Dr. Marc Seifer on Nikola Tesla, Pioneer of the Modern Electrical Age — The Learning Curve

This podcast was originally published on the The Learning Curve.

This week on “The Learning Curve,” co-hosts Gerard Robinson and Cara Candal talk with Dr. Marc Seifer, author of the acclaimed biography Wizard: The Life & Times of Nikola Tesla. He reviews what teachers and students should know about the life of Nikola Tesla, the world-renowned engineer, physicist, and inventor who is more widely known nowadays for the electric car and clean energy companies named for him. Dr. Seifer describes the remarkable variety of world-changing gadgets Tesla invented, along with his hundreds of patents, including the alternating-current electricity system (AC), the induction motor, radio-controlled technology and what students today can learn about STEM, inventions, and innovation from studying his work. They explore Tesla’s bitter rivalry with Thomas Edison, their “war of the currents,” and Tesla’s deep struggles with the business and commercial aspects of his work. They also delve into Tesla’s experience as a Serbian immigrant, interacting with a variety of powerful, Gilded Age elite figures, and the renaissance that his reputation has more recently enjoyed. The interview concludes with a reading from Dr. Seifer’s biography of Tesla.

Stories of the Week: What will President Biden’s Build Back Better plan mean for universal pre-Kindergarten education? Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is launching a five-year, $750 million effort to open access to charter schools for 150,000 more children in 20 cities across America. The Department of Education is expanding the Second Chance Pell program, allowing 200 colleges and universities to participate in prison education programs that can transforming lives and help people reenter society.

Guest:

Dr. Marc Seifer is a writer, university lecturer, and also a handwriting expert. Dr. Seifer has been featured in The Washington Post, Scientific American, Publisher’s Weekly, Rhode Island Monthly, Investor’s Daily, MIT’s Technology Review, and The New York Times. In Europe, he has appeared in The Economist, Nature, and New Scientist. With publications in Wired, Cerebrum, Civilization, Extraordinary Science, Lawyer’s Weekly, Journal of Psychohistory, and Psychiatric Clinics of North America, Dr. Seifer is internationally recognized as an expert on the inventor Nikola Tesla (the subject of his doctoral dissertation). He is the author of the acclaimed biography Wizard: The Life & Times of Nikola Tesla.

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News Links:

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