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Ever wondered what would happen if there weren't those annoying little flies and bugs? Think insects are a pest? Think again. This visually stunning science documentary shows how these tiny geniuses can help us solve some of science’s biggest problems – from producing biofuel to killing drug-resistant bacteria and curing cancer. Insects are the most diverse group of animals on the planet, making up more than 90% of the animals on Earth. They can be found on all continents, in all climates. Nature has equipped them with an amazing range of tricks. Some of them produce the strongest materials on earth to protect their bodies. Others have the most effective immune systems of the animal kingdom – far better than ours. And some have developed ingenious solutions to turn waste into energy. Wouldn’t it be great to learn some of their tricks? Using custom-made cameras and special filming techniques, this film takes you deep into a world that is completely alien to ours but offers astonishingly ingenious solutions to our everyday problems.

TViLike - the new documentary platform. Walk in THEIR shoes: celebrities, mountaineers, train-spotters, douchebags, and whatnot! Access all areas for only $4.99/month. #ANewPerspectiveEveryDay #everwondered www.tvilike.com

A murder story, a love story and a thriller with stunning twists! In May 2009 a wealthy, charismatic lawyer went cycling near his home in Guatemala City and was murdered. What was extraordinary is that the victim, Rodrigo Rosenberg, knew for certain that he was about to be killed. Rosenberg’s lover had been murdered a few weeks before. He was driven to investigate things, he told his friends, that would inevitably lead to his death. A video he recorded days before he died accused the president of his murder. Uploaded to Youtube, it nearly brought down the government. There began a brilliant investigation, a journey into Rosenberg’s soul and Guatemala’s hell, that after multiple twists and turns, reached a stunning conclusion... Experience the run for your life on TViLike now. FREE TRIAL!

Have you ever wondered how Tupac, Gianni Versace, Anna Nicole Smith, John Belushi, River Phoenix, John Kennedy or OJ Simpson's wife spent their last 24 hours? These are no ordinary biographies. These are psychological detective stories attempting to uncover the mystery of why and how the celebrity died. Each episode maps out the final 24 hours of a different celebrity’s life. Weaving in and out of this central narrative is the celebrity’s back-story, which lays bare the threads of fate that led inextricably from childhood to the moment of death. Telling interviews with loved ones and confidantes combine with high-end dramatic re-enactments and archival material illuminate these compelling life (and death) stories. Experience the revelation at TViLike now - any time, any device!

Ever imagined meeting the murderer of a close family member? How would YOU react? In this stunning documentary culprits and victims stand up to each other and challenge the human limits of forgiveness. Watch the full documentary "Beyond Punishment" on TViLike now. Free trial!

Ever wondered how it would be if you got murdered…and knew beforehand? A murder story, a love story and a thriller. In May 2009, Rodrigo Rosenberg, a wealthy, charismatic lawyer went cycling near his home in Guatemala City and was murdered. Nothing unusual there: Guatemala has a murder rate four times higher than Mexico’s, worse in fact than Iraq’s for civilians during the war. What was extraordinary is that Rosenberg knew, for certain, he was about to be killed. Rosenberg’s lover had been murdered a few weeks before. He was driven to investigate things, he told his friends, that would inevitably lead to his death. A video he recorded days before he died accused the president of his murder. Uploaded to Youtube, it nearly brought down the government. There began a brilliant investigation, a journey into Rosenberg’s soul and Guatemala’s hell, that after multiple twists and turns, reached a stunning conclusion... Experience the run for your life on TViLike now! FREE TRIAL

We all know those big trucks with yellow warning lights on the streets. Big machines with even bigger cargo. But, they are "peanuts" compared to these "Mega Transports". This series shows heavier, larger, more complicated and more unusual transports than ever shown on television. Pinpoint planning is required from big teams for weeks and months as they can only take place in certain time slots and under very specific conditions with special safety precautions. Watch the fascinating series on our new platform TViLike now. FREE TRIAL

‘The World’s Toughest Prisons’ will reveal what it really means to be part of this very special world - from different angles. At each prison we visit, the audience will be immersed into daily prison life. The viewer will experience firsthand the challenges each guard faces on a daily basis; likewise, he will learn about the prisoner’s struggles to develop strategies for survival. He will get the unique chance to discover the personalities who live behind the bars, to learn about why they’re there and what kind of contact they have with the outside world. But the deep insights in this series will also allow the audience to experience the other side of the story: why was the prison built like this? What kind of rules and security measures exist here? And how are the prisoners monitored and, if they break the rules, punished? ‘The World’s Toughest Prisons’ is a never-before-seen insight into an unbelievable world, which exists within the realms of law and justice but with its own definitions of right and wrong. This is a story audiences will love to experience, while simultaneously being thankful that it isn’t their own. Watch the entire series, seasons 1 and 2, on our new platform TViLike now. FREE TRIAL

