologist Prof Carlos Frenk, and biologist Prof Matthew Cobb to discover how to make the seemingly invisible, visible. They look at how the history and development of the telescope and the microscope have allowed us to look at the impossibly big to the seemingly impossibly small, to gain insight into the history of our universe and the inner workings of the human body. They look at how radio and space telescopes have allowed us to look back in time and "see" the big bang, and understand the age and content of the early universe, and how space telescopes have thrown light on the mysterious substance known as dark matter. They also look at the way microscopes and new biological techniques have allowed us to understand the seemingly invisible processes going on inside our cells. They also ask what, if anything, will always remain invisible to us - are there some processes or concepts that are impossible for us to "see". Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-02-06 10:35:00

The Human Story: How We Got Here and Why We Survived. (p04s1qt9.mp3)

The Human Story: how we got here and why we survived. Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Ross Noble, Professor Danielle Schreve and Professor Chris Stringer as they look at the tricky job of piecing together the history of modern humans and how we came to be here. They look back to the earliest known human ancestors and the fossils and tools that have allowed us to paint the picture of our journey out of Africa, to become the last surviving human species on the planet. They ask why we have gone from more than 5 or 6 species of humans some 200,000 years ago, to just 1 today. They also look at how discoveries made in just the last 5 years have completely transformed our understanding of human history and what new DNA technology has revealed about our ancient past. They also reveal what surprising tropical animal remains have been found buried deep under Trafalgar Square. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-01-30 10:26:00

Oceans: What Remains to Be Discovered? (p04r8zjw.mp3)

Oceans: what remains to be discovered? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by Andy Hamilton, Professor Jon Copley and marine biologist Helen Scales, as they look at the riches still remaining to be discovered deep within our oceans. The deep ocean remains the last great unexplored frontier of our planet, and as Brian and Robin discover, what we might find there could provide us with some extraordinary insights and applications. We've only just begun to touch the surface, literally, in terms of identifying and learning about the huge and varied life forms that live in our oceans -from the microbes that could inspire and generate new drugs to fight antibiotic resistant diseases, to the deep sea snails with iron clad shells, that may lead to the development of new super-strong materials. Even the humble limpet is providing inspiration to material scientists and engineers: the limpets' teeth, it turns out, are made from the strongest natural substance on the planet. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-01-23 10:51:00

Science's Epic Fails (p04qgn1p.mp3)

Science's Epic Fails Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by actor and comedian Rufus Hound, Professor Alice Roberts and Dr Adam Rutherford to discuss some of the great scientific failures, and mistakes made by some very well known scientists. They look at how some of the greatest scientific thinkers of all time, from Darwin to Einstein, got key elements of their own theories wrong, or in the case of others, followed a path of understanding that would later be completely disproved. They discuss why failure in science is no bad thing, and ask whether getting it wrong, is a fundamental part of the scientific method, and should in fact be applied to many other areas of life. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-01-16 12:24:00

How to Beat the House and Win at Games (p04pnsfw.mp3)

How to beat the house and win at games. Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by mathematicians Hannah Fry and Alex Bellos, psychologist Richard Wiseman and games enthusiast Helen Zaltzman, to get their top tips for winning games and solving puzzles. Do mathematicians make better Poker players, or is psychology the key to the ultimate poker face? Will a knowledge of probability give you the ultimate winning strategy for your next game of Monopoly? (the answer is yes!). How old are the oldest puzzles and why do they involve wolves and cabbages? And how have puzzles involving wolves, cabbages and bridges resulted in the development of whole new branches of mathematics. PRODUCER: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2017-01-10 15:35:00

The Science of Everyday Life (p04p19ly.mp3)

The Science of Everyday Life Robin Ince and Brian Cox return for a new series. They are joined on stage, at the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry, by comedian Russell Kane, physicist Helen Czerski and engineer Danielle George as they discuss the science to be discovered in everyday life. They discover how the humble cup of tea displays fundamental laws of nature that also govern our climate. How dropping raisins in a bottle of lemonade reveal how the Titanic sunk, and a robot orchestra, created from household objects, plays some familiar tunes. PRODUCER: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-12-27 09:00:00

