8 December 2011

Science Art: Red White Blood Cells, by NCI-Frederick.


The one carries oxygen around, the other keeps the system clean. They’re teeny tiny.

Image from the Electron Microscopy Facility at The National Cancer Institute at Frederick (NCI-Frederick).

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SONG: Levitating Diamonds (Tiny Impossible Things)

SONG: “Levitating Diamonds (Tiny Impossible Things)”.

ARTIST: grant.

SOURCE:Based on “Lasers used to levitate glowing nanodiamonds in a vacuum”, Science Daily, 7 Sep 2015, as used in the post “A laser levitating glowing nanodiamonds in a vacuum..”

ABSTRACT: I really wanted to use “A laser levitating nanodiamonds in a vacuum” as a lyric, because it’s got such a great rhythm, but no, it didn’t happen.

Musically, things fell together well – I came up with chords on a guitar, and t…

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SONG: One (is the Loneliest Number) (penitential cover)

SONG: “One (Is The Loneliest Number)”.

ARTIST: grant, featuring Sebastian Balfour. (Originally by Harry Nilsson.)

SOURCE: It doesn’t have a research source. It’s a penitential cover of a haunting song by Harry Nilsson that Three Dog Night turned into a prog anthem, which Aimee Mann turned into stunning reclamation project. Nilsson still wins.

ABSTRACT: I’ve been a penitential cover* behind for months and months. I first had the idea of doing this song in something like this way …

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Science Art: To Scale: The Solar System by Wylie Overstreet.

To Scale: The Solar System from Wylie Overstreet on Vimeo.

I like the desert in Nevada already because of the sense of perspective – such wide, flat spaces (wider and flatter even than Florida’s water-level wet prairies), sometimes flanked by mountains just big enough to provide a frame of reference. This is how small you are. This is how far you have to go.

That’s the ideal landscape for this kind of project. How big are we really? How far away is the place next door?

This far away. …

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Science Art: Aequorea Forbesiana by Philip Henry Gosse.

Click to embiggen

This is a jellyfish drawn by Philip Henry Gosse, a naturalist and Creationist (!) who gave us the word “aquarium” as a place to see marine creatures. Before Gosse, an aquarium was a place to water cattle.

He built the very first public one as the “Fish House” of the London Zoo in 1853.

A few years later, he published a book trying to prove that fossils couldn’t disprove Genesis because of course the act of creation would make things appear to be older than they are. …

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Science Art: A tightly wrapped trefoil knot, identified as the second member of the glueball spectrum, 2003.

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From John P. Ralston’s “The Bohr Atom of Glueballs,” an article describing how to model an atom using rope and glue. Sort of.

Ralston does say it’s something anyone can do at home:

Measure the {\it lengths} of closed knots tied from ordinary rope. The “double do-nut”, and the beautiful trefoil knot are examples. Tie the knots tightly, and glue or splice the tails into a seamless unity. Compare two knots with corresponding members of the mysterious particle states known…

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Leaping cockroaches!

8 December 2011 // 0 Comments

Because sometimes scuttling just isn’t enough. Wired gets up close and personal with the cockroach that, like its cricket cousins, jumps where it needs to go – and then some: “Other cockroaches that live in the same environment haven’t bothered to evolve an ability to jump, but this small cockroach has quite literally made the leap,” said zoologist Mike Picker of the University of Cape Town, leader of a Dec. 6 Biology Letters study detailing the leaproach’s hopping mechanics. … Picker and his colleague Jonathan Colville discovered the leaproach in 2006 as the insects hopped around a field of sedge grass in South Africa. It wasn’t until 2010, however, that the taxonomic world accepted the new species, named Saltoblattella montistabularis. The new study reveals the leaproach uses its legs much like grasshoppers do, and yet — ounce for ounce — the leaproach far out-jumps locusts. While a grasshopper can jump up to 20 body lengths, […]