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.

Pages

Science + Technology
1:18 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

What Is It About Bees And Hexagons?

Robert Krulwich NPR

Originally published on Thu May 16, 2013 1:26 pm

Solved! A bee-buzzing, honey-licking 2,000-year-old mystery that begins here, with this beehive. Look at the honeycomb in the photo and ask yourself: (I know you've been wondering this all your life, but have been too shy to ask out loud ... ) Why is every cell in this honeycomb a hexagon?

Bees, after all, could build honeycombs from rectangles or squares or triangles ...

But for some reason, bees choose hexagons. Always hexagons.

Read more
Science + Technology
12:54 pm
Thu May 9, 2013

Moths That Drive Cars (Really)

YouTube

Originally published on Thu May 9, 2013 10:07 am

What you are about to see — and I'm not making this up — is a moth driving a car.

Read more
Science + Technology
11:46 am
Tue May 7, 2013

Our Very Normal Solar System Isn't Normal Anymore

Robert Krulwich NPR

Originally published on Tue May 7, 2013 8:53 am

Some things you just count on. Like if we ever meet a space alien, it should have eyes (and maybe a head). Like somewhere out there, there are planets like ours. Like we have an ordinary solar system — "ordinary" because you know what it looks like ...

It's got a sun in the middle, little planets on the inside, bigger ones farther out. That's what most of them should look like, no?

Read more
Krulwich Wonders...
11:45 am
Tue April 30, 2013

The Boomerang Rocket Ship: Shoot It Up, Back It Comes

YouTube

What in heaven's name is happening here?

Read more
Sports
9:09 am
Mon April 29, 2013

Nobody Throws Balls Like Yu

Jeff Gross Getty Images

Originally published on Sat April 27, 2013 8:03 am

Read more
Krulwich Wonders...
11:55 am
Wed April 17, 2013

A 'Whom Do You Hang With?' Map Of America

MIT Senseable City - "The Connected States of America"
MIT Senseable City Lab

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 1:31 pm

Look at the center of this map, at the little red dot that marks Kansas City. Technically, Kansas City is at the edge of Missouri, but here on this map it's in the upper middle section of a bigger space with strong blue borders. We don't have a name for this bigger space yet, but soon we will.

Read more
Science + Technology
11:27 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Who Stands Where In A Crowded Elevator And Why?

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 1:22 pm

Read more
Krulwich Wonders...
1:18 pm
Mon April 8, 2013

The Big Squeeze: Can Cities Save The Earth?

Courtesy of Michael Wolf

Originally published on Mon April 8, 2013 4:04 pm

Let's get dense. If we take all the atoms inside you, all roughly 70,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 of them, and squeeze away all the space inside, then, says physicist Brian Greene:

Read more
Krulwich Wonders...
3:03 pm
Fri April 5, 2013

Monty Python's John Cleese Almost Explains Our Brains

YouTube

Originally published on Fri April 5, 2013 10:50 am

Read more
Science + Technology
12:56 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

The Naming Of The Shrew

Carl Buell

Originally published on Sat March 16, 2013 6:05 am

It looks kinda like a squirrel, except its ears are too small, its tail is ratty, then bushy, and its mouth? Definitely un-squirrel. More like a shrew, a fox, or a dog. And the teeth? Strange. What is it?

It's an act of edited, elegant imagination.

Read more
Krulwich Wonders...
2:53 pm
Fri March 15, 2013

Pacific Island, Bigger Than Manhattan, Vanishes

Auckland Museum flickr

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 9:04 am

You can see it on this Google Map — a little spit of land, sitting between Australia (on the left) and French-governed New Caledonia (on the right).

It's called "Sandy Island." In the Times Atlas of the World it's called "Sable Island." On both maps it's a conspicuous land mass, roughly 15 miles long from north to south, three miles across. Altogether, that's about 45 square miles — about one and a half times the size of Manhattan.

Read more
Krulwich Wonders...
11:16 am
Fri March 8, 2013

What Happened When Humans Met An Alien Intelligence? Sex Happened

Courtesy of the Neanderthal Museum

Originally published on Mon March 25, 2013 2:50 pm

Read more
Science + Technology
10:30 am
Fri March 1, 2013

MIT Invents A Machine That Can Look At Batman's Face And See His Heart Beating

The New York Times YouTube

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 11:53 am

My pal Erik Olsen at The New York Times has just described an extraordinary new way to look at people. You point a camera at someone, record the image and then, using an "amplifier," you can discover things you've never seen before.

Read more
Science + Technology
11:42 am
Wed February 20, 2013

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

Adam Cole NPR

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 10:08 am

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.

Read more
Arts + Life
9:18 am
Fri February 15, 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.

Read more
Science + Technology
8:37 am
Wed February 13, 2013

What Is It About Emily?

thebrainscoop YouTube

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

Read more
Science + Technology
8:15 am
Wed February 6, 2013

Dinosaurs With Attitude

Courtesy of Julius T. Csotonyi

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 2:13 pm

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?

Read more
Science + Technology
10:02 am
Thu January 31, 2013

Pale Blue Blobs Invade, Freeze, Then Vanish

Courtesy of Emmanuel Coupe Kalomiris

Originally published on Wed January 30, 2013 2:11 pm

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.

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

Falling Off The Moon

YouTube

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

Read more
Health
8:35 am
Thu January 24, 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.

Read more

Pages