Topic: how things work

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Can you push a spacecraft with light? – Physics Girl

In this episode from Physics Girl, Dianna Cowern explains how space ships can use sunlight to travel the stars in the same way that boats use wind to move across the seas. While solar sail spacecraft design is a more ...

Venus flytraps count to avoid being tricked

If you're a venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula), how do you know you've got a fly in your midst and not a raindrop? You count. Via ScienceMag: In order to mimic insect prey, the scientists stimulated the hairlike sen...

Evidence of a Ninth Planet

Thanks to mathematical modeling and computer simulations by CalTech researchers Konstantin Batygin and Mike Brown, we now have strong evidence that there's a large planet -- about 10x Earth's size -- orbiting in an ex...

Driving a Ford Model T at the Henry Ford Museum

In 1908, Henry Ford started selling the Model T, nicknamed the Tin Lizzie, as the first affordable car that everyone could drive, but driving the car "that started it all" is quite different than driving today's cars....

Why Do Cats Meow?

Cat meowing is not exclusively how cats vocalize. Meowing is a special kitten behavior meant to catch the attention of their mother, and not the language that they normally speak while out and about with other cats. I...

The Stroop Test

After we learn to read, recognizing words becomes an automatic behavior that our brains can process much faster than recognizing colors. For example, say these words: Red. Green. Blue. So what happens when we intro...

Jump In Jerboas – Science Friday

"A furry little rodent version of a Tyrannosaurus Rex," the jerboa has tiny forelimbs, a "noodle" tail that helps with them with balance, long legs and really long feet, with toes that support their speedy hops. W...

Circular motion demonstration with a sparkler & a hula hoop

From physics teacher and film maker Alom Shaha, check out these simple demonstrations showing how something moving in a circle will move in a straight line when you remove the centripetal force acting upon that thing....

How this color changing cake was made + lenticular printing

Like those ridged images that appear to animate as you tilt them back and forth -- on photo postcards, bookmarks, rulers, books, toys, and more -- watch as this cake icing seems to change colors as it rotates. Of ...

This is What Outer Space Does to Your Body

NASA astronaut, engineer, and former football player Leland Melvin explains how the human body changes when it leaves the confines of Planet Earth. Your body may become taller, your heart might get smaller and change ...

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...

Plastic Injection Molding

Bill [Hammack] details the key engineering principles underlying plastic injection molding. He describes its history and then reveals the intricate details of the process. He shows viewers where to found, on any injec...

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...

How to grow snowflakes in a bottle – Science Friday

If there's no snow outside, try growing your own snowflakes. From Science Friday's collection of Holiday Science features and experiments, learn how to grow snowflakes in a bottle. Caltech physicist, snowflake expert,...

The GPS-navigated rolling of the dung beetle

From all across the galaxy, the light of billions of stars finds its way to Earth, passes through our atmosphere, and enters the eyes of a small South African beetle rolling a ball of dung. The beetle’s eyes are not s...

Zero Gravity 360° + Weightless Water Experiments

Go on a zero gravity parabolic flight, also known as the ‘vomit comet’, in this 360º video from The Royal Institution. Drag the video in any direction using any modern browser or the YouTube mobile app... and, of cour...

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 ...

How to paint with ice skates, a light painting beginner’s guide

This tutorial for light painting is a great introduction for how long exposure photographs capture motion, and change the amount of light in an image. At-Bristol Science Centre's Heather Nichol explains how to modify ...

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