Explaining The Universe In 4 Minutes [VIDEO]

Gizmodo recaps:

In need of a quick refresher course on, well, the science of pretty much everything? Here’s a cheeky, irreverent summation of the universe in just four minutes from Exub1a, YouTube purveyor of “spacey stuff and existential angst.”

Loosely reminiscent of the classic “Powers of Ten” motif, the video starts with “the Tyrion Lannister of physics,” better known as the Planck length—“the smallest thing you can sensibly talk about.”

  • Joe in PA

    Science, schmience…I think I’ll go pray about something.


    • DaddyRay

      One of these times it is bound to work

    • Joseph Miceli

      According to this video, Trump is the pinnacle of human evolution.
      Pray. Pray hard.

      • AndyinChicago

        In a way he is. People think biological evolution is perfecting things over time. It’s not. Evolution is a force directing the species to change genetically through time, it makes lots of mistakes, species start to pigeonhole themselves into dangerous configurations, and this is partially why so many species go extinct. He may be the ultimate driver of human evolution: look what he’s done to sexual selection with the Miss Universe contest. Think of all the individuals who he forced to realize they don’t want to bring a life into the world he’s helping shape. And just imagine what would happen if he had control over a nuke.

        • billbear1961

          Abstain and endure!

        • Joseph Miceli

          Dude, I love you but….
          1. Get coffee
          2. Stop and smell some flowers
          3. Lighten up! It’s going to be a great day!

          • Melissajsuggs

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        • Treant

          This is why we should only have gay sex. Deny that bitch Evolution any chance to warp my precious genome!

      • William

        And now, back to the slime!

        • billbear1961

          Are we there yet?


          • TuuxKabin

            Well, Billbear, if you have to ask . . . ;o)

          • billbear1961

            Not opening my eyes till someone tells me!

          • TuuxKabin

            How ’bout we make you feel it?

          • billbear1961


          • William

            Not long, Sweetie, November will be here soon.

          • David Walker

            Nooooooooooooooooo! Please don’t rush it. I mean, yes, it’ll be nice when the political season is over, but we had a really horrid winter (of the icky blah variety) and I need sun time and thawing out temps. Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeez!

          • McSwagg

            Thawing out temps? We had heat index values over 100 deg F around here. And summer hasn’t even begun.

        • Marides48

          Welcome to the thin layer of slim called LIFE (including us). So when you start to feel really important Donald, STFU & remember your just a tiny speck of slime like the rest of us.

          • Balderdashing

            But he’s the yugest slime–that’s what matters.

      • Jeffrey

        Unfortunately, evolution ended in the modern ages. There is no more survival of the fittest or smartest. But we do have survival of those whose wealth insulates them from life.

        • Marides48

          Actually, as a species, we’ve not been around for very long time & the jury is still out about whether or not we are a successful long term species.

        • Actually, it’s just that the criteria for selection have changed, as happens from time to time.

        • Joseph Miceli

          Evolution has not ceased. The evolutionary influences have shifted from being generated solely by “natural” non human sources to human generated ones. For example: women with narrow pelvises have been selected against for the entire history of our species. With the advent of human medicine and Caesarian section, cranial sizes of infants is increasing without the deaths of narrow pelvis women.
          Evolution never stops. Period. To say otherwise reveals a lack of understanding of the concept of evolution.

      • Kyle Deetz

        No, I think the speaker was lumping him in with our earliest ancestors. Trump, very clearly, is not the pinnacle of human evolution.

  • Mark

    I love me some science – but some days….

    “Science fiction
    Double feature.
    Dr X
    will be a creature”….

    • JW Swift

      “…build a creature” (if memory serves…)

  • AndyinChicago

    The Ebola genome is not DNA. It has a single stranded RNA genome.

    • DaddyRay

      And don’t get me started on Miley Cyrus

      • AndyinChicago

        No, she’s got DNA. Pretty sure.

        • Joseph Miceli

          Miley acquires DNA like a Dust Buster does crumbs…and in much the same way.

        • DaddyRay

          She needs a DNR

        • DrRobY

          Just what she swallowed. (Sorry, couldn’t pass up the opportunity.)

  • Joseph Miceli

    And Good Morning to you too, Joe! 🙂

  • Michael Rush

    I saw Trump in with the hominids .

  • billbear1961
  • Michael Rush
  • TuuxKabin


  • billbear1961

    Sub specie aeternitatis . . .


    • Divine, Mr Bear. And I never knew you played the harp! Truly, you are a bear of many talents.

      Do you know this concerto? Many years ago, one of the guys brought his new lover along to a run to introduce him to the leather clubs. His name was Robert Boieldieu, and he was a lovely man (may they both rest in peace). Bob had brought his walkman with him, together with every CD (or were they cassettes?) of his great-great-great grandfather’s music that than yet been recorded; and anyone who wandered by our campsite must have been astonished at the sight of some 40 big leather-clad bikers in short hair and earrings (eat your heart out, Eugene) sitting silently around the fire, transported by music that none of us had ever heard before. Wonderful music, too, for piano, for orchestra, for voices; but above all it is the andante of the harp concerto that makes me feel nostalgic for those three moonlit evenings.


