bioephemera

Archives for January, 2009

The Pigeon of Passage The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands, 1754 Mark Catesby Unlike Benjamin Button, he’s not up for an Oscar, but he’s also a film star – several hundred years late. Mark Catesby (1683-1749), a forerunner of Audubon, was the first European scientist/artist to document the flora and fauna…

Weirdest lede ever? A giant flower beetle with implanted electrodes and a radio receiver on its back can be wirelessly controlled, according to research presented this week. Go DARPA! Article (MIT Technology Review) here. Video here.

For Christmas, my friend Vanessa got me this wonderful Equal Measure measuring cup by Fred. One side gives measures in cups and ounces, along with the equivalent quantity of various granular substances (five thousand drops of water, as many grains of flour as people on the planet). The other side gives metric volumes, alongside biological…

Hershey: the Borg of chocolate

Sadly, Hershey has announced the immediate closing of the small Berkeley factory that, since 2001, has been the flagship of Scharffen Berger chocolate. Scharffen Berger’s dark chocolates were a favorite among Bay Area residents years before it was sold to Hershey in 2005; the cozy Berkeley factory used to be open for tours and chocolate…

I know FoxNews does this all the time, but sometimes I accidentally click through to their site and am shocked anew by this sort of thing: Still worried that the Large Hadron Collider will create a black hole that will destroy the Earth when it’s finally switched on this summer? Um, well, you may have…

To follow up on my earlier post about Semiconductor’s short film “Magnetic Movie,” I want to share my favorite Semiconductor film: “Brilliant Noise.” It gives me goosebumps every time I watch it. In daily life, we avoid looking at the sun, but I challenge you to rip your eyes away from this film. In Semiconductor’s…

While I was at work, Sciencepunk beat me to posting that Damien Hirst (of dead-shark fame) has created an original artwork for the anniversary reissue of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species: Human skull in space (oil on canvas) Damien Hirst Hirst says: As in a lot of my work, there’s a nod to the…

My favorite Academy Award nomination: Oktopodi. By Emud Mokhberi and Thierry Marchand. Read an interview with Mokhberi – chock full of storyboard images, video, and other goodies – here.

photo from TruShu’s stream Hirotoshi Itoh Keiko Gallery The author and title have long slipped my mind, but I once saw a poem lamenting how arbitrary we can be in calling certain things alive, and others not. Though many of them contain remnants of life, biologically speaking, stones are not alive. But who has felt…

Mystery Image #4

This is a picture of. . . A) the hair cells of the bat inner ear B) a metals-polymer nanowire array C) a previously unknown species of sea anemone D) the cilia of the common goldfish parasite Trichodina Answer below the fold!