Topic: history

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Deep Look: The Amazing Life of Sand

There’s a story in every grain of sand: tales of life and death, fire and water. If you scooped up a handful of sand from every beach, you'd have a history of the world sifting through your fingers. From mountain boul...

The Great Pyramid of Giza was bright white & highly polished

Egypt's Great Pyramid of Giza used to look very different from the way it does now. When it was first completed around 2560–2540 BC, the pyramid's original external walls of Tura limestone casing stones were sanded sm...

Flying a quadcopter above Simon Rodia’s Watts Towers

High above Watts, Los Angeles, a quadcopter flies around Watts Towers, filmed by YouTuber PC3DM. Music: Now by Ernie Watts (no relation). For over 30 years, Italian-American construction worker and outsider artist...

Combat demonstrations in fifteenth century suits of armor

From Le Figaro, Le combat en armure au XVe siècle, in which two people demonstrate what it was like to battle in 15th century suits of armor. The combat was staged with reproductions for Le Musée National du Moyen-Âge...

Mysteries of vernacular: Pants

Where does the word 'pants' come from? The journey of this word throughout history begins with the 4th Century Roman Saint Pantaleon and is now used to refer to any clothing with two separate tubes that are meant to c...

The Animal That Wouldn’t Die: The Hydra

Just a few millimeters long and full of embryonic cells, the hydra is a small and mysterious cnidarian polyp that seems to defy mortality. Skunk Bear's Adam Cole and Robert Krulwich team up to tell the amazing tale of...

Georges Méliès: L’homme à la tête de caoutchouc (1901)

L'Homme à la tête de Caoutchouc (The Man With The Rubber Head) was directed by film pioneer Georges Méliès in 1901. The special effects might not look surprising now, but the superimposition and scale change film ...

Animated Life: Seeing the Invisible

"Everything that you can actually see with your eye is just the smallest sliver of life on this Earth. Most of life is invisible..." And so begins the exquisite paper-puppetry of Seeing the Invisible, a video by F...

Animated Hair Cartoon, No. 18 (1925)

From the UCLA Film & Television Archive, this is Animated Hair Cartoon, No.18 (1925), from Max Fleischer's Red Seal Pictures. Beyond it being fun to watch one face change into another, these images also come together ...

Out of the Inkwell: The Tantalizing Fly (1919)

From the Out of the Inkwell series of rotoscope-created cartoons, this is The Tantalizing Fly (1919) by animation pioneer and rotoscope inventor Max Fleischer. In addition to Koko the Clown (above), Fleischer Studios ...

Everything You Need to Know About Planet Earth

When we wake up, eat breakfast, get ready for school or work, and head out the door, we may not be thinking about how incredibly unique our small, wet rock of a planet is. But the Earth is incredibly unique. Learn som...

Dr. Mae Jemison, NASA Astronaut: I Wanted To Go Into Space

Find out why NASA astronaut Dr. Mae Jemison wanted to go into space in this profile from NOVA's The Secret Life of Scientists and Engineers. A physician, a chemical engineer, a teacher, a dancer, and the first Afri...

How Do You Dismantle a Dino? (Very Carefully)

We've learned a lot about dinosaur anatomy since displays of their bones were set up at The National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., "anywhere from the early 1900s through 1940s, 50s, and 60s." As a par...

Fossil hunting in unexplored dinosaur country

This is what it's like to be a paleontologist out in the field, from waking at dawn's first light, to digging in the rocks, to wrapping or jacketing finds, to gathering around the campfire, exhausted and covered with ...

We Are Dead Stars

We are dead stars. Everything we are – the iron in our blood, every element we've ever heard of – is made from a star, a dust cloud collapsing under the force of gravity. Astronomer Dr. Michelle Thaller si...

Renegades of Bike Culture or How Mountain Biking Was Invented

Renegades of Bike Culture, or How Mountain Biking Was Invented, from the University of California's Fig.1 series. In the 1970's, counter-culture types in the mountains north of San Francisco took to careening down ...

Georges Méliès: Le voyage dans la lune (A Trip to the Moon)

Le voyage dans la lune (A Trip to the Moon), the landmark silent film directed by prolific filmmaker Georges Méliès in 1902. And if this video disappears, you can watch it on Amazon. From Wikipedia: ...

When mending becomes an art: pottery repair with gold powder

The 400+ year old Japanese art of kintsugi (golden repair) or kintsukuroi (golden joinery) is a pottery repair method that honors the artifact's unique history by emphasizing, not hiding, the break. An art form born f...

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