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You know those YouTube channels where everything is so entertaining that you can kid yourself into believing you’re learning while getting no work done? I can’t really think of many better examples than Veritasium.

Derived from the Latin word “veritas” meaning truth, Veritasium fits right in with animated science show AsapSCIENCE Test Your Hearing Age & Other Fun Science Videos With AsapSCIENCE [Stuff to Watch] Test Your Hearing Age & Other Fun Science Videos With AsapSCIENCE [Stuff to Watch] Striking the balance between education and entertainment (go on, use the word edutainment, I dare you) is difficult, but many have achieved it. AsapSCIENCE is another channel that fuses short bursts of truly interesting knowledge... Read More VICE’s science arm Motherboard Motherboard: Films Exploring Science, Tech & Humanity With Vice [Stuff to Watch] Motherboard: Films Exploring Science, Tech & Humanity With Vice [Stuff to Watch] If you love VICE magazine, then you will probably like Motherboard, Vice's new home for all things technology and science related. With viewer discretion advised, here's a smattering of my favourite Motherboard shows. Read More  and the Royal Institution’s online demonstrations Watch Scientific Demonstrations, Discussions & More from The Royal Institution [Stuff to Watch] Watch Scientific Demonstrations, Discussions & More from The Royal Institution [Stuff to Watch] The Royal Institution is an independent British charity dedicated to connecting people with the world of scientific study, and it also happens to be the oldest independent research body in existence. For more than 200... Read More . Derek Muller, the channel’s host, conducts the experiments you wish your science teacher would have done, while asking enough questions to make sure you learn something in the process.

Can Silence Actually Drive You Crazy?

An anechoic chamber is designed to dampen echoes using specially shaped foam that absorbs high frequencies, and bounces low ones indefinitely until they are lost within the material. The world’s so-called quietest room is one of these chambers in Minneapolis, which prompted Derek to hop on over to Brigham Young University to test out theirs.

According to many shared articles online, just 30 minutes in one of these rooms has been said to drive a person crazy. While this isn’t quite the world’s quietest room, it’s pretty close, so it’s time to put the theory behind insanity and quietness to the test.

Why Do Venomous Animals Live in Warm Climates?

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Mexico, Brazil and Australia are full of venomous creatures that may or may not want to eat you, but why? What is the link between the world’s most deadly spiders, snakes and insects and warm climates? The answer, or rather, the unravelling of the belief might just surprise you.

Derek, being a Canadian-Australian, was perplexed by the difference in the two countries most dear to him, so he travelled to Australia to ask some of the most knowledgeable snake and spider experts what they think has contributed to the global distribution of venomous snakes.

The Anti-Gravity Wheel

In one of the best YouTube videos I’ve watched all year, Derek experiments with his custom-made anti-gravity wheel which he is barely able to move while stationary. The wheel itself weighs 19KG, yet after spinning it up to a speed of a couple of thousand RPM, the flywheel takes on a completely new property – vastly reduced weight and increased maneuverability.

The answer lies deep within the theory of gyroscopic precession, whereby the wheel’s weight creates a torque that pushes it round in a circle, rather than pulling it down to the ground.

Facebook Fraud

In August 2013 Facebook deleted more than 83 million fake accounts, which made up for roughly 9% of the social network’s total population. The effects of this were seen throughout the social web via a diminished growth rate for pages, but Facebook didn’t actually remove the previous Likes.

This problem snowballs when you throw Facebook advertising into the mix, particularly with relation to Facebook’s page ranking algorithms. In the end it all boils down to a bit of a scam, and one that Facebook seems perfectly happy to live with as they are making bank while doing so.

The Most Amazing Thing About Trees

Trees are awesome, we should probably plant a few more simply to bask in their many awesome qualities – like their ability to seemingly defy science by delivering water to their leaves at heights exceeding 100 metres. Using a vacuum to suck water up a tube at heights of greater than 10m will cause it to spontaneously boil, which is bad news for plants, so how do they do it?

The answer involves plenty of science, and some negative pressure that’s directly proportionate to the tree’s height. Of course, I’m massively over-simplifying a detailed explanation, so click play above and find out for yourself.

Making Solid Nitrogen

It’s possible to boil water at room temperature provided the pressure is low enough, a phenomena caused by the fastest molecules escaping which essentially leaves the slowest ones behind. This actually results in a cooling of the liquid, despite the fact that it is for all intents and purposes “boiling”.

When applied to liquid nitrogen, the process actually causes solid nitrogen to form where the pressure is lowest. Add it to water and you’ve got a recipe for solid CO2 – beautiful stuff!

The Rest

Keep telling yourself “there’s nothing wrong with procrastination provided I’m actually learning something” while you subscribe to Veritasium on YouTube. You’d be forgiven for getting very little done while you browse through the back catalogue of questions answered.

If this sort of thing appeals, don’t forget to check out science labs on YouTube 3 US Science Labs You Can Follow On YouTube [Stuff to Watch] 3 US Science Labs You Can Follow On YouTube [Stuff to Watch] It's unfair to expect a simple home physics enthusiast build their own particle accelerator, and for experiments on this scale we're lucky enough to have some of the United States' top scientific facilities showcasing their... Read More , home-made “extreme” science Don't Try This At Home! Extreme Science Experiments With Photonicinduction [Stuff to Watch] Don't Try This At Home! Extreme Science Experiments With Photonicinduction [Stuff to Watch] The combination of YouTube, scientists and the quest for rating often makes for explosive results, whether it's a running joke about being terrible at science or zero-gravity experiments that look incredible. This week's Stuff to... Read More , and Don Pettit’s zero-gravity experiments Science In Space: The Zero-Gravity Experiments of Don Pettit [Stuff to Watch] Science In Space: The Zero-Gravity Experiments of Don Pettit [Stuff to Watch] NASA astronaut Don Pettit has spent a total of 370 days in space, with his most recent off-world duty ending this July after spending nearly 6 months aboard the International Space Station. In addition to... Read More aboard the space station.