In the 1960s, choking was a national epidemic. In the United States alone, close to 4,000 people were dying from choking every year. Lobster, ham, and hamburger were common culprits. But steak was by far the greatest offender. Coroners called for a solution to these “Cafe Coronaries,” and the medical community responded with weird and dangerous gadgets: vacuum tubes and long tweezers. But Dr. Henry Heimlich knew this problem required something else; a simple technique that anyone can use to save the lives of choking victims—the Heimlich Maneuver. The Heimlich Maneuver would save the lives of thousands of people, including Carrie Fisher, Cher, New York Mayor Ed Koch, and at least one American President. And yet, Dr. Heimlich would spend a decade fighting for the legitimacy of his life-saving maneuver. Support us by supporting our sponsors! ZipRecruiter - And right now, listeners of American Innovations can try ZipRecruiter FOR FREE at this exclusive web address: to get started.
Author Jason Torchinsky Talks Our Autonomous Future | 3
The first mass rollout of robots into mainstream life won’t be humanoid machines designed to clean our homes or mow our lawns. It will be our cars. That’s what author Jason Torchinsky argues in his book “Robot, Take the Wheel: The Road to Autonomous Cars and the Lost Art of Driving.” Torchinsky, senior editor at Jalopnik.com joins us to talk about why building truly autonomous vehicles is a lot more complicated than we think. Support us by supporting our sponsors! Mack Weldon - For 20% off your first order, visit .
Introducing Sean Carroll's Mindscape
How big is our galaxy? Why do certain movies make us cry? And what exactly is string theory? Join Sean Carroll's Mindscape to dive deep into the biggest ideas in science, philosophy, culture and much more. Start listening today at
Innovation Fails: DeLorean | Shifting Gears | 2
The DeLorean was going to change the automotive industry. Designed to be fast, fuel-efficient, durable and affordable, it was going to be the first ethical sports car. It was going to break Detroit’s monopoly on car manufacturing and bring stability to Ireland’s fragile economy. So what went wrong? And what can we learn from it? Support us by supporting our sponsors! LightStream - As a listener of American Innovations, you can apply now to get a special interest rate discount. The ONLY way to get this discount is to go to
Innovation Fails: DeLorean | Driven to Succeed | 1
Normally on American Innovations, we look at the history of the science and technology that transformed the world we live in. These stories teach us about the vision, grit, competition, and teamwork required to conquer new frontiers and forge new pathways to the future. But equally valuable, perhaps, are the stories of those visionary innovators who seemed poised for greatness, who aimed for the stars, and then fell, crashing spectacularly back to earth. In this series, we’ll examine one of the greatest failures in automotive history: the life and work of John DeLorean, the maverick engineer whose technical achievements seemed destined for the history books, among the likes of Henry Ford and Elon Musk. But instead, he became known for his dramatic demise. Support us by supporting our sponsors! Viima - Go to