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Wonders of Life

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  • Message 1. 

    Posted by Geometry_Man (U12739007) ** on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    Professor Brian Cox's latest "Wonders of..." series starts tonight, BBC2 & BBC HD 9.00 pm:

    www.bbc.co.uk/progra...

    I'm looking forward to this one, which seems to have been a long time coming - it's nearly 2 years since Wonders of the Universe.

    Of the previous 2 "Wonders of" series I thought the first, Solar System, was the better - and in an RT interview even Brian says they hadn't really moved things on with Universe.

    However, Wonders of Life will be a bit different apparently; "gone are the lavish, sweeping shots" says RT. Brian still does a lot of globetrotting, meeting animals la David Attenborough, though it seems we can expect less of the visual experience and more of the underlying science than in Sir David's programmes.

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  • Message 2

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    Posted by ashleyhr (U14203741) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    Sounds like it will be worth watching.

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  • Message 3

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    Posted by Prophet Tenebrae (U5995226) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    Brian still does a lot of globetrotting 
    Who would deny the man his holiday, jollies?

    Also, good to see the BBC is sticking to its guns with its Swiss army knife approach to science. You know one science - you're able to cover any of 'em.

    While I appreciate that Brian Cox is INFINITELY superior to know nothing empty vessels that have attached themselves like limpets to the gravy train (The Horrible Hamster and Kate not-so-Humble spring immediately to mind) but is it so difficult for the BBC to take the radical step of having someone trained in the relevant discipline to discuss it?

    THE MAN IS A PHYSICIST! And yes, I know the old saying that biology is just chemistry, chemistry is just physics and physics is just maths but would it be so difficult for the BBC to take the radical step of having a biologist present a programme about biology?

    Anyway, we'll see how it goes, I suppose. I'm not prejudging, it's a more general fault with the BBC's and unquestionably a factor of its institutional bias against science, which is of course what happens when you get an organisation populated by middle managers, soap powder salesmen and people with degrees in meeja studies, I suppose.

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    Posted by zelda (U2012536) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    I see a lot of Brian Cox in shot........ hope it has improved from his last outing.

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  • Message 5

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    Posted by McNigel (U3215979) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    In a closed system energy can not be created or destroyed.
    However as the man with a sandwich board on Oxford Street proclaims, "Entropy is Increasing".

    This program seems to be full of the old trap.
    Yes that's all true, but there is no connection between the statements.

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    Posted by Prophet Tenebrae (U5995226) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    I see a lot of Brian Cox in shot........ hope it has improved from his last outing.   How else do they get middle aged housewives to watch, if not with copious Cox, smiling that whimsical smile of his as he looks off into the distance with his boyish good looks?

    Also, clumsy and inaccurate description of natural selection in the first few minutes... sorry, the notion that evolution "fine tunes" is wrong unless you've got very serious selection pressures for certain traits and even then, it's... well, a clumsy and inaccurate way to describe the process. Tsk.

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    Posted by zelda (U2012536) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    I don't really understand what he is saying.... but then I am thick.

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    Posted by Prophet Tenebrae (U5995226) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    I don't really understand what he is saying.... but then I am thick.   What I don't understand is why a discussion of life required a copy and paste of his holiday jolly to India. The historical concept of life should be an opening paragraph not the first ten minutes of the programme - if you want to do a historical analysis of cultural explanations or the history of science by all means, do that. It's a fascinating subject but it is one that is one that should be mentioned in only the briefest way.

    But no, I guess that would mean Prof C wouldn't get to trek up and down mountains in the Philippines, which is somehow ESSENTIAL to the topic at hand... and then of course, he interjects some physics - in case we'd forgotten that he's a physicist, rather than a biologist so that obvious and glaring error in his choice to host something entirely about biology can be thrust direct into our face and rubbed in it - before pointing out that's a bit useless.

    So glad you told us that then, Prof C - if only they could have edited it out and dedicated some of the time to covering more of the fascinating subject the programme professes to be about, eh?

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    Posted by zelda (U2012536) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    I wonder if I can get the Horrible Histories team to take up physics..... I am really not getting this at all. smiley - blush

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  • Message 10

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    Posted by Prophet Tenebrae (U5995226) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    I wonder if I can get the Horrible Histories team to take up physics..... I am really not getting this at all. smiley - blush  Surely the baffling thing here is - we've got a huge amount of talking about physics in a very round about way (one that I note requires a rather large amount of Brian Cox in exotic locales - funny that, it's never Hull or Rotherham) that is doing a VERY good joke of actually getting to the point.

