Sunday, January 31, 2010

Symphony of Science: auto-tuned science awesomeness

Recently a silly project called Symphony of Science (youtube playlist) opened my eyes to somewhat of a lost treature. I knew my hippie friends admired Carl Sagan, but it took until now to fall in love myself.

Just check out these profound quotes. They may not mean anything to you, but to some of us it is deeply touching:

Carl Sagan:

I find it elevating and exhilarating
To discover that we live in a universe
Which permits the evolution of molecular machines
As intricate and subtle as we

Neil deGrasse Tyson:
I know that the molecules in my body are traceable
To phenomena in the cosmos
That makes me want to grab people in the street
And say, have you heard this??

"My own musical tribute to two great men of science. Carl Sagan and his cosmologist companion Stephen Hawking present: A Glorious Dawn - Cosmos remixed. Almost all samples and footage taken from Carl Sagan's Cosmos and Stephen Hawking's Universe series" :

"'We Are All Connected' was made from sampling Carl Sagan's Cosmos, The History Channel's Universe series, Richard Feynman's 1983 interviews, Neil deGrasse Tyson's cosmic sermon, and Bill Nye's Eyes of Nye Series, plus added visuals from The Elegant Universe (NOVA), Stephen Hawking's Universe, Cosmos, the Powers of 10, and more. It is a tribute to great minds of science, intended to spread scientific knowledge and philosophy through the medium of music" :

"'Our Place in the Cosmos', the third video from the Symphony of Science, was crafted using samples from Carl Sagan's Cosmos, Richard Dawkins' Genius of Charles Darwin series, Dawkins' TED Talk, Stephen Hawking's Universe series, Michio Kaku's interview on Physics and aliens, plus added visuals from Baraka, Koyaanisqatsi, History Channel's Universe series, and IMAX Cosmic Voyage. The themes present in this song are intended to explore our understanding of our origins within the universe, and to challenge the commonplace notion that humans have a superior or privleged position, both on our home planet and in the universe itself" :

"'The Unbroken Thread' is the fourth video in the Symphony of Science series, and it features David Attenborough, Jane Goodall, and Carl Sagan. The clips used in this installment come from Carl Sagan's Cosmos, David Attenborough's Charles Darwin and the Tree of Life, The Life of Mammals, The Living Planet, BBC Life, XVIVO Scientific Animations, IMAX Cosmic Voyage, Jane Goodall's TED Talk, and a clever Guiness Commercial. The themes present in The Unbroken Thread attempt to explore the wild diversity of life on our planet, the intricacy and origin of its mechanisms, and its close relation to all other life forms" :

Also, I've taken up a habit which I encourage to everyone - when you see something cool, google it a bit to follow up on it! Like I've found these awesome books and videos:

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Must-see hilarious nerdy movie clips

I'd like to share with you a few of those movie clips all nerds just should have seen. It's funny, because even though my entire class of course will have seen them, they may be entirely ignored by later or earlier nerd generations. Do you have any favorites I missed?

First out is Look around you, which you just have to see to believe. A hint - it was made in 2002 (youtube playlist and torrent downloads: series 1 and series 2) :

Their periodic table of elements is pretty amazing:

Next, "Sorting out sorting" is an excruciating review of all the basic sorting algorithms. Very educational, very old.

I'll finish off for this time with "Erlang: The Movie", documenting the ground-breaking features of this Ericsson functional programming language. It may not seem much to you, but in the nerd world, these things matter. For artistic reasons best enjoyed muted with Falco "Der Kommissar" playing over it:

See other of my nerdy posts.