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Which animal has the best eyesight? - Thomas W. Cronin

Explore the incredible diversity of eyes and vision in the animal kingdom, and find out which creature has the best eyesight. -- The animal kingdom boasts an incredible diversity of eyes. Some rotate independently while others have squiggly-shaped pupils. Some have protective lids, others squirt blood. But which creature has the best sight? Which...

Can you solve the birthday cake riddle? - Marie Brodsky

Practice more problem-solving at https://brilliant.org/TedEd -- Your friend’s birthday is tomorrow, and he’s turning… well… you’ve forgotten. A ginormous cake has been prepared and your job is to sculpt his age as the chocolate centerpiece. The birthday boy is a giant, and you’re afraid that if your forgetfulness becomes known, you’ll become part...

The tragic myth of the Sun God's son - Iseult Gillespie

Dive into the Greek myth of Helios and Phaethon, where the Sun God allows his mortal son to drive his chariot for a day. -- Every morning, Helios unleashed his golden chariot, and set out across the sky. As the Sun God transformed dawn into day, he thought of his son, Phaethon, below. To prove to Phaethon that he was truly his father, Helios decided...

Why do cats have vertical pupils? - Emma Bryce

Dive into the incredible diversity of animal pupils, and how the different shapes indicate the animal’s role in an ecosystem. -- Peering into the eyes of different animals, you’ll see some extraordinarily shaped pupils. House cats, for one, are twilight hunters with vertically elongated pupils. Many grazing animals, like goats, have rectangular...

Why is it so hard to escape poverty? - Ann-Helén Bay

Explore the paradox of welfare programs, and learn how they inadvertently reinforce generational poverty, and what we can do to fix them. -- Imagine that you’ve been unemployed for months. Government benefit programs have helped you cover your expenses, but you’re barely getting by. Finally, you receive a paycheck— but there’s a catch. Your new...

The myth of Loki’s monstrous children - Iseult Gillespie

Download a free audiobook version of “Where the Crawdads Sing“ and support TED-Ed's nonprofit mission: https://www.audible.com/ted-ed -- Odin, the king of Asgard, was plagued by nightmares. Three fearsome figures haunted his dreams: a massive, writhing shadow; a shambling, rotting corpse; and worst of all, a monstrous beast with a deadly bite....

Why is the Mona Lisa so famous? - Noah Charney

Discover what factors helped Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” become the world’s most famous painting. -- More than 500 years after its creation, Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” is arguably the world’s most famous painting. Many scholars consider it an outstanding work of Renaissance art— but history is full of great paintings. So, how did this...

Blood, concrete, and dynamite: Building the Hoover Dam - Alex Gendler

Dig into the engineering of the Hoover Dam, a concrete arch-gravity dam on the Colorado River that supplies water to the US southwest. -- In the early 20th century, the US had expanded from coast to coast, but many cities in the southwest still lacked reliable water sources. The Colorado River's erratic flow and frequent floods made it unreliable...

You can only save one— who do you choose? - Doug MacKay

Puzzle through the ethical dilemma where two ships are in distress but you can only save one, and decide: which do you choose? -- You are the captain of an interstellar cargo transport headed to port when you receive two distress calls. The first is from a labor ship, whose passengers are running out of oxygen. The other from a luxury space cruiser...

The dark history of Mount Rushmore - Ned Blackhawk and Jeffrey D. Means

Uncover the hidden history of the building of Mount Rushmore, and how its creation destroyed sacred Native American land. -- Between 1927 and 1941, workers blasted 450,000 tons of rock from a mountainside using chisels, jackhammers, and dynamite. Gradually, they carved out Mount Rushmore. Today, the monument draws nearly 3 million people to South...

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