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Posts Tagged "light"

Compound Eye

The Color of Honey


This week I harvested a lovely linden honey (at right) from one of our backyard beehives. Nectar from linden flowers yields a honey that is exceptional both in its pale tone and in its strong flavor. Most light honeys taste light; that from linden is bold but sweet, ideal for salad dressings and marinades. I [...]

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Stop This Absurd War on the Color Pink

Last week Robert Krulwich, a co-host of the wonderful program Radiolab, Pluto’d pink. In a blog post he noted that pink doesn’t occupy a slot in the familiar colors of the rainbow—there’s no P in Roy G. Biv. From this, he concludes that pink does not really exist: That’s why pink is an invention. It’s [...]

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Octopus Chronicles

Polarized Display Sheds Light on Octopus and Cuttlefish Vision–and Camouflage


Octopuses are purportedly  colorblind, but they can discern one thing that we can’t: polarized light. This extra visual realm might give them a leg (er, arm) up on some of the competition. And a team of researchers has created a new way to test just how sensitive cephalopods are to this type of light. Their [...]

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Octopus Chronicles

Camouflage-Changing Octopuses in the Deep, Dim Seas

camouflage deep sea octopus

Vivid videos have captured stunning shallow-water octopuses performing impressive feats of disguise—changing color and texture to match kelp, coral or the sandy bottom. But what need would a deep-sea octopod, who lives suspended in dim light and darkness, have for fancy disguises? Plenty, according to a new study published online Thursday in Current Biology. Octopuses [...]

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Plugged In

Photo Friday: All lights are not created equal


At the California Lighting Teaching Center (CLTC) in Davis, California, researchers explore light from many angles. This rack of light emitting diode (LED) lightbulbs on display at the CLTC shows how different designs and bulbs can create wide varieties of light. Photo Credit: CLTC used with permission.

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Streams of Consciousness

A Transformation of Light: How We See [Video]

Courtesy of Erwss, peace&love via Flickr.

    Editor’s note: Brain Basics from Scientific American Mind is a series of short video primers on the brain and how we feel, think and act. Below is a synopsis of the second video in the series written by a guest on this blog, Roni Jacobson, a science journalist based in New York City. [...]

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Streams of Consciousness

An Artist Reveals How He Tricks the Eyes

deli in poughkeepsie

A few years ago, James Gurney, a celebrated artist and author, stood before his easel to paint a deli in Poughkeepsie. Surveying the scene before him, he was immediately overwhelmed with literally millions of details. People strolled by. Insects fluttered overhead. Signs poked out from the store and up from the street. Every tree had [...]

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What Artists Know About Light That Physicists Are Missing


Whether you learned that light was a particle or a wave in high school physics, you likely inferred that only physicists could ultimately weigh in on the subject. Technically true, I suppose, but there are a number of artists demonstrating quite deftly that light is a medium, too. Artist Darren Pearson is one such person. [...]

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