The hour continues as host Ophira Eisenberg and puzzle editor Art Chung unearth notorious stumpers from the Ask Me Another archives. How well do you know your "qwertyuiop"? We ask contestants to create words using letters found on the "Top Row" of a computer keyboard. Mental math meets pop music in "Algebraic Music" (with an assist from house musician Jonathan Coulton) and the names of esteemed world leaders get reduced to animal-related puns in "Imperial Pets."
This hour, revisit some of Ask Me Another's hardest games with host Ophira Eisenberg and puzzle editor Art Chung. If Nietzsche and Kierkegaard were actually hacky comedians, their jokes might sound a little like those told by puzzle guru John Chaneski in "The Philospher's Comedy Club." Find out from Art the original conceit of this game (hint: it involved people in tights), then try mashing up notable names in "Presidential Middle Names"--it may prove to be more brain-melting than enlightening.
Our first ever Really Hard Edition revisits some of the trickiest games played on Ask Me Another. Yes, this episode is full of subjects known to put fear (or, for some, joy) into your hearts: philosophy, history, math. But fret not. We've put our own spin on them, and injected healthy doses of comedy, music, pop culture and puns. Amid these grueling rounds, get into the head of puzzle editor Art Chung, who reveals the process behind creating the show's games. Plus, how could we have a Really Hard Edition without anagrams from NPR's puzzlemaster, Will Shortz?
Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 2:44 pm
Each Friday we round up the big conversations in tech and culture during the week that was. We also revisit the work that appeared on this blog and highlight what we're reading from our fellow technology writers and observers across the Internet.
Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 8:13 pm
We get a lot of mail at NPR Music, and amid our next-door neighbor's copy of Soldier of Fortune is a slew of smart questions about how music fits into our lives β and, this week, multiple requests for help deciding when it's time to bail on an outdated music format.
Just a few weeks ago, when Linda Holmes was out of town, we decided to extend the opportunity for a scrappy newcomer named Audie Cornish to get a bit of much-needed NPR airtime. Today? She's one of the hosts of All Things Considered. (Okay, she was one of the hosts of All Things Considered before we put her on Pop Culture Happy Hour, but stick around. I'm going somewhere with this.)
Originally published on Thu August 29, 2013 8:02 pm
Obama administration officials briefed members of Congress on Thursday on the intelligence they say proves it was Syrian President Bashar Assad who used chemical weapons against his own people.
Frank Thorp, of NBC News, and Reuters report that after the conference call, Rep. Eliot Engel, a Democrat from New York, said the administration told them intercepted communications from high level officials proved it was the regime, not the rebels who used chemical weapons.