TED-Ed

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The surprising secrets of hummingbird flight - Kristiina J. Hurme and Alejandro Rico-Guevara

Dig into the incredible fighting, feeding, and flying capabilities of hummingbirds. -- In just a matter of seconds, hummingbirds can perform astonishing aerial acrobatics, eat lunch in midair, pollinate a flower, even escape threats while upside-down. And they can do this all while achieving sustained hovering flight— an aerial feat no other bird...

Why good ideas get trapped in the valley of death— and how to rescue them

Explore why zero-carbon technologies are vulnerable to the valley of death in product development and how we can change it. -- All new products must pass through the "valley of death" before they reach the market. Many never make it out, and sometimes that’s ok— if they don’t work, don’t fill a need, or for any number of reasons. One of the fields...

Can you outsmart the apples and oranges fallacy? - Elizabeth Cox

Dig into the false analogy fallacy, which assumes that because two things share a characteristic, they must be alike in other respects. -- It’s 1997. The United States Senate has called a hearing about global warming. Some expert witnesses point out that past periods in Earth’s history were warmer than the 20th century. Because such variations...

How does ultrasound work? - Jacques S. Abramowicz

Discover how scientists and doctors used bats' ultrasound capabilities as inspiration for SONAR and non-invasive medical procedures. -- In a dark cave, bats can’t see much. But even with their eyes shut, they can navigate rocky topography at incredible speeds. This is because bats aren't just guided by their eyes, but rather, by their ears. It...

A brief history of the devil - Brian A. Pavlac

Download a free audiobook version of "Devil in the White City" and support TED-Ed's nonprofit mission: https://www.audible.com/ted-ed -- Satan, the beast crunching sinners’ bones. Lucifer, the fallen angel. Mephistopheles, the trickster striking deals. These three divergent devils are all based on Satan of the Old Testament. But unlike any of...

Why every world map is wrong - Kayla Wolf

Dig into the inaccuracies of flat maps and how different map designs can shift our point of view. -- Fourteen Greenlands could fit in Africa— but you wouldn’t guess it from most maps of the world. The fact is, every world map humans have ever made is wrong. Actually, it’s impossible to make a flat map of the whole spherical world 100% right. So...

Can you solve the fantasy election riddle? - Dennis E. Shasha

Practice more problem-solving at https://brilliant.org/TedEd -- After much debate, the realm has decided dragon jousting may not be the best way to choose its leaders, and has begun transitioning to democracy. Your company was hired to survey the citizens of the land and predict which candidate will win. There’s a lot riding on this: if you get...

Ugly History: The Spanish Inquisition - Kayla Wolf

Dig into the era of the Spanish Inquisition, when the Catholic Church was charged with rooting out and punishing heresy. -- In 1478, Pope Sixtus IV issued a decree authorizing the Catholic monarchs, Ferdinand and Isabella, to root out heresy in the Spanish kingdoms. The inquisition quickly turned its attention to ridding the region of people who...

What’s the best fuel for your car?

Dig into which fuel— gasoline, electric, biofuels, or electrofuels— is both affordable for consumers and sustainable for the planet. -- Historically, most cars have run on gasoline, but that doesn’t have to be the case in the future: other liquid fuels and electricity can also power cars. So what are the differences between these options? And...

A brief history of antidepressants - Neil R. Jeyasingam

Dig into the discovery of antidepressant drugs, how they work, and what we still don’t know about depression. -- In the 1950s, the discovery of two new drugs sparked what would become a multi-billion dollar market for antidepressants. Neither drug was intended to treat depression at all— many doctors and scientists believed psychotherapy was the...

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