Sunday, May 24, 2015

Thursday, April 23, 2015

NOVA: The Great Math Mystery

The Great Math Mystery:
Is math invented by humans, or is it the language of the universe?
Aired April 15, 2015 on PBS

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Yokohama History Museum

Yokohama History Museum
Tsuzuki-Ku, Yokohama City

The museum has relics from pre-historical Jomon, Yayoi and Sekijidai leading up to current times. Adjacent to the museum and opened as the external grounds is an actual Yayoi archaeological dig along with the building rebuilt on the same spots where ancient ones from 2000 years ago once stood. The Yayoi period (弥生時代, Yayoi jidai) is the Iron Age era of early Japan.

Friday, February 13, 2015

PCAST: DARPA Director on DARPA's Mission(s)

DARPA Director Dr. Arati Prabhakar to the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) about DARPA's mission and priorities.
Washington, DC
November 14, 2014

DARPA’s Airborne Launch Assist Space Access program (ALASA)

Launches 100-pound satellites into low Earth orbit within 24 hours of call-up, for less than $1 million per launch.

Sunday, February 08, 2015

American Experience - Last Days in Vietnam

"During the chaotic final days of the Vietnam War, the North Vietnamese Army closes in on Saigon as South Vietnamese resistance crumbles. The United States has only a skeleton crew of diplomats and military operatives still in the country. As Communist victory becomes inevitable and the U.S. readies to withdraw, some Americans begin to consider the certain imprisonment and possible death of their South Vietnamese allies, co-workers, and friends. Meanwhile, the prospect of an official evacuation of South Vietnamese becomes terminally delayed by Congressional gridlock and the inexplicably optimistic U.S. Ambassador. With the clock ticking and the city under fire, a number of heroic Americans take matters into their own hands, engaging in unsanctioned and often makeshift operations in a desperate effort to save as many South Vietnamese lives as possible."

NOVA - First Man On The Moon

"He risked his life for the nation and became a world icon, but who was Neil Armstrong?
Aired December 3, 2014"

"Everyone knows Neil Armstrong was the first to set foot on the moon. But this modest and unassuming man was determined to stay out of the spotlight. Now, for the first time, NOVA presents an intimate portrait of Armstrong through interviews with his family and friends, many of whom have never spoken publicly before. Discover and relive Armstrong's achievements before and after Apollo, from his time as a Navy combat veteran and later as a pioneer of high-speed flight to his leading role in the inquiry into the Challenger disaster and his efforts to encourage young people to take to the skies. Along the way, we learn how Armstrong's life became the inspiring story of heroic risk-taking and humble dedication that ultimately advanced humanity's adventure in space."

Thursday, January 15, 2015

This American Life #544: Batman

This American Life
544: Batman
January 9, 2015

"Can other people's expectations of you alter what you can do physically? Alix Spiegel and Lulu Miller of NPR's new radio show and podcast Invisibilia investigate that question – specifically, they look into something that sounds impossible: if people’s expectations can change whether a blind man can see."

I found this show extremely fascinating. I believe people's expectations affect those with sight too. I couldn't help think of how common expectations and people treat each other might affect how well they cope with life, whether that be family, romance, or discrimination in general. Listen to this and it may be true for us all, treat people in a way that leads them in the direction of self confidence, not false dependency.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Christopher Nolan - Interstellar (2014)

Interstellar is a 2014 science fiction film directed by Christopher Nolan. The film features a crew of astronauts who travel through a wormhole in search of a new home for humanity. Not just science fiction, also based on real science facts.

PRI Science Friday - Into the Wormhole: The Science of 'Interstellar'
NOV. 21, 2014

Colbert Report Finale - "We'll Meet Again", Obama does 'The Decree'

An amazing number of famous folks. A sudden where are they now; onstage all at once.

PBS - The Sixties: The Years That Shaped a Generation (2005)

PBS - The Sixties: The Years That Shaped a Generation (2005)

Get Lucky - 2014 MTV Music Awards

Get Lucky - 2014 MTV Music Awards
Daft Punk, Stevie Wonder, Nile Rogers and Pharrell: Amazing performance.

Happy - 86th Academy Awards

Because I'm happy.


