December 31, 2015 Space Debris: 1957 - 2015 Almost 20,000 pieces of space debris are currently orbiting the Earth. This visualisation, created by Dr Stuart Grey, lecturer at University College London and part of the Space Geodesy and Navigation Laboratory, shows how the amount of space debris increased from 1957 to 2015, using data on the precise location of each piece of junk.
December 29, 2015 The Fallen of World War II An animated data-driven documentary about war and peace, The Fallen of World War II looks at the human cost of the second World War and sizes up the numbers to other wars in history, including trends in recent conflicts.
December 28, 2015 The Christmas Light Killer Every night in December people in a small suburb of Philadelphia flock to a holiday light show. They drive at a snails pace through the 2 mile stretch of beautiful light displays, listening to holiday music, soaking up the Christmas spirt. But at the end of each night one man drives the stretch alone, turning off all of the lights, ending the joy day after day. This is his story.
December 23, 2015 Peeking Into Australia's Underground Homes Coober Pedy is a small desert town in Australia where the entire population lives in underground homes. With outside temperatures hovering over 100 degrees, residents made permanent homes in the cooler temperatures of old mine shafts.
December 21, 2015 Fembot in a Red Dress This video essay examines the cultural trope of the “lady in red” as it evolved from the genre of film noir to science fiction and from the human to the artificial female in a variety of film and television texts.
December 17, 2015 I Live in an Airplane Bruce Campbell lives in an airplane. Yes, an actual jet. The Portland-based aeronautics enthusiast makes his home in a converted Boeing 727 that was once used as a Greek aircraft until the mid-1960s and now resides in a forest near Portland.
December 16, 2015 I Have Synesthesia and Words Taste Like Meatballs What is synesthesia? -- A neurological phenomenon in which stimulation of one sensory cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second pathway. We talk to several synesthetes and recreate their experiences.
December 14, 2015 The Ethical Dilemma of Self-Driving Cars Self-driving cars are already cruising the streets today. And while these cars will ultimately be safer and cleaner than their manual counterparts, they can’t completely avoid accidents altogether. How should the car be programmed if it encounters an unavoidable accident? Patrick Lin navigates the murky ethics of self-driving cars.
December 10, 2015 Stanford Researcher Images His Brain for 18 Months For 18 months, Stanford psychologist Russell Poldrack scanned his brain activity twice a week to understand how functional areas of his brain communicate. Among his findings was that his brain behaves dramatically different when it craves coffee.
December 9, 2015 Turbo Encabulator For a number of years now work has been proceeding in order to bring perfection to the crudely conceived idea of a transmission that would not only supply inverse reactive current for use in unilateral phase detractors, but would also be capable of automatically synchronizing cardinal grammeters. Such an instrument is the turbo encabulator.
December 8, 2015 Strikes Against Isis are a Trap Nicolas Henin, a French journalist held by Mohammed Emwazi (aka ‘Jihadi John’) explains why bombing Isis in Syria will only lead to a greater conflict in the Middle East. Henin says the way to win against Isis is to gain the support of the Syrian people with hope, not drive them towards Isis with airstrikes.
December 4, 2015 A Tour Inside America's Oldest Hat Factory Nestled inside the quaint borough of Adamstown, PA is the Bollman Hat Company, America's oldest hat factory. From its opening in 1868, the factory is now home to the Bailey of Hollywood brand of high-quality headwear, with associations to Kangol and numerous other brands. Inside you'll find American made values, highly tuned machinery and the skills that create a mainstay of American hats loved by the world over.
December 3, 2015 Slavoj Žižek on Synthetic Sex and "Being Yourself" Philosopher and social critic Slavoj Žižek dislikes the sense of self-commodification and self-manipulation innate in online dating. People strive for perfection when they set up dating profiles. Žižek believes love isn't about seeing someone as perfect, but rather appreciating them for the reasons they're not perfect. Perfection is an illusion, he says. "Perfection" is plainness. It's innocuous and generic. This isn't necessarily an endorsement of bold and honest self-expression, because as Žižek explains, it's important to maintain manners and structure. Instead, Žižek promotes the idea of paying tribute to a perverse superego in order to be able to maintain civility. He then describes what he thinks the ideal date and sexual scenario would be -- complete with the aforementioned "tribute."