The Secret of Synchronization

How does order spontaneously arise out of chaos? This video is sponsored by Kiwico - go to for 50% off your first month of any crate.
An enormous thanks to Prof. Steven Strogatz - this video would not have been possible without him. Much of the script-writing was inspired and informed by his wonderful book Sync, and his 2004 TED talk. He is a giant in this field, and has literally written the book on chaos, complexity, and synchronization. It was hard to find a paper in this field that Steven (or one of his students) didn't contribute to. His Podcast "The Joy of X" is wonderful - please listen and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts
Nicky Case's Amazing Firefly Interactive -
Great Kuramoto Model Interactive -
Strogatz, S. H. (2012). Sync: How order emerges from chaos in the universe, nature, and daily life. Hachette UK. -
Strogatz, S. H. (2000). From Kuramoto to Crawford: exploring the onset of synchronization in populations of coupled oscillators. Physica D: Nonlinear Phenomena, 143(1-4), 1-20. -
Goldsztein, G. H., Nadeau, A. N., & Strogatz, S. H. (2021). Synchronization of clocks and metronomes: A perturbation analysis based on multiple timescales. Chaos: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Nonlinear Science, 31(2), 023109. -
The Broughton Suspension Bridge and the Resonance Disaster -
Bennett, M., Schatz, M. F., Rockwood, H., & Wiesenfeld, K. (2002). Huygens's clocks. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, 458(2019), 563-579. -
Pantaleone, J. (2002). Synchronization of metronomes. American Journal of Physics, 70(10), 992-1000. -
Kuramoto, Y. (1975). Self-entrainment of a population of coupled non-linear oscillators. In International symposium on mathematical problems in theoretical physics (pp. 420-422). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. --
Great video by Minute Earth about Tidal Locking and the Moon -
Strogatz, S. H., Abrams, D. M., McRobie, A., Eckhardt, B., & Ott, E. (2005). Crowd synchrony on the Millennium Bridge. Nature, 438(7064), 43-44. -
Zhabotinsky, A. M. (2007). Belousov-zhabotinsky reaction. Scholarpedia, 2(9), 1435. -
Flavio H Fenton et al. (2008) Cardiac arrhythmia. Scholarpedia, 3(7):1665. -
Cherry, E. M., & Fenton, F. H. (2008). Visualization of spiral and scroll waves in simulated and experimental cardiac tissue. New Journal of Physics, 10(12), 125016. -
Tyson, J. J. (1994). What everyone should know about the Belousov-Zhabotinsky reaction. In Frontiers in mathematical biology (pp. 569-587). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. -
Winfree, A. T. (2001). The geometry of biological time (Vol. 12). Springer Science & Business Media. -
Special thanks to Patreon supporters: Mac Malkawi, Oleksii Leonov, Michael Schneider, Jim Osmun, Tyson McDowell, Ludovic Robillard, jim buckmaster, fanime96, Juan Benet, Ruslan Khroma, Robert Blum, Richard Sundvall, Lee Redden, Vincent, Lyvann Ferrusca, Alfred Wallace, Arjun Chakroborty, Joar Wandborg, Clayton Greenwell, Pindex, Michael Krugman, Cy 'kkm' K'Nelson, Sam Lutfi, Ron Neal
Written by Derek Muller and Petr Lebedev
Animation by Fabio Albertelli and Jakub Misiek
Simulations and 3D Animation by Jonny Hyman
Filmed by Derek Muller and Raquel Nuno
Edited by Derek Muller
Additional video supplied by Getty Images
Thumbnail by Ignat Berbeci
More footage from NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio
100 metronome video from
Intro animation by Jorge Cham
Thanks for the BZ footage from SteinbockGroup: and
Animation of waves in the heart from The Virtual Heart/ EM Cherry/ FH Fenton - and
Chemical materials and protocol provided by Mike Morris and the UCI Chemistry Outreach Program
Thanks to Alie Ward for title/thumbnail consultation
Thanks to Dr Juliette Becker and Dr James O'Donoghue for the planetary science help
Music from Jonny Hyman, Epidemic Sound "Seaweed" "Deeper Than The Ocean" "Ripple Effect"
Music also from Artlist "Children of Mystery"
Thumbnail by Ignat Berbeci


