From encyclopedias to slow-motion videos, live broadcasts of events to found old footage, science lives on YouTube. Not only does this platform provide an accessible way to learn, it’s also interactive: Viewers are able to ask questions and make requests by leaving comments. YouTube videos are also a cool way to find out about technological advancements that may or may not be within your economic reach, or even available in your country. Finally, while some use YouTube as a mere video platform (like universities) to store and share videos with colleagues, other users have embraced this unique way to interact with viewers and have created entire channels to stimulate open conversation.
1) ASAP Science – This Is Your Body Over 24 Hours
With 4 million subscribers, ASAP Science is one of the most popular channels with science-related content. Created in 2012 by two Canadians, Mitchell Moffit and Gregory Brown, this channel answers questions from viewers and provides information on the creator’s’ own research. With truly engaging animations, this duo has established a weekly platform for education by combining quick drawings and a clear narrative.
Due to the virality of the topic, their most popular video is one that solves the questions of THE DRESS. However, many other videos deal with more interesting topics, like the one included in this section.
2) Fine Brothers – Teens React to An Encyclopedia
What did we even do before YouTube?! Well, the Fine Brothers decided to test and enlighten teens on the evolution of learning over the last few decades. Their episodes often compare how different generations react to the same topics. For example, they had elders and children react to the Apple Watch.
In this episode, a group of teens is asked to react to a complete printed encyclopedia. Not surprisingly, some of them remembered using these at some point in elementary school, but have no use for them in their present lives. Beyond the general video and reactions, the Fine Brothers regularly include facts throughout their videos, and always pose interesting questions to those being interviewed.
3) Biomimetic Millisys – Terradynamic Streamlining Inspired by Cockroaches
UC Berkeley has been developing a new robot — the tiniest robot. Inspired by the physical characteristics and movements of a cockroach, the team, lead by Chen Li, has successfully created a small piece of technology capable of maneuvering through and into just about anything, just like a regular roach would. In this video, we see both the inspiration and the final outcome (up until July 2015). However, this robot is also capable of dispatching a second, flying robot called Ornithopter, inspired by the type of aircraft that flies by flapping its wings.
4) People Use A 3D Pen for the First Time – BuzzFeed Blue
We all know that 3-D printing is the future. But have you ever tried a 3D-printing pen? In many ways, the 3-D pen is short of a magic wand; anything you can trace with your hand will appear as a physical object before your eyes! As usual, the BuzzFeed staff was up to the challenge — here’s the result.
5) How to See Without Glasses – Minute Physics
Similar to ASAP Science, this channel explores those itching questions we have, but with a focus on physics-related phenomena. With 2.9 million subscribers, one of their most popular uploads is one we can all relate to: Is It Better to Walk or Run in the Rain? While the creators follow the successful combination of drawing and narration, they also incorporate video, still images, and text when necessary. Photographers watching the video selected for this edition will shake their heads (duh!) but Minute Physics brings the common viewer a trick to see without glasses!