Our Known Universe in Six Minutes

The American Museum of Natural History gives you the whole enchilada in six minutes. The film, moving from Planet Earth to the Big Bang, is part of an exhibition, Visions of the Cosmos: From the Milky Ocean to an Evolving Universe, appearing at the Rubin Museum of Art in Manhattan through May 2010. If you're in New York, consider visiting the Hayden Planetarium and getting the full experience. Learn more about how to visit here.

Thanks @infoman

Ravel’s Bolero

Here we have Daniel Barenboim, the Argentinian conductor, leading the Berlin Philharmonic at Waldbuhne in Berlin, 1998. The clip is already pushing 1,000,000 views on YouTube. Part 1 is above. And Part 2 (already over 1 million views) is here. You can find a released recording on Amazon as well.

Tarantino’s Tops of ’09

Note that one of Quentin Tarantino's very early films (My Best Friend’s Birthday) can be found in our collection of Free Movies Online.

In The Nick of Time: Holiday Book Sampler!

This holiday season, I'm happy to have teamed up with eleven fabulous authors in offering a holiday sampler just for book lovers! Here you'll find excerpts of a dozen new novels and nonfiction books by these New York Times bestselling authors, successful entrepreneurs, and talented storytellers. The excerpts can all be found in this nice PDF. Included you will find:

DOWNLOAD THE IN THE NICK OF TIME! HOLIDAY SAMPLER

Spot a great gift opportunity? Order from online retailers directly from the PDF, or print the order form at the end of the document and present it to your local bookseller. Helpful staff will find what you’re looking for.

Dan Note: Check out Seth's upcoming online writing course at Stanford Continuing Studies. The Essential Art: Making Movies in Your Reader's Mind

Disruptive Technology: Student Brings Typewriter to Class

A little case of disruptive technology in Computer Science 1301 at Georgia Tech...

via Andrew Baron

Sapolsky Breaks Down Depression

Robert Sapolsky, a Stanford biologist, is currently one of the most publicly accessible science writers in the country, perhaps best known for his book on stress, Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers. In the lecture above, Sapolsky takes a hard look at depression. The topic is a little heavy. I'll grant that. But, it's also important. As Sapolsky is quick to point out, depression is pervasive and getting worse. Currently, it's the 4th greatest cause of disability worldwide, and it will soon become the 2nd. For Sapolsky, depression is deeply biological; it is rooted in biology, just like, say, diabetes. Here, you will see how depression changes the body. When depressed, our brains function differently while sleeping, our stress response goes way up 24/7, our biochemistry levels change, etc. Given the pervasiveness of depression, this video is well worth a watch.

Also don't miss Sapolsky's amazing Stanford course, Introduction to Human Biology. It's equally worth your time. It's housed in our collection of 750 Free Courses Online.

The War of the Worlds: Orson Welles’ 1938 Radio Drama That Petrified a Nation

Back in the late 1930s, Orson Welles launched The Mercury Theatre on the Air, a radio program dedicated to bringing dramatic, theatrical productions to the American airwaves. The show had a fairly short run. It lasted from 1938 to 1941. But it made its mark. During these few years, The Mercury Theatre aired The War of the Worlds, an episode narrated by Welles himself that led many Americans to believe their country was under Martian attack. The legendary production was based on H.G. Wells' early sci-fi novel, also called The War of the Worlds, and you can listen to the classic radio production here, or above.

The Mercury Theatre also adapted a series of other major novels, including Dracula, Treasure Island, and The Count of Monte Cristo. And then there's Dickens. In 1938 and 1939, The Mercury Theatre produced two versions of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. In the 1938 version (get mp3), Welles played the role of Scrooge. The 1939 version (mp3) features Lionel Barrymore (yup, the granduncle of Drew Barrymore) playing the same role. You can listen to these shows and others at this web site dedicated to The Mercury Theatre on the Air.

Related Content:

Orson Welles Meets H.G. Wells in 1940: The Legends Discuss War of the Worlds, Citizen Kane, and WWII

The Dead Authors Podcast: H.G. Wells Comically Revives Literary Greats with His Time Machine

Orson Welles Explains Why Ignorance Was the Genius Behind Citizen Kane

Various films directed by (or starring) Orson Welles can be found in our collection of Free Movies Online.

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