  1. Ilgar Roshen

    Ilgar Roshen29 minuuttia sitten

    20:26 You are a great father

  2. Piper Mahon

    Piper Mahon4 tuntia sitten

    nile red

  3. eyewazear

    eyewazear8 tuntia sitten

    46 and 2 is a song about synchronization

  4. Tanner W

    Tanner W11 tuntia sitten

    3:33 this is very disturbing looking

  5. Devin Grba

    Devin Grba13 tuntia sitten

    spiral out keep going spiral out keep going spiral out keep going spiral out keep going

  6. Kataka Zikato Tekikazi

    Kataka Zikato Tekikazi17 tuntia sitten

    Is not even Synchronizing, because Synchronization is one will remain constant and the other will adjust to it. From what i see, All things are trying to adjust to each other and it is called neutralization. But i cant deny the video it self was Amazing. Beware of Vertical Paradox.

  7. Foster Hellendoorn

    Foster Hellendoorn18 tuntia sitten

    It takes a dutchman to figure things

  8. Berserk 007

    Berserk 00721 tunti sitten

    what's the song at 15:30 ?

  9. Zizi Roberts

    Zizi RobertsPäivä sitten

    The fireflies flash together in Tennessee in the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. I took my daughter to see them about 17 years ago. Awesome. ❤️

  10. hiPsDonLiE

    hiPsDonLiEPäivä sitten

    ok. i was also hoping for more philosophical and human and metaphysical side of synchronization....the feeling of "everything falling in place"....thats synchronization too and much more important to be analyzed than for the inanimate one which is easy.

  11. Luigi

    LuigiPäivä sitten

    Yes this is definitely more important than homework.

  12. tttm99

    tttm99Päivä sitten

    How did anyone think putting a foot down as was half step. Just because the cycle was half through doesn't mean the imparted energy was only forwards or backwards or in one way. It makes me wonder how much science needs retrospective peer review... But i shouldn't be surprised of course, because until things break who would pay for the research. The potential volume and magnitude of errors in thinking and subtle misunderstandings lurking beneath what most put their faith in without question - documented scientific discovery - is truly sobering.

  13. Горькие Усы

    Горькие УсыPäivä sitten

    It looks like scientists need more dialectical materialism to understand the totality better.

  14. Blu Berry

    Blu BerryPäivä sitten

    How does this affect us humans ? like..our brains...the collective conscious ?

  15. Ипполит Матвеевич

    Ипполит МатвеевичPäivä sitten

    So what's the secret of synchronization?

  16. Bafelmauk

    Bafelmauk2 päivää sitten

    how precise is 2 pendulum clock Synchronization ? do they sync up perfectly ?

  17. Вадим Владимирович Тимофеев

    Вадим Владимирович Тимофеев2 päivää sitten

    I hate the frog LYAGULYALYULIN its impossible

  18. Troy Ward Jr

    Troy Ward Jr2 päivää sitten

    It is the way God made it. Nature doesnt use anything it is all God.

  19. Cool Legend

    Cool Legend2 päivää sitten

    nile red and veritasium are just amazing youtubers

  20. Rojar Jonez

    Rojar Jonez2 päivää sitten

    Strong evidence for a universal creator. Clearly an intelligent design.

  21. Darrell Border

    Darrell Border2 päivää sitten

    Some guy named Joshua in history did this and took down the grand city walls of Jericho. Just walking, huh?

  22. I HaveNoGunGame

    I HaveNoGunGame3 päivää sitten

    This video makes perfect scence if you are into non duality and spirituality or even if you just understand and approve of it. Everything is one and at the end everything balances out, there is chaos and there is balance, they both work together to give us perfect harmony. Great vid 👍

  23. Tacotoots12

    Tacotoots123 päivää sitten

    19:20 was that a cut???