Have you ever wondered how a way to school could look like under different conditions? Facing the most extreme conditions – marching, climbing or swimming, these little children fear neither brutal cold nor dangerous terrain. They face wild animals. They climb up mountainous paths, fight their way through icy wastelands or under the merciless sun of the dessert. They persevere through all this with only one goal in sight: a better life. These children have the most spectacular and most dangerous way to school in the world This series captivates through a unique mixture of breathtaking scenery, enormous struggle and danger coupled with childlike curiosity, happiness and inquisitiveness. Everyday routine meets the spectacular. It goes to the coldest city in the world: Oimjakon, Siberia. Where winter temperatures as low as -75 degrees Celsius make each step a challenge. Next stop the Maasai in the Kenyan savannas, whose way to school is full of fascinating and dangerous wild animals. The series will visit the Peruvian Uvos, who live on man-made islands in Lake Titicaca and must take boats to school. It goes on to the Tibetan. Plateau, where our youngest inhabitants of the village Kumpur, as they make their way climbing up mountainous trails and crossing the dangerous river Trishuli. In the Ethiopian Danakil dessert where temperatures easily reach 50 degrees Celsius during the day, it follows pupils walking for hours on scorching hot sand in order to reach their school. In Nicaragua the series attends little girls rowing a crumbly canoe all by themselves over the rapid Rio Escondido. Whereas in Papua New Guinea it will take part in the children’s perilous hike through the jungle, that will last several days. Next stop is the Copper Canyon in Mexico, home of the Tarahumara people, whose children barefooted climb 2000 meters difference in altitude only to get to school. Finally, the series stops in Mongolia where it will accompany nomad children riding to school through the bitterly cold vastness of the taiga. The series depicts people who are still living in harmony with their natural surroundings, far from any semblance of civilization. The diversity of wildlife, extreme weather conditions and the geographic uniqueness characterize the lives of the local inhabitants. In the background of these extraordinary ways to school the exceptional landscape sets the stage, telling a story all of its own. Watch this unique series on our new platform TViLike now. FREE TRIAL

Have you ever imagined how a combination of research and insanity looks like? „Howdy“ says the cat fish and swallows the Jared's arm. He in turn fishes the 30 kilo cat fish out of the water and struggles to keep a hold of it. The guy with the fish is Jared’s instructor today. Because Jared Hasselhoff, the bassist for the band Bloodhound Gang, is participating in the traditional okie noodling tournament. No small fish to fry here. And it has nothing to do with the calming benefits of fly fishing. Noodling is an extreme sport par excellence as Jared experiences himself. Tasering is not allowed while noodling ... the poor fish! But we do taser Jared, of course, in the name of science. To understand exactly what happens during tasering, we grab the high-speed camera that takes 2000 frames per second and call it "Fast and Furious". Our science ambassador, Jared Hasselhoff, embarks on a search for significant or silly myths and phenomena from daily life, and gets to the bottom of them - preferably the most painful way! Experience scientific madness on any device on our new platform TViLike! FREE TRIAL

Have you ever imagined how a combination of research and insanity looks like? „Howdy“ says the cat fish and swallows the Jared's arm. He in turn fishes the 30 kilo cat fish out of the water and struggles to keep a hold of it. The guy with the fish is Jared’s instructor today. Because Jared Hasselhoff, the bassist for the band Bloodhound Gang, is participating in the traditional okie noodling tournament. No small fish to fry here. And it has nothing to do with the calming benefits of fly fishing. Noodling is an extreme sport par excellence as Jared experiences himself. Tasering is not allowed while noodling ... the poor fish! But we do taser Jared, of course, in the name of science. To understand exactly what happens during tasering, we grab the high-speed camera that takes 2000 frames per second and call it "Fast and Furious". Our science ambassador, Jared Hasselhoff, embarks on a search for significant or silly myths and phenomena from daily life, and gets to the bottom of them - preferably the most painful way! Experience scientific madness on any device on our new platform TViLike now! FREE TRIAL

Have you ever wondered about how it feels to run a farm and work in the fields? The picture of living as a farmer is often painted in dreamy colours of living in the countryside alongside animals. There is more to agriculture than just an idyllic surrounding: such as a profound knowledge about technical equipment as well as a special feel for the environment and weather changes in relation to the harvest which is often developed over many decades. Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Part 3 of Serious Grass finds us back in Lancashire at Andrew Atkinson's dairy farm but this time we will not only see his classic Ford and John Deere tractors busy harvesting grass, we shall also see him using them to reseed a couple of grass fields. One of these will be ploughed, finding the Ford 8630 we knew in Suffolk back on a familiar Kverneland implement! The race is then on to break down and level the soil ready for a contractor to seed it before the rains come. A second field is also reseeded, this time using a Moore Unidrill straight into the sprayed off sward - and on this drill Andrew uses his 'like new' Ford 7810. Find out the story behind this tractor from Andrew himself. There is plenty more to see in this video as we see more of Andrew's latest purchase, a Ford 7710 Force II, as well as return to the chopping season and the immaculate 7810 stretching its muscles with a period New Holland 525 forager! Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Have you ever wondered about how it feels to run a farm and work in the fields? The picture of living as a farmer is often painted in dreamy colours of living in the countryside alongside animals. There is more to agriculture than just an idyllic surrounding: such as a profound knowledge about technical equipment as well as a special feel for the environment and weather changes in relation to the harvest which is often developed over many decades. Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Learn more about that very specialist knowledge and the big machinery involved on our NEW digital platform TViLike. FREE TRIAL