The Infinite Monkey Cage Christmas Special (p04lwt8w.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince return for a very special Christmas edition of the show. They are joined on stage by Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, actor and writer Mark Gatiss, cultural anthropologist Deborah Hyde and the Bishop of Leeds. They'll be discussing the joys of the Christmas ghost story, and looking at the Victorian obsession with the supernatural. They'll be asking when studying paranormal phenomenon went from a genuine scientific endeavour, to the realms of pseudoscience. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-08-01 17:00:00

The Universe: What Remains to Be Discovered? (p0438870.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince take to the stage at the Blue Dot Festival, at the home of Radio Astronomy, Jodrell Bank. They are joined on stage by Ben Miller, Charlotte Church, Dr Paul Abel and Professor Tim O'Brien to explore the big questions that are still to be answered about our Universe.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-07-25 17:00:00

200 Years of Frankenstein (p042k8wl.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince mark the 200th anniversary of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. They are joined on stage by Noel Fielding, evolutionary biologist Nick Lane and writer and expert in popular culture, Sir Christopher Frayling. They'll be looking at the cultural impact of this epic novel, and the long lasting impact it has had on the perception of science and scientists. They'll also be looking at the real science behind some of the ideas about life and the creation of life that Mary Shelley explored.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-07-18 16:30:00

Battle of the Sexes (p041vnc1.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by Professor Sophie Scott, Professor Steve Jones and comedian Sara Pascoe. They will be tackling the age old battle of the sexes, and asking whether men really are from Mars, and women really are from Venus? Probably not, according to Brian as Venus is too hot! Moving on from the pedantry of physics, they'll be asking whether the divide between men and women is based on a fundamental difference in our genetics, in our brain function, or is it all down to our upbringing. Let the battle commence. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-07-11 16:30:00

Science of Sleep (p0413s0x.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by Professor Russell Foster, Professor Richard Wiseman and comedian Katy Brand as they attempt to get to grips with the science behind Robin's insomnia. They'll be asking why we sleep, is 8 hours really enough, and why has every creature on the planet evolved with some period of inactivity? They'll also be investigating the purpose of dreams and whether analysing them has any useful purpose? Was Freud right with his symbolic interpretation of dreams, or if we dream about aggressive courgettes, does this reveal our inner most anxieties about.... aggressive courgettes? Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-07-04 17:00:00

The Recipe to Build a Universe (p040d74y.mp3)

The Recipe to Build A Universe Brian Cox and Robin Ince ask what ingredients you need to build a universe? They are joined on stage by comedian and former Science Museum explainer, Rufus Hound, chemist Andrea Sella and solar scientist Lucie Green, as they discuss the basis of all school chemistry lessons, the periodic table. They discover how the elements we learnt about at school are the building blocks that make up everything from humans to planet earth to the universe itself. They were formed in stars and during the big bang. The history of the discovery of the periodic table and the elements is a wonderful tale of genuine scientific exploration that has changed our understanding of where we come from and how life and the universe that we know came to be. The panel also ponder which element they might choose if they were building a universe from scratch and the audience suggest which elements they would remove from the periodic table if given the chance? Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-06-27 17:00:00

The Sound of Music (p03znqcs.mp3)

The Sound of Music Brian Cox and Robin Ince take to the stage at Glastonbury Music Festival. They are joined by comedian Matt Kirshen, musicians KT Tunstall and Nitin Sawhney and scientists Lucy Cooke and Trevor Cox. No Julie Andrews for this special edition of the long running science/comedy show, although music does take centre stage as the panel discuss the evolution and science of why and how humans are programmed to love everything from the Rolling Stones to Rap to Rachmaninoff. They'll also be looking at whether there are any examples of music in the animal kingdom and whether gorillas really hum. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-02-25 11:03:00

Brian and Robin's Infinite Inbox (p03kmy75.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince answer The Infinite Monkey Cage listeners' questions.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-02-15 16:30:00

Climate Change (p03jn4gx.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by guests Dara O Briain, Professor Tony Ryan and Dr Gabrielle Walker to discuss the ever-hot topic of climate change. They take a forensic look at the evidence that the climate is indeed changing, how we know that we are responsible, and what can be done to stop it. The scientific willing may be there, but is the political will finally catching up?

