September 6th, 2012
09:52 AM ET

Dawkins: Evolution is 'not a controversial issue'

Atheist. Biologist. Writer. Thinker. Richard Dawkins has developed an international reputation of spreading the word that evolution happened and that there is no "intelligent design" or higher being, as you might gather from the title of his book "The God Delusion."

But no matter what you think about his convictions, his ideas have gone viral - including the word "meme."

CNN caught up with Dawkins while he was passing through Atlanta earlier this year. His next U.S. tour is in October.

Here is an edited transcript of part of the conversation. Watch the video above for a more focused look at Dawkins' ideas about evolution vs. intelligent design.

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Filed under: CNN Ideas • Human ancestors • On Earth
September 20th, 2011
04:34 PM ET

Rare Arctic creatures in trouble

From narwhals to polar bears to even amphipods, arctic photographer Paul Nicklen has has been documenting artic wildlife for the last decade, exploring impacts they're facing from climate change. Nicklen says that with his photography, he wants people to understand that if we lose ice, we stand to lose an entire ecosystem.

FULL STORY from CNN Ideas

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Filed under: CNN Ideas • Voices
September 16th, 2011
11:15 AM ET

Inventor shows off science in the kitchen

Nathan Myhrvold, former CTO of Microsoft, is all about inventions. He's part of Intellectual Ventures Lab, which strives to come up with solutions to big problems such as curbing bacterial infections and improving wound care. The lab has worked on medical inventions that could save lives, improve diagnostics and conserve energy.

To be an inventor, you need to have failures, he says in this video from the CNN Ideas series. There are a lot of ideas that just won't work in practice, but you have to try out a lot of possibilities so that you can find out which of them does work, he says.

But he doesn't just innovate in medicine. He has also authored a 2,400-page cookbook that has stunning images illustrating the science of cooking, from barbecue to pot roast.

Check out more from Mhyrvold on CNN's Global Public Square, where he demonstrates how to make the perfect French fry, how to zap mosquitoes with lasers to stop the transmission of malaria and his fears that America isn't innovating enough.

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Filed under: CNN Ideas • Science Education • Voices
September 8th, 2011
09:17 AM ET

Hearing sound in outer space?

Part philosopher, all scientist, Janna Levin is a professor of physics and astronomy at Barnard College in New York. But her career as a scientist began half-way through college when Levin, a then philosophy major, says she was "struck by how powerful physics and math could be." Levin said she found that the sciences could change people's opinions in a way she didn't think philosophy could.

That's when she changed her focus.

When asked about her research, the "why" of what she does, Janna gives an answer that still rings of a philosopher: "What it does is it changes the way we see ourselves in the world. We realize that there are things out there that have not yet been seen, but can be heard. It gives us a deeper understanding into the universe and maybe even the origins of the universe. And I think that's a pilgrimage human beings have been on ever since they started to look out and wonder about the world.

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Filed under: CNN Ideas • Voices

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