Have you ever wondered how to turn simple food into deliciousness? From healthy diet-friendly meals to wonderful savory dishes - being a chef brings a wide range of possible ways to enjoy preparing food. And we bring these ideas to your kitchen! Meet the Peanut Butter Hot Dog and the Macaroni with Cheetos Topping. Food without "calorimeter" and Master Chefs without limits. Wok hard, play hard! Watch season 3 of this mouthwatering series from Down Under in HD on our new platform TViLike now. FREE TRIAL

Develop your prowess in the kitchen with one of Australia’s favourite home cooks, Justine Schofield, on Everyday Gourmet. Drawing on both her French and Australian heritage, Justine serves up everything from salad to soufflé, and gives you tips and tricks along the way to help you become a better cook. Justine is often joined in the kitchen by an array of amazing guests, including celebrity chefs, nutritionists and food specialists. Justine Schofield was one of the most popular contestants on series one of MasterChef Australia and is now an established and much-loved cooking personality in her own right – with a national profile. Justine runs a catering company and is a regular columnist for taste.com.au. Watch this mouthwatering series on our brand-new platform TViLike now. FREE TRIAL

Have you ever imagined to live on the tracks because trains are your life? Stop imagining, start watching where all the train action happens! We lie the tracks right into your living room - watch out for the signals! Come to our new platform TViLike for a FREE trial!

Have you ever imagined to live on the tracks because trains are your life? Stop imagining, start watching where all the train action happens! We lie the tracks right into your living room - watch out for the signals! Come to our new platform TViLike for a FREE trial!

Have you ever imagined to live on the tracks because trains are your life? Stop imagining, start watching where all the train action happens! We lie the tracks right into your living room - watch out for the signals! Come to our new platform TViLike for a FREE trial!

Ever wondered how to succeed in a battle of 1461 without having a gun on hand? Ever imagined what it's like to fight one-on-one? From Roman swords and spears to the machine guns and explosives of the First World War, INSTRUMENTS OF DEATH travels back in time and places some of history’s deadliest weapons in your hands. An immersive look at the stark realities of battle, this fascinating six-part series explores the development and effectiveness of weapons throughout the ages. Innovative experiments reveal how the blade and bullet were designed to inflict the most untreatable wounds, while forensic experts demonstrate the barbaric ways the wounded were often treated. Experience travelling back in history on our brand-new platform TViLike now. FREE TRIAL

The Final 24 is a revealing alternative biography series that unlocks the hidden secrets, psychological flaws and trigger events that led to the tragic deaths of fourteen global icons. Each episode maps out the final 24 hours of a different celebrity’s life. Weaving in and out of this central narrative is the celebrity’s back-story, which lays bare the threads of fate that led inextricably from childhood to the moment of death. Telling interviews with loved ones and confidantes combine with high-end dramatic re-enactments and archival material illuminate these compelling life (and death) stories. These are no ordinary biographies. These are psychological detective stories attempting to uncover the mystery of why the celebrity died. Experience the revelations in HD on our new platform TViLike now. FREE TRIAL

For the past 3 decades, Arctic explorer Lonnie Dupre has traveled — by dogsled, skis and kayak — more than 15,000 miles throughout the High Arctic and polar regions. His life-long love of the Arctic and the knowledge he has gained by traveling and living with the Inuit people has led him to pursue one aim: advocating for these fragile Arctic environments that impact the well being of the whole planet. Cold Love highlights three expeditions spanning many years of Dupre's career — the frst non-motorized circumnavigation of Greenland, the frst summer expedition to the North Pole, and the frst attempt of a solo January ascent of Denali. Te flm’s powerful footage reveals up-close the beauty and life-giving forces of these icy realms. And in seeing, we can’t help but be inspired to love and protect our earth’s frozen places. Not only are they beautiful and fragile, but they are the global engine that regulates the climate and provides a stable environment for all life on the planet. Watch this truly chilling documentary on our new platform TViLike now, and benefit from a FREE TRIAL!

Exodus documents the journey of Syrian refugees as they cross the Aegean Sea from Turkey into Greece. In the winter of 2015, over three thousand refugees attempted this treacherous crossing everyday, all in hope of seeking asylum in the European Union. It’s a life and death gamble that they are willing to take, all for a chance at a new life away from their war-torn homeland. Watch this shocking documentary in HD on our new platform TViLike now, and benefit from a FREE TRIAL.

Manson Documentary: Taking viewers deep inside a twisted world of hate, fear, sexual transgression and mind-control, MANSON tells the story of how one man transformed a harmless group of hippies into a gang of brutal murderers. WATCH THE FULL STORY ON www.tvilike.com

This six part Discovery documentary series features a dump truck as big as a single-family home, the world’s most modern submarine, the flying legend B-52 Stratofortress, the Merkava IV, the best tank on the globe, the world’s most exclusive business jet, the world’s longest train....and a lot more! Watch this gigantic series on our new platform TViLike now, and benefit from a FREE TRIAL!


