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Eclipses Throughout Our Universe – Out There

An exercise in cosmic geometry. A reminder that we live on one sphere among many, all moving to the laws of Kepler, Newton and Einstein. The moon’s orbit around the Earth is slightly tilted, so the shadow of the new m...

The rise and fall of the Berlin Wall

On August 13, 1961, construction workers began tearing up streets and erecting barriers in Berlin. This night marked the beginning of one of history’s most infamous dividing lines: the Berlin Wall. Construction contin...

How to draw a floating / levitating cube

Amaze friends and family with your version of this anamorphic optical illusion: a floating/levitating cube. Though it may take some practice to get the proportions and shading right, this 3D quick trick tutorial by ar...

Why Is The Very Hungry Caterpillar So Dang Hungry?

Monarchs are ravenous for milkweed. California pipevine swallowtail caterpillars want lots of pipevine. Why are these very hungry caterpillars so hungry? “Caterpillars have to store up incredible reserves of prote...

How to watch a total or partial solar eclipse

On Monday, August 21st, 2017, sky gazers can witness a total or partial solar eclipse—weather-permitting and depending on their location on the planet—as it traverses North America. There's been a lot of excitement in...

Dominoes and Fire

This friction and flame-filled domino video incorporates a series of tiny fire tricks into the chain reactions with the help of some matches, rubber bands, candles, sparklers, and strings. It was also both screenlinke...

What counts as a mountain?

Mountains: super tall, rocky landforms that rise high above the surrounding environment, much higher than hills. We might draw one as a single peak like Mount Fuji, or as a zig zag line of peaks representing a mountai...

Humphry Davy’s Potassium Volcano

Humphry Davy is one of the best know men of science of the nineteenth century. He isolated nine different chemical elements, was the first person to inhale nitrous oxide and invented the miner's safety lamp known as t...

CLOUD: An Interactive Sculpture Made from 6,000 Light Bulbs

CLOUD is a large-scale interactive installation by Caitlind r.c. Brown for Nuit Blanche Calgary. Created from steel, metal pull-strings, and 5,000+ light bulbs (both illuminated and burnt out) CLOUD asks th...

The ORBIS FLY kinetic light system at the Leningrad Center

On a grid of nearly-invisible wires, 1,089 LED-lit orbs become a massive kinetic chandelier at 10 meters (32.8 feet) high. Each orb changes its color and position according to its programming to compose fluid, angular...

Cannon cloud collisions for Art & Inactivism

Two clouds rush toward each other and collide before dissipating in this installation by Mitchell F. Chan. Titled Something Something National Conversation (In 2 Characters Or Less), the crashing forms of water vapor ...

The Event of a Thread

“The Event of a Thread” was a stunning large scale, participatory installation by Ann Hamilton that recently filled the cavernous drill hall at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City. The centerpiece of the...

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...

Florentijn Hofman’s Rubber Duck in Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour

For the last month, the kids have been super into Florentijn Hofman’s Rubber Duck in Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour. On display until June 9, the Dutch artist’s six-story tall duck has previously...

An origami-inspired model for reconfigurable materials

Metamaterials — materials whose function is determined by structure, not composition — have been designed to bend light and sound, transform from soft to stiff, and even dampen seismic waves from earthquakes. But each...

Making a baseball bat from rough-sawn lumber – Darbin Orvar

Using rough-sawn maple and walnut lumber, Linn from Darbin Orvar crafts a baseball bat from scratch for MAKE. Watch as she explains every step in detail, from cutting, to jointing and planing, gluing and clamping the ...

The Liebherr T-284 Ultra Class Mining Truck

Either all of these people are quite small or that’s one of the biggest dump trucks in the world. File under: this exists, this is the Liebherr T-284 Ultra Class Mining Truck, 261 tons ...

What’s an Engineer? + The Engineering Process – Crash Course Kids

In these two Crash Course Kids episodes, Sabrina Cruz explains how engineers design and build things to solve specific problems, like connecting two separate land masses with a bridge, or communicating with people who...

