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The Language of Science

   2017    History
Physicist Jim Al-Khalili travels through Syria, Iran, Tunisia and Spain to tell the story of the great leap in scientific knowledge that took place in the Islamic world between the 8th and 14th centuries. Its legacy is tangible, with terms like algebra, algorithm and alkali all being Arabic in origin and at the very heart of modern science - there would be no modern mathematics or physics without algebra, no computers without algorithms and no chemistry without alkalis. For Baghdad-born Al-Khalili, this is also a personal journey, and on his travels he uncovers a diverse and outward-looking culture, fascinated by learning and obsessed with science. From the great mathematician Al-Khwarizmi, who did much to establish the mathematical tradition we now know as algebra, to Ibn Sina, a pioneer of early medicine whose Canon of Medicine was still in use as recently as the 19th century, Al-Khalili pieces together a remarkable story of the often-overlooked achievements of the early medieval Islamic scientists.
Series: Science and Islam

The Empire of Reason

   2017    History
Al-Khalili travels to northern Syria to discover how, a thousand years ago, the great astronomer and mathematician Al-Biruni estimated the size of the earth to within a few hundred miles of the correct figure. He discovers how medieval Islamic scholars helped turn the magical and occult practice of alchemy into modern chemistry. In Cairo, he tells the story of the extraordinary physicist Ibn al-Haytham, who helped establish the modern science of optics and proved one of the most fundamental principles in physics - that light travels in straight lines. Prof Al-Khalili argues that these scholars are among the first people to insist that all scientific theories are backed up by careful experimental observation, bringing a rigour to science that didn't really exist before.
Series: Science and Islam

Creatures Of Light

   2016    Nature
In the dark depths of the oceans, nearly 90% of all species light up the darkness from within. These creatures flash, sparkle, shimmer, or simply glow. Whether it’s to scare off predators, fish for prey, or lure a mate, the language of light is everywhere in the ocean depths, and scientists are finally starting to decode it. Discover surprising ways to harness nature’s light—from tracking cancer cells to detecting pollution, lighting up cities, and even illuminating the inner workings of our brains.

Through the Wormhole Season 6: Are We Here for a Reason

   2015    Science
Evolution tells us that all life exists for only one purpose: to reproduce. But is that all there is? How could such a simple imperative lead us to create great art and civilizations? A new theory suggests that instead of passing on genes, our ultimate purpose is to process and pass on information. We are the universe figuring itself out. Scientists dig deep into DNA, chemistry, technology and engineering to find the meaning of life. One thing is certain: living is easier if you find a reason for living.
Series: Through the Wormhole Season 6

How the Universe Built Your Car

   2015    Science
See as never before in this series the inner workings of our world, and explore black holes, supernovae, neutron stars, dark energy, and all the titanic forces that make us. A users guide to the cosmos from the big bang to galaxies, stars, planets and moons. Where did it all come from and how does it all fit together. A primer for anyone who has ever looked up at the night sky and wondered". Beneath the hood of your car lies the history of the Universe. The iron in your chassis, the gold in your stereo and the copper in your electronics all owe their existence to violent cosmic events that took place billions of years ago.
Series: How the Universe Works Season 4
The Universe
The Universe

   2010    Science
The Big Think
The Big Think

   2017    Technology
Everything and Nothing
Everything and Nothing

   2011    Science
Pets: Wild at Heart
Pets: Wild at Heart

   2015    Nature
Neanderthal
Neanderthal

      History
Generation Iron
Generation Iron

   2017    Culture
Earthflight
Earthflight

   2012    Nature