Return of the Plagues - Locusts Swarms of locusts are still a very real plague today. They afflict drought areas, especially after a rare rainfall, leaving a trail of destruction behind. In Africa, this regularly leads to disastrous famines. Fighting the locusts with crop dusters is too costly for many of the poorer countries, and classic insecticides take an extremely high toll on the environment and the remaining plants. Researchers all over the world are looking for new, more effective ways to combat the invaders. Scientists at the University of Halle in Germany are experimenting with pheromones that might upset the insects’ mating behavior. In Australia, where swarms of locusts have recently been destroying crops in parts of the country that never had this problem before, the locusts are being attacked with crop-dusting helicopters that apply pesticides in minimum dosage. But an aerial application is extremely sensitive to the wind, and the deadly mist might easily miss its target. “… locusts … invaded all Egypt …. They covered all the ground until it was black,” reports the Bible. “They devoured … everything growing in the fields … – nothing green remained on trees or palms in all the lands of Egypt.” (Exodus 10:14–15)

Return of the Plagues - Mosquitos Even today, two million people die every year from malaria transmitted by mosquitoes, mainly in Africa. But even in the Upper Rhine valley, where malaria was still rampant only a century ago, people have to watch out – with globalization and international travel, the cause of malaria, the so-called plasmodia, may return at any time, encouraged by the rise in average temperatures and the reproduction of the “right” type of mosquito. The Asian tiger mosquito is spreading slowly across Italy and even into Switzerland, a blood-sucking species that has caused numerous casualties in Asia as well as in the U.S. as a carrier of dengue fever and the West Nile virus. In the industrialized world, people are fighting this plague with state-of-the-art medication and insecticides that have as few side-effects as possible, but mosquitoes and pathogens are becoming more and more resistant. Some promising approaches to the solution of this problem have come out of the poor African continent itself, where researchers have been experimenting with the anopheles fly’s natural enemies (robber flies and jumping spiders) and have achieved remarkable results with plants such as the neem tree and artemisia. “… so there were lice upon man, and upon beast,” reports the Bible, “all the dust of the land became lice throughout all the land of Egypt.” (Exodus 8:18, 17)

Return of the Plagues - Sandstorms Dust storms frequently paralyze public life during the storm season in many of the most arid regions of the Earth, burying roads and human settlements, threatening the lives of humans and animals alike. The frequency of these dust storms is increasing, year after year. And the deserts that supply the raw material for the dust storms are also growing. In China, 20 percent of the land is already covered by desert, and every year sand covers a new area the size of Luxembourg. China has decided to build a 4,500 kilometer-long “green wall” as a bulwark against the dust storms: a belt of shrubs and trees is supposed to block the wind and stop the expansion of the desert. The documentary series, Return of the Plagues, follows “desertification fighters” to buried villages, where they plant kilometer after kilometer of new vegetation on sand dunes, fighting pests and looking for plants that are best suited to retain humidity in the soil. In Darmstadt, Germany, researchers have found out that dust storms from China and the Sahara are not only the result of climate change but also play an important role themselves in influencing the weather. “… darkness that can be felt … covered all Egypt for three days,” reports the Bible. “No one could see anyone else … for three days.” (Exodus 10:22–23)

Return of the Plagues - Hailstroms Mostly on the edge of mountain ranges such as the Alps and the Rocky Mountains, hail and heavy rain have devastating effects today in conjunction with global warming: crops are destroyed, homes and cars are swept away, adding up to billions of dollars in damages. Thousands of people have already died as a result of floods, landslides and mudslides. The documentary, Return of the Plagues, follows individual researchers in Germany, Austria, and Colorado who are trying to determine the conditions that cause these disasters, laying the groundwork for possibly controlling them in the future, or at least making more reliable predictions. Scientists study the dramatic sequence of events in a landslide or a flood, and they test man-made structures that are meant to withstand the enormous power of these mountains. In Styria, “hail pilots” fly small propeller aircraft into menacing thunderclouds, in order to manipulate the weather. “… and the Lord sent thunder and hail, … and fire mingled with the hail,” reports the Old Testament. “And the hail smote … all that was in the field, both man and beast.” (Exodus 9:23–25)

Return of the Plagues - Deadly Waters With water pollution and temperatures on the rise, toxic algae cause serious problems nowadays for inland waters and for the oceans. Increasing algal bloom is poisoning fish and shells, and it has become a health hazard for human beings as well: toxic algae are responsible 60,000 cases of food poisoning worldwide every year. The documentary, Return of the Plagues, takes a closer look at the effect these poisonous microorganisms have today: ● in Germany, where restaurant guests suffered food poisoning from a seafood buffet in spite of intense food inspections; ● in Florida, where not only dolphins fall victim to contaminated water but also swimmers who have difficulty breathing; ● in Italy, where an invasive species of algae has caused the collapse of the marine fauna; ● in Austria, where researchers are monitoring the mysterious behavior of algae that threaten to contaminate fresh water reservoirs; ● in Canada, where the fish and shellfish industry have shown great interest in sophisticated early-warning systems; and ● at the Alfred Wegener Institute in Bremerhaven, Germany, where algae expert Allan Cembella and his colleagues are working on solving the puzzle of how this modern plague is propagated. “… all the waters that were in the river [Nile] were turned to blood. And all the fish that was in the river died,” reports the Bible, “and the river stank, and the Egyptians could not drink of the water of the river.” (Exodus 7:20–21)

