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Fractals Hunting the Hidden Dimension

   2010    Science
The ultimate adventure in scientific inquiry, this fascinating program follows the exploits of a small group of pioneering mathematicians who discovered a whole area of study that is revolutionizing all branches of understanding in the world: fractal geometry. Fractals are most recognized as a series of circular shapes with a border surrounded by jagged "tail-like" objects. The program, aimed at the average viewer does a fine job of explaining the background of fractals, first by beginning with the story of Pixar co-founder, Loren Carpenter's work at Boeing, developing 3D terrain from scratch using fractals. From there the program starts at the beginning with an introduction to Benoit Mandelbrot and his revolutionary work. The explanations are full of solid factual information but never talk above the level of a viewer who has some understanding of basic mathematical principles. Once the concept is presented the program spends the rest of the time showing how prevalent the fractal is in life. For a program about a mathematical concept, "Fractals" is very engaging, showing how the process was applied to special effects as far back as the Genesis planet from "Star Trek II" all the way to the spectacular finale on Mustafar in "Star Wars: Episode III." I found myself astonished at how fractals were the source of the lava in constant motion and action during the Obi-Wan/Anakin fight. What is more amazing is when the program delves into practical applications such as cell phone antennas, and eventually the human body. For the average person who enjoys watching science related programs, even on a sporadic basis, "Fractals" will prove to be a very worthwhile experience. The program is well produced, integrating talking head interviews (including some with Mandelbrot himself) with standard "in the field" footage. The structure of the program is very logical and never finds itself jumping around without direction. In simplest terms, this is a program as elegant as the designs it focuses on.

Fusion

   2020    Technology
It is the greatest technological challenge ever undertaken by humankind. The quest to produce the ultimate energy solution, Fusion, a reliable source of clean power. What if we could create here on earth, our very own version of a star, a machine that makes power from nuclear fuel? But so immense are the challenges, the goal of a power-producing fusion reactor has so far remained elusive and out of reach... until now.
Series: Engineering the Future

Ghosts of the Abyss

   2003    Technology    3D
Director James Cameron returns to the site of the 1912 wreck of the RMS Titanic. With a team of history and marine experts he embarks on an unscripted adventure back to the final grave of 1,517 people. Using two small, purpose-built remotely operated vehicles, we can see inside the Titanic and with the help of CGI, view the ship's original appearance superimposed on the deep-dive images. Throughout the movie, there are re-enactments of events that are discussed that use CGI recreations of the interior of the Titanic. The documentary was named one of the Best 3D movies ever by Rolling Stone.

Great Cathedral Mystery

   2014    Art
The dome that crowns Florence's great cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, the Duomo, is a masterpiece of Renaissance ingenuity and an enduring source of mystery. Still the largest masonry dome on earth, it is taller than the Statue of Liberty and weighs as much as an average cruise ship. Historians and engineers have long debated how its architect, Filippo Brunelleschi, kept the dome perfectly aligned and symmetrical as the sides rose and converged toward the center." More than four million bricks could collapse at any moment -- and we still don't understand how Brunelleschi prevented it. To test the latest theories, a team of U.S. bricklayers will help build an experimental "mini-Duomo" using period tools and techniques.

Hunt for the Mars Aliens

   2020    Technology    HD
NASA's brand-new Mars rover is on the hunt for alien life, and with the help of cutting-edge engineering, scientists embark on a search for fossilized remains, which might prove the Red Planet was once home to a vast ocean and extraterrestrial life. Perseverance carries seven scientific instruments to study the Martian surface at Jezero crater. It carries several cameras and two microphones. The rover is accompanied by the helicopter Ingenuity, which will help Perseverance to scout for locations to study.
Series: Space Deepest Secrets
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Elvis Presley: The Searcher

   2018    History
The Last Dance
The Last Dance

   2020    Culture
Building Giants
Building Giants

   2019    Technology
How Earth Made Us
How Earth Made Us

   2010    Culture
Leaving Neverland
Leaving Neverland

   2019    Culture
Cooked
Cooked

   2016    Culture
Planet Earth
Planet Earth

   2007    Nature