WUWM: Innovation Reporting

It seems like every day there are breakthroughs in science, medicine and technology. But what do those advancements mean for you? WUWM’s Innovation Reporter Chuck Quirmbach will answer your questions, and make the difficult easier to grasp.

Submit your questions to Chuck below.


Chuck Quirmbach

Officials from the Medical College of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Alumni Research Found say changes are underway that could help the public bring medical inventions to the marketplace. The ideas were outlined at a recent startup and technology forum in Milwaukee.

Chuck Quirmbach

A federal program scheduled to spend $60 million dollars in Wisconsin continues to try to get people to share their health and lifestyle information, plus their DNA. The effort known as All of Us has the ambitious goal of enrolling one million people nationally, and 33,000 in the Greater Milwaukee area. 

The promised reward is a $25 enrollment payment and eventually, specialized disease prevention and treatment. 

Chuck Quirmbach

A series of metal sculptures taking shape in Milwaukee's Menomonee Valley honors the men and women who worked at a now-lost transportation giant. The "People of the Road” monument is a tribute to the thousands who labored for a passenger and freight-rail service best known as the Milwaukee Road.

Chuck Quirmbach

Researchers continue to gather data from social media and other sources to assess information for businesses, universities and maybe public policy. And guess what? Some of the data may be about you. 

A forum Wednesday in Milwaukee looked at whether enough ethical standards are in place to protect the public.

Chuck Quirmbach

There was plenty of sports action over the weekend, with the Milwaukee Bucks and the Brewers playing games. Another intense battle took place Sunday at the Milwaukee School of Engineering, where teams from MSOE, Marquette University and UW-Milwaukee competed in esports — playing team-oriented video games on computers.

Esports has been growing nationally, and that's true locally, as well. 

Chuck Quirmbach

People who live near the Foxconn project in Racine County peppered local officials with questions at a meeting Monday night in Mount Pleasant. Part of the focus was Monday's announcement that Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou will reduce his role at the company.

Another topic was a proposed road widening to serve Foxconn. 

Chuck Quirmbach

Many scientists who invent products and form a company need financial help to get their creation to market. So, the UWM Foundation and Medical College of Wisconsin hold an annual event called "First Look Forum," which aims to connect researchers and venture capitalists.

Chuck Quirmbach

The city of Milwaukee has issued orders to knock down most of what's left of the former Northridge Mall.  Mayor Tom Barrett says the site owned by a Chinese-based company has become a public safety hazard.

But, any removal of the buildings will take time, and replacement plans aren't clear.

Chuck Quirmbach

The University of Wisconsin System could soon see an additional $150 million if a proposal from Gov. Tony Evers is approved by state lawmakers. The money is expected to be one of the topics discussed Wednesday in Oak Creek, where the Legislature's Joint Finance Committee is holding an all-day hearing on the proposed state budget.

UW officials say the increase could indirectly help with a key university mission: research. 

Chuck Quirmbach

Some engineering students strive to design a faster or more fuel efficient car. But not at UWM’s Bicycle and Motorcycle Engineering Research Laboratory.

The lab, started a few years ago within the Department of Mechanical Engineering, tests bicycle tires and works with motorcycle parts. It also has a team that's been building a human-powered, recumbent three-wheeler.

Chuck Quirmbach

Construction is ramping up at the Foxconn site in Racine County. Spring means road projects are underway and other land preparation. And more projects are planned, including an 18-month effort to put up a high-profile manufacturing building for small video display screens.

Foxconn will soon ask potential contractors to submit bids for the additional work. But can the firms trust Foxconn's request?

Chuck Quirmbach

In an attempt to convince Wisconsin legislators to fund 15 additional crime lab positions — costing $1.8 million in state funds over the next two years — Attorney General Josh Kaul is touring Wisconsin State Crime Lab locations. During a visit Thursday to the lab on the south side of Milwaukee, Kaul was also urging support for a $1.9 million pay plan, which he says is needed to address pay disparities and inequities with comparable crime laboratories in the region. 

Chuck Quirmbach

The Milwaukee Brewers begin their regular season Thursday afternoon at Miller Park, with an opening day game against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Brewers say they've been using grow lights, but not a controversial weed-killer, to get the field at Miller Park ready for play.

There are more than two acres of turf on the playing field, including what's in foul territory. As usual, the Miller Park roof was open almost all winter, and the grass did not fare very well, says the Brewers' Director of Grounds Michael Boettcher.  

Eric Allix Rogers/Flickr

A small Wisconsin consumer group that’s originally inspired by activist Ralph Nader is turning 40 this year. An April 7 event will celebrate the Citizens Utility Board of Wisconsin’s (CUB) middle age. 


Many state agencies and boards are trying to figure out their next move now that Gov. Tony Evers has withdrawn 82 appointments waiting for confirmation by the Wisconsin State Senate.