Friday, December 19, 2008

Cosmos - Carl Sagan

When Cosmos was first broadcast in 1980, our world--and the context of Carl Sagan's eloquent "personal journey"--was a different place. The late Dr. Sagan would be pleased to witness the cooling of the cold war, the continued exploration of space, and ongoing efforts to curb our destructive dependence on fossil fuels. For Sagan's series is far more than a guided tour through "billions and billions" of stars and galaxies. It remains a profound plea for the unity of humankind, for the recognition that "we are a way for the universe to know itself," with an obligation to know our origin, our place in the universe, and our future potential.

In the course of 13 fascinating hours, Cosmos spans its own galaxy of topics to serve Sagan's theme, each segment deepening our understanding of how we got from there (simple microbes in the primordial mud) to here (space-faring civilization in the 21st century). In his "ship of the imagination," Sagan guides us to the farthest reaches of space and takes us back into the history of scientific inquiry, from the ancient library of Alexandria to the NASA probes of our neighboring planets. Upon this vast canvas Sagan presents the "cosmic calendar," placing the 15-billion-year history of the universe into an accessible one-year framework, then filling it with a stunning chronology of events, both interstellar and earthbound.

From the lives of the stars, to creation theories, functions of the human brain, and the ongoing search for extraterrestrial intelligence, Cosmos asks big questions. When appropriate, Sagan offers big answers, or asks still bigger--and yes, even spiritual--questions at the boundaries of science and religion. What's most remarkable about Cosmos is that it remains almost entirely fresh, with few updates needed to the science that Sagan so passionately celebrates. It is no exaggeration to say that Cosmos--for all the debate it may continue to provoke--is a vital document for humanity at a pivotal crossroads of our history.

Episode 1: The Shores of the Cosmic Ocean

Episode 2: One Voice in the Cosmic Fugue

Episode 3: The Harmony of the Worlds

Episode 4: Heaven and Hell

Episode 5: Blues for a Red Planet

Episode 6: Travellers' Tales

Episode 7: The Backbone of Night

Episode 8: Journeys in Space and Time

Episode 9: The Lives of the Stars

Episode 10: The Edge of Forever

Episode 11: The Persistence of Memory

Episode 12: Encyclopaedia Galactica

Episode 13: Who Speaks for Earth?

Click here for the official Carl Sagan Portal

Buy the DVD box-set today...


Anonymous said...

This is the greatest series I have ever seen. I´ve only seen the first 3 episoodes and it has already inspired and amazed me. If you want to upload the episode "heaven and hell", you could go to YouTube to a user called "Fword22madre". Apart from all the episodes of the Cosmos series including heaven and hell, he also has some other documentaries including all the 100 episodes of the funny docu series "Bill Nye the Science guy". Also he identified himself as a devout atheist. Other option: user "Zuke696" or search the episode on google video search or YouTube. What I like most about this series is that Sagan talks it with such a beautiful and maybe even poetic voice combined with that great classical music and it may be a very rare series which can educate, inspire and charm or fascinate someone who is watching it. I sometimes nearly cried when I saw this for the first time. We will miss you Carl Sagan (1934-1996).

Anonymous said...

Part 4 is on Youtube overhere:

(six parts)

greetings MazAlien

Scott said...

Thanks for you help on episode 4 - I don't like to post the YT 10 minute segments, but when faced with no viable alternative...that's all I can do.

TMJ said...

Im starting to wonder if someone at google video is waching this site, vids are getting taken down in record time :(

still love the site though

Scott said...

All of the links for this series are working fine. If you ever find that a link is not working, try refreshing the page before giving up...the video links sometimes miss their link and need to be refreshed.

TMJ said...

oh wow, thanks for the tip!

Koele said...

Absolutely essential and classic! Thanks for posting. My eighth grade science teacher had us watch the episode titled "The Lives of Stars" and it freakin' altered my thinking and increased my interest in science from that point on exponentially. I love the opening line... "To make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe."

Anonymous said...

Starting from Episode 9 the video's are no longer available :(

Anonymous said...

Mm, apparantly you can load about two episodes at a time right now, just refresh the page after that and start loading the next episodes.