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A floating dock launches surfers onto, under, & over waves

A 100-foot plastic floating dock curls over the Balinese waves. Six pro Volcom surfers—Balaram Stack, Imaikalani Devault, Noa Deane, Ozzie Wright, Mitch Coleborn, and Yago Dora—launch off of it with their boards, some...

Young Explorers Club: Toddlers explore the world on their own

Observe these toddlers as they wander around their neighborhoods in pursuit of whatever happens to interest them. This is Young Explorers Club, a series of short films that asks "What happens when kids explore the wor...

Fireflies sparkle in a Pennsylvania field at dusk

Found all over the globe, fireflies or lightning bugs are winged beetles that emerge in warm, humid weather. Though their signature bioluminescent flashes are actually complex communications, the effect can create a m...

Swim With Manta Rays, the Ocean’s Peaceful Giants

For as long as she can remember, Dr. Andrea Marshall wanted to be a marine biologist. Now, she’s living out her dream with one of the ocean’s most amazing creatures. That is, Marshall studies and helps protect giant m...

Sometimes I’m Happy (Sometimes I’m Blue) – Sarah Vaughan

Recorded for Mercury Records on July 9, 1958 in Sweden, this is Sometimes I'm Happy (Sometimes I'm Blue) performed by jazz royalty Sarah Vaughan. From Jazziz Magazine: Born on March 27, 1924, the daughter of a carp...

Hummingbirds fly, shake, and drink in slow motion

First shared in the National Geographic feature A Mesmerizing Look at Hummingbirds in Flight, this high-speed video footage by Anand Varma captures these "perfect flying machines" as they fly, shake, and drink. The sl...

How Does It Grow? Blueberries

Wild blueberries are native to the Americas, from forests in the Andes Mountains northward to the Arctic tundra. They were an important part of the food, culture, and medicinal practices of North America's indigenous ...

Un albero un anno (One tree one year)

A “special” beech tree kept under observation for a whole year by a concealed eye, which never closes. Four seasons unfolding around a crossroad of smells, signals and messages left behind by the extraordinary wildlif...

Building a traditional Swedish snölykta (snow lantern)

This winter I was in sweden again, and built a traditional swedish "snölykta" (snow lantern) together with my father, trying to build a larger one than we did when I was a child. And we actually managed! (Since usuall...

The jazz of a helium ball & charcoal – Karina Smigla-Bobinski’s ADA

A transparent plastic ball filled with helium floats in an all white room. Attached are 300 charcoal sticks that make the ball look a bit like a flu germ, a "a post-industrial creature" that awaits interaction with an...

Eske Rex: Pendulum-Powered Drawing Machine

Eske Rex’s Pendulum-Powered Drawing Machine immediately came to mind when I first saw Robert Howsare’s Drawing Apparatus. They both play off of the old spirograph-ish connection, howeve...

Red PaperBridge, a temporary installation by Steve Messam

A red paper foot bridge arcs across a small river in the Grisedale Valley in Cumbria. Accessible by a 2 mile walk from the town of Patterdale, it sits in nature as a bright tribute to its natural surroundings, as well...

100,000 white balloons create clouds in Covent Garden

If you're going to be in London anytime before September 27, 2015, make your way to Covent Garden to see French artist Charles Pétillon's Heartbeat installation, an illuminated display of 100,000 giant white balloons ...

A time lapse of Sol LeWitt’s Wall Drawing 797

How does one person's actions influence the next person's actions in a shared space? Sol LeWitt's wall drawings explore this intricate visual butterfly effect in the collaborative art entitled Wall Drawing 797, a conc...

Laser-cut, flat-packed, wood DIY modular marble machine kits

A few marble machines are clickity-clacking in our archives, but never have we seen ones that are designed as laser-cut, flat-packed, wood DIY kits! Hopefully on sale soon from RetroTime.org,...

The jazz of a helium ball & charcoal – Karina Smigla-Bobinski’s ADA

A transparent plastic ball filled with helium floats in an all white room. Attached are 300 charcoal sticks that make the ball look a bit like a flu germ, a "a post-industrial creature" that awaits interaction with an...

Computational Design of Mechanical Characters

Imagine building a mechanical character from a computer program that could calculate the size and positioning of gears in order to make that character’s motions come alive. The team at Disney Research have designed an...

Poet on the Shore by Yuxi Liu

An autonomous robot rolls across the beach. Though it might stop moving, its sensors haven't stopped taking in information about its surrounding environment: the waves, the wind, the sounds of people and animals both ...

Curb Roller – How concrete curbs are made smooth

"If you know concrete, then you know just how difficult it can be to properly shape a concrete curb." If you don't know concrete, but you watch a curb roller in action, you may have no idea if properly shaping a concr...

What’s on the inside of a fishing reel?

Visually pull apart the inner components of a fishing reel, and you'll see 141 precise and sometimes tiny parts that work together to help the tool cast and catch. See what kind of engineering and craftsmanship goes i...

