Topic: history

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Sir David Attenborough at 90, an interview

In celebration of his 90th birthday on the May 8th 2016, Sir David Attenborough reflects on his incredible career as a world renowned broadcaster and naturalist. Attenborough also comments on the advances in filmm...

The Man Who Put the Pee in Phosphorus

In the 1660's, German alchemist Hennig Brand thought he knew the secret to making solid gold: pee. So set was he on these golden ambitions, he dehydrated 1,500 gallons (gallons!) of human urine to make it happen. Thou...

How is Victorian Nectar Drop candy made?

...and why are lemon drops, cough drops, and fruit drops all called drops? In this video by Tallahassee, Florida's Lofty Pursuits artisanal candy makers, we get an up close look at how their restored candy equipme...

Dinosaur fossils uncovered on an Antarctic expedition

A team of 12 scientists recently completed an audacious fossil hunting expedition to James Ross Island in Antarctica, and returned with over one ton of marine, avian, and dinosaur fossils that are between 71 million a...

Petrified Forest National Park & how petrified wood is made

Fallen coniferous trees from 211-218 million years ago can be found scattered across the desert of eastern Arizona in the form of petrified wood. Made primarily from quartz, these geological wonders are actually fossi...

The Story of Zero – Getting Something from Nothing

Once upon a time, zero wasn’t really a number. Its journey to the fully fledged number we know and love today was a meandering one. Today, zero is both a placeholder, and tool, within our number system signifying an a...

A Vault of Color: Protecting the World’s Rarest Pigments

In Cambridge, Massachusetts, you can find dragon's blood, mummy, and a very rare ball of dried urine from cows that have been fed nothing but mango leaves (now considered a harmful process for the cows). These things ...

Space Rocks: Comets, asteroids, meteors, & meteorites

This claymation primer on comets, asteroids, meteoroids, meteors, and meteorites helps us learn about Space Rocks in a super adorable way. Made by Beakus for the Royal Observatory Greenwich, the animation is one in a ...

How To Make A Mini da Vinci Catapult

It's true that you can buy da Vinci Catapult kits online, but how cool would it be to build one from scratch? Andy Elliott shares how he made a mini da Vinci Catapult from a wooden folding ruler, screws, and some work...

The Science of Skin Color – TED Ed

When ultraviolet sunlight hits our skin, it affects each of us differently. Depending on skin color, it’ll take only minutes of exposure to turn one person beetroot-pink, while another requires hours to experience the...

Evidence of evolution that you can find on your body

Signs of our evolutionary history can be found in the form of vestigial structures on the human body. Watch this Vox video to help identify the evidence of evolution in yours. Some background via Wikipedia: Vestig...

Motorized Bath on Wheels

Travel back to England in the year 1960 to see how these engineering students from Kingston, Surrey Technical College made a splash with a bath tub... a motorized bath tub, perfect for driving around the center of tow...

Melodious stone instruments called lithophones

An idiophone, the lithophone is a set of rocks -- granite, fossilized coral, petrified wood, and other melodious stones -- that are played by striking them. They've been made in a variety of forms all around the globe...

How does Leap Year work?

What is Leap Year, why do we have it, and how does it work? Vox explains and explores another question: When do leap year babies -- born on the rare date of February 29th -- celebrate their birthdays? This is an ex...

Making charcoal, baskets, & stone hatchets – Primitive Technology

In the modern world, we pick up a bag of charcoal at the market if we want our fires to start easily and get hot quickly. But what did humans from the past do when they wanted their fires to burn hot enough to, say, s...

ALMA, a telescope so powerful it can see into the past

There’s a telescope deep in Chile’s Atacama Desert that takes pictures so massive that it requires a supercomputer as powerful as 16 million PCs to decipher the images. This is the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA...

LIGO & The First Observation of Gravitational Waves – CalTech

On September 14, 2015 at 5:51am ET, the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) detected ripples in the fabric of spacetime. One hundred years after Albert Einstein predicted the existence of gravit...

Preparing Pilcher’s Hawk to fly again

According to Wikipedia, The Hawk was the fourth flying machine that British inventor Percy Pilcher built in the 1890s. Following Bat, Beetle, and Gull hang gliders, Pilcher's Hawk broke the world distance record in 18...

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