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We hear from London’s most inaccessible museum, the Met police’s Crime Museum, and take you back to India in the time of the British Raj. We hear about the first murder case ever to hinge on fingerprint evidence.No one had to invent fingerprints. They’ve been around for ages…But to be able to use fingerprints in fighting crime required an obsessive colonial administrator, hard science and the invention of an ingenious filing system that would revolutionise policing around the world.Our guests today are Chandak Sengoopta, historian at Birkbeck University and author of Imprint of the Raj: How Fingerprinting was Born in Colonial India and Paul Bickley, curator of the Crime Museum housed in New Scotland Yard.This is the second episode in a mini-series we’re bringing you all about the invention of Forensics. Next week it’s Lie Detectors. Produced by Freddy Chick Executive Producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Perfume

Perfume

2022-09-2137:11

First Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel shocked the world’s eyeballs with her fashion designs. Then she shocked its nostrils with a new smell - Chanel No. 5. “It’s punk rock but with feather boas and fragrance”. That’s how today’s guest, Suzy Nightingale, describes the impact that Coco Chanel had on society. Coco was at the heart of a revolution that was overthrowing the old world’s traditions and ideas of propriety.In 1921, in search of a perfume that would capture the smell of the modern woman, she launched Chanel No. 5. It changed perfume forever and now more than a hundred years on remains the most famous perfume in the world.Suzy Nightingale is Dallas’s guest to talk about all things perfume and Chanel. She is an award winning writer on perfume and co-host of the wonderful podcast On The Scent (https://pod.link/1573786577).Produced by Freddy ChickEdited by Thomas NtinasExecutive Producer is Charlotte LongFor more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Death by tiger bites. Death by prodding. Death from sexual excess. Deaths from over-eating and over-drinking. The opening of graves.These are a few of the chapter headings in a 13th century Chinese book called ‘The Washing Away of Wrongs’. It is a compendium of grizzly, gory, bizarre murders and deaths.Its author was Song Ci, a Confucian trained bureaucrat who, like his fellow officials all over China, was responsible for investigating murders in his jurisdiction. According to the Wikipedia page for ‘forensic science’ this book is the earliest written evidence of forensic thinking. Is that correct?Our guest today is Daniel Asen, a historian of China at Rutgers University.This is the first episode in a mini-series we’re bringing you all about the invention of Forensics. Next week it’s Fingerprints.Produced by Freddy ChickEdited by Pete Dennis and Anisha DevaActors were Lucy Davidson and Tristan HughesExecutive Producer is Charlotte LongFor more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
PowerPoint

PowerPoint

2022-09-1432:501

We take PowerPoint for granted. It's as much a fact of life as concrete. Or rainy afternoons. But it hasn’t always been here. It has a story. And once you’ve heard it, you’ll never look at PowerPoint the same way again.Those old enough can remember the world before PowerPoint. A world where presentations were done on overhead projectors or 35mm slideshow carousels. In 1985, in the US alone, people made over 600 million 35mm slides and more than 500 million overhead transparencies. Large companies had departments dedicated to producing them.Robert Gaskins, the inventor of PowerPoint, had a vision of how computers could produce these slides and transparencies more efficiently, and eventually consign them to the dustbin of history.Russell Davies is our guest today and author of Everything I Know about Life I Learned from PowerPoint. He’s here to tell us that the inventor of PowerPoint, Robert Gaskins, is the tech hero we should all have.Produced by Freddy ChickEdited by Anisha DevaExecutive Producer was Charlotte LongFor more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here.If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today!You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
We talk to the real life Siri in this episode. Susan Bennett was the original voice of Siri back in 2011, although she didn't know it at the time...But before that it's a conversation with Dallas's friend Ali Maggs (from Chaos Created) about the history of virtual assistants - everything from a mechanical dog that jumps out of its kennel, to that helpful digital paperclip Clippy, to the incredibly smart assistants of today and tomorrow.Produced by Freddy ChickThe Executive Producer was Charlotte LongFor more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here.If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today!You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Contact Lenses

Contact Lenses

2022-09-0431:12

The Contact Lens. The humble Contact Lens. Oh boy, do we have a rip-roaring episode for you about the humble contact lens.Nazi villains, arrests by secret police, chance encounters on trains and fear of Soviet invasion. And in the middle of it all, an unlikely hero: a Czech chemist called Otto Wichterle.On Christmas Eve 1961, Otto Wichterle created the world’s first soft contact lens at his kitchen table with the help of his son’s toy mechanics set.Who was Otto?How did he manage to create the world’s first contact lens behind the Iron Curtain, despite political opposition?Why is his story not better known?Our guest today, Riikka Palonkorpi, works at the University of the Arts in Helsinki and wrote her PhD thesis on Otto Wichterle back in 2012. As part of her research, Riikka met Otto’s wife and visited their home, so naturally is the perfect person to help us answer these questions as we unravel Otto’s story.The episode was produced by Freddy Chick.The editor was Anisha Deva.The senior producer was Charlotte Long.For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here.If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today!You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Sports Bra