The 12 Days of Evolution – It’s Okay to Be Smart

Joe Hanson of It's Okay To Be Smart celebrates the diversity of life with 12 days of videos dedicated to explaining evolution and natural selection. Above: What is evolution, anyway? From Berkeley’s Understanding ...

The Amazing Shapes of Ammonites

Now extinct, ammonites are abundant, prehistoric sea molluscs that first appeared in the fossil record around 240 million years ago. The images of ammonites that we often see in museums and books are planispiral-shape...

The Animated Life of A.R. Wallace

This incredible paper puppet video by Flora Lichtman and Sharon Shattuck chronicles the story of British naturalist, anthropologist, biologist, geographer, and intrepid adventurer Alfred Russel Wallace, who was also C...

Evolution – Why do dogs bark?

Wolves howl and dogs bark. So why do dogs bark File under: dogs and communication.

Who was the first human? – It’s Okay to Be Smart

The question “Who was the first human?” was a very popular one in our house just last year, but the evolution videos we had in the archives – even the awesome – didn’t answer ...

The world’s largest collection of whale bones

The world's largest collection of whale bones—sperm whale, gray whale, massive blue whales—and a bunch of ancient whale fossils from extinct species are stored in this warehouse in Maryland. It's a whale bone warehous...

Making a wooden lampshade from a tree stump

Watch New Zealand-based woodturner Sören Berger turn a radiata pine tree stump (originally cut down for firewood) into a unique, hand-crafted lampshade. On a lathe, he painstakingly alternates between shaving the exte...

Amezaiku (飴細工) Japanese Candy Sculptures by Ame Yoshihara

Ame Yoshihara sculpts taffy candy into adorable "Amezaiku" animals, a traditional Japanese folk art that dates back to the 700s. This video from SweetsTales showcases his craftsmanship, as well as Ame-pyon, Yoshihara'...

City workers paint letters on a London road

Recorded early in the morning by London designer Tom Williams, watch these skilled city workers paint letters on the road with only chalk marks and a straight-edge to guide them. File under:...

How to make a rolled Japanese omelette

How to make a rolled Japanese omelette, Dashimaki Tamago, with a square frying pan. In related news, my kids want a square frying pan. In the archives: more eggs. via swissmiss.

Mr Rogers: How Crayons Are Made

Mix hot liquid wax, hardening powder, and some color pigment. Pour the mixture into a mold of small cylinders, and after it cools, pop them out! Label them, collate them, and box them. This classic 1981 crayon factory...

The art of suminagashi or Japanese paper marbling

Watch artisan Tadao Fukuda as he creates beautiful handmade marbled papers, an art called suminagashi (墨流し) in Japanese. From echizenwashi.jp: Mr.Fukuda is in his eighties and very energetic to have had his marb...

Wind up bots

Director Fernando Livschitz of Black Sheep Films makes super-sized tin toy robots real as they walk and roll around the streets of Buenos Aires: Wind Up Bots. Watch more toy videos, includ...

Madeline the Robot Tamer

Allowing people to easily direct industrial robot actions through human movement, researcher, designer, and educator Madeline Gannon developed a gesture-based communication software, Quipt, as an artist-in-residence a...

Flight Assembled Architecture

Let's travel to an art gallery warehouse, not far from Paris, to see, as roboticist Raffaello D'Andrea put it, "the very first installation to be built by flying machines." …four helicopteri...

Transplanting pansies with a highly efficient gardening robot

So smooth, seemingly gentle, and ridiculously time efficient, the transplanting pack planter robot in this Bob's Market and Greenhouses video moves crowded plants from smaller containers to much larger ones. On deck: ...

NASA’s Valkyrie Superhero Robot

Need a battery-powered, modular, humanoid robot with strong legs and an amazing array of built-in cameras to help set up habitation on Mars for pioneering astronauts? NASA's got you covered. Meet Valkyrie. "The spa...

Staffed by robots alone – The Henn-na Hotel in Japan

In Sasebo, Nagasaki in Japan, the Henn-na Hotel is using advanced robotics and environmentally friendly technologies to create an "efficient" hotel experience. Henn-na means 'strange', which may apply to the velocirap...

Pitagora Suitchi (Pythagora Switch) – Marble chain reaction

After watching NYT’s Brooklyn’s Rube Goldberg video, we went googling for Japanese versions and happened upon a bunch short films for the educational TV show, Pitagora Suitchi (Pythagora Switch).  Updat...

To the Scientists of the Future: Materials science with EUPHRATES

Created by EUPHRATES and Masahiko Sato for Japan's National Institute for Material Science (NIMS), these three "To the Scientists of the Future" short films are a mesmerizing combination of materials research innovati...

Science Extras from Jiwi’s (Rube Goldberg) Machines

A YouTube series that hearkens back to characters and situations from old silent films, Jiwi's Machines mixes a love for Rube Goldberg Machines with an ode to comedy greats like Charlie Chaplin or Buster Keaton. T...

Paul Grundbacher’s wooden marble machines

We love Rube Goldberg machines, marble roller coasters, and all kinds of wooden inventions that are fun to watch or are lovely to listen to.  These seven amazing marble machines by Paul Grundbacher fit perfectly int...

