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History of the universe, in brief: Twice

A group of engineering students at Purdue University built a Rube Goldberg machine that depicts a history of the universe, in about a minute. (Thanks to Scott Langill for bringing it to our attention.) See it in the videos below.

It’s an alternative universe history to Eric Schulman’s classic “A History of the Universe in 200 Words or Less“, published long ago in the Annals of Improbable Research (and later translated into many languages). Eric then performed a 1-minute-long version at the Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony, where a book publisher saw him and challenged Eric to expand it into a book. He did. The book—a very good book— is called A Briefer History of Time. The NSF has posted a video of Dr. Schulman performing his masterwork.

Improbable Research