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Understanding is a documentary television series that aired from 1994 to 2004 on TLC. The program covered various things understood from a scientific perspective and was narrated by Jane Curtin and Peter Coyote. It originally aired on TLC and As of 2013 is currently being shown on the Science Channel. The series is presented in a similar fashion to two other programs that also show on the Science Channel, Discover Magazine,


Saisons & épisodes Les résumés de tous les épisodes de Understanding

S01E01 Aliens 00/00/0000
S01E02 Archaeological Mysteries 00/00/0000
S01E03 Ardi 00/00/0000 Paula Zahn and a round table of key scientists discuss the discovery of the Ardipithecus Ramidus skeleton
S01E04 Asteroids 00/00/0000 Explore the history of our near misses and visiting visions of killer rocks in the sky. Follow the NEAR mission, from its beginning to the history-making end when we land the first man made spacecraft on the huge Near asteroid.
S01E05 Beauty 00/00/0000 The collective knowledge of philosophers and mathematicians of the past, as well as modern day artists, scientists, models and musicians form the basis for considering what people find beautiful and why.
S01E06 Bridges 00/00/0000
S01E07 Cars 08/06/2009
S01E08 Caves 15/01/2001 Take a journey into the darkness, deep below the Earth's surface. Discover how caves were formed, learn who has walked their corridors through the ages, and see caves teeming with life that is amazingly different from our sunlit world above. Cities: Experts on subjects ranging from infrastructure to traffic flow explain what it takes to make a city run smoothly. Five cities are studied to see how they work and what gives them their personality.
S01E09 Cities 18/12/2008
S01E10 Extraterrestrials 29/08/1998 Look twenty years into the future for a vision of a world where human beings live, work and play with intelligent computers and robots. Explore fears for the future as machines become more powerful, more present and more intrusive.
S01E11 Cyberworld 2020 20/02/2002 Man has harnessed electrical power to light and fuel the world. Learn what electricity is, where it comes from, and how it works.
S01E12 Electricity 18/02/2009 Examine the theory and scientific developments since Darwin. Explore the Galapagos Islands and the life forms that inspired Darwin's thinking. Hear the John Scopes controversy in Kansas where fundamentalist Christians want to abolish teaching evolution in schools; origin theories, Azee the orangutan, sexual selection, female boxer Bridgett Riley, and genetic engineering. Features interviews with science historian Richard Milner, author Jonathan Weiner, Celera Genomics president J. Craig Venter, evolutionary biologist Rob Shumaker, Pat Pratt, author Richard Dawkins, Los Alamos Labs scientist Bette Korber, USDA scientist Richard Beeman, evolution teaching opposer Linda Holloway and supporter Sue Gamble, Los Alamos Labs geophysicist and religious fundamentalist John Baumgardner, Swami Dheerananda, evolutionary psychologist Geoffrey Miller, author Michael Shermer (Skeptic), Professor of Biology Randy Thornhill, and Ward F. Odenwald.
S01E13 Evolution 01/04/2002 We've seen them in sci-fi movies such as Men In Black. But do they really exist in real life without us knowing about it?
S01E14 Extra Terrestrials 29/08/1998 For centuries people have used fire to sustain life, to worship God, to annihilate enemies and to create technologies that run the world. Discover how both civilization and science was created from playing with fire.
S01E15 Fire 12/02/2010 For centuries people have used fire to sustain life, to worship God, to annihilate enemies and to create technologies that run the world.
S01E16 Flight 20/02/2009 The desire to fly is as old as human culture. Ancient Egyptians studied birds in an attempt to learn how to fly. Centuries later, we were still strapping on wings, jumping off cliffs... and crashing. It took a bit of time, bruised bodies and the occasional death to figure out that we were too heavy and too weak to propel ourselves with flapping wings. But in the last century, our dreams of flight finally became reality. While we haven't grown wings, we have learned how to fly by shaping metal and plastic into machines that take us higher and faster than birds could ever fly or possibly even imagine. Produced and written by Pamela Caragol Narrated by Jane Curtin Photography by Chris Nusbaum Music by Michael Whalen
S01E17 Genes 08/01/2009
S01E18 Ice 08/10/2000 Scientists span the globe to assess global warming's effect on the world's ice and implications for the entire planet. Cryobiologists study animals that survive freezing temperatures and Olympian Kristi Yamaguchi discusses ice in our everyday world.
