The Contenders

3 minutes

Video gamers solve a biological puzzle that has stumped scientists for years

Video games are frequently seen as an unproductive pastime, but the Center for Game Science at the University of Washington hopes its crowdsourcing puzzle game, Foldit, might eventually help cure debilitating and terminal diseases such as Alzheimer’s and cancer. Taking inspiration from classic 8-bit video game sights and sounds, Lucy Walker’s The Contenders reveals how nine Foldit players ended up as the first gaming group ever to co-author an academic research paper. The film argues for the value of basic human intelligence and for crowdsourcing as agents of positive change in the modern world.

Director: Lucy Walker

Producer: Joseph Peeler

Video/Art

How the ‘Master of Black’ uses non-colour to manipulate light in his artwork

4 minutes

ORIGINAL
Video/Neuroscience

Aristotle was wrong and so are we: there are far more than five senses

6 minutes

Video/Demography & Migration

Painted frame by frame, a vivid animation restores a history lost to deportation

6 minutes

Video/Physics

How the ‘identity agnostic’ neutrino exists in three states all at once

3 minutes

Essay/Physics

Operation: neutrino

How the neutrino went from ghost particle to vital physics tool – a tale of bombs, espionage and subtle flavours

David Kaiser

Idea/Astronomy

What high-speed astronomy can tell us about the galactic zoo

Christopher Kochanek

Video/History of Science

In 1938, a fish thought extinct for 65 million years resurfaced, nearly unchanged

7 minutes

Idea/Anthropology

It’s not that your teeth are too big: your jaw is too small

Peter Ungar

Essay/Quantum Theory

Quantum common sense

Despite its confounding reputation, quantum mechanics both guides and helps explain human intuition

Philip Ball