  24. bmq34

    bmq343 päivää sitten

    Who the hell give dislike to such a gread video? Anything wrong with it?

  25. Simon Mølgaard Hansen

    Simon Mølgaard Hansen3 päivää sitten

    Hi. This night I was at a concert, and at the end it dawned upon me that the applause didnt synchronize the same way it usually does, unlike shown at around 10:00. Due to covid-19 we, as individuals, havent been attending consert etc. And we were sitting with distance. I wonder if it could have a connection?

  26. Kian F

    Kian F3 päivää sitten

    I love the guest guy, he was so enthusiastic!

  27. vicarioustube

    vicarioustube4 päivää sitten

    The young son of a friend of mine who had a heart transplant at 17 now at 19 his heart failed. He is alive and getting better at LA children hospital. But from your minute 14 it is quite amazing to visually see the electric representation of a heart failure. His dad told me about heart electrical specialist working on him or with him. I did send him this utmost pertinent link. Thank you!

  28. sergio gonçalves

    sergio gonçalves4 päivää sitten

    great vid but isnt the moon pulling itself further from earth? meaning its not completely in sync with the earth? with the right equipment and the panels that the astronauts put on the moon we can observe that phenomenon

  29. Arctic lama

    Arctic lama4 päivää sitten

    I clicked on this video only expecting to watch a couple minutes of it. I made sure to like and subscribe when it was done 👍

  30. Fletcher Johnson

    Fletcher Johnson4 päivää sitten

    It's pronounced pendulum not pendalum

  31. Eric

    Eric4 päivää sitten

    Oh you really don't need the cheap red arrow click bait on the thumbnail.

  32. Кабаняра Клыков

    Кабаняра Клыков5 päivää sitten

    I'm from Russia and I watch your videos, but I watch your videos from another channel that does Russian voice acting. But I still go to your channel looking for the right video and put a like. It was you who instilled in me a love for physics and I would like to say a huge thank you! You probably won't even read this comment, but I still want to write it. Thanks!

  33. Ernest Gonzalez

    Ernest Gonzalez5 päivää sitten

    i should be paying for this

  34. Shawn Savage

    Shawn Savage5 päivää sitten

    You can’t understand the whole with the sum of its parts unless you first know who made the parts.

  35. Aarya Jain

    Aarya JainPäivä sitten

    So I can't understand 10= 9+1 completely? Good to know

  36. Shawn Savage

    Shawn Savage5 päivää sitten

    Man if this doesn’t make you believe in God idk what will

  37. Shawn Savage

    Shawn Savage5 päivää sitten

    God made nature to function this way. How awesome is that!

  38. Shawn Savage

    Shawn Savage5 päivää sitten

    Without God there is no order, He sets everything in order!

  39. Family Three

    Family Three5 päivää sitten

    must be why iv never heard of or seen this bridge and work in london

  40. Halima Nasrin

    Halima Nasrin5 päivää sitten

    Outstanding demonstration , well said.

  41. Fenrir

    Fenrir6 päivää sitten

    Someone please share the secret of synchronization with the Windows OS, because for more than 15 years not a single Windows machine I've ever had has successfully sychronized with a time server, not even once.

  42. Schwatzen zero

    Schwatzen zero6 päivää sitten

    Me watching the video : 15:02

  43. The Wolf Gaming

    The Wolf Gaming6 päivää sitten

    Veritasium : "So u naturally expect universe to be *MESSI* " Ronaldo fans : Nooo, i expect the universe to be Ronaldo.

  44. Pilton Jones

    Pilton Jones6 päivää sitten

    It also brought all the fighters to the strongest being on earth.