S01E19 Laughter 30/12/2008 Laughing patterns, how the brain processes a joke, spontaneous laughter infects an African community, the art and craft of humor, faking a smile to reach euphoria. Features interviews by Paul E. McGhee and others.
S01E20 Magnetism 00/00/0000
S01E21 Money 04/12/2003 Money is the most powerful tool that Man has ever invented. It can build and destroy empires, and make people to go to war. Some people even believe that money is the key to happiness. What makes an object money? Where does it come from and who decides?
S01E22 Murder 17/05/2001
S01E23 Mysteries of Memory 15/01/2002 The power, fragility and extraordinary qualities of memory are examined through the stories of an amnesia victim, a Vietnam veteran haunted by images of war and people tricked into altering their memories of critical events.
S01E24 Oceans 06/01/2009 Explore the universe of the ocean. Take the 1960 journey to the deepest part of the ocean, and meet a man who can hold his breath for four minutes while 500 feet underwater.
S01E25 Odds 21/11/1998 The human mind is a complex instrument that often employs the game of odds to guide it in decision-making. Discover how this process works and what beating the odds means in situations from winning the lottery to being struck by lightning.
S01E26 Pyramids 22/04/2001
S01E27 Race 00/00/0000
S01E28 Risk-Takers / Thrill Seekers 23/03/2001 Enter the extreme world of skydivers, big wave riders and wing walkers to discover what pushes these thrill-seekers to the limits of human endurance. Experience the adrenaline rush and learn the vital role this behavior plays in human culture.
S01E29 Skyscrapers 15/10/2000 From the Petronas Towers in Malaysia to the John Hancock Center of Chicago, see how the world's tallest structures are designed to handle high winds, earthquakes and fire. Computer graphics illustrate their inner workings and points of vulnerability.
S01E30 Sleep 21/10/2000 Most people think they can sleep enough to get by, but few realize it is regulated and required by the brain at any cost. Sleep patterns and habits can be modified and manipulated to better fit our needs, but sleep and wake are in a delicate balance.
S01E31 Space Travel 15/01/2009 How do we get people into outer space? An astronaut describes her experiences, scientists explain rocket science, including propulsion, gravity and thrust, and engineers discuss the future of space travel. Astronauts Buzz Aldrin, Winston E. Scott, Story Musgrave, and Shannon Lucid talk about the excitement and wonder of space travel; actor/director Ron Howard explains how the crew simulated weightlessness in the film Apollo 13; science fiction authors Arthur C. Clarke and Charles Sheffield discuss the human longing to understand and explore the universe; and NASA administrator Daniel Goldin talks about the present and future of the U.S. space program.[
S01E32 Television 16/01/2009 Television has become the dominant form of mass communication providing a source of immediate information and entertainment. Learn how it works and the tricks of the trade used to create programming.
S01E33 The Amazing Brain 05/02/2002 The brain's intricate organization is revealed through real-life stories of a teenager with an off-the-charts IQ and a child with half his brain removed to control seizures. Innovative medical tools, including 3-D imaging, track the brain in action.
S01E34 The Paranormal 00/00/0000
S01E35 The Power of Genes 29/06/2002 The 21st century has been heralded as "the biotech century," but what does this mean? From Dolly the cloned sheep to DNA forensic work, genetic engineering has dramatic implications for society.
S01E36 The Senses 19/01/2009 The world, as we know it, is shaped by our senses. The biological processes that allow us to see, hear, smell, taste and touch are incredibly complex. Scientists examine our senses and medical breakthroughs relating to them. Features the artificial intelligence project, Cog, neuroscientist Vilayanur S. Ramachandran, photographer Howard Schatz, Stomp (dance troupe), and a perfume company.