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-02-08 16:30:00

Maths of Love and Sex (p03hx1k2.mp3)

Robin Ince and Brian Cox get romantic (although unfortunately not with each other) as they discuss the mathematics of love and the statistics of sex. They are joined on stage by comedian and former maths student Paul Foot, mathematician Hannah Fry and statistician Professor Sir David Speigelhalter, as they discover whether a knowledge of numbers can help you in the affairs of the heart? Can a maths algorithm help you find your perfect mate at a party and what do the statistics tell us about what happens after the party, if you do! They find out whether mathematicians are more successful at dating than comedians, and whether a rational, scientific approach to love and life long happiness is really the answer.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-02-01 16:30:00

What Is Reality? (p03h6fct.mp3)

What is Reality? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by US superstar neuroscientist David Eagleman, Professor Sophie Scott and comedian Bridget Christie to ask what is reality? Is our sense of the world around us a completely personal experience and a construct of our brains? How can we ever know whether what one person perceives is exactly the same as what another person perceives. Is your sense of the world around you an illusion constructed by this extraordinary organ, the brain, that has no direct access to the outside world that it is helping you to understand.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-01-25 16:30:00

Invisible Universe (p03gj97h.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince transport the cage of infinite proportions to the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry. They are joined on stage by impressionist Jon Culshaw and astrophysicists Sarah Bridle and Tim O'Brien as they look up at the sky to discover that everything we see only accounts for 5% of the entire universe. So what is the rest of the universe made of? What are these mysterious elements known as Dark Matter and Dark Energy and would their discovery mean a complete re-writing of the laws of physics as we know them? Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-01-18 16:30:00

What is Race? (p03ftyqw.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Shappi Khorsandi, science broadcaster Adam Rutherford and evolutionary geneticist Mark Thomas. They look at the thorny issue of race, and whether there is a scientific definition for the concept of race. Do our genes reveal racial differences, and if so do they tell us anything about our evolutionary history? They also look at the results of their own personal DNA tests...so which panellist is a little bit neanderthal and which one has a genetic history firmly rooted in the North! Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2016-01-12 10:29:00

Artificial Intelligence (p03f8mct.mp3)

Artificial Intelligence Brian Cox and Robin Ince return for a new series of their award winning science/comedy show. Tonight the infinite monkey's are joined on stage by comedian Jo Brand, neuroscientist Anil Seth, and robotics expert Alan Winfield to discuss Artificial Intelligence. How close are we to creating a truly intelligent machine, how do we define intelligence anyway, and what are the moral and ethical issues that the development of intelligent machines might bring? Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-12-25 17:00:00

The Infinite Monkey Cage Christmas Special (p03cp8x0.mp3)

The Science of Doctor Who Brian Cox and Robin Ince celebrate the festive season with a look at the science of Doctor Who. Swapping the infinite cage for the Tardis, they are joined on stage by comedian Ross Noble, Professor Fay Dowker, Oscar winning special FX director Paul Franklin, author and Doctor Who writer Simon Guerrier and the Very Reverend Victor Stock. They discuss the real science of time travel, the tardis and why wormholes are inaccurately named (according to Ross!).

