Education Science
Exploring the Wonders of Practical Engineering

I get YouTube channel crushes. I am currently crushing on Practical Engineering. The creator and host of the channel is Grady Hillhouse, a civil engineer and maker living in San Antonio, TX. On the goal of the channel, he writes:

My goal for Practical Engineering is to increase exposure and interest in the field of engineering. I’m trying to highlight that connection between the world around us and the energy, passion, and thought that goes into making it a nicer place to live.

Seeing programming this good, this rich with science, technology, education, and wonder, it’s easy to underestimate how hard it is to create something this watchable on subjects this technical and complex. I learn so much from each episode and they really work, not only to educate me on the physical sciences and technologies upon which our everyday lives are built, but I gain a greater sense of wonder as a take-away.

In each (usually) 8-10 minute episode, Grady looks into some aspect of the world around us, from water towers and sink holes, to dams and the wonders of concrete. Besides the thumbnail education on each topic, Grady also performs clever and eye-opening lab experiments to clearly illustrate the principles being discussed. Really impressive stuff.


Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. And he has a new best-of writing collection and “lazy man’s memoir,” called Borg Like Me.

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