“Planned Obsolescence” is a documentary made by Eva Vidal and Carla Casado, two sixteen-year-old International Baccalaureate students at Colegio Montserrat in Barcelona, Spain. It covers the history of companies intentionally designing products that would break or become obsolete so that consumers would have to buy their products more frequently. What impact does planned obsolescence have on society and on the environment? How much control have corporations gained over us through their omnipresent advertising and forced reliance on their new products that must replace the discarded?
Tesla: Master of Lightning
This documentary does a wonderful job of conveying the genius that was Nikola Tesla. Watch this documentary and then look around your house. You’ll be amazed in the ways in which Tesla impacts our everyday lives. His death ray is also examined and a good discussion of particle beam weaponry follows. Reagan’s Star Wars program is also discussed, along with HAARP, the super secret microwave array in a remote part of Alaska.
Tesla was truly a man who knew the secrets of electricity. His thoughts on capturing free energy and transmitting it around the world was truly a humanitarian concept and the video explains how he was stopped by the greedy capitalists and how he died as a penniless man. Like many geniuses, Tesla was not a conventional man. He gave his life to realize his visions, while others made millions with his inventions. Tragically, he died nearly forgotten.
Star Clock BC: Antikythera Mechanism
Over a century ago, sponge divers recovered an extremely complex mechanical device from a shipwreck. Hidden among a rich cache of bronze and marble statues, glassware and amphorae was a mechanism the size of a shoe box. Inside the mechanism were mathematical gears and pointers.
The Ancient Greeks were known to be philosophers, poets, and mathematicians but there was nothing in the archaeological record to suggest that they were also technicians capable of creating something so complex. It has taken researchers 100 years to understand what the mechanism does.
Dubbed the Antikythera mechanism (for the location of the shipwreck from which it came), the device is considered the world’s first computer, developed by the Greeks around the 1st century B.C. Scientists continue to marvel at its intricate system of gears which rival that of the most complex Swiss watch.
The Strange World of Nanoscience
Where and what is nano? How will it shape our future? Nanoscience is the study of phenomena and manipulation of materials at the nanoscale, where properties differ significantly from those at a larger scale. The strange world of Nanoscience – it can take you into atoms and beyond the stars.
The nanoscale ranges from 100 nanometres down to the atomic level, where a nanometre is a millionth part of a millimetre. Manipulating shape and size at nanometre scale, nanotechnologists are producing a wide variety of applications that take profit of the properties that this scale offers. Nowadays, thousands of researchers around the world are investigating the new contributions that NT can bring us by designing, characterizing and producing new structures, devices and systems. This film was produced and directed by Tom Mustill for the NANOYOU Project (nanoyou.eu) as a resource for young people, teachers and anyone interested to get a quick introduction to Nanoscience. It is mainly shot at and with the assistance of the Nanoscience Centre at the University of Cambridge and features researchers involved in exploring the world of Nano.
The Extraordinary Genius of Albert Einstein
The core of the video is a pedagogical workshop on the Theory of Special Relativity as part of the educational process conducted by our youth leadership. Not for the sake of understanding the theory itself, but using Einstein’s particular discovery as a case study to demonstrate and walk people through real human thinking, as being something above sense perceptions or opinions. We end with reflecting on the principle of relativity in terms of social relations and individual identities or thought processes, asking the question – how was Einstein able to make his breakthrough?
A Machine to Die For: The Quest for Free Energy
Conventional science claims this is impossible, yet generations of inventors have been mesmerized by the promise of an engine that powers itself.
The world’s reliance on diminishing fossil fuel resources and the associated problems of pollution serve to spur them on.
A Machine to Die For showcases a number of dedicated, sometimes eccentric, and always obsessive individuals who have devoted their lives to this quest.
The documentary could be used as a resource when studying motion and simple machines in secondary science and physics.
It could also serve as a springboard for discussions about inventors and inventions and the history of scientific endeavors. It would be suitable for teachers of middle to senior secondary students in Science.
Inventions That Changed the World
Jeremy Clarkson hosts Inventions That Changed The World, a series which tells the stories behind some of the most significant inventions which have helped shape the world we live in today. Our daily lives are governed by inventions. From what we wear to the food we eat and our methods of travel – it’s all been invented or significantly altered by inventions.
But sometimes an invention comes along that doesn’t just change the way we do things but changes the world. Inventions That Changed The World examines not only how and why life altering inventions got off the ground in the first place, but also how they created a domino effect spawning other essential inventions in their wake. Beginning with the gun, Jeremy reveals that successful attempts to create ever more lethal weapons have not only shaped the world but led directly or indirectly to all of the following: the industrial revolution; the production line; cowboy films; street lighting; the car exhaust pipe and the development of trauma medicine.
Other inventions covered in the series include: The computer, without which we couldn’t fly planes, drive cars or even run our dishwashers; The jet which plays a key part in our weather, mass tourism and outbreaks like SARS; The telephone which was invented by mistake by a man trying to make a humming telegraph. The telephone has not only changed the way we do business but also led to the development of the Internet; The television which was invented by two men with wildly different visions: John Logie Baird, a Scotsman, and a 14-year old American Mormon, Philo T Farnsworth, both died unrewarded but their invention, Jeremy reveals, helped win the Battle of Britain. Throughout the series Jeremy gives his own passionate and witty take on some of the inventions and inventors that he believes have helped change the course of history.
Future by Design
Future by Design shares the life and far-reaching vision of Jacque Fresco, considered by many to be a modern day Da Vinci. Peer to Einstein and Buckminster Fuller, Jacque is a self-taught futurist who describes himself most often as a generalist or multi-disciplinarian – a student of many inter-related fields. He is a prolific inventor, having spent his entire life (he is now 90 years old) conceiving of and devising inventions on various scales which entail the use of innovative technology. As a futurist, Jacque is not only a conceptualist and a theoretician, but he is also an engineer and a designer.