Adrift

11 minutes

‘Space junk’ is a calamity in the making and a threat to anyone venturing off Earth

‘Space junk’ – including defunct satellites, rocket fragments and even a spatula that escaped the clutches of the astronaut Piers Sellers – has been an inescapable byproduct of space exploration, with only a few negative consequences so far. But with some 200 million objects bigger than a millimetre in size orbiting the Earth at 17,500 miles per hour, every astronaut knows that they are, in Sellers’s words, ‘playing the odds’. Featuring interviews, archival footage and an inventive bit of narration from one of the most notable pieces of space junk, Cath Le Couteur’s whimsical short film Adrift puts the mounting, cosmic problem of space debris in perspective.

Director: Cath Le Couteur

Website: Project Adrift

Video/Childhood & Adolescence

What to make of a Riot Grrrl? A snapshot of feminism and high school in the 1990s

18 minutes

ORIGINAL
Video/History of Ideas

How did the 20th century’s most glamorous intellectual friendship go wrong?

3 minutes

Video/Demography & Migration

Amid massive urbanisation and modernisation, rural Japan persists in idiosyncratic corners

30 minutes

Video/History of Technology

What does innovation sound like? For a century, typewriters chattered an evolving story

21 minutes

Essay/Technology & the Self

Natural, shmatural

Mother Nature might be lovely, but moral she is not. She doesn’t love us or want what’s best for us

Molly Hodgdon

Idea/Computing & Artificial Intelligence

Quantum cryptography is unbreakable. So is human ingenuity

Joshua Holden

Video/Human Enhancement

It takes a careful blend of science, craft and compassion to make a prosthetic eye

6 minutes

Essay/Computing & Artificial Intelligence

Raising good robots

We already have a way to teach morals to alien intelligences: it's called parenting. Can we apply the same methods to robots?

Regina Rini

Idea/Computing & Artificial Intelligence

The body is the missing link for truly intelligent machines

Ben Medlock