25th Rock and Roll Hall of Fame - Gimme Shelter

U2, Mick Jagger, Fergie - "Gimmer Shelter" at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25th Anniversary Shows

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Winter Solstice 2014

A natural holiday. Happy New Year.

Winter solstice is an astronomical phenomenon which marks the shortest day and the longest night of the year. Winter solstice occurs for the Northern Hemisphere in December and for the Southern Hemisphere in June.

Friday, December 12, 2014

NASA - New Horizons Mission to Pluto and Chiron

"New Horizons is a mission designed to fly by Pluto and its moon Charon and transmit images and data back to Earth. It will then continue on into the Kuiper Belt where it will fly by a one or more Kuiper Belt Objects and return further data."

New Horizons should perform a flyby of the Pluto system on 14 July 2015.

PBS - Richard Pryor Icon

PBS Richard Pryor Icon
November 23, 2014
"About the Program:
Richard Pryor: One of the greatest American comics of all time. His impact on comedy and this generation’s top comedians — who cite Richard as their biggest influence — is unrivaled. He was one of the first black men ever on television. He pioneered a new brand of humor: black man impersonating white man while making fun of himself. And he was a hit. His comedy was universal. His rise to fame was nothing short of miraculous."

Richard Pryor, A Comedy Pioneer Who Was 'Always Whittling On Dynamite'
NPR Fresh Air
December 11, 2014

via Youtube - instead of the the PBS link, firewall, international rights restricted.

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Flowers for Algernon

Flowers for Algernon is a science fiction short story and subsequent novel written by Daniel Keyes. The short story, written in 1958 and first published in the April 1959 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy; Science Fiction, won the Hugo Award for Best Short Story in 1960.

The eponymous Algernon is a laboratory mouse who has undergone surgery to increase his intelligence by artificial means. The story is told by a series of progress reports written by Charlie Gordon, the first human test subject for the surgery, and it touches upon many different ethical and moral themes such as the treatment of the mentally disabled.

I read it when I was 8 years old and now find it analogous to our life experience; attaining everything what life has to offer and losing everything at the end.

Charly - 1968 film starring Cliff Robertson, for which he won the Academy Award for Best Actor. I watched it for the first time last month. At first I thought the film looked dated, but found I loved that the film is set in the Boston, Mass of my youth. 

Thursday, November 27, 2014

BBC - The Planets

BBC The Planets is a 7-hour miniseries produced by the BBC and A&E and released in 1999. It documents the Solar System and its nature, formation, and discovery by humans during the space age. The series of eight episodes includes a substantial amount of archival footage from both the United States and Soviet space programs. It also depicts the Solar System through computer graphics.

Links to full episodes streaming video on Dailymotion, below:

Episode 1: Different World - The first episode covers the early attempts at space travel and the development of rocket technology.

Episode 2: Terra Firma - The story of the terrestrial planets and their exploration.

Episode 3 : Giants Looking at the giant planets of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune and the journeys of Voyager 1 and Voyager 2.

Episode 4 : Moon - Detailing the moon and the race to reach it during the "Space race" years.

Episode 5 : Star - Concentrating on the Sun, the early belief in it being a god and the science behind its behavior.

Episode 6: Atmosphere - A look at the atmosphere of our planet and those in the rest of the Solar System.

Episode 7: Life - A journey into looking for life on other planets and trying to find if life elsewhere really does exist

Episode 8: Destiny - The final episode explores the future of the solar system, plus research into extrasolar planets.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

TED Radio Hour - How It All Began

NPR - TED Radio Hour

How It All Began
October 24, 2014

In this hour, TED speakers explore our origins as a species - who we are, where we come from, where we're headed - and how we're connected to everything that came before us.

Are All Human Beings Related?

Geneticist Spencer Wells describes how he uses DNA samples to trace our individual origins going back 2,000 generations

What Are The Origins Of The Universe?

David Christian explains the history of the universe from the big bang, and how humans occupy little more than a millisecond on that cosmic timeline.

Why Do We Continue To Care About Dinosaurs?

Paleontologist Jack Horner explains what dinosaurs tell us about our own origins and what we can learn by attempting to revive a piece of the past.