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-12-15 09:30:00

Episode 2 (p03c0r38.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince explore the legacy of Einstein's great theory, and how a mathematical equation written 100 years ago seems to have predicted so accurately exactly how our universe works. From black holes to the expanding universe, every observation of the universe, so far, has been held up by the maths in Einstein's extraordinary work. So how was he able to predict the events and behaviour of our universe, long before the technology existed to prove he was right, and will there ever be another theory that will supersede it? Brian and Robin head up the iconic Lovell telescope at Jodrell Bank to explore Einstein's theory in action, and talk to scientists who are still probing the mysteries hidden within General Relativity.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-12-08 09:00:00

Episode 1 (p03bby02.mp3)

It's 100 years since the publication of Einstein's great theory, and arguably one of the greatest scientific theories of all time. To mark the occasion, Brian Cox takes Robin Ince on a guided tour of General Relativity. With the help of some of the world's leading cosmologists, and a comedian or two, they explore the notions of space time, falling elevators, trampolines and bowling balls, and what was wrong with Newton's apple. It's a whistle stop tour of all you'll ever need to know about gravity and how a mathematical equation written 100 years ago predicted everything from black holes to the Big Bang, to our expanding universe, long before there was any proof that these extraordinary phenomena existed.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-08-10 16:30:00

Forensic Science (p02z75tf.mp3)

A Forensic look at Forensics No dead strawberries this week, but plenty of dead bodies, as Brian Cox and Robin Ince take a gruesome look at the science of death and some of the more unusual ways that forensic scientists are able to look for and gather clues and evidence. From insects that can be used to give a precise time of death, to the unusual field of forensic botany, It's not just DNA evidence that can be used to pinpoint someone to the scene of a crime. They are joined on stage by Professor Sue Black from the University of Dundee, Dr Mark Spencer, a forensic botanist at the Natural History Museum and comedian Rufus Hound.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-08-03 16:30:00

Speed (p02y4szn.mp3)

The Need for Speed The Monkey Cage returns from its tour of the USA, as Brian Cox and Robin Ince take to the stage of the BBC Radio Theatre to look at the science of speed. They are joined by comedian and former motoring correspondent for the Daily Telegraph, Alexei Sayle, Land Speed Record Holder Andy Green and Professor Danielle George from the University of Manchester. They'll be looking at the engineering challenges of creating the fastest vehicle on the planet, and whether the limits to human speed are engineering or the laws of physics themselves.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-07-27 16:30:00

The Infinite Monkey Cage USA Tour: San Francisco (p02xkmfp.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince take to the stage in San Francisco for the last of their USA specials. They talk alien visitations, UFOs and other close encounters with astronomer Dr Seth Shostack, NASA scientist Dr Carolyn Porco, and comedians Greg Proops and Paul Provenza. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-07-20 16:30:00

The Infinite Monkey Cage USA Tour: Chicago (p02wyxdh.mp3)

Fossil Records and other Archaeological Hits. Brian Cox and Robin Ince take to the stage in Chicago, Illinois, to discuss fossil records and evolution. They are joined on stage by host of NPR's "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" Peter Sagal, comedian and Saturday Night Live alumnus Julia Sweeney, palaeontologist Paul Sereno and evolutionary biologist Jerry Coyne.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-07-13 16:30:00

The Infinite Monkey Cage USA Tour: Los Angeles (p02wff2g.mp3)

Science Goes to Hollywood: Science Fact V Science Fiction Brian Cox and Robin Ince continue their tour of the USA, as they take to the stage in LA. They are joined by cosmologist and science advisor on movies such as Thor and Tron Legacy, Sean Carroll, comedian Joe Rogan, The Simpsons' writer and Executive Producer of Futurama, David X Cohen, and Eric Idle. They ask why so many movies now seem to employ a science advisor, whether scientific accuracy is really important when you are watching a film about a mythical norse god and whether science fact can actually be far more interesting than science fiction.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-07-06 16:30:00

The Infinite Monkey Cage USA Tour: New York (p02vx6jl.mp3)

The Infinite Monkey Cage USA Tour: New York The Infinite Monkeys return for a new series, the first of which will see them head to the USA for their first live tour. This week Brian Cox and Robin Ince can be found on stage in New York asking the question, Is Science a Force for Good Or Evil? They are joined on stage by Bill Nye the Science Guy, cosmologist Janna Levin, actor Tim Daly and comedian Lisa Lampanelli.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-02-23 17:00:00