The Day of the Cyborg The dream of enhancing the functions of the human body and optimizing its performance is hundreds of years old. One means of achieving this is through the fusion of man and machine. In recent times, this technology has made incredible progress, achieving results that were until recently found only in science fiction. The key to these achievements is the neurochip, a tiny device that could turn us all into cyborgs... Neurochips are systems of tiny electrodes implanted in the body, which connect with nerve cells and can read and transmit their electrical impulses. They can thus take over functions in the human brain. They harbor many dangers, but also many benefits for mankind, and the economic and medical potential is enormous. These are the issues at the heart of this documentary. It takes an objective and well-founded look at how the neurochip is used in medical practice today. The Cochlea implant, for example, allows the deaf to hear again; and the blind are able to "see" with the Artificial Vision System. But the most highly developed implant to date is the neuro brain chip, called "BrainGate." Inserted into the human brain, it allows paraplegics to operate a computer or even to walk with the power of thought. In the style of a thriller, we trace the developments leading to the spread of cybernetics in everyday life, an inevitable process that keeps provoking the question as to whether the neurochip really is "man's best friend." Graphs and computer simulations from leading institutes illustrate complex phenomena in an easily accessible manner. And thanks to CGI technology, we can almost feel the effects of neurochip surgery on selected patients. Weighing in with their expert opinions are scientists such as Prof. Fromherz of the Max Planck Institute, a pioneer of neurochip research, John Donoghue, head developer of "BrainGate," and "cyborg-man" Kevin Warwick. In the future, artificial organs might function better than natural ones. We must ask ourselves today what forms of abuse are imaginable – and what are the ultimate consequences of this new technology...

Episode III “The Global Community” Episode 3 looks at geopolitical developments 50 years from now. Climate concerns, energy issues, peace and the race for weapons technology will dominate international headlines. We’ll take a scientific look at these topics and add a close-up examine the future of nanotechnology and solar energy, all of which will provide the basis of the dramatic scenes. Two researchers just starting out on their career paths (the protagonists) are both working together in a cramped space station to revolutionize the efficiency of solar cells. Their laboratory is reachable from Earth via a sort of “space elevator”. The elevator’s cables receive their enormous strength and necessary lightness from tiny carbon, tube-like nano-particles. It may sound like science fiction, but researchers at the Los Alamos National Laboratory are already busy at work on it. The technical challenges of the project were laid out during a large conference in 1999, and it was deemed to be realizable. Since then physicists have been working intensely on this new material. The so-called “nano tubes” are intended to make the elevator cable 1000 times stronger than steel. Specialists in space travel have already produced working models and 3-D simulations to test the behavior of this type of capsule in space. An accident of sorts in their laboratory leads the two researchers to the discovery of a substance, which turns out to be unusually effective in turning sunlight into electricity. At the same time, a serious conflict ignites between China and the USA in the face of dwindling energy reserves. Both powers are placing dibs on a sizable load of oil from Central Asia, which is at sea on a tanker. While these two giants set their military machinery in motion, the two scientists, one Chinese and one American and both of them friends, place their own safety at risk to crack the chemical code of their coincidental discovery. They are aware that this formula could lead the way out of the energy crisis and prevent the world war brewing below them. The dramatic sequences are built upon very promising research inroads into solar technology. Since the silicon panels that have been used up until now are too expensive to provide an effective energy supply, scientists have been working on a new, revolutionary method. A fluid made of nano-particles could provide the key. This fluid costs only a fraction of what the silicon cells cost and could be sprayed onto any surface. But at the present, it is still not very productive. Only 15 percent of the sunlight striking such coated surfaces is transformed into usable energy. According to scientific and economic predictions, the Earth’s final oil reserves will be nearly exhausted in the year 2057, and must by then be replaced by alternative energy sources. On a political level, leading experts predict that both China and the USA will gain more might. Episode III puts these variables up for debate while setting them in ecological and demographic projections for the mid 21st century.

Episode I “The Human Body” The first episode concentrates on the future of the human body. The effect of medical progress on the body will dramatically change daily life, but this will be compounded by other technological innovations. “Intelligent” clothing and surroundings will serve to constantly monitor a person’s health and well-being in real time. Micro-chips and sensors will be ubiquitous in all kinds of products and will keep just about everything around us online at all times. Intelligent jackets that monitor important vital signs like respiration and pulse already exist as prototypes. Their data could easily be transmitted via a wireless signal, permitting the wearer to be located immediately in case of an emergency. The elderly, the infirmed and even children could be the first to benefit from this invention. In our dramatic story, protagonist Alain Dega is seriously injured in an automobile accident – a rarity in his day - and receives immediate medical attention thanks in part to his “intelligent” clothing. With multiple fractures and a hairline crack to his artificial heart, Alain is rushed by air-ambulance to the hospital of the future. By this point the exponential rate of progress in genetic research and medical technology has enabled doctors to heal virtually any injury. As an optimally insured patient, Alain Dega has access to the best medical care of his times. Even in our present day, it is already possible to produce swaths of tissue and simple organs from human cells, so when Head Physician Marie Belzac takes on his case in 2057, it’s only routine that she arrange to have a new biological heart cloned for Alain from his own cells. Alain is spared the wrenching strain of physical therapy thanks to processor-driven electrodes, which stabilize his musculature and help him get back up onto his feet quickly. While his new heart gradually takes form, Alain and Maria become closely acquainted. Unexpectedly the insurance company produces evidence indicating that Alain bares partial liability for the accident, and the posh treatment he has enjoyed as a “First Class” patient comes to a rude halt. Maria puts her career on the line to ensure the illegal transplantation of his new heart and saves in the nick of time from certain death. In the dramatic sequences in the operating room, doctors are aided by various robotic devices offering an array of capabilities. For years scientists were of the opinion that robots could some day replace surgeons completely. New research and botched operations have shown the limitations of machines in real-life situations. Each individual patient places different demands on the OR, requiring a human being to make complex decisions and react to surprises. Semi-robotic systems and intelligent instruments seem to make for the perfect compromise. Machines can offer operators the best possible points of incision and illustrate them with the help of 3-D simulations, while counterbalancing miscalculations and smoothing out shaky hands. The first episode introduces us to the future of medicine, genetic technology and health care. But only those who can pay will have access to the constantly improving possibilities of healing and life extension. Experts from various disciplines will give us their take on the consequences of online connectivity in our personal space as well as the advantages and dangers involved in genetic research and robotic development.

