Guest post by Taylor DeCelles
Ideas Roadshow was created out of a sense of frustration —frustration that, despite the fact that the world seems to be drowning in “information”, there doesn’t seem to be very much out there that explores intriguing topics in a substantive yet unpretentious manner. Today’s technological world is awash with millions of provocative sound bites and self-promoting soapboxes. There is no shortage of academic journals either, but these are often narrowly focused and relatively inaccessible to the average intellectual in terms of both cost and abstruseness. Meanwhile, many universities put entire academic courses online, but these require an exorbitant time commitment and often suffer from substandard production quality. There is very little opportunity for the curious non-specialist to be stimulated in a thoughtful, accessible way. This is the absence Ideas Roadshow was created to redress.
Ideas Roadshow is a new digital multimedia magazine that incorporates both video (streaming and downloadable) and text (eBooks and PDF downloads). Each weekly issue is centered around a conversation, roughly an hour in length, with an expert in his or her field. Videos are available in both 480p and 1080p formats. The eBook includes an unabridged version of the conversation, an introductory essay, a brief bio of the interviewee, and suggested further reading and resources. Ideas roadshow offers a number of different payment options [http://www.ideasroadshow.com/subscribe] including a yearly subscription, which includes 52 new issues, for $99 and a monthly subscription for $9.99. Subscribers also receive full access to all past issues of Ideas Roadshow. For those who don’t want to pay, each video is available free streaming for two weeks after its initial release. These issues can be accessed on the Ideas Roadshow website or through the new iPad app on Apple Newsstand. Ideas Roadshow is currently working on making issues available through Android, iPhone, and other mobile devices.
Past issues have addressed everything from how to communicate science and theoretical physics with Nima Arkani-Hamed to the excavation of the ancient city of Herculaneum with Andrew Wallace-Hadrill. Primatologist Frans de Waal, philosopher Angie Hobbs, and physicist Roger Penrose are some of the thinkers who will be featured in upcoming issues. The next issue, “Minds and Machines”, scheduled for release June 21st, will feature Neuroscientist Miguel Nicolelis discussing brain-machine interfaces.
For more information and access to a number of free issues visit the Ideas Roadshow website [www.ideasroadshow.com].