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Podcast Profile: Conversations at the Perimeter

podcast imageTwitter: @Perimeter@laurenehayward@Call_me_Colin (@Perimeter followed by 265 accounts on physicist, mathematician, and astronomer lists)
Site: perimeterinstitute.ca/conversations-perimeter
17 episodes
Average episode: 53 minutes
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Categories: Interview-Style • Physics • Two Hosts

Podcaster's summary: Conversations at the Perimeter will introduce you to brilliant researchers working at the forefront of science, seeking to solve nature’s deepest mysteries – from quantum to cosmos. Learn about their motivations, the challenges they encounter, and the drive that keeps them searching for answers. Join the conversation!

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List Updated: 2022-Dec-07 12:58 UTC. Episodes: 17. Feedback: @TrueSciPhi.

2022-Dec-01 • 59 minutes
Nicole Yunger Halpern on quantum steampunk
Nicole Yunger Halpern reenvisions 19th-century thermodynamics for the 21st century, using the mathematical toolkit of quantum information theory. She is a fellow of the Joint Center for Quantum Information and Computer Science (QuICS), a theoretical physicist at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland. She is also the author of Quantum Steampunk: The Physics of Yesterday’s Tomorrow, a book that blends the topic of quantum th...
2022-Nov-24 • 70 minutes
Dustin Lang on big data from a big universe
Dustin Lang is a computational scientist at Perimeter Institute who develops techniques for finding needles in the cosmic haystack. He works on several large sky survey projects, tackling the statistical data analysis required to discern meaningful insights from huge datasets gathered by telescopes. In this conversation with Lauren and Colin, he shares his experiences mapping galaxies with the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI), and hunting for mysterious fast radio bursts (FRBs) with the Canadian ...
2022-Nov-17 • 62 minutes
Savas Dimopoulos on the universe’s biggest unsolved puzzles
Savas Dimopoulos is an influential particle physicist based at Stanford University, who also holds the Coril Holdings Archimedes Visiting Chair in Theoretical Physics at Perimeter Institute. He worked at CERN during the 1990s, and was featured in Particle Fever, a 2013 documentary about the hunt for the Higgs boson at the Large Hadron Collider. In this episode, he talks with Lauren and Colin about how he approaches the grand, open questions that keep him up at night – including two particularly fundamental ...
2022-Nov-10 • 47 minutes
Lee Smolin on a lifetime of big questions
Lee Smolin is a founding faculty member at Perimeter Institute and one of the world’s best-known voices in theoretical physics. He is a co-founder of loop quantum gravity, together with Abhay Ashtekar and Carlo Rovelli. Smolin is also the author of numerous popular science books, including The Trouble with Physics, The Life of the Cosmos, and Einstein’s Unfinished Revolution: The Search for What Lies Beyond the Quantum. In this conversation with Lauren and Colin, Smolin shares his philosophical outlook on q...
2022-Nov-03 • 62 minutes
Jessie Muir on the mystery of dark energy
The universe is expanding faster and faster all the time, and Jessie Muir wants to understand why. Muir is a postdoctoral researcher at Perimeter Institute and a member of the international Dark Energy Survey (DES) collaboration. She co-leads the DES analysis team that seeks to understand the mysterious dark energy driving the universe's accelerating expansion by analyzing galaxy clustering and weak lensing. In this episode, she chats with Lauren and Colin about her work at the intersection of theory and ex...
2022-Jun-23 • 60 minutes
Raymond Laflamme on the life-changing power of curiosity
Raymond Laflamme was the founding director of the Institute for Quantum Computing at the University of Waterloo, a position he held for 16 years, and he has been an associate faculty member at Perimeter Institute for more than two decades. He is known as one of the world’s leading experts on quantum information science, and was recently appointed as the chair of the Expert Panel on Quantum Technologies assembled by the Council of Canadian Academies. In this conversation with Lauren and Colin, Laflamme expla...
2022-Jun-16 • 54 minutes
Hilding Neilson on stellar stories
Hilding Neilson is an astrophysicist who works at the intersection of science, astronomy, and Indigenous knowledge. He joins co-hosts Colin and Lauren for a fascinating conversation about the ways humans make sense of the vast night sky, via telescopes, mathematics, and traditional knowledge passed through generations. Neilson – who recently started a new role as an Assistant Professor at Memorial University of Newfoundland – probes the physics of stars, from the nuclear-burning cores out to the circumstell...
2022-Jun-09 • 50 minutes
Estelle Inack on quantum intelligence
Estelle Inack is a research scientist at Perimeter Institute, working at the intersection of quantum matter and artificial intelligence as a member of the Perimeter Institute Quantum Intelligence Lab (PIQuIL). She is also the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of yiyaniQ, a quantum intelligence startup. Her research aims to develop quantum-inspired algorithms to tackle real-world optimization problems using state-of-the-art machine learning techniques. Originally from Cameroon, Inack tells Lauren and C...
