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FROM THIS EPISODE

A new study finds that while the rich live longer than the poor nationwide, the size of that gap depends very much on where you live. In L.A., for example, the poor live almost as long as their wealthier counterparts. Why?

Then, we get the details on the very first Smart Fabrics Summit in Washington today, which showcases hi-tech clothing.

In our regular Monday TV segment, a roundup of so-called “prestige comedies” that ironically portray Los Angeles as a sad, depressing place.

Next, Madeleine speaks to the author of a new non-fiction book about a teenager who murdered another teenager in Oxnard. Why did he do it?

And finally, Silicon Valley types are hiring writers and poets to make virtual assistants like Siri sound more human.

Banner Image Credit: EvaSwensen via Flickr

Producers:
Matt Holzman
Anna Scott
Jolie Myers
Christian Bordal
Laura Swisher
Sarah Sweeney

The Poor Live Longer in Los Angeles 9 MIN, 9 SEC

We’ve known for decades that the rich live longer than the poor. But it turns out the size of that gap depends on where you live. That’s the surprising finding of a new study out today. In some cities, like Los Angeles, the poor live almost as long as their wealthier counterparts. Their lives are getting longer too. Elsewhere, the trend is going in the opposite direction. The poor are living shorter and shorter lives. Why? Madeleine speaks to one of the researchers on the new study.

Guests:
Sarah Abraham, MIT

Smart Fabrics 8 MIN, 32 SEC

Imagine if your shirt could cool or warm you depending on the temperature. Or if it could tell if you’re having a heart attack and call an ambulance. Hi-tech clothes -- fabrics embedded with sensors and GPS -- could be on shelves soon. The first Smart Fabrics Summit is taking place in Washington today. We hear the details.

Guests:
Steve Lohr, New York Times (@stevelohr )

TV: L.A. in Prestige Comedies 8 MIN, 58 SEC

HBO’s Togetherness aired its last show over the weekend. It’s an example of a genre that’s been called “prestige comedies.” And in prestige comedies, LA seems like a particularly depressing place. Despite its sandy beaches, gorgeous vistas, and year-round good weather, the LA of shows like Togetherness, Love, The Comeback and BoJack Horseman is a pretty awful place filled with existential despair… and traffic. What’s driving this West Coast dreariness?

Guests:
Sonia Saraiya, Variety (@soniasaraiya)

'A Murder Over a Girl' 14 MIN, 52 SEC

What do you do with a 14-year-old who murders another child? That question lies at the heart of a new book, A Murder Over a Girl. It’s about a case in Oxnard eight years ago. Fourteen-year-old Brandon McInerney murdered one of his classmates, Larry King. The trial wasn’t about figuring out if Brandon was guilty, because he’d confessed already and there were a lot of witnesses. Instead, the trial focused on why he did it. How much was Brandon’s background and family life to blame for that day he pulled out a gun and shot Larry twice in the head? Psychologist Ken Corbett tries to figure that out in his book.

Guests:
Ken Corbett, psychologist and author

Poet Robots 9 MIN, 13 SEC

The virtual assistant is becoming more and more a part of everyday life. But Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa don’t seem to be getting any more human. That is a problem. Imagine spending a day with a coworker you’d describe as “robotic.” Now the tech gurus of Silicon Valley are trying to do something about making our robots friends more friendly, with the help of writers and poets.

Guests:
Elizabeth Dwoskin, Washington Post (@lizzadwoskin)

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