Big Picture Science – Sensor Sensibility

by Gary Niederhoff on December 19, 2011

Have you lost your senses? You’ll find them everywhere you look. Sensors respond to external stimuli – light, sound, temperature and much else – to help us make sense (ha!) of our universe. And more are on their way. “Ubiquitous sensing” is the term that describes a world blanketed by tiny sensors: on bridges, in paint and medicine bottles, and even in our brains!

Discover where you’ll find sensors next. And, has the world’s largest detection device found the elusive particle that will help explain the universe? Where are you, Higgsy-wiggsy?

Also, out-of-this world sensors have detected a possibly Earth-like planet. What’s next for the Kepler planet-hunters?

Plus, DIY sensor kits, and, if computers can do all that, why can’t we send the odor of, say, freshly-baked bread over the Internet? The case for a smell-o-meter.

Listen to individual segments here:
Part 1: Hints of Higgs
Part 2: Sam Space
Part 3: Ubiquitous Sensors
Part 4: Smell-o-meter
Part 5: Interactive Design
Part 6: Kepler’s Discoveries
Part 7: Planet Hunters

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