Sports Bra

2022-08-3137:122

REAL LIFE INVENTOR ALERT!!!Two jockstraps cleverly sewn together. That was how the very first sports bra was made in 1977. The product built out from this prototype, the “Jog Bra”, went on to change women’s athletics forever.Today we’re talking to Lisa Lindhal who, together with her friends Polly and Hinda, unleashed the sports bra on the world. The episode was produced by Freddy Chick.The editor was Anisha Deva.The senior producer was Charlotte LongFor more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here.If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today!You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency

2022-08-2850:50

If you feel confused and left behind by cryptocurrency then this is for you. We're taking you on a journey through the strange history of cryptocurrency. Why and how does it exist?It turns out this history isn’t so much about clever codes as good old-fashioned politics.Our guide is Finn Brunton, author of Digital Cash: The Unknown History of the Anarchists, Utopians, and Technologists Who Created Cryptocurrency.Get ready for a rip-roaring tale of Bletchley Park codebreakers, the wild west early days of the internet, dystopian visions of the future, and a man with a fortune buried somewhere in a rubbish dump in Wales.The episode was produced by Freddy Chick.The editor was Thomas Ntinas.The senior producer is Charlotte LongFor more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here.If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today!You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Home Security System

Home Security System

2022-08-2430:05

The patent for the Ring doorbell cites this as the starting point. A Heath Robinson looking design with peep holes, sliding cameras and radio controlled alarms. An invention, and an inventor, ahead of their time.Marie van Brittan Brown was an African American nurse living in Queens in New York in the 1960s. In 1969 she and her husband received a patent for what is the first modern home security system. It had many of the same fundamental features as the smart doorbells of today. But after the patent and some positive press coverage, nothing happened. No big companies swooped in to help build the system. Marie never became a millionaire.Who was Marie van Brittan Brown? What was her invention? And why didn’t it take off?My guest today is Shontavia Johnson, vice president for entrepreneurship at Clemson University and patent lawyer in a former life. Shontavia has been helping to revive Marie’s remarkable story as we will hear, thus allowing us to explore what Marie’s story teaches about who gets to be an inventor.For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here.If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today!You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Play-Doh

Play-Doh

2022-08-2130:49

Find out what Play-Doh has to do with sooty walls. And how we have a nursery teacher called Kay Zufall and a TV presenter called Captain Kangaroo to thank for it.Our guest is Chris Bensch from the Strong Museum of Play, surely the world’s funnest museum. Chris takes us for a jaunt down memory. Along the way we sniff deeply from a tub of everyone's favourite modelling compound.If you could spritz yourself with a Play-Doh scented perfume, would you?The episode was produced by Freddy Chick The editor was Anisha Deva The senior producer is Charlotte LongFor more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here.If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today!You've been listening to a History Hit podcast. Please take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey with your feedback, we'd really appreciate it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Pyres on the Appalachian mountains. Planes spraying chemicals into clouds. Mirrors in space. “I can make it rain, I can make it rain, I can make it rain…by waggling my stick”.For more than a century, scientists, soldiers and charlatans have tried to manipulate the weather, wildly exaggerating what is possible.Does any of it actually work?And even if we could control the climate, should we? Whose hand would be on the thermostat?Today we’re joined by James Fleming, a leading historian of meteorology and climate change and author of Fixing the Sky: The Checkered History of Weather and Climate Control.James helps us chart the dubious history of attempts to control the weather from the 19th century meteorologist dubbed the ‘Rain King’, to Cold War efforts to drench opposing armies, to cloud seeding at the start of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.The episode was produced by Freddy Chick The editor was Anisha DevaThe senior producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
!!!REAL LIFE INVENTOR ALERT!!!Usually we talk about dead people on this podcast. It is history after all. But this week we’ve got living, breathing Ben Jen on talking about his invention Vantablack.Vantablack is so dark, so black, that all details of the objects it covers dissolves. 99.965% of light that hits it is absorbed. It is no longer possible to tell what you are looking at. All you see is a black hole in space.It was created by Ben and his colleagues at his company Surrey Nanosystems. They produced it for the space industry who had asked for something really, really good at absorbing light.But this darkest of materials has gone on to have a life of its own causing outrage in the art world and provoking emotional responses in everyone that sees its strangeness.The episode was produced by Freddy Chick The senior producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Pyramids

Pyramids

2022-08-1038:141

The Great Pyramid of Giza was the tallest building in the world for nearly four thousand years…until it was beaten by Lincoln Cathedral.This week Dallas is joined by Egyptologist and friend Chris Naunton for a crash course in pyramid construction and the mysteries that surround them.Discover where pharaohs were buried before pyramids came along; find out who is believed to have designed the very first pyramid; and learn why they wanted to build giant triangles in the desert in the first place.The episode was produced by Freddy ChickEdited by Thomas Ntinas The senior producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
The transistor; solar panels; the first telecommunications satellite; cell phone networks; UNIX code; information theory. All these and more were invented in one place: Bell Labs.Bell Labs was where the future, which is what we now happen to call the present, was conceived and designed. It was the research and development arm of AT&T, which had monopoly control of the American phone system for much of the 20th century, and had more than ten thousand employees in its heyday.Why is Bell Labs not a household name?How did the transistor chip come to be?Which genius rode a unicycle around the office while smoking a cigar?Our guest today is Jon Gertner, author of The Idea Factory as we explore the secret to Bell Labs’ success.With thanks to AT&T Archives and History Center for the archive recordings.The episode was produced by Freddy Chick The senior producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Shipping Containers