Where Did Human Beings Originate?

Louise Leakey describes her family's long search for early human remains in Africa, and how unlocking that mystery is the key to understanding our past and our future.

Why Did Humans Migrate Out Of Africa?

Geneticist Spencer Wells tells the story of early humans, and our eventual migration from Africa.

Are We Evolving Into A Different Species?

Juan Enriquez argues that human evolution is far from over - Homo sapiens are becoming a new species right before our eyes.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

WGBH - Blue Hill Avenue: If A Street Could Speak

Blue Hill Avenue: If A Street Could Speak
Oct. 28, 2010

Audio on

Part One: Blue Hill Avenue, In Truth And Memory
Part Two: Crime -- And Solutions -- On Blue Hill Avenue
Part Three: On Blue Hill Avenue, Community Abounds
Part Four: Blue Hill Avenue Looks Forward

In Detroit there’s 8 mile Road, in Los Angeles there’s Crenshaw, and then there’s Miami Avenue in Miami.  These are considered roads that both divide and connect disparate communities. Some avenues are equated with hard luck, others are known for commerce.

In Boston, there’s Blue Hill Avenue. Many residents who live on and near it argue that the corridor—which runs from Roxbury to Mattapan and through Milton—is unfairly tainted with a reputation for crime. They point to a thriving commercial sector and new projects on the way as evidence of the community’s revitalization.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

National Geographic video: Rise of the Black Pharaohs

PBS: National Geographic, Rise of the Black Pharaohs
Premiered October 1, 2014

"About the Program

The Egypt of the Great Pyramids, the Sphinx, and the Valley of the Kings was an empire of indomitable might. Then, around 800 BC, the impossible happened. Kush, a subject kingdom from the south, rose up and conquered Egypt, enthroned its own Pharaohs, and ruled for nearly 100 years.

These were the mysterious Black Pharaohs of what is today Sudan—the Nubian kings—whose reign has become legendary among Africans and written off as heresy by early archaeologists who refused to believe that dark skinned Africans could have risen so high.

But now, in the heart of Sudan, exciting new archaeological finds are revealing the truth about the great Kush dynasty. A sacred mountain holds the key to the Kush kings’ spiritual claim on the Egyptian throne; stunning statues are providing details about the true color of their skin and their long and prosperous reign; and a long-hidden tomb complex is shedding light on the trappings of their royalty and the extent of their empire."

Friday, September 26, 2014

Ken Burns - THE ROOSEVELTS: An Intimate History

THE ROOSEVELTS: AN INTIMATE HISTORY chronicles the lives of Theodore, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, three members of the most prominent and influential family in American politics. It is the first time in a major documentary television series that their individual stories have been interwoven into a single narrative  This seven-part, fourteen hour film follows the Roosevelts for more than a century, from Theodore’s birth in 1858 to Eleanor’s death in 1962.

Aired the week of September 14, 2014

Episode 1: Get Action (1858-1901)
Episode 2: In the Arena (1901-1910)
Episode 3: The Fire of Life (1910-1919)
Episode 4: The Storm (1920-1933)
Episode 5: The Rising Road (1933-1939)
Episode 6: The Common Cause (1939-1944)
Episode 7: A Strong and Active Faith (1944-1962)

Mount Rushmore National Memorial
South Dakota
(Teddy Roosevelt the third sculpted face)

Crucible of Empire: The Spanish-American War 1999 Film

PBS: Crucible of Empire: The Spanish-American War, 1999 Film
(Entire 2-hour film on Youtube below)

One hundred years ago, United States celebrated victory in the Spanish-American War. Popular songs and headlines popularized Commodore Dewey's victories at sea and Theodore Roosevelt's ride up Kettle Hill. Although the Spanish-American War sparked unprecedented levels of patriotism and confidence, the defeat of the Spanish also raised new questions about the nation's role as a world power.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

American Experience - Freedom Summer

PBS American Experience - Freedom Summer
June 24, 2014

Over 10 memorable weeks in 1964 known as Freedom Summer, more than 700 student volunteers from around the country joined organizers and local African Americans in a historic effort to shatter the foundations of white supremacy in what was one of the nation’s most viciously racist, segregated states.