SciShow Future Episode Ideas

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  • Hail, Ice pellets, Diamond Dust.

    Additionally / Alternatively, how exactly meteorological measurements are taken, what they are measuring, and why or how those factors matter.
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  • softcannonballssoftcannonballs Posts: 51 ✭✭
    It would be really cool if we could get a simplified explanation of string theory :3
    turn off your mind, relax, and float downstream
  • aiyoungaiyoung Posts: 19
    @softcannonballs

    NOVA did a pretty good mini-series on string theory with physicist Brian Greene. 


    His book "The Elegant Universe" goes into more detail than the show and is worth checking out too.  
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  • ArielAriel Posts: 146 ✭✭✭
    Mercurial said:
    I would love to hear more about neuroscience! I'm an undergrad studying biology and work in a neuroscience lab right now. So, yeah, the idea of consciousness would be a great topic to cover!

    In particular though, a topic that I think would be interesting to a lot of viewers is the concept of neural plasticity. There's a lot of different directions an episode could go with this one. Neural plasticity of learning, or how drugs or neurodegenerative diseases change in terms of plasticity -- for example, when rats are given cocaine it is seen that their brains actually develop more synapses and more dendritic spines, thus leading to sensitization. Fascinating!

    There is actually some website now (wish I could remember the name of it! But it advertises on SciShow or CrashCourse, that's how I heard about it) which is based on the concept of neural plasticity and how their games can help your brain become more efficient at problem solving.. or something. I wish I knew more about it; I'm not sure how credible it may or may not be, but it's an interesting idea at very least! :)

    If there are any other nerdfighter neuroscientists around, you're welcome to send me a message! :p I'd love to geek out with you.
    Learning sounds like a fascinating topic for SciShow. If they did just a series on how the brain works, I would be super excited.
  • What if there were more videos featuring famous scientists? I'd love to hear interesting stories on some of the more famous faces of science as well as become familiar with some not-as-famous ones.
  • J_J_RoonJ_J_Roon Posts: 32
    edited January 12
    [deleted]
    by J_J_Roon
  • How about the Cavendish Experiment?
    Henry Cavendish conducted a very clever experiment to weigh the world in 1797. He used a torsion balance, 2 small lead balls and 2 huge lead balls of 158 kg (348-pounds). Based upon the rotation of the torsion balance, he could work out what the attraction force was between the balls, and measure the mass of the earth. 

    It's a bit of astronomy, it's a bit of physics, it's a lot of genius.

    Btw. Henry Cavendish didn't invent the measuring device, so there's a bit of credit spreading to be done as well.

    Also: @J_J_Roon Negative Kelvin is also very interesting, and even after reading into it I don't fully understand it yet, so definitely a good idea!
  • Space Junk: this came up in my Space Dynamics class, so I have been reading up a lot on it.

    In the last 5-10 years, there has been a lot of talk about all of the debris in orbit, the threat they pose to satellites, craft, and astronauts, and how to go about removing them. Solutions have included laser systems, garbage-collecting robots, and tungsten dust clouds. A lot of the space debris has come from previous collisions of objects; there is the idea of Kessler Syndrome, that a chain reaction of collisions causing debris causing more collisions wipes out all low Earth orbiting objects. So yeah, there's that.
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  • FilliamHMuffmanFilliamHMuffman Posts: 46 ✭✭
    J_J_Roon said:
    How about a  scishow video explaining negative kelvin temperature? Someone mentioned negative kelvin temperatures in the "Politics and current events" subforum of general discussion.
    That may be beyond the ability of SciShow to convey in a simple explanation. The confusion of negative temperatures partly comes from the mainstream understanding of temperature being representative of the kinetic energy of all the particles in the system you have measured. Temperature is actually defined by the relationship of the internal energy and the entropy of a system. Getting past that hurdle may take at least 5 minutes by itself in order to continue onto what a negative temperature actually is.
    "Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."
    "The key thing about all the world's big problems is that they have to be dealt with collectively. If we don't get collectively smarter, we're doomed."
    "The death of a nation is the moment when the public is tricked into believing the cynical position as the reasonable position."
  • NillieNillie Posts: 888 ✭✭✭
    J_J_Roon said:
    How about a  scishow video explaining negative kelvin temperature? Someone mentioned negative kelvin temperatures in the "Politics and current events" subforum of general discussion.
    That may be beyond the ability of SciShow to convey in a simple explanation. The confusion of negative temperatures partly comes from the mainstream understanding of temperature being representative of the kinetic energy of all the particles in the system you have measured. Temperature is actually defined by the relationship of the internal energy and the entropy of a system. Getting past that hurdle may take at least 5 minutes by itself in order to continue onto what a negative temperature actually is.
    I haven't read the forum post, but I suspect it was inspired by the video about it on Sixty Symbols. I don't see why SciShow should need to explain it as well, since, to me at least, it is a subject better suited to the format of Sixty Symbols.
  • MattTheRickerMattTheRicker Posts: 27

    I would like to see Hank explain a bit about how it is possible for there to be a 'short-cut' to the International Space Station. All of the articles that I have read on the topic simply say that they used "complex maneuvers" or something to that effect.

