The Scientist's Unique Perspectives on Nature

Examples of scientists giving us unique explanations of natural phenomena.


Folksonomies: spiritual naturalism nature perspectives

Memes

20 MAR 2018

 Human Females Menstruate to Eliminate Unviable Fetuses

From a female perspective, pregnancy is always a huge investment. Even more so if her species has a hemochorial placenta. Once that placenta is in place, she not only loses full control of her own hormones, she also risks hemorrhage when it comes out. So it makes sense that females want to screen embryos very, very carefully. Going through pregnancy with a weak, inviable or even sub-par fetus isn't worth it. That's where the endometrium comes in. You've probably read about how the endometriu...
Folksonomies: human evolution pregnancy
Folksonomies: human evolution pregnancy
  1  notes
 
20 MAR 2018

 Human Pregnancy is Adversarial Between Mother and Fetus

Inside the uterus we have a thick layer of endometrial tissue, which contains only tiny blood vessels. The endometrium seals off our main blood supply from the newly implanted embryo. The growing placenta literally burrows through this layer, rips into arterial walls and re-wires them to channel blood straight to the hungry embryo. It delves deep into the surrounding tissues, razes them and pumps the arteries full of hormones so they expand into the space created. It paralyzes these arteries ...
Folksonomies: human evolution pregnancy
Folksonomies: human evolution pregnancy
  1  notes
 
20 MAR 2018

 DNA from the Perspective of a Coder Excerpts

Of the 20,000 to 30,000 genes now thought to be in the human genome, most cells express only a very small part - which makes sense, a liver cell has little need for the DNA code that makes neurons. But as almost all cells carry around a full copy ('distribution') of the genome, a system is needed to #ifdef out stuff not needed. And that is just how it works. The genetic code is full of #if/#endif statements. This is why 'stem cells' are so hot right now - these cells have the ability to diff...
Folksonomies: science metaphor analogy
Folksonomies: science metaphor analogy
  1  notes
 
21 JUN 2014

 800 Lifespans Bridge 50,000 Years

Eight hundred life spans can bridge more than 50,000 years. But of these 800 people, 650 spent then lives in caves or worse; only the last 70 had any truly effective means of communicating with one another, only the last 6 ever saw a printed word or had any real means of measuring heat or cold, only the last 4 could measure time with any precision; only the last 2 used an electric motor; and the vast majority of the items that make up our material world were developed within the lifespan of t...
Folksonomies: history time perspective
Folksonomies: history time perspective
  1  notes
 
24 DEC 2013

 Microbes Rule the World

Microbes make up 80 percent of all biomass, says microbiologist Carl Woese. In one-fifth of a teaspoon of seawater, there are a million bacteria (and 10 million viruses), Craig Venter says, adding, “If you don’t like bacteria, you’re on the wrong planet. This is the planet of the bacteria.” That means that most of the planet’s living metabolism is microbial. When James Lovelock was trying to figure out where the gases come from that make the Earth’s atmosphere such an artifact of ...
  1  notes

Stewart Brand describes the state of our world, engineered by microbes and ourselves as the vehicles for their propagation in many cases.

24 DEC 2013

 Temperament is Influenced by Chemicals

Some 40 percent to 60 percent of the observed variance in personality is due to traits of temperament. They are heritable, relatively stable across the life course, and linked to specific gene pathways and/or hormone or neurotransmitter systems. Moreover, our temperament traits congregate in constellations, each aggregation associated with one of four broad, interrelated yet distinct brain systems: those associated with dopamine, serotonin, testosterone, and estrogen/oxytocin. Each constellat...
  1  notes

Helen Fisher on the many chemicals that influence our behavior.

10 DEC 2013

 Vitamins Come from Living Things

Every vitamin is made by living cells — either our own, or in other species. Vitamin D is produced in our skin, for example, when sunlight strikes a precursor of cholesterol. A lemon tree makes vitamin C out of glucose. Making a vitamin is often an enormously baroque process. In some species, it takes 22 different proteins to craft a vitamin B12 molecule. While a protein may be made up of thousands of atoms, a vitamin may be made up of just a few dozen. And yet, despite their small size, v...
Folksonomies: evolution biology vitamins
Folksonomies: evolution biology vitamins
  1  notes

They are part of our universal chemistry from our common origins.

28 MAY 2013

 The Brain Dies in Stages

“The body tries to stay alive. It’s not so… It’s natural. Maybe you’ll see it now. First the human brain dies, then the animal brain, then the lizard brain. Like your Rm, only backward. The lizard brain tries to its very last bit of energy to keep things going. I’ve seen it. Some kind of desire. It’s a real force. Life wants to live. But eventually a link breaks. The energy stops getting to where it needs to be. The last ATP gets used. Then we die. Our bodies return to earth, go...
Folksonomies: evolution death meaning
Folksonomies: evolution death meaning
  1  notes

From higher functions to lower functions, de-evolving.

17 MAR 2013

 Fire is Unwinding the Sun's Energy from the Trees

Nobody is bom a specialist. Every child is born with comprehensive interests, asking the most comprehensively logical and relevant questions. Pointing to the logs burning in the fireplace, one child asked me, "What is fire?" I answered, "Fire is the Sun unwinding from the tree's log. The Earth revolves and the trees revolve as the radiation from the Sun's flame reaches the revolving planet Earth. By photosynthesis the green buds and leaves of the tree convert that Sun radiation into hydrocarb...
 1  1  notes

Every year the trees store the sun's energy in a ring. When we burn the tree, we are unwrapping that energy.

