The Evolution of Form

The Evolution of Form

When discussing evolution it is helpful to distinguish between those aspects of animals that are naturally variable and those which are far more inflexible.  Take, for instance, the shape, form or color of an animal.  Beaks can be long or short, straight or curved.  Fur can be dark or light, yellow or brown.  And indeed, evidence that life varies […]

Nature’s Materials (Biomimicry)

Biomimicry (Natuer's Materials)

We are (rightly so) impressed by the technological advancements that the modern world has accomplished. From computers and cars to lasers and lights, we have managed to transform our world far beyond what we ever dreamed possible. And yet, if we peer into the machinery of the biological world, we discover technological wonders that far […]

There is More to Light than Meets the Eye

There is More to Light than Meets the Eye

Having recently discussed sound waves and how we hear, it’s worth taking the time to understand light waves and the eye.  Light, like sound, is a wave.  But, unlike sound, it is also not a wave. Yes, light is strange. For now, though, we’re going to pretend that light is not strange and simply focus on […]

A Planet Fit for Life

The Privileged Planet

It is often said that we take life for granted. The same can be said for the planet that we call home.  Creating a planet like earth is evidently not so simple.  A lot of factors have to be just right in order to create a planet that we (and all the other creatures who […]

How Ants Communicate (and build air conditioned homes)

How Ants Communicate

Ants have never been accused of being too smart. An ant brain is rather small and an individual ant is capable of making only simple, uncomplicated decisions. And yet ants as a whole are extremely impressive and are capable of extraordinary feats. And so one can wonder, how are these rather simple creatures able to […]

Understanding the Code of Life (Part 2: Information)

DNA Blocks by Duncan Hull

A number of years back my grandmother z”l became too old to cook anymore.  And so it happened that on one of my visits to her I asked for (and received) her recipe box.  I wanted those recipes for one simple reason – they contained the information needed to recreate that special something that my […]