YouTube is fantastic.
I find myself at one of those interesting little energy crossroads. I’ve discussed this before and at this point it gets old even mentioning it. Some days I feel like conquering continents and others I can’t be bothered to get out of bed. Brains are interesting little organs, slick sloppy folds passing currents and chemicals promiscuously.
I still can’t have very much coffee, whatever happened to me has taken up residence for the long term. I do hope that aging for me will not be a collection of life long pains, this would be highly unfortunate and I’m just the kind of guy to let it overwhelm me. But I’ve mostly gotten used to my knees so perhaps this pain will just become another thing, a reminder that I still have the faculties to feel pain which I suppose is some kind of victory.
It’s about time to kill Reddit again, I keep hoping to turn to it as a repository of news and information but for the most part it is a time sink and utterly vapid. This is a shame because I have fallen in love with YouTube, which I realize should be the topic for today. Let me discuss some YouTube channels that I think you’d be a better person for seeing.
The first set of shows come from a group of brothers, Hank Green and John Green. Respectively they are known as the “VlogBrothers”. I happened across their channel by accident and it has enriched my life in ways that few other new things do.
The show is basically a series of messages from each brother to the other, they talk about life, love, science, mathematics, history, and anything else that you can think of. They’ve done over a thousand shows and have hundreds of thousands of viewers. All of them earned. But this isn’t their only channel they’ve also got SciShow and Crash Course that I’d like to talk about, these aren’t their only options but are my two favorite.
SciShow is a channel dedicated to the wonderful and ever expanding world of science. Weekly news updates on the latest and greatest discoveries as well as specialized episodes on very fascinating topics. You can easily set this thing to play all and find hours of educational entertainment.
History, Biology, Ecology, and now even Literature. This is one of the most delightful collections of feature length education. They work together with actual educators to provide accurate and fascinating information about each subject in a depth that you have likely never experienced. I’ve watched all of these to completion now and could see myself doing it again. You owe it to yourself to start from the beginning, right now.
Ever wished you could get a full college education without spending a small fortune? Perhaps you want some refreshers on many different topics? The Khan Academy provides in spades, I’ve linked to the YouTube channel but their website is delightful.
BigThink interviews the worlds greatest minds (and occasionally celebrities) on the topics of today. It’s a wonderful channel that provides succinct jewels of knowledge. The university lessons that they have on there are an hour long and utterly pact with information from the absolute best in their fields. I’m only slightly biased since I like almost everyone they’ve chosen as professors.
CGP is one of an interesting collection of individuals who provide succinct lessons on science and mathematics while almost never showing their faces. He’s a bit snarky and has a personality that makes him a delight to listen to. I could say you’d never want to miss one of his videos but I’m not aware of anyone I’ve suggested that this is not true for. CGP is a class act for sure.
Numberphile is a channel for all of those out there that love numbers. Perhaps you don’t think you do, maybe you think Math is boring. Check out this channel right now gosh darnit! Mathematics is a sexy fiend! Don’t be fooled! Your teachers might have made it seem boring, maybe your parents or friends have too, but math is super neat! Numbers are amazing, the way numerals interact is something of divinity. So do it, go check it out, pick a random video and enjoy yourself. Also while you are out it check out their amazingly delightful website. If I catch you not visiting numberphile there might be a problem *flips switchblade*.
This is the channel that started it all. I ended up here after a random web search looking for a picture of the periodic table. I walked in, had a look, and haven’t been able to leave since. The Periodic Table of Videos is one of the best things to ever happen to the internet.
Really? The greatest thing? You sure about that Mike? Yes I am! I used to think YouTube was all about sneezing Pandas and other bullshit. Then I found this channel and started branching out to everyone that was related to it. Now my weeks are enriched with Biology, Physics, History, Economics, Mathematics, Astronomy, and a slew of other topics that all fill my brain with good feelings and enrichment. While you are at it why not drop by their website which is where I ended up, its clever and simple.
Brady is the camera man behind Numberphile, Periodic Table of Videos, and Deep Sky Videos. He has a few others but, much like the VlogBrothers, these are my favorites. However you can do nothing but benefit from checking them all out. The beauty of the great vast darkness of our skies is shown in full on this channel, its great if you get a tingly feeling for telescopes and satellites. If you don’t, you just might after you get subscribed.
This is an interesting channel. Destin is what I like to think of as a redneck scientist. That’s not the word I’m looking for but you’ll understand once you watch. He’s a genuinely entertaining and smart guy that tackles all sorts of topics and subjects you might not have otherwise been interested in. His channel originally was just about whatever but then it seems like one day he decided to set out on a goal. I don’t know what it is necessarily but the name of the channel seems more to me like a goal for Destin and the viewers, to get smarter every day, no matter what.
Subscribe to him, you won’t be disappointed. He has an enthusiasm I wish more people did, he might not be a professor or have a slew of teachers to support his projects but he goes fairly in depth and corrects himself when he makes mistakes.
Much like CPG Grey, MinutePhysics is a great channel for incredibly fast and vivid descriptions of physics. Henry Reich is an incredibly bright fella and you will be hard pressed to find any inaccuracies in the topics that he covers. These are just full of good feelings and information and you will be much less for not having seen them. Give MP a look, the odds of you being disappointed are slim and none.
AsapSCIENCE and MinutePhysics are like two peas in a pod, where MP covers Physics almost exclusively AsapSCIENCE goes all over the spectrum. From morning wood to spider-man, if there is a science behind it you’ll find it getting a quick once over by AsapSCIENCE.
So I wrote this list while listening to T-Pain for the first time in a long time, appropriately enough we’ve hit the song “Change”. With that in mind I would like to present you the final channel suggestion for today and one that will certainly inspire you.
I actually bought their CD twice since I found this channel. MelodySheep is a fantastic source of beautiful music about science. The topics of science are things of wonder and joy and I think that they capture this in a way that few can. Music is a powerful medium and more often than not they nail it with exquisite skill.
I think this is a good note to leave on. The information in these songs sticks with you like Bieber songs, but infinitely less vapid. You’ll find yourself suddenly knowing all the forces, how many particles of matter there are, and further you might find yourself getting intrigued by the clips and hunting down the full lectures. It’s a cascade effect that only has positive outcomes.