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…

Todd McLellan: Disassembled / Things Come Apart

Photographer Todd McLellan has been on my mind ever since I saw this post on making an Inventor’s Box: a collection of tools and second-hand electronics for kids to disassemble, organiz...

The Guillemot egg, an egg that saves its own life

Guillemots are sea birds that reside in crowded colonies on rocky cliff sides. When they breed, they produce one conical egg which incubates for around 30 days on the precarious cliffside... but guillemots don't make ...

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 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 ...

Paleoartist John Gurche reconstructs the face of Homo naledi

Paleoartist John Gurche is known for his award-winning reconstructions of our ancient human ancestors. His process of mixing forensic accuracy with emotional realism has been featured in documentaries by National Geog...

Emoji Science with Bill Nye the Science Guy

Have you ever found an idea in science to be confusing and said, "I wish I had some emoji around to help make this information more clear." Well, look no further because Bill Nye the Science Guy has teamed up with GE ...

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...

The Problem Solver: Inventor Mike Kapp makes “invisible” things

Meet Mike Kapp, The Problem Solver, and an inventor of invisible clocks, automated cat doors, and machines that seem to write in the air. Anne Hollowday's short video series, The Makers of Th...

How Ink Is Made – Pigment powders, varnish, & big machines

A promotional video by a Canadian ink maker, this video not only explains the behind the scenes of how ink colors are made, but its artful presentation makes the process actually feel inspirational. (The music helps, ...

The Putter and the art of putting together scissors

Cliff Denton is "The Putter," or more specifically he's a "a putter-togetherer of scissors." As the modern world has moved toward machine-made goods, Denton and his unique skills are working diligently at Ernest Wrigh...

Making a traditional Japanese wooden Kokeshi Doll

Watch as Kokeshi artisan Yasuo Okazaki carves and paints a traditional, one-of-a-kind Kokeshi Japanese Wooden Doll in the “Naruko” style from a spinning block of wood. The video was filmed by Te to Te to Te (Hand and ...

How is money printed in the United States? – Reading Rainbow

How is money printed in the United States? Or more specifically, how is 453 million dollars printed in just one day? LeVar Burton visits the Bureau of Engraving and Printing in Washington D.C. in this Reading Rainbow ...

Sparklers – How It’s Made

How It’s Made: Sparklers! There are more fireworks in the archives. Updated link.

Quadruple backflip by a robot gymnast

This rather extraordinary quadruple backflip by robot gymnast Hinamitetu may look perfectly executed now, but before the programming and physics came together, it had a long history of trials and errors that are a gre...

Terradynamic Biolegged Robot For Mars Exploration

Robots have to be able to move, perhaps quickly, on all kinds of terrain — search and rescue missions on remote parts of Earth or explorations on other planets like Mars will require i...

Orizuru, a remote controlled origami crane that can fly

A super lightweight, flying symbol of peace, this RC origami crane is made from paper, carbon tubes, 3D-printed nylon filament, and an energy-efficient microcomputer. Its wingspan is 27.6 inches (70 cm), and only weig...

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...

An origami-inspired model for reconfigurable materials

Metamaterials — materials whose function is determined by structure, not composition — have been designed to bend light and sound, transform from soft to stiff, and even dampen seismic waves from earthquakes. But each...

Anthropomorphism in Robots

The Verge reports on Anthropomorphism in Robots at the 2014 International CES (Consumer Electronics Show). Anthropomorphism, or personification, occurs when inanimate objects, animals, or thing...

A-Trak & Tommy Trash’s Tuna Melt

Toast slices as dominoes? Yes, please. This domino-driven Rube Goldberg-esque video may not be all in one shot — and maybe some of it is helped with some digital post-production? I’m looking at you, parach...