    More here: http://news.discovery.com/space/new-crew-takes-express-lane-to-space-station-130329.htm

  • ThemanTheman Posts: 3
    I would love to see some videos on ecology and how pollution works and how we can help lower it. Ive been in love with ecology ever since the crash course ecology series!!!
  • ThemanTheman Posts: 3
    A video on the great minds of today would ve cool. Something along the lines of Stephen Hawking or Steve Jobs.
  • wrenabirdwrenabird Posts: 5
    I would love an episode exploring ocean currents. Like how the difference between El Nino and La Nina, the currents off the West coast of Chile, other major currents and how they affect the weather patterns of the world. 
  • I'd like to know about Autism and Aspergers Syndrome, and other similar disorders. It's not a very wide topic, I am aware, but I would like a more specific knowledge of what they are and how it impacts life. It just fascinates me how little is known (or how little I know) about it. 

    Obviously I'm biased because I have Autism. But I think if someone like Hank explains it to me a little I might appreciate it more and be less sceptical about it. It would certainly be a lot better than what everyone I've asked has ever told me: 'you're just under developed' or 'you see the world differently from other people' are just a couple of the great hit records from my life. I'm not complaining. I thoroughly enjoy my wonderful life most of the time. I just think it's rather funny. But I just have too many questions that people can't (or won't) answer directly. It's more of an itch to scratch. 

    How am I under developed? And how do you know I see the world differently? Do you have any experience as an autistic person when they're not being them? No. Because nobody can ever experience another person's life. We all see different colours, we all react to things in different ways depending on how our lives are lived. Each one of us is collectively unique.

    I know this is an odd and selfish request but I really want to know who I am, and why I react to certain things in certain ways. I know nobody can't help me completely figure it out but maybe if someone can give me a little push in the right direction, I'd feel better. :)
  • im1000applesim1000apples Posts: 16
    J_J_Roon said:
    How about a  scishow video explaining negative kelvin temperature? Someone mentioned negative kelvin temperatures in the "Politics and current events" subforum of general discussion.
    Sixtysymbols did a video on that
    image
  • EddiPooEddiPoo UtahPosts: 8
    I would love to see a video on why polar bears don't need to drink water. I mean it makes sense because a lot of the water is frozen most of the year, but still. From what I understand, they have evolved so that their body uses a chemical reaction to get water from the blubber that it eats. It just sounds weird and I would love some further explanation on this. :)
  • DinoDudeDillonDinoDudeDillon Posts: 13
    I'd like to see an episode on graphene. Also anything to do with Dinosaurs, although those episodes are the ones I'm the most critical of.
  • OlleOlle Posts: 289 ✭✭✭
    I'd like to know about Autism and Aspergers Syndrome, and other similar disorders. It's not a very wide topic, I am aware, but I would like a more specific knowledge of what they are and how it impacts life. It just fascinates me how little is known (or how little I know) about it. 

    Obviously I'm biased because I have Autism. But I think if someone like Hank explains it to me a little I might appreciate it more and be less sceptical about it. It would certainly be a lot better than what everyone I've asked has ever told me: 'you're just under developed' or 'you see the world differently from other people' are just a couple of the great hit records from my life. I'm not complaining. I thoroughly enjoy my wonderful life most of the time. I just think it's rather funny. But I just have too many questions that people can't (or won't) answer directly. It's more of an itch to scratch. 

    How am I under developed? And how do you know I see the world differently? Do you have any experience as an autistic person when they're not being them? No. Because nobody can ever experience another person's life. We all see different colours, we all react to things in different ways depending on how our lives are lived. Each one of us is collectively unique.
    Great idea for a topic, not selfish at all; given the amount of stereotypes and prejudice you clearly run into in your life, it's obvious that the public could use a little education on this matter.

    I think "under-developed" is a misleading term to use about autistic people; for one thing, it detracts from how autistic people frequently outperform non-autistic people in certain mental tasks (many supremely intelligent people have Asperger syndrome, for example). "Differently-developed" might be more accurate. There's actually quite a lot of research on how autistic brains develop and behave differently from non-autistic brains. Wikipedia might be a good place to start if you're interested, although that particular article is really dense.

