Tree of SCIENCE!!! #8

Today's Tree of SCIENCE!!! ornaments salute this here series of tubes:


On the right side of this picture, you see two little clothespin soldiers in sailor outfits with semaphore flags. These guys represent communications technology.

Communications technology, from crude semaphore all the way up through the Internet, is both an outgrowth of SCIENCE!!! and essential to it. Particularly today, when SCIENCE!!! is an international endeavor, it's impossible to do science if you can't communicate with your collaborators and disseminate your results.

As a special bonus, to the left side of the picture is a little fox mask from the Fushimi Inari shrine outside Kyoto. Foxes are associated with the Shinto god Inari, and serve as guardians and messengers, so there's a communications theme there, too. I don't think this was really intended as a Christmas tree ornament-- I think it's probably supposed to be a cell phone charm, another communications link-- but it works well on the tree.

The ornate glass ball beneath the fox mask is an ornate glass ball, and doesn't stand for anything.


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