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Infinity Paradoxes: Numberphile

Infinity can throw up some interesting paradoxes, from filling Hilbert's Hotel to painting Gabriel's Trumpet... Mark Jago is a philosophy lecturer with a background in computer science.

The money game is known as St. Petersburg Paradox - it is quite famous.


See-Through Brains

Scientists have come up with a way to make whole brains transparent, so they can be labelled with molecular markers and imaged using a light microscope. The technique, called CLARITY, enabled its creators to produce the detailed 3D visualisations you see in this video. It works in mouse brains and human brains; here the team use it to look into the brain of a 7-year-old boy who had autism.


PBS: Money on the Mind

In a series of startling studies, psychologists at the University of California at Berkeley have found that "upper-class individuals behave more unethically than lower-class individuals." Ongoing research is trying to find out what it is about wealth — or lack of it — that makes people behave they way they do. Paul Solman reports as part of his Making Sen$e series, more of which you can check out here: http://www.pbs.org/newshour/economy/makingsense/ and http://www.pbs.org/newshour/businessdesk/2013/06/why-those-who-feel-they-have-less-give-more.html


How Does a Transistor Work?

How does a transistor work? Our lives depend on this device. When I mentioned to people that I was doing a video on transistors, they would say "as in a transistor radio?" Yes! That's exactly what I mean, but it goes so much deeper than that. After the transistor was invented in 1947 one of the first available consumer technologies it was applied to was radios, so they could be made portable and higher quality. Hence the line in 'Brown-eyed Girl' - "going down to the old mine with a transistor radio."

But more important to our lives today, the transistor made possible the microcomputer revolution, and hence the Internet, and also TVs, mobile phones, fancy washing machines, dishwashers, calculators, satellites, projectors etc. etc. A transistor is based on semiconductor material, usually silicon, which is 'doped' with impurities to carefully change its electrical properties. These n and p-type semiconductors are then put together in different configurations to achieve a desired electrical result. And in the case of the transistor, this is to make a tiny electrical switch. These switches are then connected together to perform computations, store information, and basically make everything electrical work intelligently.


Real Gases: Crash Course Chemistry #14

Hank bursts our ideal gas law bubble, er, balloon, and brings us back to reality, explaining how the constants in the gas law aren't all that constant; how the ideal gas law we've spent the past two weeks with has to be corrected for volume because atoms and molecules take up space and for pressure because they're attracted to each other; that Einstein was behind a lot more of what we know today than most people realize; and how a Dutch scientist named Johannes van der Waals figured out those correction factors in the late 19th century and earned a Nobel Prize for his efforts.


The Art of Data Visualization

Humans have a powerful capacity to process visual information, skills that date far back in our evolutionary lineage. And since the advent of science, we have employed intricate visual strategies to communicate data, often utilizing design principles that draw on these basic cognitive skills. In a modern world where we have far more data than we can process, the practice of data visualization has gained even more importance. From scientific visualization to pop infographics, designers are increasingly tasked with incorporating data into the media experience. Data has emerged as such a critical part of modern life that it has entered into the realm of art, where data-driven visual experiences challenge viewers to find personal meaning from a sea of information, a task that is increasingly present in every aspect of our information-infused lives.


Neil deGrasse Tyson: Sputnik Moment

In Space Chronicles, Neil deGrasse Tyson describes how the Soviet Union was a catalyst for the U.S. space program, and China might be considered a similar catalyst today (http://goo.gl/fzGtH).

Transcript--

When the president, President Obama, mentioned the Sputnik moment, seeing that we are losing a competitive edge to the Chinese and others, said, "This is a new Sputnik moment" and then he gave a list of things we should do, which included like higher speed Internet and light rail. I'm thinking, no, no. Energy independence, that's not a Sputnik moment. We should have those things anyway. Sputnik moments, you reserve those for grand visions that take your mind, body and soul to places that no one had previously dreamed. Sputnik moments are occasions where you invent tomorrow.

I'm not old enough to remember 1957 but there's certainly plenty of people among us who do. And when the Soviet Union launched Sputnik that was a Sputnik moment. This was our sworn enemy, the communists. And we had our own state of self-assessment that we were technologically proficient, you know, we won the war. Our manufacturing was back in place and here's this country that we were telling the whole world that we were better than they were in every way that mattered and, bam, out comes a satellite.

Our response was we created NASA; first we went berserk then we created NASA a year later. We redoubled our efforts in science and technology and engineering. And that would shape the identity of the United States from the end of the 1950s through the 1970s.

The Sputnicity of that moment I think comes from the fact, whether or not the public knew this, the military folks knew it, that Sputnik was a hollowed out intercontinental ballistic missile shell. They took out the warhead and put in a radio transmitter that went beep, beep. The military folks knew that if they could put a radio transmitter in a ballistic missile shell and fly it over our heads that they have the new higher ground.

So in that case the Sputnik moment was a military one. And it was clear that technology and science would be what would enable nations to take the lead and the high ground.

Right now we're, we in America, we're sort of slowing down, or maybe everyone else is just speeding up but the effect is we've lost our edge. We've lost our leadership position.

When President Obama said, "In a Sputnik moment, in fact we will rejuvenate the space program." The space program in fact is not dead it's just kind of smoldering back there. One of them is we'll be back to Mars in the 2030s, 2030's, maybe as early as the late 2020's. Who's gonna be president? On what budget? So that's a nice thing to listen to in a speech because he's thinking about the future but that's not a future that's actually within reach that anyone can act upon.

I don't like Sputnik moments. I'd rather have been the leader all along. Why do we have to be shocked into being motivated to lead? Why don't we just lead all the time? And maybe that's just unrealistic, maybe that's just not human nature. Maybe we have to feel threatened in order to act.

So yes Sputnik moments work, and if we can't lead all the time, let it be a Sputnik moment that kick starts our heart back beating again. But I can't help but be a little disappointed that we haven't stayed there. That we're going to have to play catch-up if we're gonna catch up at all.

Directed / Produced by Jonathan Fowler & Elizabeth Rodd


Making The World's Smallest Movie

How did IBM researchers move all those atoms to make the world's smallest movie? This short behind-the-scenes documentary takes you inside the lab. Meet the scientists, see how they made a movie with atoms, and find out more about their research in the field of atomic memory and data storage. See the world's smallest movie at http://youtu.be/oSCX78-8-q0. Learn more about atomic memory, data storage and big data at http://www.ibm.com/madewithatoms


A Boy & His Atom: World's Smallest Movie

You're about to see the movie that holds the Guinness World Records record for the World's Smallest Stop-Motion Film (see how it was made at http://youtu.be/xA4QWwaweWA). The ability to move single atoms the smallest particles of any element in the universe is crucial to IBM's research in the field of atomic memory. But even nanophysicists need to have a little fun. In that spirit, IBM researchers used a scanning tunneling microscope to move thousands of carbon monoxide molecules (two atoms stacked on top of each other), all in pursuit of making a movie so small it can be seen only when you magnify it 100 million times. A movie made with atoms.


I Feel for My New Robot Overlords

Subjects showed objectively similar neural activation for both humans and robots, providing some of the first empirical evidence that humans emotionally identify with affection or distress "experienced" by robots.


How Much Would Call of Duty Cost?

MATH UPDATE: The bullets would only be .000000006% the weight of Earth. I accidentally wrote the number down wrong. HOWEVER, the weight of those bullets would be more than all of humanity (286,670,377,840kg)!