  45. James Lento

    James Lento6 päivää sitten

    Fun fact my last name is lento it’s also on metronomes 50bpm

  46. asher platts

    asher platts6 päivää sitten

    Fantastic video

  47. Tim Jessel

    Tim Jessel6 päivää sitten

    How is clapping mysteriously synchronised?? We adjust our clap due to the overall sound and by watching those next to you. This is using our own human abilities.

  48. Open Heart

    Open Heart6 päivää sitten

    Women can even synchronize their periods if they get in to a close group for some time.

  49. zokonjazokonja

    zokonjazokonja6 päivää sitten

    19:05 "that's why we don't understand immune system very well... " Now that's some sort eye opening, especially theese days

  50. Cleveland explorer

    Cleveland explorer6 päivää sitten

    I'm not sure about the relation of fireflies, might it also be compared with sociology, people in large crowds now behaving as themselves because of how the crowd or atmosphere is, like a starling murmurstion perhaps? Very very interesting

  51. Juan David Navarro Ortega

    Juan David Navarro Ortega6 päivää sitten

    Does this happen also to larger celestial bodies, planets oscillating around stars, stars around galaxies or even black holes?

  52. Airbag888

    Airbag8886 päivää sitten

    The kiwiko crate won't ship to my country... Devastated 😭

  53. Bottom Dollar Outdoors: Hunt. Fish. Grow.

    Bottom Dollar Outdoors: Hunt. Fish. Grow.6 päivää sitten

    This is one of my favorite videos on FItitle.

  54. Ali Fatih Yılmaz

    Ali Fatih Yılmaz7 päivää sitten

    plot twist : living in computer reality , just crashes after 155 player in same area and fix script working

  55. Bunny Bevy TV

    Bunny Bevy TV7 päivää sitten

    The water doesn’t freeze at the same time...but I suppose y’all put that in there to screw with smart people and trick us into commenting 😭

  56. Kris Stepke

    Kris Stepke7 päivää sitten

    This is vibration space time stuff

  57. Jacob Gardiepy

    Jacob Gardiepy7 päivää sitten

    13:50 imagine filling a pool with that stuff

  58. The Gorn

    The Gorn7 päivää sitten

    Millenium bridge pays homage to millenials. i.e. complete failures.

  59. The Gorn

    The Gorn7 päivää sitten

    2:16 "Famous Dutch physisis Christiaan Huygens" Everyone: "who?"

  60. Jacob Hood

    Jacob Hood7 päivää sitten

    Can we see a similar pattern in the collection of thoughts in society?

  61. TwistedVNM

    TwistedVNM7 päivää sitten

    How can we not understand the economy we as humans invite it. It's not part of nature or science

  62. TwistedVNM

    TwistedVNM7 päivää sitten

    Next time you are in traffic look at the turn signals they will synchronize then get out of synchronization then get back into synchronization

  63. Tiny Tuber

    Tiny Tuber7 päivää sitten

    i wonder, why is it when i'm at an intersection, blinkers synchronize aswell

  64. Q Q

    Q Q8 päivää sitten

    This makes me think of when I’m at a stop light and my blinker starts syncing up with the car in front of me for a few seconds

  65. Metalman Extreme

    Metalman Extreme3 päivää sitten

    Or when your bouncing your leg and notice the person nearby is bouncing in sync

  66. bipedalbob

    bipedalbob5 päivää sitten

    It only happens when you watch it.

  67. Stephen Birks

    Stephen Birks8 päivää sitten

    Thats is an amazing insight- thank you for showing and explaining ?

  68. Miguel V

    Miguel V8 päivää sitten

    0:06 In NY I milly rock

  69. Mirdjan Hyle

    Mirdjan Hyle8 päivää sitten

    Adam Neely has entered the chat.

