WBEZ's Clever Apes

Series produced by WBEZ

Caption: www.wbez.org/cleverapes
www.wbez.org/cleverapes 

WBEZ’s science experiment, “Clever Apes” is a nano-sized show with a cosmic scope. It tells the stories of the rich scientific community of the Chicago area, its quirky characters and the fascinating, often mind-bending questions they’re out to answer. But it is not so Chicago-centric that it won't work for your town.

"Clever Apes" is a self-contained 9 minute module organized around a theme and containing multiple elements including two-ways and feature stories. It is designed to fit into the "D segment" of NPR's "Morning Edition," but has the flexibility to float elsewhere as well.

While there is a focus on the work of Chicago-area science, the themes of the show are broad and would likely work for all stations looking to add some science reporting to their broadcast.

In 2011, Clever Apes won the AAAS Kavli Science Journalism Award for radio.


30 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
Caption: La Chaire Trepidante: the 19th century vibrating chair invented to relieve Parkinsons's symptoms., Credit: Christopher Goetz
Treating Parkinson's with a vibrating chair; reading the rumblings of the earth; and a hip-hop battle of cosmic proportions.

Bought by PRX Remix


  • Added: Oct 05, 2010
  • Length: 13:00
  • Purchases: 1
Piece image
What better symbol of human mastery over the power of nature than fire? Countless years of evolution have written fire into our DNA…No wonder kids ...

Bought by PRX Remix


  • Added: Oct 05, 2010
  • Length: 13:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Alexander Karczmar, at 93, is an authority on the brain and a student of the self.
How our brains age, and why some people manage to cheat death and stay sharp.

Bought by KUT and PRX Remix


  • Added: Oct 20, 2010
  • Length: 13:00
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Gordon's pez: an image of tensor glyphs baffles a spouse., Credit: Courtesy of Gordon Kindlmann
Some tough science threatens an otherwise happy marriage, and some gifted students try to unravel relativity.

Bought by PRX Remix


  • Added: Oct 26, 2010
  • Length: 13:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Mike Wong using mirror therapy., Credit: Spitzer/WBEZ
Mirrors treat phantom limb pain, chronic pain changes your brain, and one scientist's colorful guide to insect bites.

Bought by KUT and PRX Remix


  • Added: Dec 01, 2010
  • Length: 12:59
  • Purchases: 2
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Over this hour, we'll bring you highlights from the show's first half-year. We’ll learn about why kids play with fire, how vibrations let us peer ...

Bought by KUT and KZYX


  • Added: Dec 16, 2010
  • Length: 54:30
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Ham, the first chimp in space, Credit: NASA
In this episode, host Gabriel Spitzer considers what science has to learn from flying saucers, what it might take for humans to colonize space in o...

Bought by WTJU, KBGA 89.9 FM, WRST-FM Oshkosh, PRX Remix, and KUT


  • Added: Jan 28, 2011
  • Length: 12:59
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: www.wbez.org/cleverapes
In this episode, host Gabriel Spitzer explores the realm of the senses, finding out how cochlear implants are opening up a world of sound for the h...

Bought by KUT, WRST-FM Oshkosh, and PRX Remix


  • Added: Feb 25, 2011
  • Length: 08:47
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: Paleontologist Paul Sereno
Why do dinosaurs ignite our imaginations and why do we have so many misconceptions about them? In this episode, Gabriel Spitzer tackles those quest...

Bought by KUT and WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: Mar 30, 2011
  • Length: 08:47
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Bill Stanley holds the skull of an African rat he discovered. It's being cleaned by carrion beetles.
In this episode, host Gabriel Spitzer explores the dirty work of science, from flesh-eating beetles working at a museum to creepy crawlers that fin...

Bought by WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: Apr 13, 2011
  • Length: 08:42
  • Purchases: 1
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What is disgust, and where does it come from? Host Gabriel Spitzer explores why we've evolved with this emotion and what it says about us.

Bought by WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: Apr 27, 2011
  • Length: 08:45
  • Purchases: 1
Piece image
There are certain questions that get scientists really excited – discoveries that are big, tantalizing, and often, far out of reach. Even if they’r...

Bought by WDBM, WTJU, KUT, and WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: May 18, 2011
  • Length: 08:40
  • Purchases: 4
Caption: Bill Stanley and the skull of a new genus he helped identify.
As scientists figure out the world, they often turn back the clock to understand the beginnings of things... The Big Bang, patient zero, the chicke...

Bought by WTJU and WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: May 26, 2011
  • Length: 08:40
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: A chimp at the Lincoln Park Zoo uses a stick to fish for food., Credit: Michael De Bonis/WBEZ
Humans have an incredible ability to fashion tools that make our lives easier and advance the goals of science, but we're not the only species maki...

Bought by KUT, WRST-FM Oshkosh, KVMR, and PRX Remix


  • Added: Jul 07, 2011
  • Length: 08:32
  • Purchases: 4
Caption: Lisa Utschig holds a vial of the protein active in photosynthesis.
In this installment, we consider why photosynthesis remains a puzzle to science. And we’ll find out how a research team at Argonne National Laborat...

Bought by WRST-FM Oshkosh and KUT


  • Added: Aug 02, 2011
  • Length: 08:59
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Diagram of the holometer at Fermi Lab
In this episode, stories of two researchers: one measuring the shape of music, and another hunting for signs that the world is flat.

Bought by WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: Aug 10, 2011
  • Length: 08:40
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Don White captures surround sound in downtown Chicago by mimicking human ears., Credit: WBEZ/Gabriel Spitzer
Believe it or not, with just two little ears, humans hear in 3-D, and Clever Apes has captured it on tape.

Bought by KUER, WTJU, KFAI, PRX Remix, WRST-FM Oshkosh and more


  • Added: Aug 24, 2011
  • Length: 08:22
  • Purchases: 6
Caption: www.wbez.org/cleverapes
After the anthrax attacks of 2001 the government chartered 13 high-security labs to study some of the world's most dangerous germs. Clever Apes got...

Bought by KUT, Vocalo.org, PRX Remix, and WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: Sep 14, 2011
  • Length: 08:35
  • Purchases: 4
Piece image
We remember the legacy of the Tevatron, the particle collider that was shut down in September of 2011.

Bought by KUT and WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: Sep 30, 2011
  • Length: 08:24
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Heinrich Jaeger demonstrates the jamming effect, which led to a soft robot., Credit: (WBEZ/Gabriel Spitzer)
What if the next generation of robots looks less like a humanoid, and more like a slug?

Bought by WTJU, KFAI, KUT, WRST-FM Oshkosh, and PRX Remix


  • Added: Oct 19, 2011
  • Length: 08:25
  • Purchases: 5