This is one of my favorite videos that I've seen on the whole of the internet. (Gasp!) Piecing together clips from dozens of science documentaries and specials overlaid with stunning music, the youtube user UppruniTegundanna starts out tracing the history of humans, integrating technological and artistic development. Then it takes a turn to beautifully visualize the most severe mass extinctions on this planet before starting from the beginning -- from the big bang, formation of the solar system and earth, the first molecules and the evolution of life as we know it.
It's a lot of ground to cover and it's so well done. Get ready for 12 straight minutes of butterflies and chills. I haven't failed to get them each time I watch it, an unquantifiable number of times at this point.
In this video and his others, the artist seems to truly grasp the magnificence of the universe. At its heart, this video is about natural disasters, embracing extinction and death as key to how we got here -- and true awe at the fact that we exist at all.
[Edited and reposted from the previous incarnation of Culturing Science.]