99% Invisible

Friday 6:51am & 8:51am

99% Invisible is a tiny radio show about design, architecture & the 99% invisible activity that shapes our world. Roman Mars is also the host, producer and program director of Public Radio Remix from PRX. 

99% Invisible: Speech Bubbles

Apr 13, 2018

Author of Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art, cartoonist and theorist Scott McCloud has been making and thinking about comics for decades. His classic volume explores formal aspects of comics, the historical development of the medium, its fundamental vocabulary, and various ways in which these elements have been used.

99% Invisible: Project Cybersyn

Apr 6, 2018

On September 11, 1973, a military junta violently took control of Chile, which was led at the time by President Salvador Allende. Allende had become president in a free and democratic election. After the military coup, General Augusto Pinochet took power and ruled Chile as a dictator until 1990.

99% Invisible: Atom in the Garden of Eden

Mar 23, 2018

As  part of the Atoms For Peace efforts, experts would be mobilized to apply atomic science to the fields of energy, medicine, and agriculture. One of the products of these initiatives were the atomic gardens of the 1950s and 60s.

99% Invisible: The Pool and The Stream

Mar 9, 2018

It’s hard to say where inspiration comes from. The path from the seed of an idea to its execution is often a long one. The brilliant architect Alvar Aalto expressed this sentiment well, in an extended metaphor about a fish in a stream:

99% Invisible: Oyster-tecture

Mar 2, 2018

Standing on the sidewalk in Manhattan’s financial district in the shadows of glass skyscrapers, it is easy to forget how close you are to the water. But just a few blocks away, there are docks, and sea gulls, and ferry boats ready to take you island hopping.

99% Invisible: Money Makers

Feb 16, 2018

TV and movies are full of characters who come across suitcases full of cash. It’s a fun plot device—what will the characters do with all this easy money?

99% Invisible: Home on Lagrange

Feb 11, 2018

Over the course of his career, Gerard O’Neil would turn skeptics into true believers, find support from NASA, and start a social movement toward the goal of building human colonies in space.

99% Invisible: Dollar Store Town

Feb 11, 2018

Go into any dollar store in the United States and you’ll find the same kind of stuff. There are grocery items and cleaning products, some of them generic and others brand-named.

99% Invisible: On Average

Feb 5, 2018

In many ways, the built world was not designed for you. It was designed for the average person. Standardized tests, building codes, insurance rates, clothing sizes, The Dow Jones – all these measurements are based around the concept of an “average.”

99% Invisible: The Giftschrank

Jan 28, 2018

In May 8, 1945, the Allied powers declared victory in Europe, putting an end to the Nazi regime. There was much to be done, and figuring out what to do with Mein Kampf (“My Struggle”), Adolf Hitler’s fictionalized autobiography, was prominently on the list.

99% Invisible: The Stethoscope

Jan 28, 2018

Imagine for a moment the year 1800. A doctor is meeting with a patient – most likely in the patient’s home. The patient is complaining about shortness of breath. A cough, a fever. The doctor might check the patient’s pulse or feel their belly, but unlike today, what’s happening inside of the patient’s body is basically unknowable. There’s no MRI. No X-rays. The living body is like a black box that can’t be opened.

99% Invisible: McMansion Hell

Jan 28, 2018

Few forms of contemporary architecture draw as much criticism as the McMansion, a particular type of oversized house that people love to hate.

99% Invisible: Public Works

Jan 28, 2018

Infrastructure makes modern civilization possible. Roads, power grids, sewage systems and water networks all underpin society as we know it, forming the basis of our built environment … at least when they work.

99% Invisible: Negative Space

Jan 28, 2018

Michael Bierut is an award-winning designer, partner at Pentagram in New York City, and author of various books on design. 

99% Invisible: Unpleasant Design

Jan 28, 2018

Benches in parks, train stations, bus shelters and other public places are meant to offer seating, but only for a limited duration. 

99% Invisible: Miss Manhattan

Nov 25, 2016

On the November 25, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: The Blazer Experiment

Nov 11, 2016

On the November 11, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: Best Enjoyed By

Jul 29, 2016

On the July 29, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: The Fresno Drop

Jun 17, 2016

On the June 17, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: Tube Benders

May 20, 2016

On the May 20, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: The SoHo Effect

May 12, 2016

On the May 13, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: A Sweet Surprise Awaits You

Mar 4, 2016

On the March 4, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: Milk Carton Kids

Feb 19, 2016

On the February 19, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: Bathysphere

Feb 5, 2016

On the February 5, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: Butterfly Effects

Jan 29, 2016

On the January 29, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: Hard to Love a Brute

Jan 15, 2016

On the January 14, 2016 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: Reefer Madness

Dec 18, 2015

On the December 18, 2015 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: Awareness

Dec 11, 2015

On the December 11, 2015 edition of 99% Invisible.

99% Invisible: On Location

Oct 23, 2015

On the October 23, 2015 edition of 99% Invisible.