Oh, what a night! Performing in front of an audience is always fun, but when you’re recording a tech/comedy podcast series with two excellent comedians, prepare for your face to ache at the end of each show.
The DesignSpark Podcast (the follow on series from the History Makers Podcast) was recorded in March at the Rosemary Branch Theatre in London. The Rosemary Branch was once a Victorian music hall and legend goes that Charlie Chaplin performed there. Which probably wouldn’t have made for a great Podcast.
The subjects covered this series are space, medical technology, augmentation, the future of transport, robots and Big Data.
My co-hosts, Bec Hill (the comedian with a sense of pun) and Harriet Braine (musical comedian and also a historian), are fantastic, and help to take us on a journey of discovery about the week’s topic. Each episode is full of factoids – for example, did you know:
That using today’s technology, the six million dollar man would cost $12,000? But if you include the cost of his medical care, he’d be the 33 million dollar man!
That throwing up in zero-g is gross – there’s nothing to pull it out, so it sticks to your face and the inside of your mouth!
That Big data is just more information than can be easily handled by traditional data-processing software – such as Microsoft Excel?
Bec brings her take on what’s happening today in the world of tech – she really has her finger on the pulse. She also has a heart rate monitor, which leaves her fingers free for scrolling through social media. She has all the answers, although not necessarily the factually correct ones. She also has an eye for interesting new things that she’d like to see invented – such as Long Shoes™. Tune in to find out what she has actually sent into space, and why every time she hears the Black Eyed Peas, she can taste mint.
Harriet dons her historian hat and gives a fascinating tour of developments that have lead to our current situation – from the Doomsday Book to the Mechanical Turk, and from codpieces to donkeys and leeches. With minor digressions into the history of teleprompters and who was the first person to drive on the moon.
Harriet also transmogrified into people from different ages to sing about their achievements. Listen out for the earworm “Zees are the....milestones of the drones “ and the poignant story of Ignaz Semmelweis (the show is worth a listen just for this!).
My part, as an inventor with a sense of fun (www.LucyRogers.com), is to keep the tech explanations as factually correct as giggling allows. I also got the chance to indulge my fantastic future forecasting skills, and transport the audience ...
“to the future. The year is 2176 and humans have perfected artificial organs. They are so ubiquitous that you can even buy them from vending machines on every street corner…”
“The year is 2069 and, in return for a small monthly income from giant corporations, we've all installed cameras in our eyes, meaning everything we see is uploaded to the cloud... and instantly analysed to determine what we might want to buy next.”
Using Bec’s RS Time Machine, stock number– (Caution: Your mileage may vary), Bec and I also get up to some fun adventures in the future.
Those who came to the live recordings not only got to hear some real bloopers (cut from the show for reasons) but also can be smug in the knowledge that proceeds from the ticket sales went to the fabulous charity Remap who custom-makes equipment to help disabled people live more independent lives.
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And, while you wait, you can listen to the previous series… All available on your favourite podcast platform.