Your NPR news source

Clever Apes #5: Decoding science

SHARE Clever Apes #5: Decoding science
Clever Apes #5: Decoding science

Image courtesy of Gordon Kindlmann

Gordon’s pez: Tensor glyphs baffle a spouse, who calls Clever Apes for help. (Image courtesy of Gordon Kindlmann)

“I heard about your show and thought immediately of my husband, Gordon Kindlmann, who is a professor at University of Chicago . I would love it if you would consider interviewing him, mostly because I am hoping you’ll be able to explain what he actually does so that I can understand it and explain it to others.”

This email is how the latest installment of Clever Apes came about. I took up Anne Dodge’s challenge, and attempted to understand and get across Gordon’s esoteric research — which turns out to be both practical, and, I would argue, even inspiring.


Anne Dodge and Gordon Kindlmann look to bridge the communication gap. (Gabriel Spitzer / WBEZ)

If you’ve ever felt like scientists speak a different language from the rest of us, this one is for you.

The Latest
It’s election day, and hundreds of teens are serving as election judges. The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments today in a case that could impact more than one million student people in Illinois with college debt. Local groups are stepping up to provide shelter for asylum seekers arriving in Chicago.