Isaac Newton vs. Rube Goldberg

Here’s a perception-bending video from 2012 by Rube Goldberg machine specialists 2D House: Isaac Newton vs. Rube Goldberg. How do you think they do it? There are always more Rube Goldber...

Sketchbook Machines by Maarten Koopman

Sketchbook Machines, all very Rube Goldberg in nature, animated by filmmaker Maarten Koopman, featured previously. Related videos include machines and Rube Goldberg machines.

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 ...

Audri’s Rube Goldberg Monster Trap

My kid loved watching this kid and his Rube Goldberg monster trap machine. Audri is seven years old and has been making Rube Goldberg machines since he was five. He’s inspired by 

In.gredients: Austin’s Package-Free Grocery Store

In.gredients is a new package-free grocery store that is opening in Austin, Texas in the Summer of 2012. Its mission as the US’s first zero-waste, package-free grocery store will support...

Animals drinking water, captured by an underwater bucket cam

Who might you find drinking from a water bucket in the desert heat of southwest Texas? John Wells of The Field Lab, an experiment in sustainable off-the-grid living, found bees, birds, chickens, and other animal faces...

Salute the Reuser – Using reusable containers instead of disposables

In the same way that we use reusable metal water bottles and sippy cups for kids on-the-go, the team at Keep Cup is promoting reusable coffee containers for adults on-the-go in this promo vide...

How do living things change their environments?

Think about your day, from when you wake up, to where you spend your day, to your bedtime routine at night. Crash Course Kids asks, "What pieces of it are a result of human intervention? Where did these pieces come fr...

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 ...

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...

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 ...

Discovering A Second Species of Giant Manta Ray

Beautiful footage of giant manta rays in Mozambique, including an interview with conservation biologist Dr. Andrea Marshall, who has lived there since 2003.  Andrea’s world-leading manta ray research p...

You Have Mites Living On Your Face – Gross Science

Yep, you have mites living on your face. And in this episode of Gross Science, Anna Rothschild explains how they're eating, laying eggs, dying, and leaking feces. On your face. But don't worry because we've known this...

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....

The Physics Behind a Curveball – The Magnus Effect

What makes a curveball curve? How do soccer players (or football players internationally) bend the ball in the air? Physics! It's specifically called The Magnus Effect, "the commonly observed effect in which a spinnin...

Fossil Sharks – The Brain Scoop

The Megalodon Shark and Helicoprion: two mysterious, extinct sharks that have left fossilized clues of their existence in the form of their teeth (and some vertebrae). Get a close look at the largest shark tooth and a...

And in case you missed it...

Wild Oceans: Hammerhead Shark Swarm

From Earth Touch: Wild Oceans, a dive off the coast of Mozambique reveals a beautiful surprise swarm of hammerhead sharks. In the archives: more sharks, more Mozambique and more Earth Touch vi...

Minoule (2014)

A mischievous cat enjoys his lazy day on a city windowsill until a small canary across the street catches his eye and works up his appetite. From director Nicolas Bianco-Levrin, this is Minoule (2014).

Flying Fish, hunted underwater and in the air

Flying fish can make powerful, self-propelled leaps out of water into air, where their long, wing-like fins enable gliding flight for considerable distances. It appears these Flying Fish are in a no win situation, pic...

A surgical robot delicately stitches a grape back together

In 2011, there was news that a surgical robot could deftly peel a grape with multiple efficient pincers. Now, the da Vinci Surgical System has demonstrated modern surgical technology by delicately stitching a grape ba...

Chladni Plate: Sand Vibration Patterns

Hey kids! Go rest your hands on a speaker playing loud music. Feel the sound vibrations? Good. Now you might want to adjust your volume for this one. Sound frequencies produce a variety of incre...

Irina Werning’s Back to the Future

It’s been interesting trying to explain the passage of time to a 3 year old. When he was 2, he would ask, “When Dad is 2 years old, will he still play with me?” as if at some point, his fathe...

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