Episode II “The City” The infrastructures of large cities in the industrialized world are already becoming very difficult to manage. Technological trends in the coming decades will likely move towards a centralized management system to coordinate a city’s energy consumption, traffic and data networks. This way traffic - for example - could automatically be diverted in the even of an accident and medical assistance immediately be called onto the scene. As practical as this model may seem, it’s not without potentially serious pitfalls. These highly sensible data systems could become a tempting target for hackers and terrorists. For this reason the development of networked city models is going hand in hand with that of data security. Even with that, the experts agree that data systems will never be absolutely secure – not even in 50 years. In 2057 the budding but talented hacker Paul, our protagonist of the second episode, manages to penetrate his megapolis’ data network. The pre-teen boy lives with his divorced mother, a police detective in the department for “Critical Infrastructures”, and his grandfather, a former famous hacker-with-a-cause. One day after school, Paul decides to give some virtual cartoon characters of his own design a taste of urban life. Using his grandfather’s equipment and his own nascent genius he accesses the city’s network and programs his “friends” onto all of the city’s holographic advertising spaces as colorful 3-D projections. But in the process, he makes an egregious error, and little by little city’s entire network and the vital infrastructures it drives come to a crashing halt. While Paul gradually begins to understand the mess he has made, the police, in particular his mother’s department, launch a manhunt for the perpetrator. Police investigations reveal to the audience the technology and methods of future crime-fighting efforts and their invasion into individual privacy. In London, the city with the most surveillance cameras in the world today, scientists are developing so-called smart cameras. They could be utilized to reduce crime dramatically according to the experts. VMAD – Video Motion Anomaly Detection – is the name given to the technology, which teaches data-enabled cameras which movements of the human body are normal and which should arouse the attention of law enforcement. As an added capability, the system can follow the extended path of a single individual as long as the subject has a few recognizable features. Scientists from various fields discuss what consequences the increasing need for security might have on the integrity of our private lives. They voice their opinions on the issue of data protection and the individual’s right to informational confidentiality. After the first phases of the investigation, the police have set their sites on Paul’s grandfather, the former hacker, who for his part is preoccupied with helping his grandson out of this calamity. Together they attempt to root out the error and save the city from a total meltdown. For both parties a race against time ensues. Paul manages to rectify the situation at the last minute. The second episode’s fictional plot serves to reveal visionary technologies to our viewers while introducing them to the city of the future. We see how people live their everyday lives – working, having fun, shopping – and how developments in robotics, automobiles and traffic tie into it all. As in the field of data processing, the desire for safety dominates research and development in the automobile industry. Accident-free driving is the ultimate aim of traffic and driver-assistance systems. The driver is to relinquish more and more responsibility to the systems networking all of the car’s electronic components. At the same time, vehicles will be able to communicate with one another independently via sensors and cameras. Engineers and scientists envision a seemingly utopian scenario of completely data-streamed rivers of traffic, in which vehicles silently glide through town piloted automatically and accidents are a thing of the past (our present). The Boeing corporation and Mollers International are developing flying cars that are almost completely independent of surface traffic. But since the airspace is already overfilled today, it would seem to experts that so-called “Personal Air Vehicles” would be used exclusively by police and rescue teams. The first existing prototypes can transport up to six people, are easy to fly and are capable of negotiating short distances in surface traffic. The purpose of these new airborne “cars” is to get help where it is needed rapidly. By the time they go into series, they should be able to reach speeds of up to 500 km/h.

