The Boring Talks

The Boring Talks

BBC Radio
Apr 06, 2020 20 min

#50 - Windows

Where does the word 'Window' derive from? And what does it have to do with a Norwegian architectural historian and a bohemian Austrian poet? On a lyrical journey from death to inspiration, Anne Ulrikke Andersen takes a look through the windows in the life of Christian Norberg-Schulz. James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe.
Mar 30, 2020 22 min

#49 - Coal Holes

They are either 12, 14 or 16 inches wide, they live just outside our doors, and they come in a variety of striking designs. So why has no one heard of coal holes? Local historian Amir Dotan explores the streets of London to find the small metal discs you may not have noticed before, but may well have stepped over thousands of times. James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe.
Mar 23, 2020 25 min

#48 - Data Centres

What do we all use, but never visit? The sound artist Matt Parker takes us inside the bizarre world of remote Data Centres, where our wireless world is powered by rows and rows of computers running all day, everyday. But what is the true cost of these centres to our planet? What do they sound like? And why does one have an empty white room with an executive leather armchair and a faceless portrait hanging on the wall? James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe.
Mar 16, 2020 16 min

#47 - Crinoline Ladies

It began as an image of Victorian femininity, became a 1920s style icon, and perhaps ended as a 1970s toilet roll cover. Dr Kathryn Ferry looks at the curious history of the Crinoline Lady, exploring the growth of suburbia, Gone With The Wind and 'crinolinemania'. James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe.
Mar 09, 2020 17 min

# 46 - Teletext

James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe. From Bamboozle, to being switched off, and now being salvaged for the digital age. James O'Malley looks at the life, death and resurrection of Teletext.
Mar 02, 2020 19 min

#45 - Box Certificates

One day while breaking down a box in a corridor, Joyce Smith noticed a box certificate. Quickly followed by a second one. Now Joyce had 2 of them, and 2 of anything is the start of a collection. James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe.
Feb 24, 2020 14 min

# 44 - Swearing: a personal cross-cultural comparative study of Hindi and English

If you hit your thumb with a hammer, what swear word would you immediately scream? Charvy Narain asked her friends and family this question, which lead to a personal journey from the 'buffalo's eye' to New York City cops and the her surprising Mausi. In this edition of The Boring Talks Charvy Narain takes a very foul mouthed and personal look at swearing in Hindi and English. James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe.
Feb 17, 2020 14 min

# 43 - The Sounds of Computer Games Loading

James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe. The clunk and click of the datasette machine. The white noise of the tape loading. The strange and compelling soundtrack of the loading music. The author and video games journalist Keith Stuart remembers the forgotten whirrs and clicks that made up the soundtrack of his youth. Presenter: James Ward Contributor: Keith Stuart Producer: Luke Doran
Feb 10, 2020 15 min

#42 - The Lexicon Of Breakups

James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe. In 2011, comedian Rosie Wilby was dumped by email. (Though she did feel better about it after correcting her ex’s spelling and punctuation). Obsessing ever since about whether technology has enabled abrupt endings to relationships, she discovered an entire new language. But what are ghosting, breadcrumbing, submarining, pocketing, benching and curving? Rosie Wilby is a comedian and presents The Breakup Monologues podcast. Presenter: James Ward Contributor: Rosie Wilby Producer: Luke Doran
Feb 10, 2020 27 min

#41 - Pencils

James Ward introduces another curious talk about a subject that may seem boring, but is actually very interesting.... maybe. Brian Mackenwells is passionate about pencils. In this Boring Talk he shares his passion for good pencils. He talks us through their history, and explains why having a good pencil gives you a pleasurable 'small pivot point that can change your whole mind set'. He also talks us through his favourite pencils, and shares the very personal reason that he can't part with one particular pencil in his collection. Presenter: James Ward Contributor: Brian Mackenwells Producer: Luke Doran
The Boring Talks
Genre
Society & Culture
Episodes
51
Frequency
Weekly podcast
Prediction
Next episode Monday, April 13
Website
bbc.co.uk/programmes/p05t3gr2
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