  70. Allan Salzman

    Allan Salzman8 päivää sitten

    The notion of the moon “rotating about its axis” has bugged me for a while and I think it comes down to the definition of rotation. When viewed from a fixed Newtonian frame of reference, as in your animation, an observer sees all sides of the moon, hence you could say it’s rotating. But it’s not rotating about its own axis. Once the moon has been tidally locked, it no longer rotates about its axis. The analogy would be the pedal on a bike where the pedal is the moon and the center of the crank is earth. If you held the pedal and did one full rotation the pedal would rotate about its axis and the “earth” would see all sides of the crank. But an observer in the room would only see one side of the crank. If instead you did not touch the pedal but rotated the crank one revolution, the pedal would clearly not rotate about its axis and the “earth” would only see one side of the pedal...but someone standing in the room would see all sides of the pedal and hence say that it was “rotating”.

  71. eioshen boboi

    eioshen boboi8 päivää sitten

    explaining his first experiment. That was very cool to see.

  72. Collin Wilkerson

    Collin Wilkerson8 päivää sitten

    What if several metronomes were set on a large plane that sit on balls instead of cylinders and the metronomes were facing towards the center in a square shape

  73. some time

    some time8 päivää sitten

    15:06 19:00 lol you seems convinced

  74. Lisa Gunnison

    Lisa Gunnison8 päivää sitten

    I would like to know why fireflies will decide to gather around a random individual......and light up.... is it smell? It’s like they are in unison and in step with you and not anybody else around you.....odd

  75. eioshen boboi

    eioshen boboi8 päivää sitten

    Rocket Ei are)uuuu

  76. WeTubule

    WeTubule8 päivää sitten

    9 million subscribers. He makes an episode featuring pendulums and can't get software that even comes close to illustrating pendulum motion. 🤨

  77. Navin Singh screen

    Navin Singh screen9 päivää sitten

    we were 3-4 friends, alwys cycle together. i always used to think "How r we doing this or y r we doing this"

  78. Dark

    Dark9 päivää sitten

    In a complex system, chaos is the norm Women: hold my beer

  79. Wendy

    Wendy9 päivää sitten

    Chinese medicine is about the property of the whole for human body instead of part by part. It looks at human body as one whole system. Unfortunately not so many people believe in it anymore...

  80. Willaraz

    Willaraz9 päivää sitten

    15:01 Mr. Veritasium is Not impressed! 19:03 Mr. V. continues to be unimpressed

  81. Zizi Mugen

    Zizi Mugen9 päivää sitten

    To be fair, the audience in Bucharest isn’t a part of the synchronization phenomenon. One person decides it’s time to do a slow-clap and build-up, and that person’s friend or the person on the other side thinks it’s a good idea, they get louder, people generally like the build-up of a slow-clap, and everyone chooses to get in on it.

  82. juanito arcoiris

    juanito arcoiris9 päivää sitten


  83. Rusty Shackleford

    Rusty Shackleford9 päivää sitten

    I didn't know Christian Huygen was the singer of Led Zeppelin!

  84. PlaySomething!

    PlaySomething!9 päivää sitten

    Perfect harmony in creation. It’s a beautiful witness

  85. Deep Thoughts Radio

    Deep Thoughts Radio9 päivää sitten

    Yeah, you need another ad at 2 mins. No thanks. This entire video is based on a loose FALSE claim and a complete lack of understanding the fabric of the universe.

  86. Mohit Sharma

    Mohit Sharma9 päivää sitten

    Please make a video on Hindu calender, it is based on periodic nature of planets, and no error like we have... Leap year

  87. Ethan In Deo

    Ethan In Deo9 päivää sitten

    If people clap in same time, it's because they want a "rappel (in french)". They want the artist back on the stage.

  88. Sarah Justice

    Sarah Justice10 päivää sitten

    I once was taking a bath when I was 3 and got bored so I started to slide back and forth long ways and apperently I that enough I could not stop moving I would sit still and the water would pull me back and forth it took a while to slow it to a stop

  89. Lillian Ezesky

    Lillian Ezesky10 päivää sitten

    Rocket Ei are)uuuu

  90. Lillian Ezesky

    Lillian Ezesky10 päivää sitten

    Wwwwwwwwwwwqssssss Rocket Ei are)uuuu

  91. Phylum Sì

    Phylum Sì10 päivää sitten

    Everything has their own signature, also known as frequency and/or vibration.