The waters off the Rangiroa Atoll in French Polynesia are home to an astonishing creature, a true survivor from an age when dinosaurs roamed the Earth around 400 million years ago: the great hammerhead shark. At up to 6 metres in length, they are imposing predators with an array of incredible sensory organs housed in their distinctive hammer-shaped heads. But there are still many unanswered questions about these mysterious creatures. Marine biologist Dr Johan Mourier of the University of Perpignan is dedicated to exploring the behaviour and genetic make-up of great hammerhead sharks to help preserve this endangered species in the wild. In the last 25 years alone, their world population has shrunk by about 80%. Yet very little is known about them. Dr Mourier wants to get to the bottom of the sharks’ migratory patterns, as well as their social behaviour. By tagging individual sharks with GPS locators, he hopes to establish where the animals go, what their migration routes are and where they are most threatened. It is becoming increasingly clear that sharks tend to move very quickly and deliberately between different fishing grounds. Is this also true for the Great Hammerheads? Are changes in these traditional fishing grounds threatening the hammerheads’ survival? The extreme shyness of these mighty predators makes them difficult research subjects. To make matters worse, great hammerheads are loners, unlike their common hammerhead cousins. And since tagging is usually done by using airtanks, it is very difficult to approach these shy individuals. This is where Frederic’s silent and calm approach underwater makes all the difference: Dr Mourier is working together with Fred to get closer to the animals than ever before. This gives him not only the chance to study their behaviour up close, he is even able to select individuals for tagging to reflect a cross-section of the population. The researchers are able to track the tagged sharks and plot their migratory patterns for the very first time. For Frederic, this undertaking is not only exciting, it is seriously dangerous and requires months of preparation and training. Approaching a predator like this one in open water is not for the faint-hearted, especially since it is thought that sharks are able to ‘feel fear’ and respond to it aggressively. On Frederic and Christian’s arrival in Papete, the capital of French Polynesia, Dr Mourier diligently highlights the risks and pitfalls of trying to dive with great hammerhead sharks: they are powerful predators, not to be underestimated. Frederic and Christian have their work cut out. They have to plan each dive meticulously – not least how Christian and his diving equipment can stay close enough to Frederic to document his findings without disturbing the sharks. Minimising potential risks is also top of their agenda. Test dives perfect their technique and illustrate just how abundant and stunning the local marine life is. They come across many shark species: Silvertips, oceanic white tips, grey reef sharks, lemmon sharks and many others. Dr. Mourir shows and explains their nursery: bays with hundreds of baby sharks. No matter which shark species Frederic wants to approach, he cannot afford to panic. He must remain calm and in control – instinctive reactions like sudden, hecticmovements could be detrimental. Loose control, and it could cost him his life. The tagging and sampling process in itself is even more dangerous than the initial approach: Frederic has to use a harpoon to dart the sharks from their immediate vicinity. The tagging could be interpreted as a threat and prompt an attack. But luck is on their side. After many days Fred finally can set the tags near the dorsal fin of two great hammerheads. This is the crucial moment Dr Mourier has been waiting for: the tags will give him a unique chance to track the sharks’ movements. A huge success for Frederic, Christian and the research team. The insights gained into the great hammerheads migration patterns and their genetic make-up will combine to paint a much more accurate picture of these elusive predators’ lives. For science today, this undertaking is truly uncharted territory.

Secrets in the Dust II Uncovering the Etruscans It took an Italian doctor in the 1870s to discover the legendary 12th City of the Etruscans, the mysterious people the Romans tried to write out of history, because they were jealous of this superior civilization that they had thrust aside. It was a chance find of a coin in a field that led Isodoro Falchi to indentify the site Vetulonia the last township of the Etruscan federation. This loose grouping of hilltop cities inhabited Italy’s beautiful Tuscany region for 1,000 years, until their disappearance around 500 BC. Because they decorated their tombs as facsimiles of their homes, we know exactly how they lived. From these, their unmistakable statues and other artifacts, we know that they used iron tools, built towns with stone temples, and lived in terraced houses with small interior pools. Theirs was a sensuous, prosperous lifestyle of banquets and pleasure, with equality between the sexes - and a healthy interest in sex itself. But the Etruscans had one remarkable, almost unique characteristic. As if all this was too good to be true, they predicted their own downfall, after a thousand years. The Romans seemed almost too happy to oblige, for no-one must be seen to have influenced them -- even though they built on the achievements of the Etruscans. Literally, in the case of Rome, where they even adopted their sewerage system! In Falchi’s day the archaeological authorities in Rome seemed almost as reluctant to recognize his discoveries as the Romans themselves had been to remember the Etruscans; but today’s geneticists have proved that Falchi was right. They have discovered that the current inhabitants of Campiglia Marittima , once called Vetulonia, are descended from the Etruscans of old; and they have solved a second mystery. The original ancestors of the Etruscans came not from Italy but from Asia Minor: today’s Turkey. From the latest excavations by Simona Rafanelli and Sylvia Guideri we understand one more crucial fact. The Romans may like to pretend that the Etruscans never existed - and the Etruscans may have predicted their own downfall. But today, archaeologists find evidence that Etruscans and Romans lived in harmony for a long period, worshipping the same gods, before the Romans took over, conquering lands far beyond the Italian hills to become the superpower of the ancient world.

Empire of the Persians In 1923 Ernst Herzfeld was the greatest living scholar of the Persian Empire, that ruled in the Middle East from 612BC until it was defeated by Alexander the Great in 330BC. That year Herzfeld set out on his last major expedition. It would last more than 10 years. It would make crucial discoveries about this misunderstood civilization, and it would end in personal disaster. A German expedition in the 1920s was of necessity small-scale, operating with little or no money. The defeated power in WWI could no longer afford such ‘luxuries’. But this was also an opportunity: the colonial powers – Britain and France – were not popular with the local governments in the region. By teaming up with oil money from America, Herzfeld could gain both political, and financial, support – enough to continue his work. And what discoveries he made: Herzfeld excavated the administrative centre of Persepolis, the Persian imperial capital, uncovering thousands of clay tablets which described in detail the administrative system and the trade networks of the Empire. Far from being the tyranny described by their Greek conquerors, this was evidence of a tolerant and cosmopolitan Empire that took the best from all the peoples it ruled. If Herzfeld found the information, his assistant Friedrich Krefter discovered the treasure – the solid gold plaque forged for the great King Darius to acknowledge his glory. But Herzfeld was Jewish, and while he was in Persia his country was taken over by the Nazis. Once again, distrust and prejudice ruled; stripped of his professorships by 20th Century tyranny, he was even accused of theft of Persia’s national treasures. Politics refuses to spare the region today, as archaeologists – notably from Australia - continue to research the ancient Persian Empire, trying now to understand how this Empire extended its power so many hundreds of kilometres from the capital. Their work is tolerated by the Iranian government, who know that building a sense of national identity and pride in the past is in their interests in the present...

