The Point

9:00am and 7:00pm

WCAI's award-winning public affairs program. Tuesday through Thursday, Mindy Todd hosts a lively and informative discussion on critical issues for Cape Cod, the Islands and the South Coast. Every Friday is the News Roundup, as WCAI News Director Steve Junker speaks with news editors and reporters from around the region.

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Scroll down for audio of programs that have aired recently. Looking for a specific topic? Use the Search box at top right.  


Fred Benenson / Wikimedia Commons

The suicide of computer prodigy and internet activist Aaron Swartz on January 11th has prompted a groundswell of support for the open access movement - the push to make academic publications available online, free of charge and without copyright restrictions.

Swartz helped invent RSS feeds - the technology that allows website updates and internet search results to be automatically delivered to users - and co-founded the social news site Reddit. He was also a staunch advocate of open access, which he viewed as a social justice issue. His Guerrilla Open Access Manifesto began:

Information is power. But like all power, there are those who want to keep it for themselves. The world's entire scientific and cultural heritage, published over centuries in books and journals, is increasingly being digitized and locked up by a handful of private corporations.

Swartz went on to exhort those with access to academic publications to share that content however they could:

Dan Tritle

Reaction to Gov. Patrick's push to raise taxes for transportation and education, and eleven firms apply for casino licenses - on The Point Mindy Todd speaks with news editors for the weekly News Roundup.  Also, a ban on dogs returns to Brewster's Drummer Boy Park, and more.


How can we improve wastewater management for our region? On The Point, Mindy Todd finds out about the latest efforts with guests Paul Niedzwiecki, Executive Director of the Cape Cod Commission, and Andrew Gottlieb, Executive Director of the Cape Cod Water Protection Collaborative.

J. J.

Feeling a bit burnt out after the holiday hustle and bustle? You're not alone. On The Point, clinical psychologist Michael Abruzzese and psychiatrist Marc Whaley join Mindy Todd to discuss why January can be a time of the "winter doldrums" - and what we can do to feel better.

WCAI gets a power boost to its signal, Bird News launches as a one-hour once-a-month program - on "Ask the Manager" on The Point with Mindy Todd, General Manager Phil Redo joins us to talk about the programming on WCAI and the exciting news of our latest projects, including plans for an expanded Point program, and we take your comments and suggestions.

Author Bill Sargent takes the long view in his new book "Beach Wars: 10,000 Years on a Barrier Beach."

In March of 2012, crews began demolishing five homes on Chatham's North Beach Island. The action was ordered by the owner of the cottages, Cape Cod National Seashore, but came after months of strenuous protest by leaseholders and numerous observers who argued that the buildings were more than just summer homes - they were part of Chatham's cultural heritage.

That's a notion that Bill Sargent challenges in his latest book, Beach Wars: 10,000 Years on a Barrier Beach.

Nadine Lysiak / Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

On the weekly News Roundup on The Point with Mindy Todd: the flu hits Cape Cod hard, the Cape is expected to receive $3M to develop a regional wastewater management plan, underwater robots developed in Woods Hole are helping whales, and more.

J. Junker

Ornithologist Vernon Laux brings us up to date with the latest bird news on The Point with Mindy Todd. We'll hear about the tallys from this years Christmas Bird counts, and some highlights including unusual birds. 

The Accessible Home

Jan 9, 2013
Kathy Tarantola Photography / from "The Accessible Home"

There's a growing awareness of making homes more accessible for independent living. On The Point with Mindy Todd, guests Deborah Pierce, architect and author of "The Accessible Home: Designing for All Ages and Abilities", and Roe Osborn, architectural photographer, author and former editor at Fine Home Building Magazine, discuss creating and adapting homes for graceful daily living.

Rowland Scherman

The 1960's was a time of radical change in American culture. On The Point, photographer Rowland Scherman talks about capturing history and iconic images on film. From the March on Washington and Bobby Kennedy's campaign trail to The Newport Folk Festival and Woodstock, Scherman's images capture the essence of the time. Documentary Filmmaker Chris Szwedo has chronicled Scherman's work in a new film "Eye on the Sixties."  Mindy Todd speaks with Rowland Scherman and Chris Szwedo about the film.

A bowl glazed with sediments from Fukushima, Japan registers no more than background radiation and provides an entrez for learning about radiation in the environment.
Courtesy of Joan Lederman

The seafloor is a treasure trove of information for scientists hoping to glean a better understanding of ocean processes, both past and present. The color and texture of the mud, as well as the organisms that inhabit it, all hold clues. But what happens to sediment samples when scientists are done with them?

Here in Woods Hole, these cast-offs of oceanographic exploration are getting a second life at The Soft Earth Pottery studio, where artist Joan Lederman uses them to glaze her ceramics.

On the News Roundup, this week on The Point with Mindy Todd: A new legislative session for lawmakers at the Statehouse brings new priorities, the new medical marijuana law has many towns asking for guidelines, remembering Patti Page, and more. News editors and reporters join Mindy to discuss the top stories from the state and the Cape and Islands.

Can't wait to find out what happens on the new season of Downton Abbey? On The Point, Executive Producer Rebecca Eaton talks about Season Three of the acclaimed Masterpiece Classic, which premieres January 6th. We get a glimpse into what it takes to create the show and how the new season unfolds.

Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies

Right whales are among the most endangered mammals on the planet - and they spend much of their time in our near-shore waters. On The Point, Mindy Todd joins Charles "Stormy" Mayo, senior scientist at the Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies, and his crew on a voyage to conduct whale research. This program first aired in April, 2008.

To know a place deeply, you must live there the year through. On The Point with Mindy Todd Laura Wainwright discusses her book Homebird: Four Seasons on Martha’s Vineyard. She offers her lyrical views of everyday things – the birds arriving and departing, the winter nights when skaters take to frozen ponds, the joys of quick dips in oceans and ponds. Since food often accompanies her memories, she includes eight of her favorite island recipes.