Category: Science


On this episode of StarTalk, Neil deGrasse Tyson reveals his love of the engineering marvels that are NYC water towers. Learn more about what makes it possible for water to be pumped into your home at a moment’s notice.

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Renowned physicist Stephen Hawking has died at the age of 76, but his contributions to humanity will live on forever — including what is arguably his life’s most important work … his appearances on The Simpsons.

Destin of SmarterEveryDay says, “There are tons of things I had never considered about how difficult it is to fool your brain into thinking it’s touching something it’s not. I think the most important technical issue to overcome is timing. Much like how your brain can understand hearing someone’s voice AFTER seeing their lips move, but not the opposite… the lag time of the sense of touch is an important thing for your brain. Another thing I hand’t considered is the “rise time” that has to do with internal stresses in your fingers. If you conceptualize your fingers as water balloons around bones, you can understand how the internal pressure of your fingers rise the harder you press something. This type of information coupled with the “Sensory Homunculus” make for some incredibly fulfilling thought experiments. The temperature question is something I’m particularly interested in. Using a colder fluid to model a room temperature fluid because of the heat transfer equation is a fascinating area of scientific problem solving. If you think it through, everything about this boils down to differential equations. How much heat is leaking out of the hand, and at what rate, through what contact area?”

World’s Fastest Camera

Stay Updated shows us how a research group at LUND University in Sweden has developed a camera that can film at a rate equivalent to five trillion images per second, or events as short as 0.2 trillionths of a second. It can actually capture the speed of light.

Happy birthday to me! This is Jupiter’s moon Io, taken by Galileo on 9/19/1997, courtesy of NASA and JPL.

Destin of SmarterEveryDay gets to play with the very latest in virtual reality.

From National Geographic, “At the Ross Ice Shelf in Antarctica, scientists used a hot-water drill hose to create a hole through the thick ice until they reached the perpetually dark water. What they found surprised them.”

RIP Stephen Hawking

A memorable scene from Star Trek TNG, Season 6, Episode 26 The Descent (part 1). Lieutenant Commander Data is playing poker with the most famous Physicists of our recent history: Stephen Hawking, Albert Einstein, and Isaac Newton, simulated on the Holo-deck. Newton and Einstein are played by actors, but Hawking gamely played himself.

YouTuber and all-around science geek Destin of SmarterEveryDay went to see Space X’s launch of the Falcon Heavy and recorded it in Binaural Audio Immersion. Headphones recommended.

YouTuber engineerguy wrote a book called Fatal Flight, which brings vividly to life the year of operation of R.101, the last great British airship—a luxury liner three and a half times the length of a 747 jet, with a spacious lounge, a dining room that seated fifty, glass-walled promenade decks, and a smoking room. The British expected R.101 to spearhead a fleet of imperial airships that would dominate the skies as British naval ships, a century earlier, had ruled the seas. The dream ended when, on its demonstration flight to India, R.101 crashed in France, tragically killing nearly all aboard.

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