The Ice Age Hunters Alfred Rust was a humble electrician in 1920s Germany when he first discovered ice-age tools in a swamp near Hamburg. At that time no-one believed that ice-age man could have survived this far north. No scholar would take this amateur’s views seriously, so in 1930 he set off on a 3,000km bicycle ride to Syria, to learn about ice age civilizations. His studies there made his reputation, and back in Germany he could demonstrate how nomadic ice-age hunters lived from the meat and hides of great reindeer herds whose migration routes led between the glaciers. He even identified two quite separate cultures a thousand years apart, by their changing use of weapons. The first used slings to throw their spears further; but the second had developed the far more effective bow and arrow. These nomads depicted the animals crucial to their existence in engravings on rocks, and they found a way to preserve their meat at the bottom of icy ponds. Today experimental archaeologists test out ice-age weapons, while geologists use satellite imagery to pin-point the water sources that migrating reindeer - and hunters – would have used.

In Search of the Aztecs Luckily for him, Eduard Seler had a weak constitution; in 1882 he met and married his doctor’s daughter. Caecilie’s energy and curiosity complemented Eduard’s intellectual passion and capacity for hard, detailed work, and together they left Berlin for Mexico to decipher the codices of the Aztecs. These were only authentic written accounts of the civilization destroyed by the arrival of the Spaniards in the 16th Century – and nobody had succeeded in interpreting them. Seler cracked the code of the Aztec calendar, which in turn revealed a great deal about their sacrificial rituals and their temple-building cycles; at the turn of every Aztec century, new, grander temples must be built over the old ones. Seler also realized that Aztec illustrations revealed the truth about Aztec education and everyday working lives. Meanwhile Caecilie photographed their discoveries on their travels, and collected Aztec artifacts, found in far-flung rural markets. Today’s archaeologists are making further important discoveries: like King Montezuma’s secret room for communing with the gods, unearthed when a lift shaft in a Mexico City block was renovated. Today’s scientists face the same challenge Seler knew – Mexico’s capital city is built right over the ancient Aztec capital, so the opportunities to dig are limited and frustratingly brief. Ironically this fact, like his poor health, played to Seler’s scholarly strengths, and helped him become a giant in the story of archaeology.

A Dive into History Alfred Merlin was digging for Roman remains in Tunisia in 1907 when sponge-divers identified mysterious remains – stone columns, just off-shore in the Mediterranean. Was this the legendary lost city of Atlantis? But when beautifully-crafted Roman works of art were salvaged from the site Merlin, came to an even more intriguing conclusion: these were the remains of a Roman shipwreck. The Mediterranean, he knew, was the super-highway of the ancient world – water was the only efficient way to transport heavy goods quickly throughout the Empire. And when greedy traders overloaded their ships, the resulting disasters left behind a gift for archaeologists two thousand years later. Understand where the ships were going and what they were taking, and you could decode the whole of the ancient world. And so Alfred Merlin created a whole new discipline: marine archaeology. At first it was exhausting and extremely dangerous work. Divers in the cumbersome suits with lead boots and copper helmets depended on a steady stream of air pumped from the surface. Many suffocated or died in agony from the bends. But the rewards were fabulous: individual artworks and the revelation of a trade network that saw building materials and luxuries crossing hundreds of miles of sea to construct new colonies in the image of Rome. This film shows the pioneers at work in Merlin’s time and their successors today, faced with the same challenges of salvage and preservation, and even using some of the same methods!

The Mediterranean, that popular holiday destination for Germans, is of course also the natural habitat of many sea creatures. But can be true that the biggest predator in the world, the sperm whale, lives in the Mediterranean? And where can monk seals, who once inhabited the Mediterranean beaches, be found today? Underwater filmmaker Thomas Behrend tracks down sperm whales and monk seals, capturing fascinating footage of the giants and the phantoms of the Mediterranean. But witnessing the birth of a sperm whale calf at close quarters unexpectedly places Behrend‘s life in danger...

DOLPHINS & WHALES Ute Margreff lives on Ireland’s Atlantic coast, Florian Graner in the Puget Sound in the Northwest of the USA. Both Germans share a deep passion for the sea and its creatures. About 10 years ago Ute Margreff got to know the female solitary dolphin Mara – it was the start of an unusual friendship. Florian Graner found its private paradise close to Seattle. Right in front of his doorstep he dives into a world inhabited by sea lions, giant octopus and orca whales. Both Ute and Florian fight for the protection of marine habitats, each one in a different and very unique way.

          
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