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Series Info

Episodes: 4

Length: 30 min.

Grade Levels:
6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12


Teachers Guide
Web Resources

Alan Alda in Scientific American Frontiers

Science, technology and nature are examined with insight, humor and an eye on the practical, with smartly paced reports on such subjects as the big-bang theory, robots, the relationship between stress and illness, and whether we are alone in the universe. There’s a good deal of fascinating information, but as long-time host Alan Alda notes in one episode, “big questions don’t always have answers.”

Alan Alda’s natural curiosity and his enthusiasm for science made him the ideal host of Scientific American Frontiers for over ten years. Join Alan once again as he takes us from the depths of the conscious mind to the outer reaches of the universe.

Episode Guide

1. Robot Pals —To be really useful, robots need to behave as a cooperative partners rather than mindless machines. We’ll meet three robots – including a future member of an astronaut team- that are trying to better understand us.

2. The Secret Canyon — Travels to a remote canyon in Utah, and discovers perfectly preserved remains of Native Americans who lived over 1,000-years-ago.

3. Cybersenses — Discovers how replacement synthetic senses are now a reality. Children as young as 12 months are getting artificial hearing, and scientists are working on developing artificial sight for the blind.

4. Cars That Think — Introduces cars that are controlled more by computers than people, cars that watch out for hazards, listen to the driver, read lips, and even know when the driver’s distracted.

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