Robert Krulwich

Robert Krulwich works on radio, podcasts, video, the blogosphere. He has been called "the most inventive network reporter in television" by TV Guide.

Krulwich is a Science Correspondent for NPR. His NPR blog, "Krulwich Wonders" features drawings, cartoons and videos that illustrate hard-to-see concepts in science.

He is the co-host of Radiolab, a nationally distributed radio/podcast series that explores new developments in science for people who are curious but not usually drawn to science shows. "There's nothing like it on the radio," says Ira Glass of This American Life, "It's a act of crazy genius." Radiolab won a Peabody Award in 2011.

His specialty is explaining complex subjects, science, technology, economics, in a style that is clear, compelling and entertaining. On television he has explored the structure of DNA using a banana; on radio he created an Italian opera, "Ratto Interesso" to explain how the Federal Reserve regulates interest rates; he has pioneered the use of new animation on ABC's Nightline and World News Tonight.

For 22 years, Krulwich was a science, economics, general assignment and foreign correspondent at ABC and CBS News.

He won Emmy awards for a cultural history of the Barbie doll, for a Frontline investigation of computers and privacy, a George Polk and Emmy for a look at the Savings & Loan bailout online advertising and the 2010 Essay Prize from the Iowa Writers' Workshop.

Krulwich earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from Oberlin College and a law degree from Columbia University.

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Krulwich Wonders...
11:32 am
Mon February 25, 2013

What's That Thing Hanging Outside My Bathroom Window? My Neighbor's Drone

YouTube

Originally published on Mon February 25, 2013 12:08 pm

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Krulwich Wonders...
10:08 am
Tue February 19, 2013

The Filibuster Solution, Or 'What If Honeybees Ran The U.S. Senate?'

Adam Cole NPR

Bees are democrats. They vote. When a community of bees has to make a choice, like where to build a new hive, they meet, debate and decide. But here's what they don't do: they don't filibuster. No single bee (or small band of bees) will stand against the majority, insisting and insisting for hours. They can't.

Bee biology prevents it.

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Krulwich Wonders...
9:53 am
Fri February 15, 2013

A Crazy But Rational Solution To Our Electoral College Problem

Courtesy of Fake Is The New Real

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 2:26 pm

Let's pretend. Let's pretend that politics doesn't matter, politicians don't matter, history doesn't matter, nostalgia doesn't matter, emotion doesn't matter, habit doesn't matter, romance doesn't matter, prejudice doesn't matter — all that matters is good old rational, mathematical, look-at-the-numbers common sense.

And now let's look at the Electoral College.

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Krulwich Wonders...
8:09 am
Thu February 14, 2013

Guy Pumps Out A Valentine — Literally

Courtesy of Payam Rajabi

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 1:47 pm

Last year, Payam Rajabi got a new job and had to leave Toronto and his girlfriend, Clare, and move to San Francisco. All that left him feeling a little down — until he came up with his upsy, downsy valentine idea.

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Krulwich Wonders...
11:52 am
Tue February 12, 2013

What Is It About Emily?

thebrainscoop YouTube

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 3:46 pm

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Krulwich Wonders...
12:40 pm
Mon February 11, 2013

The Egg Makes Its Move In A New Version Of Which Came First: The Chicken Or the Egg?

Robert Krulwich NPR

Which came first? I just bumped into a new take on this old puzzler.

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Krulwich Wonders...
4:59 am
Sat February 9, 2013

Yes, Cats Know How To Fall On Their Feet. But These Guys Do It Better

Agence Nature Science Source

The champ has met its challenger.

Drop a cat and it will swing its head to a horizontal, rearrange its rear, arch its back, splay its legs, and — amazingly often — land on its feet.

This is what cats do. They're famous for it. But now they have a rival.

This is an aphid.

Aphids spend their days sucking sap from leaves. Those leaves can be high off the ground. "High" of course, being a relative term, but think of it this way: Five feet high up is 381 aphids tall. Which is why things get so dicey when a ladybug comes by.

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Krulwich Wonders...
12:37 pm
Thu February 7, 2013

Next Time Your Mom Says Don't Go Out in The Rain, Spray Yourself With This

YouTube

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 12:38 pm

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Krulwich Wonders...
2:13 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

Dinosaurs With Attitude

Courtesy of Julius T. Csotonyi

Come on, this isn't serious, is it? There was an animal that looked like this?

