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Marketplace Morning Report

Google's 200-second quantum leap

Oct 23, 2019

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Tony Wagner

Digital producer

SHORT BIO

I work on digital and publishing strategy for Marketplace's podcasts “Make Me Smart,” “The Uncertain Hour” and “Corner Office,” along with upcoming projects and the podcast versions of our flagship radio shows.

What was your first job?

I was a "party coach," serving pizza and cutting cake at The Play Station, a birthday venue in my hometown of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. It was kind of like a Chuck E. Cheese, but train-themed.

What is something that everyone should own, no matter how much it costs?

A good pair of boots is not cheap, but they'll last your whole life.

What’s something that you thought you knew but later found out you were wrong about?

I used to think I didn't like tacos, because when I was growing up in a small mostly white suburb in the Midwest, "tacos" meant ground beef, limp lettuce, pre-shredded cheese and a seasoning packet in a hard shell. It took moving to LA for me to realize how narrow my view was and start exploring the endless varieties and rich history of my absolute favorite food.

What’s the favorite item in your workspace and why?

For Christmas a few years ago, my good friend (and Marketplace colleague) Sarah Menendez gave me a framed photo of the animatronic baby Grinch from the 2000 Jim Carrey adaptation of "How the Grinch Stole Christmas." It's been on my desk ever since, and when people ask, I say he's my son.

Latest Stories from Tony (386)

Make Me Smart with Kai and Molly

Trump's situation isn't new — presidential conflicts of interest date back to George Washington

by Tony Wagner Sep 26, 2018
A closer look at Washington's finances, slaves and the conflicts of interest that came with them.
First U.S. President George Washington and 45th President Donald Trump
Getty Images and Wikimedia Commons
Make Me Smart with Kai and Molly

10 things you didn't know were in the Library of Congress

by Tony Wagner Sep 25, 2018
You don't have to go to D.C. to explore one of the biggest libraries in the world.
You don't have to dig around in the archives to explore the Library of Congress.
Alex Wong/Getty Images
Make Me Smart with Kai and Molly

The Clinton impeachment: Where are they now?

by Tony Wagner Aug 7, 2018
Introducing, or reintroducing, some of the characters you'll meet on season two of "Slow Burn."
Reporters in a press room in the U.S. Capitol watch as the videotaped testimony of Monica Lewinsky is played in the Senate during the impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton on Feb. 6, 1999.
MARIO TAMA/AFP/Getty Images

How Wisconsin became the ginseng state — and part of the trade war

by Tony Wagner Jul 31, 2018
Almost all the ginseng grown in America comes from the state, and the majority of that crop gets exported to China. It's the perfect target for retaliatory tariffs.

Five things to know about the World Trade Organization

by Tony Wagner Jul 16, 2018
The U.S. and China have both brought new complaints to the WTO.
FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images
How to be a...

How to be a Lego designer

by Eliza Mills and Tony Wagner Jun 29, 2018
The company's vice president of design left fashion for his "ultimate childhood dream" of working with the plastic bricks.
Husband and wife Annie and Ed Diment put the final bricks in place on their 400,000-piece "Ice Age" display at a Lego exhibition in London in 2015. The woolly mammoth took nine weeks to build.
Chris Ratcliffe/Getty Images

Let's do the numbers on the Paralympic Games

by Tony Wagner Mar 9, 2018
They're hard to find on cable or streaming, but worth watching.
Joe Howard of the United States celebrates a gold-medal win against Norway in sledge hockey during the Salt Lake City Winter Paralympic Games in Utah in 2002.
Adam Pretty/Getty Images
The Uncertain Hour

Why aren't falconers allowed in the movies anymore?

by Tony Wagner Mar 1, 2018
Technically, they never were.
A still from "The Royal Tenenbaums," which isn't about falconry, but features a falcon as a major plot point.
Buena Vista Pictures
The Uncertain Hour

Counting pages of regulations is a waste of time (and paper)

by Tony Wagner Jan 19, 2018
Politicians on both sides of the aisle will use page counts to demonstrate regulatory burden. It's not an exact science.
U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell points to a stack of papers representing what he said are the regulations associated with former President Barack Obama's health care reform as he speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference in National Harbor, Maryland, in 2013.
NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images

"Star Wars" economics: What it takes to turn a planet into an insane superweapon

by Tony Wagner Dec 15, 2017
Let's do the numbers on Starkiller Base.
Starkiller Base, in all its sun-extinguishing, planet-destroying glory.
Disney/Lucasfilm