  • Ginger Snap

    I love vids like this. Ahhh the beauty and joy science and the universe can arouse in me.

  • Treant

    “Which reminds me…Natasha? …. You’re a bitch.”

    Cute. Not particularly in depth, but hey, four minutes, right?

    • Schnackenpfefferhausen

      I was hoping we could get through at least one video describing the entire universe without a mention of Natasha.

      • Treant

        No, we can’t, ’cause she’s a bitch. She’s the standard of bitch, so it has to be mentioned.

  • another_steve

    So why are there all these particles and energies and thingies, my puppies? What put them there? What started it all?

    There is mystery there.

    • The_Wretched

      And that ‘mystery’ isn’t any of the god(s).

      • another_steve

        A perfectly valid opinion. One, as a non-theist, I share.

        So how do you describe / think about the mystery, Wretched One?

        • Chucktech

          I simply defer to minds far more cerebral than mine and science’s great instrumentation. Stephen Hawking, the Hubble telescope, and CERN spring to mind.

        • The_Wretched

          I’m comfortable with “i don’t know” or “it’s not knowable” or similar and leaving it at that. The whole ‘why anything’ question has next to nothing to do with my day to day life and has no impact on living my life.

          • another_steve

            I’m Philosophical Daoist in outlook. What you say there is considered, in the circles I frequent, to reflect a high state of consciousness/awareness.

            It’s okay to question, but to obsess on the unknowable is undesirable. An ego attachment.

            Kudos to you.

        • Balderdashing

          Why must there be a “what” that put them there? As for “what started it all?” if time is intrinsically tied to space, why do you speak in terms of a “before” type of causality? And if there are multiverses, there would have been plenty of material/opportunity/cause for something like the big bang. If a deity could either have always been or could have spontaneously come into existence, so could the universe, and with no need to posit a deity. If a cause or reason were required, what put the deity there? There is still no evidence for a deity, certainly not the anthropomorphic kind described in virtually all religious texts; there is only a passel of wishful and egocentric thinking and cherry-picking of experience.

          I don’t need to know the answer to everything (like “why the mullet?”) More mysterious to me are the questions “what is the nature of awareness?” and “why do we still have the illusion of free will in an apparently deterministic universe?” This concerns me far more than how the universe began (as interesting a question as that is). Even if there were some deity (by Occam’s Razor, about the least likely explanation), it’s rather preposterous and narcissistic to assume that deity would care on a personal level or have a specific plan for every sentient creature that ever lived on every planet that life has or will develop, when our entire lives to It would be less than is, from our persective, a quantum blink affecting a quantum of matter. It would be more likely that the galaxies are alive and self-aware, though on an entirely different scale and nature than we consider life existing, and that if the deity cared about anything on a personal level, it cared about the billions of them.

          The universe is indeed mysterious and wondrous, but to believe in the whole deity thing in modern times takes either willful ignorance, a complete lack of understanding of scale and probability, or a belief in things more “impossible” than simple randomness or determinism–and with neither need nor backing evidence.

          So, with apologies if I offend religious folk, I have to ask how theirs is a “perfectly valid opinion”? By what definition of “valid” do you make this assessment? Is it a “perfectly valid opinion” to assert that you can predict the future by observing the position of the planets (which have less effect on you than the gravity exerted by a person standing nearby) or by reading children’s entrails? I grant that we have developed evolutionarily to be rationalizing (as opposed to rational) beings, and so we have an instinctive need to create concepts like deity to fill in gaps in our worldviews. That doesn’t make such beliefs perfectly valid when countering evidence is so overwhelming. Religious folk are fond of saying science doesn’t explain everything, but is this reason to embrace superstition wholesale? Science has been massively more effective at explanation and prediction of future results and findings than anything in religion.

        • The_Wretched

          I’m also not singular, my nym is a collective noun.

  • Charlie 2001

    The last line made me laugh.

    • Rick Tan

      wow, that’s offensively racist. Black attire and slang is devolution? Fuck you.

      • Johnny Wyeknot

        I agree. A more appropriate version would be the GOP convention.

  • easygoingmister

    I love things like this.

  • Webster

    All of which would not be possible without the immortal music of Tchaikovsky…

    • Johnny Wyeknot

      Who was, as we all know, gay.

  • BeaverTales

    Quantized length per Heisenberg and Einstein-(check)
    Quantized time/gravity per Yang and Mills-(check)
    Quantized entropy per Hawking and Jaynes-(check)
    Roots of Unity per Hamilton and Cayley-(check)
    Constructible universe per Ramanujan and Godel -(check)

    He covered it all, kinda sorta…..Well done!

  • Jean-Marc in Canada

    Hehehehe, my mid-morning smile 🙂

  • olandp

    “Nothing means anything, and we’re all going to die. Bye then!”

    Works for me.

  • Trog

    cool beans. but… the joke where he called his ex-girlfriend a bitch? not cool.

    • Johnny Wyeknot

      Well, it’s better than calling his current girlfriend bitch.

  • Johnny Wyeknot

    Still upset about Pluto.

  • Orly

    Ahh, the elusive banana quark. Science! It works bitches!

  • Paraphrasing..
    But if we’re the only intelligent life form out there, it just seems like a lot of wasted space.