    If we want to talk about abiogenesis, here's a radical idea - JUST TALK ABOUT IT! Nope, instead lots of babbling on about energy. If not for the title and the first five minutes, I'd be waiting for the bit where Prof C starts waxing lyrical about black holes or supernovas or the heat death of the universe.

    I'm 30 minutes in and this has done an astonishing job of concealing the fact it's about life - actually, a few times I was having serious deja vu... I was going "Wait, is this a repeat of Wonders of [something else]?"

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  • Message 11

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    Posted by zelda (U2012536) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    Stop it Prophet, you are starting to scare me. smiley - yikes

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    Posted by Prophet Tenebrae (U5995226) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    Stop it Prophet, you are starting to scare me. smiley - yikes  How so, zelda?

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  • Message 13

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    Posted by zelda (U2012536) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    You keep using long wordsthat I don't know the meaning of and my little brain can't cope.

    Are you a physicist or scientist? You seem very knowledgeable.

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  • Message 14

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    Posted by Prophet Tenebrae (U5995226) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    Are you a physicist or scientist? You seem very knowledgeable. 
    'Fraid not - just someone that takes an active interest in the workings of the universe.

    To be honest, I don't MIND Prof C using technical language but really, MUST he keep talking about "proton gradients"? And he talks about mitochondria and that is a FASCINATING topic and yet, it's examined it's just "hey, living things need energy! And most of them have mitochondria. PROTON GRADIENTS!

    The importance of mitochondria to multicellular life is really rather hard to overstate and it's fascinating but I guess all that science stuff is too gosh darned boring, let's have Brian swimming in a lake with jellyfish.

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    Posted by zelda (U2012536) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    We'll get the BBC to let you present a programme...... you'd get me edumacated double quick! smiley - smiley

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  • Message 16

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    Posted by Sue the former ladyparishclerk (U12715623) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    Wonderful programme but a slap on the wrist to whoever was doing the graphics, or, rather, checking them.

    DNA is deoxyribonucleic acid not dioxyribonucleic acid as given. Or do I need my eyes testing?

    Other than to chemists it's a minor point and I know I'm being pedantic, but a science programme shouldn't make silly mistakes - after all, the sainted Prof Cox said he wanted this to be on BBC2 so it didn't have to be dumbed down.

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  • Message 17

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    Posted by Prophet Tenebrae (U5995226) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    We'll get the BBC to let you present a programme...... you'd get me edumacated double quick! smiley - smiley  Ha, I've certainly got the lack of qualifications that the likes of not-so-Humble and the horrible Hamster have!

    But this programme truly is baffling me. Is it about biology or physics? Yes, I know biological processes are ULTIMATELY just physics in action but they aren't separate branches of science for no reason.

    Does this want to be an investigation of life? Or does this just want to be a sneaky way to recut vast amounts of the content from the previous "Wonders of..." needless to say, it feels very much like the latter which strikes me as a phenomenal waste of both Prof C (who I do actually like but think is criminally misused) and time and money.

    I get the sneaking suspicion that you are not the only person who is going to walk away from this programme scratching their head and going "This science thing is all just too confusing for me." When that's no reflection on your ability to comprehend, just the nonsensical and positively garbled way this entire dog's dinner was thrown together in the most bafflingly counter intuitive way possible.

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  • Message 18

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    Posted by Geometry_Man (U12739007) ** on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    I have to admit Brian seemed, unusually for him, to be struggling to get his points across for much of the programme. This isn't really his field and I'm afraid it showed a bit.

    We have to take his word for it over the proton gradients and stuff, and there was some jumping about between subjects that didn't really appear to follow from each other. It seemed to get a bit better towards the end.

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  • Message 19

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    Posted by madboff1n (U15593794) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    you beat me to it....spent the last 35 minutes questioning my education and having a rant at that particular typo

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  • Message 20

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    Posted by McNigel (U3215979) on Sunday, 27th January 2013

    Ever get the feeling that Brian Cox knew exactly what he was talking about, but the rest of the production team and editors were totally lost.

    So it's been cobbled together in a more or less random order.

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