Tom Scott

Near Hindon, on the South Island of New Zealand, there’s one of only two remaining one-lane road-rail bridges in the country. No barriers, no lights, no sirens: if you’re driving across this, you need to make sure to listen out for the train horn. Thanks to all the Dunedin Railways team! You can find out
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The @Royal Albert Hall is 150 years old; the roof is 600 tonnes of glass and steel. And it turns out that there’s a terrifying technicians’ trampoline, acoustic-dampening mushrooms, and a complete lack of connections. Thanks to everyone at the Royal Albert Hall: https://www.royalalberthall.com/ Camera by Jamie MacLeod https://www.jamiemacleod.co.uk/ Aerial operations by Phil Conrad and
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The Chicago and Sanitary Ship Canal is the path that invasive carp would take to reach the Great Lakes. So to stop them, the US Army Corps of Engineers has installed an electric barrier. Although for obvious reasons, I didn’t get to see it close up. [The interviewee is project manager Jeff Zuercher, whose name
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Mount Taranaki, on the North Island of New Zealand, is a large-scale circle that’s visible from space: a stratovolcano with six miles of forest around it. But that didn’t happen naturally. Oh, and there’s a good chance that, in the next fifty years or so, it might explode. GOOD VIDEOS ON NATURAL PERSONHOOD: Law professor
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On Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, there’s a summer tradition: “mail jumping”. It’s a bit dangerous, a bit ridiculous, and would never be allowed to start today. But it’s a tradition. ■ Thanks to the Lake Geneva Cruise Line: https://www.cruiselakegeneva.com/ Edited by Michelle Martin https://twitter.com/mrsmmartin I’m at https://tomscott.com on Twitter at https://twitter.com/tomscott on Facebook at https://facebook.com/tomscott and
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At the Remote Encoding Center in Salt Lake City, keyers process 1.2 billion images of mail every year. It’s a more difficult job than I thought. Edited by Michelle Martin: https://twitter.com/mrsmmartin Thanks to Zack from JerryRigEverything for being the camera op: https://youtube.com/jerryrigeverything I’m at https://tomscott.com on Twitter at https://twitter.com/tomscott on Facebook at https://facebook.com/tomscott and on
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If you’re in Canada, you need good winter boots. But how do you know whether they’re actually safe, or whether you’ll fall over the first time you step on ice? This is WinterLab, part of the Challenging Environment Assessment Laboratories at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, where they’re testing winter shoes with science. More about the
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http://tomscott.com – http://twitter.com/tomscott – This weekend, the Royal Navy was offering public tours of HMS Defender, one of their new-generation Type 45 destroyers. It’s an astonishing ship: about 8,000 tonnes of steel and high-tech equipment designed to defend an entire fleet against air and missile attack. There’s another type of attack it’s more vulnerable against,
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http://tomscott.com – http://twitter.com/tomscott – Under the Elbe river in Hamburg, Germany, lies the Old Elbe Tunnel in St Pauli. Like early 20th century tunnels around the world, it has lifts or stairs to take you down and under the river. But this is on a whole different scale to those you might have seen elsewhere…
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Crash Safari dot com — and no, I’m deliberately not linking to it! — crashes your phone. Or your browser. Pretty much instantly. How? And after several months of obscurity, why did it go viral so fast today? And yes, I did have to put this video together really quickly. Thank you SO MUCH to
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I feel like there are other YouTube channels that would take a different approach here. ▪ With thanks to Professor Brian Kalt: his original article is here: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=691642 — any inaccuracies that have slipped in are mine alone, and this is, obviously, not legal advice! To save you doing the research, my location while recording
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Victor Gruen is, according to history, the man who invented the shopping mall… but that wasn’t quite what he was aiming for. And it seemed like an appropriate day to do a video about suburban sprawl — happy Independence Day, America! I’m at http://tomscott.com on Facebook at http://facebook.com/tomscott on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tomscott and on Instagram
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In Wuppertal, Germany, there’s the Schwebebahn: a suspended monorail that carries 80,000 people a day above the streets of the city, and above the river Wupper. It’s a wonderful thing: but it wasn’t the future of travel, and here’s why. INSTAGRAM: tomscottgo FACEBOOK: http://facebook.com/tomscott TWITTER: http://twitter.com/tomscott or on the web at https://tomscott.com
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http://www.tomscott.com – http://twitter.com/tomscott – I was walking through New York and found a couple of seemingly-abandoned liquid nitrogen tanks on the street. Except they weren’t abandoned: they were full, making a very quiet hissing noise, and plumbed into… somewhere. I did a bit of research, and found out why they’re really there. Thanks to David
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http://www.tomscott.com – Jedi! Are you bored since the fall of the Empire? Well, the Coruscant Juggling Club wants you. Featuring Robin, Anna and Tim juggling lightsabers; Jess on lightsaber devilstick; Sam attacking; and Nic’s balls.
