Over the past 25 years I have accumulated a collection of various gizmos, devices, toys etc. which to me are excellent examples of scientific principles or things that you look at and you say "That's impossible!" except it's staring you in the face. In the hope that others may also find them interesting and with the help of two undergraduates, Jacy Lundberg and Omar Khan, we have created videos of many of the items in the collection. In many cases we have tried to include explanations of how they work or references to where one can find this information. Jacy and Omar are currently seniors in the Boston College pre-medical program. In the olden days some people assembled what were known as curiosity cabinets.
Related: Science past and future
Solar System ScopeThe Discovery of PhotosynthesisWho Discovered Photosynthesis? Photosynthesis is a very important and complex process in nature and some of its phases are still not completely understood. Photosynthesis in plants and a few bacteria is responsible for feeding nearly all life on Earth. It does this by taking energy from the sun and converting it into a storable form, usually glucose, which plants use for their own life processes. As important a job as making all of the world's food is, there's another vital function that photosynthesis performs: It generates the oxygen that oxygen-breathing animals need to survive. From PBS's "NOVA" program Many scientists contributed to the discovery and understanding of photosynthesis throughout the ages; in this page are outlined some of those crucial milestone experiments that contributed to this effort. Famous Historic Experiments Is Water the Source of Energy in Plants? The Interaction of Plants With Air So priestly proved that plants somehow change the composition of the air. Links
Moonbase Alpha on SteamAbout This Game NASA has once again landed on the lunar surface with the goal of colonization, research, and further exploration. Shortly after the return to the Moon, NASA has established a small outpost on the south pole of the moon called Moonbase Alpha. Utilizing solar energy and regolith processing, the moonbase has become self-sufficient and plans for further expansion are underway. In Moonbase Alpha, you assume the exciting role of an astronaut working to further human expansion and research. Key features: Team up with your friends...
Here Are All The Crazy Ways Humans Are Changing NatureA new photo series titled "A Guide to the Flora and Fauna of the World" documents the ways humans are changing the natural world. Shot and edited by Robert Zhao Renhui, whose work explores the ethics and morality of man's relationship to nature, the images catalogue how animals and organisms evolve in response to the modern world. On view at the Centre for Contemporary Photography in Melbourne, Australia, the series features both human-engineered changes—like fake meat—and some mutations that have occurred in the wild as the result of human activity—like a beetle with three eyes. Largely, the changes are the result of human intervention, though. There are cube-shaped apples (bred to be easier to store on grocery shelves) and rhinos whose horns have been removed by wildlife conservationists to deter poachers; and a wild tiger who's been fitted with a kill switch around its neck to be activated if it shows too much interest in getting near humans. [via the Guardian]
The Planets Today : A live view of the solar systemEdge.orgAny first-hand experience of how scientific institutions actually operate drives home an excruciating realization: Science progresses more slowly by orders of magnitude than it could or should. Our species could have science at the speed of thought—science at the speed of inference. But too often we run into Planck's demographic limit on the speed of science—funeral by funeral, with each tock of advancement clocked to the half-century tick of gatekeepers' professional lifespans. In contrast, the natural clock rate of science at the speed of thought is the flash rate at which individual minds, voluntarily woven into mutually invigorating communities by intense curiosity, can draw and share sequences of strong inferences from data. Indeed, Planck was a giddy optimist, because scientists—like other humans—form coalitional group identities where adherence to group-celebrating beliefs (e.g., we have it basically right) are strongly moralized.
100,000 StarsWhat You Don't Know About History's Most Famous ScientistsIt's easy to take the wonders of modern science—gene technology, particle physics, robotics—for granted. But it took a long, hard road of experiment and discovery—and failure—to make these leaps. In his new book, To Explain the World: The Discovery of Modern Science, Nobel Prize-winning theoretical physicist Steven Weinberg tells the inspiring story of science's greats and the obstacles that stood in their way. Courtesy of HarperCollins Talking from his home in Austin, Texas, Weinberg explains how the scientific revolution in Europe laid the foundations for today's science, why he watches old movies while he's doing physics, how religion has influenced Islamic science, and why joy is ultimately what drives science forward. You say this is a book about how we came to learn how to learn. Scientists today learn about nature by doing experiments and making observations. But this way of pursuing truth is quite new from the perspective of the history of mankind. [Laughs] I don't think so.
Magnifying the UniverseEmbed this infographic on your site! <iframe width="500" height="323" scrolling="no" src=" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br />Copyright 2012. <a href=" the Universe</a> by <a href=" Sleuth</a>. The above is an interactive infographic. Introduction: This interactive infographic from Number Sleuth accurately illustrates the scale of over 100 items within the observable universe ranging from galaxies to insects, nebulae and stars to molecules and atoms. While other sites have tried to magnify the universe, no one else has done so with real photographs and 3D renderings. We hope you have a blast magnifying the universe, know that each time you zoom in a depth, you're magnifying the universe 10x ... and every time you zoom out, the bigger objects are 1/10th of their prior size. How To Use: Credits: