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History's Mysteries
Episode 1 of The Inexplicable Universe
Begin this journey by taking a closer look at concepts that were once unexplainable but are now better understood. You'll focus on two such former mysteries: the existence of an invisible "aether" through which light and sound were believed to…
The Spooky Universe
Episode 2 of The Inexplicable Universe
Did you know that electrons have never actually been observed by scientists to this day? Or that quarks can only be studied in pairs? Or that as you travel faster or find yourself in a higher gravity, time ticks more…
The Transformability of Information
Episode 1 of The Science of Information
What is information? Explore the surprising answer of American mathematician Claude Shannon, who concluded that information is the ability to distinguish reliably among possible alternatives. Consider why this idea was so revolutionary, and see how it led to the concept…
Inexplicable Physics
Episode 4 of The Inexplicable Universe
Turn now to some inexplicable aspects of physics and our physical world. Among the many eye-opening topics you'll learn about in this episode are the discovery of more and more elements on the periodic table; muon neutrinos, tao particles, and…
Why Time Is a Mystery
Episode 1 of Mysteries of Modern Physics: Time Series
Begin your study of the physics of time with these questions: What is a clock? What does it mean to say that "time passes"? What is the "arrow of time"? Then look at the concept of entropy and how it…
Chemical Energy, Biomass, and Photosynthesis
Episode 5 of The Science of Energy
Turn now to chemical energy, the potential energy resulting from the position of atoms within molecules. After an overview of photosynthesis (perhaps the universe's most amazing form of energy conversion), learn how combustion transforms biofuels into light and heat, and…
Metaphysics and the Nature of Science
Episode 1 of Redefining Reality
Start with the metaphysical concept of reality and how it led to a scientific worldview. Then see how the scientific picture of reality changes as theories are refined or overthrown. Explore examples such as the germ theory of disease and…
Inexplicable Life
Episode 3 of The Inexplicable Universe
Join Professor Tyson on a fascinating investigation of the possible origins of life in the universe. Why was Jupiter believed to be a good environment for life in the 17th century? Why is there only one single "tree of life"…
Time Travel, Tunneling, Tennis, and Tea
Part of the Series: Einstein's Relativity and the Quantum Revolution
What are the two big ideas of modern physics? How can nonscientists gain a handle on these ideas and the radical changes they bring to our philosophical thinking about the physical world?
Earth Songs - Capturing Earth's Beauty
For over two years, filmmaker Brian Luke Seaward traveled to many of the world's most pristine locations - Patagonia(Chile), the Caribbean, Iceland, the Canadian Rockies, Hawaii, Greenland, Alaska, Peru, and New Zealand - capturing the Earth's beauty in ways that…
The Arrival of Robot Autonomy
Episode 1 of Robotics Series
Plunge into the world of robots with this engaging introduction. When did we start thinking about robots? What three components are responsible for so many advances in robot design? Why is behavioral autonomy so essential to the development of modern…
Out from the Shadows - The Story of Irene Joliot-Curie and Frederic Joliot Curie
Nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the 2009 Paris Science Film Festival in France. Using newsreels, family home movies and stills, stock footage, dramatization and interviews, this biography relates the life and times of Irene Joliot-Curie and her husband,…
Computation and Logic Gates
Episode 2 of The Science of Information
Accompany the young Claude Shannon to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where in 1937 he submitted a master's thesis proving that Boolean algebra could be used to simplify the unwieldy analog computing devices of the day. Drawing on Shannon's ideas,…
Defining Reality
Episode 2 of Redefining Reality
Take a step back to define reality as understood by the ancient Greeks. Then work your way forward through revolutionary ideas about reality proposed by Plato, Aristotle, Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, and finally Newton, who inspired the Age of Enlightenment. Close…
The Fundamental Science
Episode 1 of Physics and Our Universe: How It All Works Series
Take a quick trip from the subatomic to the galactic realm as an introduction to physics, the science that explains physical reality at all scales. Professor Wolfson shows how physics is the fundamental science that underlies all the natural sciences.…
Inexplicable Cosmology
Episode 6 of The Inexplicable Universe
Brace yourself for a fascinating trip through dimensions higher than our own. You'll discover how quantum physics and string theory have opened our eyes to the possibilities of quantum foam, the multiverse, and antimatter. Join Professor Tyson for a preview…
The Importance of the Higgs Boson
Episode 1 of The Higgs Boson and Beyond Course
Why was the discovery of the Higgs boson such a big deal? That's the key question that Professor Carroll tackles in his illuminating introduction. Take a fascinating dive into the world of modern particle physics and see how the Higgs…
Inexplicable Space
Episode 5 of The Inexplicable Universe
Shoot off into the stars for an investigation of some perplexing aspects of space that science has uncovered in the last half-century. Learn about the mysterious trajectory of the Pioneer spacecraft (known as the "Pioneer anomaly"). Explore two of the…
I Dream of Wires - The Machine that Shaped Electronic Music
I Dream of Wires is a documentary about the rise, fall and rebirth of the machine that shaped electronic music: the modular synthesizer. The film explores the synthesizer's remarkable history, revealing how innovators like Robert Moog, working at Columbia University's…
The Science of Structure - Forces in Balance
Episode 2 of Understanding the World's Greatest Structures
Explore how two types of external forces: loads (forces applied to structures) and reactions (forces developed at supports, in response to applied loads): act on structures such as Kansas City's Chouteau Bridge. Also, learn how these forces are related to…