S01E37 The Universe 10/02/2009 Join astronomers and astrophysicists as they probe light years beyond the Milky Way, in Understanding The Universe, part of Discovery's popular television series. Narrated by actress Candice Bergen, This enriching and entertaining video employs graphic models and spectacular computer animation to illustrate some of the most complex theories of all time. Peer through the largest telescopes on Earth. Get a close-up look at our sun, nebulas and supernovas, capture by the Hubble Space Telescope. Listen via satellite to echoes of the Big Bang. See how "red Shift" among the stars suggests that our universe if much younger than previously thought. Visit the set of Star Trek: Voyager and ponder the questions, could black holes be "worm holes," or shortcuts to other worlds? Understanding the Universe boldly goes where no television show has gone before.
S01E38 Time 20/01/2009
S01E39 Traffic 10/11/2001 Examine one of society's greatest frustrations, the gridlock that exists on the world's roadways. Since the invention of the automobile, car travel has become increasingly hazardous. Visit the world's most crowded cities in search of solutions. Narrator: Barry Corbin
S01E40 Tunnels 30/01/2004 From subways to storage, tunnels occupy much of the infrastructure beneath our feet. Descend 1,700 feet below the mountains of northern Nevada to the most lucrative gold mine in North America and examine the world's largest railway tunnel system.
S01E41 Uncertainty 23/01/2009 Explore the strange, small world of quantum mechanics. The phenomenon of "uncertainty" takes a quizzical glimpse at quarks and a world in constant flux. In this episode, Leon Lederman makes a spoonerism: he says "swell foop" instead of "fell swoop".
S01E42 Viruses 27/01/2009 iruses are the tiniest, simplest form of life on the planet. Yet they know ways to enter our body, kidnap our cells, and outwit our defenses
S01E43 Volcanoes 28/01/2009
S01E44 Weather 28/03/2000 Chase tornadoes with the Oklahoma-based VORTEX Project and visit the NOAA's Space Environment Center to examine the solar cycles and meteorological currents that spawn the Gulf Stream, El Niño and the crucial North Atlantic Oscillation.
S01E45 Widgets 03/03/2004
S01E46 Sex 00/00/0000 What we are, in large part, depends on our genes. It is the hand we are dealt when we are born, and the cards we play our entire lives. You can study as hard you can, but some people will be smarter. Work out as much as you want. Some people are born to be bigger, or prettier, or more artistic. The hand you get depends upon the luck of the draw. Which genes you get from your mother, which you get from your father, and how they combine to make you a unique individual, is largely a matter of chance. In the game of life, the shuffling of genes to create a new individual is called sex. But life does not have to be this way. We humans believe we are more than that: as much what we think, what we believe, what we imagine and what we hope as what we are physically. And that can transcend the selfishness of our genes, the fight for fertility, and the siren song of sex. Don't call it "love" if you wish, but species other than humans don't seem to experience the idea as we do. The power of love in humans is so striking that it seems love could be the answer to some questions science has not yet asked. Sex, however, is easier to understand. For three billion years sex has been the way of life, shuffling physical characteristics and creating enough diversity to survive whatever hand Nature deals us. Life, sex, may be "in the cards" - in the hand we are dealt - but we humans are notorious for cheating, and perhaps outwitting and transcending, that hand nature has dealt us.
S01E47 Bacteria 00/00/0000 The experts say this is the beginning of the golden age of microbiology. Industry, medicine, the definition of life itself, are all being changed by single-celled creatures you and I can't even see. But the news is not all good. Many people are spooked by the diseases caused by bacteria: Pneumonia, Salmonella, meningitis... all caused by bacteria and passed among us every day. Infectious diseases are the greatest cause of illness and death in human history. Bacteria can make us deathly sick and often kill us. And just when we develop medicines to kill the germs, they do what they do best... mutate, find ways to resist our medicines. Now we are bombarded with products that promise to kill these germs. The number of new antibacterial products has tripled. But does the use of these products just make the germs even more resistant? At the same time, the search for new microbial life has taken researchers from the lab to the ocean floor and to the heavens. A meteorite from Mars has fossilized structures on it that look suspiciously like small bacteria. Scientists are coming to the conclusion that life may be far more common in the universe than we had supposed. Anywhere that there is liquid water, there is a possibility of life, and, in fact, anywhere on Earth where there is liquid water, you find there is life. And so on worlds such as Mars or Europa where there may be hydrothermal features under the ice, the prospect of finding microbial life is very exciting.

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