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Solar System in an amazing 360 video

The guys at Crash Course have created an amazing 360 video animation where we can learn more about our solar system. What’s a 360 degree video, you ask? It is a video in which you can rotate around and see other perspective while the video is still running.

If movies would have such a 360 degree video, then you may be able to see the cameras rolling while the actors do their thing. Just kidding. A great concept applied to a science video. Neat.

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Investing in science pays off thousands of times

I had a short talk a couple of months ago, on June 21st 2015, in BraČ™ov, Romania, about science and secular humanism. I argued that science gave us mobile phones and television and some kids from the last line started laughing: “how could science give us TVs”?

Well, how could it? Did you know that older CRT TVs, or tube TVs as they are called, are using an electronic cannon? It is not sci-fi, as I’m talking about the hot cathode which generates electrons because passing currents through it make it get so hot that it releases electrons inside the tube.

The science that goes in a simple CRT display is incredible and it is almost 100 years old, since the first CRT TV set was released in the 1920s.

In the video from above you can see that the MIT has created technologies in the 80s that we use now on a current basis, like touch screens, e-ink, GPS. And the science work paid off as there are billion dollar industries which use that tech today.

And why is science so powerful? I’ll let Vsauce answer that. I’m just adding here that science’s power relies on out endless curiosity and on our power to work on abstract problems which do not seem to have a practical meaning. But there is a goal to all this:

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What and how: fruits/vegetables and diverting an asteroid

What is the difference between a fruit and a vegetable? You call it a fruit when the part that you eat stemmed from the flower of the plant, then grew around some seeds. This way cucumber, peas, apples, pears and tomatoes are fruits. But what about vegetables? If you eat the root, the leaves or the stem, then that is a vegetable. Example of vegetables: cabbage, carrots, onions.

Now you know. Go annoy your friends who call tomatoes vegetables :))

Also, how do you divert an asteroid from it’s path when it is about to hit the Earth? Well, PBS Time Space explains how can you use gravity to simply move the asteroid away from our certain doom. You need to use a big enough rocket and send it to the asteroid. All you need to do is to make sure that you put the rocket close enough to the asteroid so that it has a small gravitational effect on it.

Then all you need to do is to simply move the rocket inch by inch away from asteroid’s path and the asteroid will follow. But how is this possible? Well, when two object come close together, then the gravity takes over and both objects will have a common gravitational point. Even a small rocket can influence a big asteroid due to the force of gravity. After enough time you push the asteroid just a couple of inch away from its path and avert a tragedy.

Also, the video from below has the calculations already done.

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Science craze: 7 hours of science. I dare you watch them all in one day!

Yesterday and Saturday were lazy days for me. I had some work to do, but otherwise made sure to spend hours upon hours watching documentaries, online videos of courses.

In the first video you see a team from Fermilab, US talking about a specific topic, like what are neutrinos or the importance of an operator for the particle accelerator they have at Fermilab. The guys at Fermilab have discovered the up quark, bottom quark and the tau neutrino.

Moving on to the next movie, you will learn from Prof. Melvin Pomerantz of UC Berkeley what science is and what we do know and what we do not know in the field of physics. For example we do not know what energy or charge is, but we do knot a ton of things about how they work and how we can make them work for us.

See the video:

Had enough physics? Let’s learn about a great Englishman called Robert Hooke. He is associated specifically with the elasticity laws when we use springs, but he was also an inventor and the one go gave the idea to Newton that gravity is a force which can be calculated using calculus. Check out more:

We then go to our Periodic Table of Elements to find out more info about some of them. For example, Telurium has a smell and taste much like garlic and, coincidentally, was first discovered in Romania, Transylvania, Zlatna, not far from the Dracula Castle (Bran village). Video:

And we end up our list of videos by probing our minds using neuroscience. How do thoughts come into existence, how does our brain work? We are able to learn, move and evolve because there are already some underlying structures in our brain, like specific neurons linked and positioned in a certain way which would permit us to learn. Some concepts are already hardwired/hardcoded in our brains.

Yes, we already have notions of up and down, here and there and so on, but we strengthen them via experience, via our sensors:

Do not want to spend 7 hours by watching all these 5 videos? Then speed up the process by choosing Speed 2. You will still be able to understand the core concepts and ideas of the videos. Try it out.


The super science music video of the day: Science STYLE – Taylor Swift Acapella Parody

The guys at ASAP Science have created an awesome Taylor Swift Acapella Parody called Science STYLE. In the hands of great communicators science does blossom in ways you would never think of. Science is great and truly amazing, but many regards it as a fringe domain, something on the far side of the World.

Science, on the other side, was created to reveal the inner workings on the Universe and create a system of laws, principles and theories to allow us to make sense of everything.

Truth is, science saves lives, makes us feel better, give us better lives. Science rules.

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Science with Tom: awesome science music videos abound

As they say “this white guy knows how to rap”. His videos are awe inspiring, they teach and they bring everyone closer to science.

And the rap is as good as it gets. And he’s preparing a new row of music videos for us to educate ourselves and to enjoy.

Check out this older video:

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What do all these science channels do all the time?

The guys at IFL Science have nailed it: none of the mainstream science channels actually do science. Except DNEWS I do not follow anything from Discovery Channel. The other science channels have gooten damn boring so I’ll skip them all the time.

Have a comic here:


Win people over to the science side with rap

Sciences needs this, science deserves this, science is cooler with this. It’s about science rap and this guy is making the best of it. It is about Tom McFadden who has the YouTube channel called Science With Tom.

In there you will see different music videos rap style. They are awesome and they help you learn more on the subject.
Tycho Brahe vs Johannes Kepler

Pluto rap

Oxidate it

Blame it on the DNA

Hi, Meiosis

Via Inside Science.

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The clouds are teeming with life aka bacteria

Yes, the clouds are home to tons of lifeforms, especially bacteria. They are small and easy to carry in the air. Clouds are a good home for dust particles, dust mites, bacteria and who knows what else. There a whole jungle in there!

Bacteria was found even at 40 km high up, in the air, above every possible terrain you can think of. The bacteria are also living and multiplying in the cloud where they help forming rain drops, snowflakes, hail.

The bacteria from up there live due to the fact that they eat sugars flown up by the wind. These sugars are generated by plants on earth.

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You wont believe: the smallest possible star is just a bit bigger than Jupiter

It is said that Jupiter is a failed star. It is so massive that, if it were a couple of times more massive, it would have become a star. Stars can be way smaller than our Sun. For example, theoretically, a red dwarf star has only about 7.5% the mass of the Sun.

Poxima Centauri, another example, has only 12.3% the mass of the Sun.

The smallest possible star would be only about 50% larger than Jupiter. Imagine how our sky would be with a planet-star our there. Cooler than Tatooine from Star Wars, of course.

The smallest known star is MASS J05233822-1403022 at about 9% the mass of Sun.

Bonus: what is the biggest star in the Universe? The most massive we know of is R136A1 which is over 265 solar masses. Eta Carinae is also big: 120 solar masses. Betelgeuse, from Orion Constellation, a red supergiant star, with a radius of 980-1200 times the radius of the Sun.

Betelgeuse would be so big that even Jupiter’s orbit would fit inside it. Vy Canis Majoris, another great star, is 1300 – 1540 times the radius of the Sun.

See how big is Betelgeuse:

How big is Vy Canis Majoris compared to the Sun?

And here are all of the biggest stars in one row: