9.22.14: Objects In The Future Will Be 'Enchanted' & Nuclear Tourism

Sep 22, 2014

The Living Room of the Future! From the 1979 book Future Cities: Homes and Living into the 21st Century
Credit Matt Novak via flickr Creative Commons

In Stanley Kubrick’s film 2001 A Space Odyssey, future technologies take center stage in the form of Hal 9000, a sentient, yet sinister, computer aboard the spacecraft Discovery One. On today’s show, an instructor at the MIT Media Lab envisions a brighter future, in which the interaction between humans and technology will be useful, and even playful. 

Plus, a science writer plays nuclear tourist and visits the site of the Chernobyl disaster, where he finds some surprising imagery.

Listen to the full show and Read more for individual segments.

Enchanted Objects

Hillbilly Treasure Trove

  • You know the saying, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure”, but for Nathan Salsberg, curator of the Alan Lomax archive, that statement became a literal truth.
  • This story was produced by Matt Frassica for The Organist. You can listen to it at PRX.org.

Nuclear Tourism

  • George Johnson recently visited Chernobyl, and its surrounding villages. He wrote about his trip for National Geographic Magazine. You can see photos from his trip and read an excerpt from his article here.


  • Singer/songwriter Mirah talks to Virginia about her new album Changing Light.
  • Mirah will be at The Music Hall Loft on Friday, September 26th, at 8:00pm. Tickets can be purchased online at this link.