Science and Technology Guests on Late Night, Week of May 16

This is a thin week for science and technology guests.  There is a repeat of note on Wednesday when the Conan program will re-air the recent episode from Korea.  The segment where Conan visits a Korean internet cafe is the most explicitly technological part of the program, but the topic comes up in other places during the episode.

Last night’s episode of Last Week Tonight merits inclusion for its segment on the 911 emergency system.  Much like a lot of the U.S. infrastructure, it is in bad shape, with underfunded call centers and outdated technology in many jurisdictions.

Perhaps the trend of the last few weeks of having plenty of non-guest science and technology content will continue.  For instance, on May 9, Stephen Colbert asked a question of The Big Bang Theory star Kaley Cuoco about the cast’s understanding of the science used in the show.  She does not play a scientist, which is why I didn’t note her appearance last week.  That same night The Daily Show covered a woman grounding a flight over the equations her seat neighbor was writing on the plane.  Over at The Nightly Show, Larry Wilmore and his contributors talked about the recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report about antibiotic overprescription.  On Wednesday the 11th, both @midnight and The Daily Show noted the reports that allege Facebook was downplaying stories in its news feeds on topics of interest to conservatives.

Then there was a missed guest.  On May 12th the History Channel’s Join or Die program aired an episode on History’s Dumbest Mistake.  One of the panelists for that episode was Dan Riskin, a biologist and television host.  But the closest the show came to discussing science or technology was with the mistake about selling a large percentage of Apple stock before the company hit big.


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