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An intimate conversation with the creators of some of the world's most remarkable games, hosted by comedian and life-long gamer Adam Conover. This season I will talk with the developers of Portal, Assassin's Creed, Hyper Light Drifter and many more about what it’s like to make video games for a living, how they come up with their ideas, and their first memory of the medium.
 
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show series
 
Would leaving your freezer door open help climate change? What would happen if you slid down a fire pole from the Moon down to Earth? And how has creativity on the Internet changed over the past few decades? Legendary XKCD cartoonist and author Randall Munroe joins Adam today to ask and answer some of the most mind-blowing questions you’ve ever hea…
 
Iran is currently being rocked by protests against the oppressive theocratic regime that rules the country. What is happening there, and what brought us to this point? Writer and scholar Reza Aslan joins Adam to explain how decades of bad American foreign policy created the Iran we know today, dispel media myths about the country and its people, an…
 
The housing crisis seems like one of the most intractable problems threatening America. But slowly and surely, we’re solving it, and you can be a part of the solution. President of California YIMBY, Brian Hanlon, joins Adam to explain how his group is building a movement for fair housing, how to organize for your rights as a renter, and the two pie…
 
Climate change is the biggest disaster facing humanity. And yet so often, our solutions seems to be limited to buying slightly better grocery bags and cars. How do we ACTUALLY fight back against climate change — and are our solutions working? One of America’s foremost climate experts and activists, Bill McKibben, joins Adam to explain what is being…
 
How do we fight back against those who are trying to take away Americans’ civil rights? Scholar and organizer Mie Inouye joins Adam to explain how American civil rights movements built political power, and how we can do the same by following their example. She gives practical tips for organizing in our daily lives, and explains how each of us can b…
 
Comedy is one of world’s oldest, most popular art forms, but almost no one thinks seriously about what comedy is or what it’s for. Is comedy inherently liberal? Does it actually convey truth, or is it just for entertainment? And what do we make of the rise of right-wing comedy in America? Researchers Nick Marx and Matt Sienkiewicz, authors of the n…
 
Americans are trapped in two competing narratives about immigration: That we’re a nation of immigrants, and that outsiders are invading to steal our jobs. But if we set ideology and narrative aside, what’s the truth? Leah Boustan joins Adam on this weeks episode to discuss her research into why and how people come to the United States, and what act…
 
Climate change, racial inequality, and the anti-rights revolution all feel like comets heading towards our inevitable destruction. If you’re depressed about these challenges, you’re not alone. So how do we fight back? In this episode, author and journalist Chris Hayes joins Adam to discuss whether we’re as fucked as we think, and to offer solutions…
 
Why is it so hard to get around in America? Why is it so much more expensive to build a mile of transit here than it is in any country? And will we ever be able to break America of its car addiction? United States Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg joins Adam to answer these questions. They cover how countries in Europe laid the foundation …
 
In honor of our move to Starburns Audio, we’re taking a week off and running a Factually classic. In this interview from 2019, Adam speaks with Jenny Odell, artist, writer, and author of the wonderful book "How To Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy.” Jenny’s message about how to reclaim your attention and the value of seemingly purposeless…
 
How can we best help animals, when it’s we humans who cause their suffering? Animal Crisis authors Alice Crary and Lori Gruen join Adam to explain how the same systems that hurt and kill animals also harm humans. They discuss the human rights abuses that happen in industrial slaughterhouses and how palm oil monocrops are devastating the world’s rai…
 
In times of turmoil, it can be useful to take a longer view of history. Like, a LOT longer. Paleontologist and author of “The Rise and Reign of the Mammals” Stephen Brusatte joins Adam to explain how mammals took over the Earth hundreds of millions of years ago, and why we survived and achieve sentience when dinosaurs died out. Stephen goes on to d…
 
Trans people have existed as long as, you know, people have. But the barriers to legal inclusion and equality are still higher than most people realize. “Sex is as Sex Does” author Paisley Currah joins Adam to discuss why institutions have been slow to give legal recognition to trans identities, why Republicans have shifted their attacks from bathr…
 
Asian Americans are an essential part of the history of this country, but the true story is all too little told, especially in a time of rising anti-Asian sentiment and violence. Historian and author of “Asian American Histories of the United States” Catherine Choy joins Adam to discuss the origin of racist ideas such as the “model minority myth,” …
 
Crypto is crashing, which makes it the perfect time to ask whether blockchain technology is actually — you know — useful for anything. Computer scientist Nicholas Weaver joins Adam to discuss the inherent flaws in the technology, the shockingly slow state of innovation considering that the technology has been around for a decade, and what a better …
 
Is artificial intelligence a problem, or is the real problem how we’re using the term in the first place? Linguistics professor Emily Bender joins Adam to discuss why we should resist the urge to be impressed when it comes to big tech’s AI promises, and how our belief in the fantasy of A.I. could be worse than the reality. You can follow Emily on T…
 
Despite our efforts, we seem to be no better at treating mental illness than we were hundreds of years ago. Desperate Remedies author Andrew Scull joins Adam to explain why, on the way touching on the history of lobotomization, the collapse of psychoanalysis, and why our current regime of pharmaceutical intervention might not be all it’s cracked up…
 
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