2022-Jun-02 • 50 minutes
François David on mathematical beauty
François David is a mathematical physicist and a passionate educator with an infectious zest for decoding the mysteries of the universe. As a scientist based at the Institut de Physique Théorique (IPhT), he uses mathematical techniques and tools to tackle open questions in areas ranging from quantum gravity to statistical mechanics. He is also a popular lecturer among graduate physics students in his native France and at Perimeter Institute, where he has led classes in the Perimeter Scholars International (...
2022-May-26 • 51 minutes
Meenu Kumari on quantum chaos
A postdoctoral researcher at Perimeter Institute, Meenu Kumari is an explorer at the edge of quantum science. Her research explores open questions at the meeting points of quantum information, quantum foundations, and quantum matter. In this conversation with Lauren and Colin, she explains what it means to study the realm where quantum meets classical, and how we might harness the peculiar nature of the quantum realm to better understand chaos. She shares her unlikely path toward theoretical physics from a ...
2022-May-19 • 50 minutes
Lucien Hardy on quantum gravity and (apparent) paradoxes
Lucien Hardy is a theoretical physicist working at the intersection of the two pillars of modern physics – general relativity and quantum mechanics – in the quest for a single unifying theory: quantum gravity. Hardy joins co-hosts Lauren and Colin for a conversation about the puzzles that have driven him throughout his career, including the past 20 as a Perimeter faculty member. Hardy recalls the radio program that first sparked his childhood curiosity about the universe, describes his operational approach ...
2022-May-12 • 56 minutes
Avery Broderick on a black hole breakthrough from the EHT
On May 12, 2022, the global Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) collaboration unveiled the landmark first image of the black hole at the heart of our own Milky Way galaxy, called Sagittarius A* (or Sgr A*). On this special episode of Conversations at the Perimeter, Lauren and Colin talk with astrophysicist Avery Broderick about the significance of this discovery. He explains how the EHT collaboration created an “Earth-sized telescope” – a network of eight radio telescopes on five continents, all focussed on a sin...
2022-May-05 • 72 minutes
Ghazal Geshnizjani and Niayesh Afshordi: Cosmologically Coupled
They often debate the workings of black holes and the big bang at Perimeter Institute’s blackboards -- and sometimes at the breakfast table too. Ghazal Geshnizjani and Niayesh Afshordi split their time between investigating the mysteries of the cosmos and raising their young family. Both are researchers at Perimeter Institute and the University of Waterloo, exploring concepts like the beginning of the universe, the extreme gravity of black hole singularities, the mysteries of dark energy, and other big open...
2022-Apr-28 • 58 minutes
Carlo Rovelli on physics and philosophy
Theoretical physicist, philosopher, and international bestselling author Carlo Rovelli joins Lauren and Colin for a conversation about the quest for quantum gravity, the importance of unlearning outdated ideas, and a very unique way to get out of a speeding ticket. Rovelli is a Distinguished Visiting Research Chair at Perimeter Institute. He is also the author of seven popular science books, including The Order of Time, Reality is Not What it Seems, and the breakout bestseller Seven Brief Lessons on Physics...
2022-Apr-21 • 57 minutes
Katie Mack on the end of it all – and new beginnings
Katie Mack was recently appointed as Perimeter’s inaugural Hawking Chair in Cosmology and Science Communication. An adept science communicator, she is best known as @Astrokatie to her 400,000+ Twitter followers. She published her first book in 2020, The End of Everything (Astrophysically Speaking), in which she explains the various ways our universe could come to its end. During this conversation, she tells us about her early interactions with Stephen Hawking, how she became fascinated with the universe’s u...
2022-Apr-14 • 46 minutes
Timothy Hsieh on the magic of quantum
Timothy Hsieh is a Perimeter faculty member and a co-leader of the Institute’s Clay Riddell Centre for Quantum Matter. His research explores the intersection of quantum information and condensed matter physics. The Los Angeles native is also a classically trained violinist and a new dad. During this conversation, he shares how “quantum magic” can help us build powerful quantum computers, his first experiences at Perimeter as a teenager, and how fatherhood has helped fuel his innate curiosity about nature. ...
2022-Apr-04 • 4 minutes
Introducing: Conversations at the Perimeter
Get to know some of the brilliant minds trying to solve nature’s deepest mysteries. Conversations at the Perimeter will introduce you to researchers working at the forefront of science, tackling challenges from dark matter and black holes to quantum computing and particle physics. The series is co-hosted by Perimeter Teaching Faculty member Lauren Hayward and journalist-turned-science communicator Colin Hunter. In each episode, they chat with a guest scientist about their research, their motivations, the ...