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Category: Self-Improvement

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Prodigy is an investigation into our current understanding of intelligence, skill acquisition and expert performance. With interviews from the leading researchers in the field of human performance.

Episode Date
Synesthetes and Seekers
Synesthesia is a connection between senses. It could be the key to understanding brilliance. Most people are born with it, but in a few rare cases people have acquired it after a traumatic brain injury. We'll also cover the neurodiversity of autism with Dr Simon Baron-Cohen. For resources and show notes visit the website. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Jan 15, 2021
The Versatile Von Neumann
John von Neumann made major contributions to multiple fields including computers, physics, mathematics, economics and statistics. He helped design the atomic bomb, created game theory, provided the architecture for the modern computer, pioneered the concept of mutually assured destruction and developed the foundation for quantum physics. Daniel Whiteson, particle physicist and host of the show Daniel and Jorge Explain the Universe, joins us to describe the significance of von Neumann's work. For more about his life, Stuff you Missed in History Class did an excellent episode on him. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Jan 08, 2021
What’s wrong with Ted?
Ted Kaczynski had a higher IQ than Einstein and used the postal service to deliver handmade bombs to targets over the course of a 17 year long domestic terrorism campaign. It became the longest and most expensive manhunt in FBI history.  The question is not what he did, but why... Learn more about your ad-choices at
Jan 01, 2021
Gifts and Gambits
Learn about the queen’s gambit opening strategy, the indian defense and Paul Morphy. Also the psychology of gift giving with Dr. Jeff Galak, a marketing professor at Carnegie Mellon who studies consumer behavior and runs the youtube channel Data Demystified. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Dec 24, 2020
The Source Code
Every human being shares a 99.9% identical DNA code. It's that .1% that makes us unique. We could see the influence of genetics before we unlocked it, but now that we've learned how to measure those differences, the knowledge could be dangerous. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Dec 18, 2020
The Origins of Expert Performance
Is elite performance just a matter of how much and how well you practice? I interview a man known as the expert on experts, Dr Anders Ericsson and discuss the controversy surrounding Deliberate Practice. Learn about how we learn in this episode of Prodigy. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Dec 10, 2020
The Polgar Sisters
Can prodigies be created with early specialization? Laszlo Polgar was an educational psychologist who believed they could. He experimented with his own children and the results were fascinating. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Dec 03, 2020
Introducing: Prodigy
Prodigy examines questions about our psychology and performance. For example: What determines our behavior, environment or genetics and how can we measure their effects? What are personality disorders and how do they influence the way our minds work? Why do accidental savants exist and can we recreate them? What is the psychology of gift giving? Hosted by Lowell Brillante who interviews more than 30 academics to get a better understanding of intelligence. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Jul 29, 2020