    Everyone is unique in how they see the world, but psychiatric diagnosis is all about putting people into groups to understand them better. Obviously we can't know what it's like to be another person, but we can say that autistic people tend to respond to the world differently from non-autistic people, if nothing else. =)
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  • cookiefiendcookiefiend Posts: 114 ✭✭✭
    edited September 2013
    I shall hereby cast my vote for computer science! There are tons of resources on the internet for anyone who wants to learn to program, but the science of computers and computing actually happens in and around the programming, that programming itself is just a tool, and the interesting stuff comes from the underlying intricacy of how the machinery works, and how we work with it. I've noticed, in my time studying CS, that not many people understand that when they start out.
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  • JoeOfNerdJoeOfNerd Cornwall, EnglandPosts: 2
    I would love to see more Physics related stuff and stuff related to new tech and the physics behind them.
  • gravitongraviton Truro, Cornwall, United KingdomPosts: 3
    An episode on superfluids? They're pretty froody things...
    "Science is but a perversion of itself unless it has as its ultimate goal the betterment of humanity." - Nikola Tesla

    "On the infrequent occasions when I have been called upon in a formal place to play the bongo drums, the introducer never seems to find it necessary to mention that I also do theoretical physics" - Richard Feynman
  • JasmineSkunkJasmineSkunk South Bend, IndianaPosts: 92 ✭✭
    edited October 2013
    It would be really cool if we could get a simplified explanation of string theory :3
    I saw a video of Professor Brian Cox attempting that very thing once while discussing quantum theory in a BBC special titled, " A Night with the Stars". Though you will find some people have slightly disagreed with some of his statements, it does do a fairly good job of explaining things in a somewhat simplified way. It's easy to watch, too. Here it is if anyone is interested:


    edit: I just re-watched this and discovered I am a little bit mistaken. He only covers quantum theory in the above video... but it's still really good, so I'm leaving it up. I will keep looking for something good on string theory, though. ;-)
    by JasmineSkunk
  • MadScientistMadScientist Lawrence, KSPosts: 32 ✭✭
    How about a show on how biologists are using gamers to solve problems? Like the protein structure from HIV that was solved by gamers in 10 days after researchers spent 10 years trying to get the structure.
  • JasmineSkunkJasmineSkunk South Bend, IndianaPosts: 92 ✭✭
    How about a show on how biologists are using gamers to solve problems? Like the protein structure from HIV that was solved by gamers in 10 days after researchers spent 10 years trying to get the structure.
    Hey!! I know about that! 


    Also, for gamer inspiration, here is an awesome TED talk by Jane McGonigal:


    Sorry... you just inspired me to share...lol
  • KariklarinettKariklarinett Pentagon, NorwayPosts: 17
    All the weird things that live within the eukaryotes. We think of fungi, plants and animals, but there is so much more! So much more! Some have scales that look like pin-wheels, some can swim, some have thread like tentacles, some lack mitochondria!

    Also: Nitrogen cycle :D Not covered well enough in Crash Course. 
    I believe in dragons, good men and other fantasy creatures.

  • gerenjiegerenjie Posts: 64 ✭✭
    Something on silicon aerogel would be cool, it's a really amazing substance.
  • quarkygirlquarkygirl Posts: 2
    It would be cool to do something about stars. Or just astrophysics.
  • cookiefiendcookiefiend Posts: 114 ✭✭✭
    How about a show on how biologists are using gamers to solve problems? Like the protein structure from HIV that was solved by gamers in 10 days after researchers spent 10 years trying to get the structure.
    Hey!! I know about that! 


    Also, for gamer inspiration, here is an awesome TED talk by Jane McGonigal:


    Sorry... you just inspired me to share...lol
    Jane McGonigal has multiple talks (I have seen two) on the general topic of why games make the world better. I shared them with my students during game design week at the CS summer camp I taught last summer. They were a big hit :)
    In masks outrageous and austere the years go by in single file; but none has merited my fear, and none has quite escaped my smile.
  • BH622BH622 BaltimorePosts: 128 ✭✭
    I'm a planetary scientist, and I'd love to see you discuss the Earth's structure. Plate tectonics as a theory is only a few decades old, with a lot of unanswered questions (like are the plates primarily pushed apart at the divergent boundaries or pulled down at the convergent boundaries?) 

    Additionally, the crust, which is what we are all the most familiar with, is compositionally different from the mantle and core, and in terms of relative sizes is like a sheet of paper wrapped around a bowling ball. 

    One of the most interesting tie ins with the idea of tectonics is that the Earth is the only planet (including moons of the gas giants) in the solar system that exhibits this kind of behavior, and it has played a drastic role in everything from evolution to the climate of the planet.

    And the geodynamo! French the Llama, the geodynamo. The core of the Earth is an incredible mystery that we are unraveling. First, the geodynamo is the motion of the molten iron-nickel of the outer core that is swirling around and causes the Earth's magnetic field. But the core is solidifying from the inside out, with the solid inner core encroaching on the molten outer core, which will cease the geodynamo. And it's growing lopsided! one hemisphere is cooling and solidifying faster than the other, and we don't know why! Also, there have been times throughout history that the geodynamo has reversed polarity, during the transition of which the magnetic field around the planet goes bananas. and guess what? We're overdue for such a shift!

    So yeah. I'd love to see you talk about this stuff. : )
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