Monday, July 20, 2009

The Mother Lode of Science Playlists

This youtube channel by user zuke696 has one of the most comprehensive science playlists ever... click here!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Online documentaries

Here is a great site that links to online documentaries on almost any category, it is called John Locker. This is their blurb... was started in April of 2008 to help students, teachers, educators, and the public get educated on a variety of topics. As the first user powered online learning network, you can expect to come away with knowledge that both challenges and empowers you.

By harnessing the power of social communities and video sharing, is able to provide the best documentaries and educational videos found on the web. It is our goal to make the process of watching, adding, rating, and discussing the videos as simple as possible.

Every video on was added by people just like you. By clicking "Add Video", you can instantly import any video from YouTube, Google Video, Veoh, MegaVideo, and DailyMotion by simply copying and pasting the URL of the video.

Please help grow by telling all your friends and relatives where they can educate themselves online for free. Without all of you, JohnLocker couldn't provide the videos and documenataries you see today.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Professional learnings

The "in plain English" series of youtubes are a great way to learn more about web 2.0. For the whole list click here!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Free online documentaries

The site is called and they have a free speech adgenda. Most of the stuff has a fair bit of political, moral, religious etc bias... but tonnes to browse through and most are downloadable.

Psychology Cognition

I have been researching youtubes to use in my upcoming topic of cognition

Person swap.

Subliminal messages.

Photographic Memory


(Although I am finding the photographic memory one a bit hard to believe... anyone seen where I put my car keys??)

Saving Youtubes

Hopefully you have been checking out youtube content that is available in easy to digest portions that is the same size as the average teenagers attention span. Saving them can be a pain... but hurt no more!
The first thing you need to do is to download a free browser Mozilla Firefox. Personally i have ditched Internet Explorer altogether. IE is not the best browser, it just comes bundled with Windows and Bill Gates has already got into big trouble for his anticompetitive strategies of not making IE separate from Windows. I was having problems with IE accepting my cookies (no cookie monster) and so I downloaded Mozilla Firefox, a free, open source browser. Firefox looks not unlike IE, so it is no real change, although you may notice that Firefox crashes less often. (I haven't had one crash so far) It is perfectly ok to run both browsers if you wish, they don't conflict with each other in any way.

Then download a Firefox add on, Downloadhelper.
It puts a button on your tool bar that becomes animated when video content is on the screen.

Then you visit whatever site with embedded video content. You click the drop down menu next to the pretty button and choose which video you wish and voila! Firefox's download manager starts downloading the file! Nicely named whatever youtube called it!

Make sure you place it on your school server for all staff to access.

4 Corners Online

You can watch over 40 ABC's Four Corners episodes online, streamed Flash Video or windows media format... they also have my favourites Peak Oil (10) and a doco on Crystal Meth (9).


National Geographic documentary on the "Hobbit", Homo Florensis.

Horizon Documentary on the "hobbit".

First Contact, a look at tourists being taken to view previously undiscovered tribes in PNG.

Ape to Man
documentary of human evolution.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Ephemeral Content

Youtubes come and youtubes go. You would be sure to click on a link and come up with a message "This video has been removed by the user" or "this video violated copyright"... so what to do then? Just search using the key words of the documentary or series... it is likely that you will find what you have been looking for. Feel free to leave me with a comment so i know the links are broken.

My picks for today

BBC Memory Documentary

Supersize me

The Invaluable Potato

The Problems of Sustainable Fishing (BBC)

The Brain - Memory

Maths Documentaries

Personally I have a love/hate relationship with maths. I find some of it fascinating, a lot of it useful (especially in physics) and yet years of dull mathematics taught by dull teachers left me with a dislike of mathematics.

However there are plenty of docos that can bring maths to life. i have already blogged about N is a Number, How Kevin Bacon Cured Cancer and Dangerous Knowledge.

Here is a multipart documentary by the BBC..The Story of Maths

Monday, June 29, 2009

Nature's Great Events

I have been watching a great series called Nature's Greatest Events on ABC iview, if you have broadband I recommend you have a look. However if your bandwidth is a little tighter you can always watch (or download from) youtube... so click here.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Easy to upload youtube

Today was a grey winters Saturday so i decided to do science experiments with my children. My daughter grabbed her cheapish camera, we took some video and some stills. Then we put the files onto my computer. With Windows Movie Maker (proprietary software but came shipped with my machine) and a little editing this is the result. When saving the finished product i selected the lowest "Media Windows Low Bandwidth" so it would be small enough to upload to youtube. Sadly the quality was much better than this originally, but to make it small enough to fit down the pipes you have to compromise on quality.

Then to youtube and selected upload.. and voila, my first youtube. Just click on the embedded product below.

I always pause youtubes at the start as I have sluggish broadband, then wait for them to load to watch in a continuous uninterrupted stream.

Methylated Spirits Rocket...

More Youtube Documentaries

I have always found reading somewhat laborious - my hyperactive brain just wants to cut to the chase. So I relate quite well to the internet generation which I am charged with teaching. Youtube is like an intellectual candy store for me... I run amok trying to find new documentaries that engage, entertain and inform my brain, and I hope you are also stimulated by my latest finds...

BBC Horizon - Genie (Deprived Girl)
BBC Horizon - Human vs 2.0
Arthur C Clark - Fractals, the Colours of Infinity
Most of the Universe is Missing
The World According to Monsanto
God on the Brain
The Oil Crash
The Corporation
Happiness Machines
Antidepressant Documentary
Animal Pharm
Bomb Harvest
Nanotechnology : The Dark Secret of Hendrich Schon
What on Earth is wrong with Gravity?
How Kevin Bacon cured Cancer
BBC series: The Human Mind - Get Smart

Science Documentaries on tap

Youtube is a treasure trove of documentaries. Downloaded using download helper and mozilla firefox (especially if you have slow internet) makes for smooth viewing. See my blog for downloading youtubes. They come in parts due to youtube's size requirements.
Here are some things I have watched of late and would certainly appreciate hearing of any other documentaries.

Absolute Zero
Dangerous Knowledge
Daniel Tammut - the boy with the amazing brain
Fermat's Last Theorem
N is a number (Paul Erdos)
The End of Oil
The Secret Life of the Brain
Who killed the Electric Car

On Google Video they don't have a size requirement so you can watch the whole documentary
Understanding Time
Sicko (Michale Moore on the US health system)
Einstein's Unfinished Symphony

Happy watching! Start with Absolute Zero... it is excellent!

Of coourse you could just visit my favourite youtube user New Scientist or How Stuff Works Video

Youtube is more than old ladies falling over.... much, much more.


*Show students everything... anything!
*Are you being asked to teach something beyond your field of expertise?
*Don't know how to use web 2.0 tools?
*What to know, see or understand ANYTHING?

Type in the youtube search box and see for yourself.