On Parabolas and Moments
"How could this inanimate thing know about parabolas?" -Steve Strogatz, speaking on Radiolab about a toy pendulum. This brief, meditative video shows examples of parabolas in nature, and in manmade structures. Vimeo commenter Peter Behr notes something that bugged me a bit about this video: "I hate to nitpick, but a great deal of the shapes in the video are not parabolas, but catenaries. The distinction is subtle, but extremely important."
The video is still beautiful -- and now you can watch for what's a parabola and what's a catenary! I presume the film's authors named it "Parabolas (etc.)" because of this.
A meditation on moments -- those bits of time that mean something to each of us, and hopefully that we share. How do you define a moment? By showing four minutes worth of them. Warning: there is one shot of a surgical cut, one needle-stick, and one non-deployed prophylactic -- if those things make you queasy, stay away.
If you want to zone out for twelve minutes, check out the Coasting video, featuring time-lapse photography.