Archive for the science Category

The Wellcome Book Prize Nerve Cell Trophy

Posted in craft, science, sculpture with tags , , on February 11, 2016 by shewalkssoftly

“Wellcome Book Prize, the annual £30,000 prize for literature that engages with the human experience of medicine and medical science, has unveiled this year’s winner trophy: a bespoke creation inspired by the nerve cells of the mind, from London-based artist, Kyle Bean.”

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I’m amazed by the piece, particularly because it was not made from painstaking, intricate carvings or laser cutting…but by injecting a clear acrylic block with a 5 million volt particle accelerator to create what is essentially a fossil of electricity.

German physicist Christoph Lichtenberg discovered the technique circa 1777 when he succeeded in making branching electric discharges appear on the interior of an insulating material.

Best. Trophy. Ever.

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Image Odyssey: Bat Embryos

Posted in creatures, nature, science with tags , , on February 1, 2016 by shewalkssoftly

Yesterday I received an email bursting with bat embryos (which sounds like cyberbullying, but is actually what people do when they love me). The message prompted me to seek out some of the most beautiful specimens on the Web.

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While ostensibly a rather morbid search entry, these images (particularly the diaphonized variety) allow us to see the awe inspiring artistry of nature. Even the tiny creatures so often reviled by humans are majestic in their own way.
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And adorable. They’re also adorable.
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See no evil…hear no evil…
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Thanks for the inspiration, CP!

3D Printed Model of Cell Division

Posted in craft, science with tags , on January 11, 2016 by shewalkssoftly

The Drummond Lab created this awesome bronze 3D printed model of a yeast cell dividing. Late-anaphase…

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If I had a 3D printer…I’m sure cellular models would inch toward the top of my to-make list. I love this thing!

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Brain Coasters

Posted in anatomy, products, science, wish list with tags , , , on April 28, 2015 by shewalkssoftly

These Brain Coasters have been making the rounds in many of the blogs I follow lately (and some kind readers sent me the link, too!).

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Each set of Brain Specimen Coasters comes with ten glass coasters. Each coaster has four rubber feet (to further protect the surfaces the coasters are protecting in the first place) and a slice of brain printed on it. If you stack your Brain Specimen Coasters in the proper order (which is easy to do, since the coasters are labeled) and look from the proper angle, you’ll see a full brain.

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These belong in my house.

Brain Coasters

Seung-Hwan Oh

Posted in art, nature, photography, science with tags , , , on March 27, 2015 by shewalkssoftly

Seung-Hwan Oh is a South Korean experimental photographer and microbiologist. In the series Impermanence, he creates thought provoking abstract portraits at the intersection of art and organic decay. They are ethereal, electric, psychedelic, and in some ways almost spiritual…but always intriguing.

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In the artist’s own words:
This project is about the superimposition of a moment in microbial growth upon a moment in the life of a person through the projection of one spatial-temporal reality onto another.

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This captures the evanescence of film photography, the transiency of life, and the continual entangled creative and destructive processes; a millisecond of an expression, an instance of an autonomous geometric evisceration of film, an exploitation of chemical materiality, a vestige composed of millions of pixels, and a complete obliteration into intangible atoms that dissipate into something else.

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The process involves the cultivation of chemical consuming microbes on a visual environment created through portraits and a physical environment composed of developed film immersed in water. As the microbes consume the emulsion over the course of months, the silver halides destabilize, obfuscating the legibility of foreground, background, and scale.

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This creates an aesthetic of entangled creation and destruction that inevitably is ephemeral, and results in complete disintegration of the film so that it can only be delicately digitized before it is consumed.

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Seung-Hwan Oh

Mad Mad Mad Scientist Laboratory

Posted in science, toys, vintage with tags , , on January 13, 2015 by shewalkssoftly

Got $2,3000 to spend on a toy? Consider the Mad Mad Mad Scientist Laboratory.

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Found on Ebay:
One of the holy grails on Monster toys. 1965 The Mad Mad Mad Scientist Laboratory Sold briefly through the back pages of Famous Monsters of Filmland Magazine. Original Cost – $4.95. Considered the rarest Monster toy in existence. Only 4 known to exist. This is the second finest one known. Would be considered mint but one of the chemicals leaked and damaged the bottom of the box. Other than that, cover is super mint and shiny.

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It actually looks like a pretty amazing kit. The test tubes appear a bit more “real” than I would expect. I’d love to hand make something like this for a special kid; set up a whole box of mad scientist goodies with a cool cover.

Did you have any science toys as a kid? What was your favorite?

Mad Mad Mad Scientist Laboratory

Decellurization

Posted in anatomy, science with tags , on August 22, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Decellurization is an absolutely fascinating process in which cells are “discharged” from organs, leaving only the connective tissue.

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The first step involves the application of a specialized detergent known to be an efficient solubilizer, without affecting the integrity of the protein in the tissue. Then, a recombinant endonuclease is used to degrade nucleic acids. (I had to quote Wiki there because I’m pretty sure there was no other way to get the word “solubilizer” into your day today)
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This process has tremendous implications for organ donation and transplants, as it maintains structural function yet greatly reduces the immunological response that causes organs to be rejected. It can be done by pumping the detergent through the organ, or submerging the organ.
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Science!

If you are as captivated by this as I am, don’t miss the work of Iori Tomita and Brandon Ballengee.

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