May 6, 2003

A century ago a mechanic named Henry Ford launched the first mass production of automobiles when he began his company, Ford Motor Company. On the eve of the Ford Motor Company's centenary, Todd talks with author Douglas Brinkley about Henry Ford and how the Ford Motor Company changed the manufacturing world. Brinkley's book is called "Wheels for the World: Henry Ford, His Company and a Century of Progress."

A new spacecraft designed to explore star formation when the Universe was young has been launched. It's called the Galaxy Evolution Explorer (Galex) and will observe millions of galaxies across 10 billion years of cosmic history. Todd talks with Christopher Martin; the Galex's principal investigator; and asks what the spacecraft will do and how it differs from other exploration spacecraft.

Todd talks with author Penny Le Couteur about how chemistry can offer a way to view our history and help us understand how we live. She also explains how seventeen molecules have altered the course of human events. Le Couteur's book is called "Napoleon's Buttons: How 17 Molecules Changed History".