It's a dinosaur — scaly, fuzzy, with an oversized zebra-striped head, leopard-spotted legs, tiger stripes on the tail and two unfoldable wings permanently erect and attached to its feet. Really?

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Krulwich Wonders...
11:37 am
Mon February 4, 2013

Irresistible Meets Unstoppable. Who Wins?

YouTube

It's such a tantalizing question: What if an irresistible object crashes into an immovable object, what happens? Would the unmovable move? Would the irresistible be resisted? Which one would prevail? Somebody must have thought about this, must have an answer.

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Krulwich Wonders...
2:11 pm
Wed January 30, 2013

Pale Blue Blobs Invade, Freeze, Then Vanish

Courtesy of Emmanuel Coupe Kalomiris

It's a lake, yes. But it's also a bomb. Those pale blue blobs, stacked like floating pancakes down at the bottom of this photograph? They're astonishingly beautiful, yes, but they can be dangerous.

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Krulwich Wonders...
11:33 am
Mon January 28, 2013

My Yeast Let Me Down: A Love Song

YouTube

In a moment, there's going to be singing. It will be a love song, sung by Nathaniel, a sad-eyed, blue-gloved scientist who gave his heart to an organism, but then did her wrong. (Or maybe she did him wrong. These things get complicated.)

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Krulwich Wonders...
6:05 am
Sat January 26, 2013

Weekend Special: The Slobbering Cat That Stole My Heart

Courtesy of The Oatmeal

Maybe you already know about this, maybe I'm in love, maybe this is just me and my particular craziness, but I want you to click on the image below. It's Mathew Inman's (who calls himself "The Oatmeal") story, handwritten, hand drawn, about his cat, Domino.

There are, we all know, wonderful sites all over the web, but every so often somebody comes along and rejuggles words, pictures and plays with space, remixing elements to very quietly find new beats, new ways to tell a story. That is what Mathew did here. At least I think so.

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Krulwich Wonders...
1:02 pm
Fri January 25, 2013

Falling Off The Moon

YouTube

Originally published on Fri January 25, 2013 5:42 pm

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Krulwich Wonders...
8:34 am
Thu January 24, 2013

Wile E. Coyote Teaches Math (And Despair) To Lucky Students In New Zealand

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 10:07 am

There's something about being upside down (from all of us in the Northern Hemisphere) that makes New Zealanders a little melancholy. At least that's my theory.

My evidence? Well, the other day, I was looking at a curriculum guide for math teachers ("maths" teachers, they would say) on the New Zealand Ministry of Education's site, where the text on top says, We want to equip "all New Zealanders with the knowledge, skills, and values to be successful citizens in the 21st century."

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Krulwich Wonders...
11:45 am
Tue January 22, 2013

Nature Has A Formula That Tells Us When It's Time To Die

Courtesy of Yunfun Tan

Originally published on Sat January 26, 2013 10:19 pm

Editor's Note: Robert has added a postscript to this post. Scroll down or click here to read it.


We wax, we wane. It's the dance of life.

Every living thing is a pulse. We quicken, then we fade. There is a deep beauty in this, but deeper down, inside every plant, every leaf, inside every living thing (us included) sits a secret.

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Krulwich Wonders...
8:39 am
Fri January 18, 2013

No Fists, Gentlemen, Just Necks. The Ali & Frazier Of The Giraffe World

iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri January 18, 2013 10:18 am

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Krulwich Wonders...
1:58 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

A Mysterious Patch Of Light Shows Up In The North Dakota Dark

Suomi NPP Satellite/NASA Earth Observatory

Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 1:57 pm

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Krulwich Wonders...
7:33 am
Sat January 12, 2013

Phooey On Flu

A lot of you have had it by now, or are having it or are about to be exposed. This year's flu is called "H3N2" and this week it's doing big business in about 47 states, Chicago and New York. If you've had a flu shot and if you wash your hands several times a day for 20 seconds, (which is the time it takes to hum "Happy Birthday to You" two times through) you might reduce your odds of getting sick.

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Krulwich Wonders...
10:05 am
Fri January 11, 2013

The Oldest Rock In The World Tells Us A Story

Steve Munsinger Photo Researchers Inc.

Originally published on Fri January 11, 2013 1:51 pm

It's hard to imagine how this teeny little rock — it's not even a whole rock, it's just a grain, a miniscule droplet of mineral barely the thickness of a human hair — could rewrite the history of our planet. But that's what seems to be happening.

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