On today’s episode we tackle a future that was once a staple of science fiction: food pills.
Instead of shopping and cooking and sitting down to eat meals together, we all simply pop our nutritional pills and move along with our lives. How feasible is this, really? Where did the idea come from? And what does the rise and fall in the popularity of the idea say about our changing relationships to food, culture and politics?
- Annalee Newitz, science journalist and science fiction author, co-host of Our Opinions Are Correct
- Charlie Jane Anders, science fiction author, co-host of Our Opinions Are Correct
- Helen Rosner, food correspondent for the New Yorker
- Rob McGinley Myers, writer and podcaster
- Katie Gordon, associate professor of psychology at North Dakota State University and co-host of Jedi Counsel Podcast
- Mike Rugnetta, producer of Reasonably Sound
- Soleil Ho, food writer, co-host of Racist Sandwich, host of Popaganda
- Why We Don’t Have Food Replacement Pills
- The Enduring Appeal of a Meal in a Pill
- Meal in a Pill: A Staple of Science Fiction
- TV Tropes: Food Pills
- Futuristic Foodways: The Metaphorical Meaning of Food in Science Fiction Film
- Nutrition Q&A: Pros and cons of Soylent
- What Soylent tells us about Silicon Valley
- Why do we eat lunch at our desks? Because capitalism
- The Efficiency Argument for Capitalism
- How to Appeal to Dude Investors? Tell Them Your Start-up Is for Men.
- Food tech is just men rebranding what women have done for decades
Flash Forward is produced by me, Rose Eveleth. The intro music is by Asura and the outtro music is by Hussalonia. The voices from the future for this episode were provided by Tony Garcia, Fernando Galdino and Ed Yong. The episode art is by Matt Lubchansky.
If you want to suggest a future we should take on, send us a note on Twitter, Facebook or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We love hearing your ideas! And if you think you’ve spotted one of the little references I’ve hidden in the episode, email us there too. If you’re right, I’ll send you something cool.
And if you want to support the show, there are a few ways you can do that too! Head to www.flashforwardpod.com/support for more about how to give. But if that’s not in the cards for you, you can head to iTunes and leave us a nice review or just tell your friends about us. Those things really do help.
That’s all for this future, come back next time and we’ll travel to a new one.
Flash Forward is a critically acclaimed podcast about the future.
In each episode, host Rose Eveleth takes on a possible (or not so possible) future scenario — everything from the existence of artificial wombs, to what would happen if space pirates dragged a second moon to Earth. What would the warranty on a sex robot look like? How would diplomacy work if we couldn’t lie? Could there ever be a black market for fecal transplants? (Complicated, it wouldn’t, and yes, respectively, in case you’re curious.) By combining audio drama and deep reporting, Flash Forward gives listeners an original and unique window into the future, how likely different scenarios might be, and how to prepare for what might come.