Freakonomics Radio has been offering fascinating insights into the hidden side of everything for over a decade now. From exploring the economics of sleep and the dark side of creativity to the psychology of decision-making and the science of quitting, these episodes offer a captivating glimpse into the world around us. Here are some of the top episodes of the Freakonomics Radio podcast.
How to Make Your Own Luck
When Maria Konnikova made up her mind to become a professional poker player, she wasn’t even aware of the number of cards present in a deck. However, with her expertise in psychology, an excellent coach, and an intense curiosity to uncover the role of skill and chance in life, she delved deep into the world of poker. Her book, The Biggest Bluff, chronicles her journey and reveals all that she learned along the way.
Why Don’t We All Speak the Same Language
With over 7,000 languages spoken on our planet, have you ever wondered about the advantages and disadvantages of this modern-day Tower of Babel?
What Are the Police for, Anyway?
Policing in the United States is quite different from other countries, with over 1,000 fatal shootings by police each year. Moreover, the country has a heavily armed population and a fragile mental healthcare system, and people spend a lot of time in their cars. With a history of racism, it’s not surprising that only half of the population has a lot of confidence in the police. However, what if we consider policing as a form of philanthropy?
How to Get Anyone to Do Anything
Robert Cialdini, a renowned social psychologist, is widely known as a pioneer in the field of persuasion. His book, Influence, which was first published in 1984, has become a classic in the field. Recently, he released an updated and expanded edition of the book. In an episode of the Freakonomics Radio Book Club, Cialdini offers a master class on the seven psychological triggers that captivate our minds and lead us to make decisions, purchases, or beliefs without much thought.
How Stupid is Our Obsession With Lawns?
Maintaining green lawns covers almost 2 percent of the United States’ land area. While lawns certainly have aesthetic appeal and offer functional benefits, such as a pleasant aroma, it is worth considering if the advantages are worth the financial, environmental, and other associated costs.
Why Is the U.S. So Good at Killing Pedestrians
It’s quite clear why, but the real challenge is whether we’ll ever care enough to make a change.
Here’s Why You’re Not an Elite Athlete
Achieving greatness requires a multitude of factors, some of which may not be immediately apparent. In this podcast, several Olympic and professional athletes share their journey toward success and the sacrifices they had to make along the way. Additionally, if you can pinpoint the sport that has the highest likelihood of getting a child into a prestigious college, then you have certainly hit the mark!
Swearing is More Important Than You Think
All languages have a set of words that are considered taboo, yet many people use them frequently. However, these lists of forbidden words are constantly evolving, and the changes that occur over time can reveal some unexpected insights about ourselves. Please note that in this episode, the swear words have been censored.
The Zero-Minute Workout
It’s well-established that exercise offers numerous benefits to our health. However, it’s equally evident that a significant number of people dislike exercising. Given this scenario, wouldn’t it be great if there were a pill that could replicate the effects of a workout? After all, who wouldn’t want to reap the benefits of exercise without actually having to engage in physical activity?
Air Travel Is a Miracle. Why Do We Hate It?
It’s a bizarre experience that has become commonplace. You find yourself confined in a metallic cylinder with countless unfamiliar faces (and unpleasant odours), challenging the laws of physics and soaring through the air. However, the destinations you can reach are worth the discomfort! We travel to the world’s most bustling airport to observe the intricate workings of air travel.
68 Ways to Better at Life
In a conversation with the accidental futurist Kevin Kelly, he shares his thoughts on why enthusiasm is more important than intelligence, how to listen attentively, and why the answer to poor technology is simply more technology.