0: Sleep paralysis, cool 13-year-olds, toxoplasmosis, and Wikipedia reliability

This week we learn about sleep paralysis, whether cool 13 year olds have already washed out by the age of 22, is your cat’s poop affecting your behavior, and how reliable is medical information on Wikipedia.

The is the first ever episode of the Useful Science Podcast. We're still figuring this thing out, and we can really use your help to make it as good as possible. Let us know what you think at podcast@usefulscience.org.


Jaan Altosaar

Jaan's undergrad is in Maths & Physics from McGill in 2013; his name is weird because he's Estonian-Canadian. He's a Physics PhD student in machine learning at Princeton and Columbia. He founded Useful Science in 2014 and gets excited about the societal impact of artificial intelligence, Roberto Bolaño books, meditation, and making science useful.


Andrew Blevins

Andrew holds a B.A. in English and Cognitive Science from the University of Georgia. He lives in Brooklyn, where he writes stories and essays and works at a legal publishing agency. He's been summarizing scientific studies for friends and loved ones for years (whether they wanted him to or not), so it's nice to be putting this skill to use. Other interests include philosophy, comedy, busking, and running.

Jaime Devine

Jaime K Devine has a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Brandeis University. Her research focuses on how human behavior interacts with biological functioning, particularly between sleep and the endocrine system. When she is not doing science, Jaime enjoys wrestling, wife carrying and acting in horror movies.

Thomas Donoghue

Tom is a PhD student in the Cognitive Science department of UCSD, where he uses computational methods and neural recordings to investigate how the brain communicates with itself. He did a Cognitive Science Bachelor's degree at McGill University and has research experience in neuroimaging and language studies. Outside of being a science nerd, he enjoys travel and music.

Davi da Silva

Davi is a PhD student in medical engineering at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology. He did his undergraduate work in mathematics and chemistry at the University of Chicago while nurturing a secret interest in biology and medicine. Outside of lab and studying, Davi enjoys ballet, bread, beer, and being less serious than he looks in his photo.

Cameron Spencer

Cameron is a designer and web developer. He is the founder of Lab 43.