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Torpenhow Hill, in the Lake District in the north-west of England, is the only place in the world whose name has the same word four different times. That’s the story, anyway. The truth is a bit more complex. Filmed safely: https://www.tomscott.com/safe/ REFERENCES: The Debunking of Torpenhow Hill: http://digitalcommons.butler.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=4733&context=wordways Etymology from the Oxford English Dictionary https://oed.com
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El Caminito del Rey, the King’s Little Pathway, is now a tourist attraction near Malaga, in southern Spain. But once, it brought adrenaline junkies here – sometimes fatally. Now it’s safe: but the internet doesn’t really know that yet… I’m at http://tomscott.com on Facebook at http://facebook.com/tomscott on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tomscott and on Snapchat and Instagram
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Monte Kaolino, in Bavaria, Germany, is 35 million tonnes of quartz sand, piled up over the years from a nearby kaolin mine. In the 1960s, one guy just turned up with skis, and now half a century later it’s a theme-park destination for sandboarders and skiiers. ■ More: https://www.montekaolino.eu/ Location camera: Moritz Janisch Producer: Marcel
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The Wasserspiele of Bergpark Wilhelmshöhe are 300 years old, powered entirely by gravity, and entertaining tourists. As legacies for rich people go, there are far worse ones. ■ More about the Bergpark: https://museum-kassel.de/en/museums-parks-palaces/unesco-world-heritage-site-of-bergpark-wilhelmshoehe Location camera: Moritz Janisch Producer: Marcel Fenchel https://www.fenchel-janisch.com/ Editor: Michelle Martin https://twitter.com/mrsmmartin
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http://tomscott.com – @tomscott – Are you tired? Stiff? Feeling a bit peaky? Try Yorkshire Yoga. Written with Liam Butler – http://angryflatcap.com – @liammakesstuff and directed by Matt Gray – http://mattg.co.uk – @unnamedculprit
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In Sanlúcar de Guadiana, in Spain, there’s a zip line called Límite Zero: the only cross-border zip wire in the world, landing in Alcoutim, Portugal. You land about an hour before you set off. It seemed like a good time to talk about programming. Thanks to all the team at Limite Zero! Tickets and info:
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The “accelerated pavement testing facility” in Nantes can simulate decades of road traffic in a few months. Here’s how. ■ More information: https://lames.univ-gustave-eiffel.fr/en/equipments/the-pavement-fatigue-carrousel Editor: Dave Stevenson http://davestevenson.co.uk Camera: Guillaume Juin https://www.guillaumejuin.fr Producer: Axel Zeiliger at Block8 https://block8production.com Thanks to Jérémie Chabot for the suggestion I’m at https://tomscott.com on Twitter at https://twitter.com/tomscott on Facebook at https://facebook.com/tomscott
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http://tomscott.com – http://twitter.com/tomscott – Around the United Kingdom there are odd concrete pillars on the top of hills, built to last for decades if not centuries. They’ve got a cryptic marking on them, and the words “Ordnance Survey Triangulation Station”. What are they? (They’re trig points.) Who put them there? (Brigadier Martin Hotine and thousands
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http://tomscott.com – @tomscott – As complaints about Apple’s new Maps continue to pile in, team leader Jackson Seepage explains why it isn’t quite working as planned. Music based on “Resignation” by Kevin MacLeod released under Creative Commons CC by 3.0 • http://incompetech.com iPhone 5 mockup by Zach Vega released under Creative Commons CC by-sa 3.0
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Near Bodø in Norway, there’s the strongest tidal current in the world: Saltstraumen Maelstrom, a constantly-changing rush of whirlpools, boils and vortices. It might not be quite the whirlpools of myth and legend, but it’s still an impressive sight to see. I’m at http://tomscott.com on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tomscott on Facebook at http://facebook.com/tomscott and on Snapchat