Serendipity (p02qjwdh.mp3)

Serendipity in Science Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by comedian Lee Mack, science author and journalist Simon Singh and chemist Professor Andrea Sella to look at how many of our biggest science discoveries seem to have come about by accident. From Viagra to Pyrex to the discovery of the Cosmic Background Microwave Radiation, the earliest remnant of the big bang, they all owe their discovery to a healthy dose of luck and accident as scientists stumbled across them in the course of looking for something else. So are these discoveries just luck, are they still deserving of Nobel prizes and scientific glory, or is serendipity and an open scientific mind key to exploring and understanding our universe?

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-02-16 17:00:00

What Is the Point of Plants? (p02qg58c.mp3)

What's the Point of Plants? Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by plant biologist Professor Jane Langdale, physicist Professor Jim Al-Khalili and comedian and former horticulture student Ed Byrne to ask, "what's the point of plants?". How would the evolution of life on our planet have differed without plants, and what would our planet look like today? Most crucially that seemingly dull but necessary process of photosynthesis that we all learned about in school, is in fact one of the most important processes in our universe, and as usual it seems, the physicists are trying to take credit for it. Could there be a quantum explanation for how this amazing reaction works, and if so, are plants in fact the perfect quantum computers?

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-02-09 17:00:00

When Quantum Goes Woo (p02qjx25.mp3)

When Quantum Goes Woo Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by Bad Science author, Ben Goldacre, Professor of Particle Physics at Manchester University, Jeff Forshaw, and comedian Sara Pascoe. They'll be looking at why quantum physics, in particular, seems to attract some of the more fringe elements of pseudoscience and alternative medicine, and whether there is anything about the frankly weird quantum behaviour of particles, like the ability to seemingly be in two places at once, that really can be applied to the human condition. When spiritual healers and gurus talk about our own quantum energy and the power of quantum healing, is it simply a metaphor, or is there more to this esoteric branch of science that we could all learn from?

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-02-02 17:00:00

Solar System (p02qjzjq.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined by comedian Jo Brand, planetary scientist Professor Monica Grady and NASA scientist Dr Carolyn Porco as they discuss some of the most exciting and technically ambitious explorations of our solar system. They'll be looking at the Rosetta mission that has, for the first time, landed a probe on a comet, and the Cassini-Huygens mission which is bringing us extraordinary information about Saturn and its moons, and what these explorations of the far reaches of our solar system might tell us about our own planet.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-01-26 17:00:00

Fierce Creatures (p02qjbfn.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by naturalist Steve Backshall, zoologist Lucy Cooke and comedian Andy Hamilton as they battle it out to decide which creature wins the title of earth's most deadly. The panel reveal their own brave encounters with a host of venomous, toxic and just downright aggressive beasts, including the bullet ant, rated the most painful stinging insect on the planet, deadly tree frogs and snakes, sharks, scorpions and hippos. They ask whether our seemingly innate fear of snakes and spiders is justified, and whether the deadliest creature on the planet is in fact a human being.

From The Infinite Monkey Cage at 2015-01-19 17:00:00

Deception (p02qfsy2.mp3)

Brian Cox and Robin Ince are joined on stage by author and journalist David Aaronovitch, psychologist Professor Richard Wiseman and neuroscientist Professor Sophie Scott as they tackle the science of deception. They'll be asking why we seem to be so good at telling lies, but not very good at spotting them, and why being good liars could be the secret to our success as a social animal. They will also be carrying out their own act of deception on the monkey cage audience. They reveal the results of an experiment to test the idea of subliminal advertising, carried out by David Aaronovitch for the Radio 4 documentary, "Can You Spot the Hidden Message" . Will they manage to secretly persuade a section of the theatre audience to pick one type of soft drink over another by secretly flashing the name of a certain brand on a screen? All will be revealed. Producer: Alexandra Feachem.