  92. plasma globe kid [PGK]

    plasma globe kid [PGK]10 päivää sitten

    Play 2 or more frequencies like 100hz and 100.1 hz You will hear it synchronise and go out of tune A sawtooth is best for this...

  93. Patrick bennett`

    Patrick bennett`10 päivää sitten

    Why am i underwelmed with this whole thing, like i get it but like, its just like duh, stuff movin that has weight tansfering weight and effecting the other object that is moving and it sinking up with eachother..

  94. HL9GY Korea

    HL9GY Korea10 päivää sitten

    The synchronized clapping sample is somewhat erroneous. People consciously adjust clapping based on mental influences, such as to keep tempo with a band playing music. If people were to naturally start clapping in unison it would seem so odd that they would likely adjust their clapping to be out of sync. Unless, of course, they were keeping time with music or some form of ritual chant. But then their synchronized clapping would be a conscious decision, not a natural phenomenon.


    WULFAXE10 päivää sitten

    shoutouts to gurren lagan for the Spirals

  96. DUGGI

    DUGGI11 päivää sitten

    We are all just puppets to the universe..

  97. kilaru kartheek

    kilaru kartheek11 päivää sitten

    In a typical 20min Veritasium video, there is always a 2min period which put a smile on my face and tears in my eyes at the same time.

  98. 99SamIAm99

    99SamIAm9911 päivää sitten

    Ah, randomness. Secret solved.

  99. Jhon Smith

    Jhon Smith11 päivää sitten

    This was such a cool video.

  100. Anthony Stewart

    Anthony Stewart11 päivää sitten

    This is common knowledge to those EE's who have designed all kinds of programmable oscillators with a limited Capture Range that depends on the Q of the resonator Q=fo/BW (-3dB ). Remember old TV's with Horizontal and vertical sync? There are other factors like Barhausen Criterion (Loop gain must =>+1) It also depends on phase compensation and phase/gain margin . Old TV CRT's worked with manual tuning the flyback oscillator so that it synced up to the TV signals. This was an injection locked loop (ILL) like the pendulums. Then came stable crystal oscillators were used with Phase Locked Loops (PLL) with phase mixers and filters. The internet and telephony uses Stratum 1 to 3 synchronized clocks all synchronized to a Cesium global clock. Then there are ATM's that are pleisiochronous or "almost" synchronous. The formula for this capture range is nonlinear partly from positive feedback and because of the Barkhausen criteria where damped oscillations may get amplified to sustain oscillations such that the loop gain must be >=+1 After which soft limiting stress keeps it a more or less sine wave and dampens the oscillation to be steady like the Wein (Wien?) Oscillator. The harmonic content of bridge failures is because Civil engineers didn't understand what EE's already knew about harmonic content (THD) and intermodulation (IM) distortion, where nonlinear materials create sub-harmonic (sum and ) difference frequencies. This is fundamental to all radio design. (no pun intended). The theory of the whole being greater than the sum of the parts is also a passion to me and my son who described to me his theory that global consciousness of brain waves sometimes matches the Schuman frequencies of upper ionospheric magneto resonance from solar flares pinging the magnetic ring fields around earth and some get into sync like the old TV Hsync injection oscillators.

  101. markhrabe

    markhrabe11 päivää sitten

    Aren’t Jupiter’s moons spinning in a 1,2,4 motion based on Kemplars law?

  102. Kartikey Singh

    Kartikey Singh11 päivää sitten

    Simply think in terms of vibrations, vibration should he evenly distributed along the system, it can only be achieved when in sync.

  103. Andrew Stevenson

    Andrew Stevenson11 päivää sitten

    If we all start the video at the same time... then pause and play every second, maybe we could crash Google's servers??? 😜

  104. Orphan Of Orbit

    Orphan Of Orbit11 päivää sitten

    I don't think the audience in Budapest was real.