Power of Optics: A light-powered Rube Goldberg machine

In this commercial for au Hikari, one of Japan’s high-speed optical internet service providers, a Rube Goldberg machine is "powered" by a single beam of light that travels via mirrors, magnifying glasses, and reflecti...

The LEGO Great Ball Contraption: 17 different modules of incredible

This LEGO machine, or LEGO Great Ball Contraption, is 17 different modules of incredible. Transporting 500 mini soccer and basketballs over 101.7 feet (31 meters), this hypnotic project was created in two years from ...

The Goat Brigade: Preventing Wildfires in Southern California

Goats have an insatiable appetite. Elite goats have an insatiable appetite and are independent, hearty, and trained to clear brush across California's hillsides. Science Friday joins Ian Newsam, owner of Brush Goats 4...

How to fit 4 years of trash into a mason jar, a zero waste experiment

Recycling, carrying reusable bags and coffee cups, buying compostable or metal straws, investing in solar energy... these are just a few of the eco-focused habits that consumers have embraced in recent decades. How di...

Designing solar panel walls that can recycle & heat greywater

What if the walls of your house could recycle the wastewater from your sinks, showers, baths, and washing machine? Architect Maria Paz Gutierrez is working with environmental engineer Slav Hermanowicz and bioengineer ...

Shaggy Lawn Mowers – Paris’ Eco-Friendly Park Lawn Maintenance

Shaggy Lawn Mowers - Paris Tries an Eco-Friendly Way of Maintaining Park Lawns… the New York Times reports on a sustainable idea: Mayor Bertrand Delanoë has made the environment a priority since his election ...

Love Food Hate Waste – Solutions for reducing food waste

This video from UK-based Love Food Hate Waste, directed by Wes West, is one in a very useful educational series about how to reduce food waste in your home. Did you know that you could put a w...

Do Cities Need More Green Roofs?

Green roofs or living roofs are different types of gardens that are created on the tops of buildings to help manage stormwater, improve air quality, help cool city temperatures, insulate the building, create park spac...

Outfitting Tree Kangaroos with tiny video cameras

Tree kangaroos are elusive creatures that live high in the trees of New Guinea's tropical rainforests. To learn more about them and to better protect them, Dr. Lisa Dabek has worked with National Geographic and local ...

Each Tree Is Its Own Adventure: Climbing giant sequoias for science

Among the planet's longest-living organisms—3,000+ years and growing—giant sequoias (Sequoiadendron giganteum) can seem pretty indestructible. They're thought to be mostly disease, fire, and drought resistant thanks ...

Siats Meekerorum: The newly-discovered mega-predatory dinosaur

Meet Siats (pronounced SEE-otts) Meekerorum, the first giant mega-predator to be discovered in North America — specifically in the Utah desert — in over 60 years. In this Untamed Science video, we ...

How to make a Crazy Pool Vortex – Physics Girl

Have a plate, a pool, and some food coloring? In this experiment, Physics Girl Dianna Cowern makes strange black circles form by briefly dragging a plate through the pool. On a sunny day in still water, those black ci...

Onward: Searching for Life in Iceland’s Frigid Fissures

In Onward: Searching for Life in Iceland’s Frigid Fissures, National Geographic grantee and biology researcher Jónína Ólafsdóttir goes diving in search of tiny arthropods in the underwater volcanic fissures of ...

Why 10 Daily Tons of Ant Poop Keep This Rainforest Thriving

High up in the rainforest canopy of Panama's Barro Colorado Island, there are ants everywhere. Azteca ants—one kind of 30 different ant species that might be in a given tree—stand out because of their epic, 9 foot (2....

And in case you missed it...

A crab takes a video camera into its hole

A crab finds a small video camera set up outside of its hole in Fiji. The crab decides to take the camera home…

LEGO Rolling Ball Clock

Jason Allemann, who created these Lego mazes last year, built this beautiful and elegant Lego ball clock. The video shows how the rail system works with one ball being hauled up the chain e...

Oxygen’s surprisingly complex journey through your body

Oxygen forms about 21% of the air around us. In your body, oxygen forms a vital role in the production of energy in most cells. But if gases can only efficiently diffuse across tiny distances, how does oxygen reach th...

Time lapse construction of the world’s tallest prefab skyscraper

Broad Sustainable Building (BSB) is a Chinese construction company that's made the headlines with their 2012 proposal to build Sky City, a prefabricated skyscraper in Changsha, Hunan, China in only 90 days (not counti...

How to peel potatoes quickly and easily

How do you peel a potato quickly, easily, and without the messy process of peeling them with a vegetable peeler? Dave Hax demonstrates a simple alternative that only requires a clean slice and boiling, or as he sugges...

Clever Japanese Farmer: Keeping crows out of the vegetable patch

Now this is an environmentally-friendly and resourceful improvement on a scarecrow! It seems that, without the use of harmful chemicals, this Japanese farmer came up with a simple system to keep local crows from eatin...

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