Incredible Human Machine

Synopsis: National Geographic: Incredible Human Machine takes viewers on a two-hour journey through an ordinary, and extraordinary, day-in-the-life of the human machine. With stunning high-definition footage, radical scientific advances and powerful firsthand accounts, Incredible Human Machine plunges deep into the routine marvels of the human body. Through 10,000 blinks of an eye, 20,000 breaths of air and 100,000 beats of the heart, see the amazing and surprising, even phenomenal inner workings of our bodies on a typical day. And explore striking feats of medical advancement, from glimpses of an open-brain surgery to real-time measurement of rocker Steven Tyler's vocal chords.
Genre: Documentary
  2 wins & 2 nominations.
120 min

There is nothing more familiar

or more mysterious...

more breathtaking in its action...

marvellous in its mechanics...

exquisite in its range of senses...

and staggering in its ability to understand.

On a fantastic voyage

through a single day,

we plunge deep into the routine miracles

of the human body.

Dream on, dream on...

Our instruments,



roadways and circuitry.

Through 1 0,000 blinks,

20,000 breaths,

1 00,000 beats...

Hello. is an ordinary, extraordinary day

in the life of the incredible human machine.

Bits of stardust is really all we are.

Oxygen, carbon, hydrogen

and a handful of elements that would cost

very little at any chemical supply shop.

But get these chemicals together,

marinate in a hospitable place

for about 3.8 billion years

and the mundane mix of molecules

becomes precious.

There are more than six billion human bodies

living on Earth

and each of us is the amalgamation of

some 1 00 trillion microscopic cells.

While the blueprint for each individual

are 99.9 per cent identical,

no two of us are exactly the same.

As a new day dawns,

each human machine begins

the succession of miracles

that will take it from morning to midnight.

Cells, senses,

muscles, bones,

hearts, brains,

all must marshal their forces and unite

just to wake us up.

(Alarm beeps)


At the surface of it all,

a velvety overcoat of cells and protein

keeps us in

and the rest of the world out.

lt's our armour,

our radiator,

our entree to pain and pleasure.

lt is the body's largest organ -

our skin.

Smooth and silky to the eyes and touch

a closer look

presents a very different landscape.

Magnified 600 times,

our outermost skin is nothing but dead cells,

riddled with ridges and grooves

and pocked with countless bumps

and holes.

Look closer still and we find

hundreds of thousands of bacteria

inhabit every square inch of us.

With every tick of the clock,

our dead skin gets sloughed off.

We shed at least 600,000 particles of skin

an hour-

about a pound-and-a-half's-worth each year,

which accounts for as much as 80 per cent

of the dust in our houses.

But there's plenty of skin to go around.

lf we could peel it off and lay it out flat,

the average person's skin

would cover some 1 8 square feet.

Though just millimetres thick,

it would weigh about 6lb.

And we're constantly making more.

Just wait a month or so

and you'll have a shiny new coat.

Which means skin can't be all dead.

Dip below the surface

and you find cells continuously dividing

to replace those dead cells above.

Kilometres of blood vessels

pulse to skin's connective tissues.

Not forgetting

all those precious nerve endings.

45 miles-worth of nerves stretch

from our heads down to our toes,

and many reach to our skin.

Some parts more than others.

lf sensitivity were size-dependent,

we would look something like this.

Our supersensitive hands, feet,

tongue and lips,

each packed with touch receptors,

would swell enormously.

Our legs, on the other hand,

would resemble a chicken's.

Good thing for us there is more to this organ

than touch.

Skin is also our heating and cooling system.

And by helping maintain

that comfy 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit

it keeps us alive.

Through its network of blood vessels,

skin carries as much as one-third

of the heart's hot, freshly-pumped blood.

Get too hot and these vessels can widen

to release heat from our bodies.

But sometimes that's not enough.

A good workout can raise the body's

temperature several degrees above normal -

a potentially deadly state

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Chad Cohen


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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Incredible Human Machine" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 27 Jan. 2021. <>.

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