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The Chauvet cave, in the south of France, is one of the most important archaeological sites in the world, filled with art that’s tens of millennia old. No-one’s allowed in, for very good reasons: but just a few kilometres away, there’s a near-exact copy. Is that enough? Camera: Simon Gillouin Editor: Dave Stevenson http://davestevenson.co.uk Producer:
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“Non-brewed condiment” is what they call it: it’s chemically very similar to proper vinegar, a mixture of ethanoic acid, colourings and flavourings, but it’s put together by just combining simple chemicals rather than brewing. Hardly anyone knows, and those that do know don’t generally care; so here’s my question. Does it matter? Thanks to Matt
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Funchal Airport, on the island of Madeira, was too short for modern commercial airliners: but there was nowhere to extend to. The solution is one of the greatest civil engineering projects of our time. Producer: Aitken Pearson https://firecrestindependent.com Assistant Producer: Elsa Gouveia Camera: Elton Cantoni Editor: Dave Stevenson http://davestevenson.co.uk The 1990 photo of the airport
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The Monte Toboggans, in Funchal on the island of Madeira, are wicker sofas: a bit like the gondolas of Venice, only you’re going downhill in regular traffic. More about them: https://www.carreirosdomonte.com/ Producer: Aitken Pearson https://firecrestindependent.com Assistant Producer: Elsa Gouveia Camera: Elton Cantoni Editor: Dave Stevenson http://davestevenson.co.uk I’m at https://tomscott.com on Twitter at https://twitter.com/tomscott on Facebook
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“Daly’s Bridge”, in Cork, Ireland, is better known as the Shakey Bridge. Because it shakes. But what happens when a bridge like that has to be repaired and refurbished? • Thanks to Cllr McCarthy: his site is http://corkheritage.ie/ ! Edited by Dave Stevenson http://davestevenson.co.uk A thorough study of how the Bridge shakes: http://publish.ucc.ie/boolean/pdf/2015/00/32-ODonnell-2015-00-en.pdf [PDF] I
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In the south-east of Estonia, there’s 800m of road where you can drive through Russia without a visa. We drove it. BONUS PARK BENCH: We Got Pulled Over By The Estonian Military: https://youtu.be/KCR2kHrr4oA This video has a correction: Further research revealed that the camera tower Matt spots is, almost certainly, just a regular cell tower.
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Did I need to get a radio controlled clock and travel to Anthorn to film this video? Absolutely not. But for a few minutes, that clock was really, really accurate. • Thanks to the team at NPL! More about NPL Time: https://www.npl.co.uk/time-frequency/time-scales I’m at https://tomscott.com on Twitter at https://twitter.com/tomscott on Facebook at https://facebook.com/tomscott and on
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http://tomscott.com – http://twitter.com/tomscott – Thanks to Ashley Shepherd for the drone footage – see the full video on his channel here: http://youtu.be/nhtL2dBrmlI This is the Duga-3 array, inside the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. It’s an incredible piece of Soviet engineering, capable of sending radar pulses so powerful they could see over the horizon. Which, when you
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Deepstore doesn’t let many people film in their massive facilities. So when the team at Laura Ashley invited me down into the mine to look at their archives, I jumped at the chance. Thanks to Deepstore https://www.deepstore.com/ and Laura Ashley https://www.lauraashley.com/ ! Camera by Ryan Priestnall https://ryanpriestnall.com Edited by Michelle Martin https://twitter.com/mrsmmartin I’m at https://tomscott.com
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