When I was young I learned that the colors I saw in the world were due to materials absorbing certain wavelengths of light and reflecting others. Leaves appear green because the chlorophyll in plant cells absorbs blue and red light and reflects green. While this holds true for most natural materials, it turns out that nature has more than one way of making color. Many of the most striking colors found in nature often occur through the development of structural coloration. For instance, the absurdly bright colors of butterfly wings, beetle scales, day gecko skin, bird feathers and even certain berries all come from structural color.
While traveling across the entire globe in 80 minutes may be a bit of stretch, getting from Los Angeles to San Francisco in just 35 minutes might not be completely […]
Anyone who has read my previous post on “Why Computers Can’t do Everything” knows the Information Technology industry has an uncanny ability to generate a variety of buzzwords to try […]
In popular culture, biologically-inspired robots play a sinister role. Movies like Blade Runner and The Terminator depict scenes of a humanoid faces split open to reveal violently grinning machines underneath. Such stories often portray machines in a dire “us vs. them” scenario. However, real life robots can have a much softer side. Taking inspiration from creatures such as jellyfish, rays, and octopuses, scientists are developing soft robots that can respond to different environments and can augment human capabilities.
What is the fate of the universe? Will it keep expanding forever? What did some of the first galaxies look like? Why are we here? The Hubble Space Telescope was […]
As we continue Vaccine 101 we move from history to the recipe for a vaccine. Throughout our lives we eat food, drink beverages, and use products on our bodies and around our homes. We do not always know what these things are made of, but we ingest them and use them anyways. Of these foods and products, many people have expressed concerns about what is being injected into their bodies when they get a vaccination. Much like a recipe for brownies, the ingredients that go into a vaccine all serve a specific purpose. But what exactly are these ingredients? What is their purpose?
Today vaccination is considered a normal part of childhood and life for many. But do you know the origins of this life saving scientific discovery? Who were the big players and when? Hop in your TARDIS, DeLorean, or time machine of choice to take a trip back in time with me to visit some of the major milestones in the history of vaccinations.
Americans buy bananas in larger quantities than apples and oranges combined. However, this favorite potassium-filled fruit could soon go extinct. Panama disease, caused by a new strain of fungus called Tropical Race 4 (TR4), is slowly spreading around the world and causing entire crops of bananas to be eradicated.
What comes to mind when you think about the word “physics?” You probably see yourself sitting in your high school or college Intro Physics course trying to memorize what seemed […]
Climate change is happening. What should we do about it? With climate change, we can expect serious consequences, including destruction of coastal communities by sea level rise, increased frequency of […]