Shipping Containers

2022-08-0330:573

90% of everything you own arrived by sea.And there’s one invention to thank above all else – the humble shipping container.Today on Patented we’re joined by Rose George - journalist and author of the book Deep Sea and Foreign Going about her experience of spending five weeks on board a container ship.Who do we have to thank for the modern shipping container?Which country provides a quarter of the world’s merchant seamen?Batten down the hatches and man the riggings as we set course for another edition of Patented.The episode was produced by Freddy Chick & edited by Joseph Knight The senior producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Barbie

Barbie

2022-07-3131:031

Barbie. What is it about Barbie? Love her or loathe her this 11 ½ inch doll gets a big reaction.Which is strange in a way because she’s over sixty years old. Few things have managed to stay relevant so long, surviving seismic cultural change.This week it’s the story of how the doll that changed childhood for millions came to be.Our guest is Tanya Stone author of The Good, the Bad and the Barbie. And we meet Tristan Piñeiro and some of his more than 600 barbies.Find out what Barbie has to do with a 1950s cartoon hooker…And what Teen Talk Barbie said that so incensed the world…The episode was produced by Freddy Chick & Seyi Adaobi. The senior producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Contactless Payment

Contactless Payment

2022-07-2734:29

*tap* *tap* *tap*That’s the sound of physical cash being consigned to the dustbin of history by us tapping cards/phones/watches instead.Contactless payments are growing so rapidly that it seems a safe prediction that a cashless future is not far away.In the UK contactless payments rose 52% between 2019 and 2021. Some shops already don’t take cash. And it’s a similar picture in countries across the world.We’ve been using hard cash as the primary way to pay for things for millenia. How has this new technology crept up on us so fast?Today we find out how contactless payments began, how they work, and who really benefits from them. Joining us today are guests Natasha de Teran and Gottfried Leibbrandt.The episode was produced by Emily WhalleyThe editor was Peter Dennis The senior producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Air Conditioning

Air Conditioning

2022-07-2430:59

No summer blockbuster. No Las Vegas and no skyscrapers in Dubai. No chocolate bars when the weather gets hot. Air conditioning is one of those things we take for granted but that has transformed the world around us, for good and for bad.There are 1.6 billion air conditioners in the world today and they consume an estimated 10% of all electricity. Both these figures are likely to rise dramatically as the climate changes.But when air conditioning first appeared people were slow to adopt it. People were so used to suffering extreme heat that it's as if it was hard to believe this godsend was real. Now it is hard to imagine life in many parts of the world without it.Who do we have to thank for this transformative piece of technology?How did Queen Victoria keep cool?And what is the connection between Hollywood's summer blockbusters and air conditioning?Our guest to explore this world-changing technology is Salvatore Basile, author of – Cool: How Air Conditioning Changed Everything.The episode was produced by Emily Whalley The senior producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Baby Formula

Baby Formula

2022-07-2031:111

The United States has been suffering from a baby formula shortage for months now. It’s shown how reliant we are on this one commodity. People need it to feed their babies. It doesn’t get much bigger than that.But we managed without baby formula for a very, very long time. So when did the United States along with large swathes of the rest of the world become so dependent on baby formula?Learn the real origins of Baby Formula and its rise and rise on Patented with our guest Dr Jacqueline Wolf.The answer will surprise you.The episode was produced by Emily Whalley The senior producer is Charlotte Long For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Measurements

Measurements

2022-07-1736:45

A pint might be Britain’s most beloved measurement. But what’s the name for the distance a reindeer can walk before it needs to pee?The way we measure things changes the way we see the world. Measurements have shaped our history and are bound up in ideas of statehood, power and control.“Measurement is as important to human civilization as language or mathematics.”That’s the view of today’s guest James Vincent, journalist and author of Beyond Measure: The Hidden History of Measurement.The episode was produced by Emily Whalley The senior producer is Charlotte Long Edited by Freddy Chick For more History Hit content, subscribe to our newsletters here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts, and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
Comments (2)

Tony Salisbury

The question I wanted you to ask was - who makes the decision to revive the person and what technologies have to be in place to even consider reviving someone. Great program very thought provoking.

Jul 9th
Reply

J

Such an great podcast idea generally, and this episode is a really interesting subject. Just wish the host would let the guest speak to the end of her sentences without interrupting because I'm sure there was so much more we could have learnt from her! Hopefully it's just because it's a new podcast and the host is settling into his interviewing style. Will keep listening and hope for the best! 😊

Jul 6th
Reply
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