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Ep #3 Show Notes | Sean B. Carroll: Chance, Evolution, and the Nature of Innovation

Updated: Jan 12

About the Guest: Sean B. Carroll, PhD is an award-winning biologist, author, and filmmaker. Dr. Carroll is currently a Professor of Biology at the University of Maryland and VP of Public Education at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI).


Episode Summary: Nick and Sean discuss everything from Sean's unique career trajectory and writing process, to dinosaurs and snake venom, to mRNA vaccines, the evolution of viruses, and why comedians and scientists are kindred spirits.


Relevant Links:


Audio Clip:


Conversation Timeline:

0:00:00 Intro

0:02:09 Snake venom & Sean's research

10:23 Mutant flies & animal bodies

17:09 Chance & opportunity in science

23:47 Endless forms most beautiful

27:19 Luck & science communication

31:34 Science denialism

34:30 Chiropractic & the polio vaccine

37:58 Science denialism & vaccines

42:27 Viruses & viral evolution

47:49 Coronavirus vaccines

59:50 Sean's new book

1:09:30 Sean's childhood & upbringing

1:14:17 Curiosity, chance, and opportunity

1:17:56 HHMI & documentary filmmaking

1:24:11 Sean's book writing process

1:27:37 Scientists, comedians, and truth-telling

1:31:48 Closing remarks

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