17 MAR 2013

 There is No "Up" and "Down"

This flat conceptioning is manifest right up to the present in such every¬ day expressions as "the wide, wide world" and "the four comers of the Earth." As mentioned before, "up" and "down" are the parallel perpendicu¬ lars impinging upon this flat-out world. Only a flat-out world could have a Heaven to which to ascend and a Hell into which to descend. Both Christ and Mohammed, their followers said, ascended into Heaven from Jerusalem. Scientifically speaking (which is truthfully speaking...
  1  notes

There is only "in" and "out." The Sun does not go "down," but rather the Earth revolves us away from it.

08 JAN 2013

 Infinite Creativity was Stored in Hydrogen Atoms

Once the matter created by the Big Bang cooled sufficiently, the universe consisted of a vast cloud of hydrogen atom consisting of a single proton surrounded by a single electron—along with a smattering of slightly heavier elements, including helium (with two protons) and lithium (with three). The universe at that time was about the most boring place imaginable. It consisted of nothing but disembodied atoms drifting through space and the radiation left over from the Big Bang. Yet the potent...
Folksonomies: wonder simplicity big bang
Folksonomies: wonder simplicity big bang
  1  notes

From this simple unit, everything in the Universe came about.

11 JUN 2012

 The Chemical Decline in Energy

It is the destiny of wine to be drunk, and it is the destiny of glucose to be oxidized. But it was not oxidized immediately: its drinker kept it in his liver for more than a week, well curled up and tranquil, as a reserve aliment for a sudden effort; an effort that he was forced to make the following Sunday, pursuing a bolting horse. Farewell to the hexagonal structure: in the space of a few instants the skein was unwound and became glucose again, and this was dragged by the bloodstream all t...
Folksonomies: wonder chemistry energy
Folksonomies: wonder chemistry energy
  2  notes

Levi describes with wonder the chain of events leading to an increase in entropy as energy is used up in the body.

11 JUN 2012

 Science Reveals the Wonder of a Mundane World

Where the untrained eye will see nothing but mire and dirt, Science will often reveal exquisite possibilities. The mud we tread under our feet in the street is a grimy mixture of clay and sand, soot and water. Separate the sand, however, as Ruskinn observes—let the atoms arrange themselves in peace according to their nature—and you have the opal. Separate the clay, and it becomes a white earth, fit for the finest porcelain; or if it still further purifies itself, you have a sapphire. Take...
Folksonomies: science wonder
Folksonomies: science wonder
  1  notes

Turning mud into wonder.

07 MAY 2012

 Molecules of Water and Air Passed Through Famous People

Take water. It's simple, common, and vital. There are more molecules of water in an eight-ounce cup of the stuff than there are cups of water in all the world's oceans. Every cup that passes through a single person and eventually rejoins the world's water supply holds enough molecules to mix fifteen hundred of them into every other cup of water in the world. No way around it: some of the water you just drank passed through the kidneys of Socrates, Genghis Khan, and Joan of Arc. How about ai...
Folksonomies: wonder atoms scale
Folksonomies: wonder atoms scale
  1  notes

Best explanation for why the H2O in a glass of water has molecules that passed through the kidneys of historical figures (even dinosaurs).

23 APR 2012

 It's Raining DNA Outside

It is raining DNA outside. On the bank of the Oxford canal at the bottom of my garden is a large willow tree, and it is pumping downy seeds into the air. ... [spreading] DNA whose coded characters spell out specific instructions for building willow trees that will shed a new generation of downy seeds. … It is raining instructions out there; it's raining programs; it's raining tree-growing, fluff-spreading, algorithms. That is not a metaphor, it is the plain truth. It couldn't be any plainer...
Folksonomies: wonder dna
Folksonomies: wonder dna
  1  notes

There is DNA everywhere, in seeds in bacterium, it's all around us, this programming for life.

14 APR 2012

 The Journey of a Fossil

One hundred million years ago, an ammonoid lived in the sea that then separated India from Asia. It died and fell into limy sediments on the seafloor. These sediments grew deeper and hardened into rock. The shell calcified, becoming part of the rock, though maintaining every detail of its structure. India was on the move, drifting on a slab of the Earth's mobile crust toward Asia. The floor of the intervening sea was forced under the Asian continent, back into the hot interior of the planet. ...
Folksonomies: wonder fossile
Folksonomies: wonder fossile
  1  notes

Chet Raymo describes the epic journey of a fossil from the bottom of the ocean to the top of a mountain.

14 APR 2012

 The Energy Game in a Dead Moth

The moth moves across the porch, millimeter by millimeter, a brief stage of a longer journey of energy from the core of the sun to the table of the ants. Protons fuse at the center of the sun, releasing energy. The energy diffuses upward, taking several million years to reach the sun's surface, where it is released as heat and light. The light streaks across ninety-three million miles of space, reaching the Earth eight minutes later, where it falls upon the green leaves of plants. The plants ...
Folksonomies: energy energy game
Folksonomies: energy energy game
 2  2  notes

From the sun to the ants that eat it.

29 MAR 2012

 Gravity is an Extremely Feeble Force

...imagine holding an electron in your left hand and another electron in your right hand and bringing these two identical electrically charged particles close together. Their mutual gravitational attraction will favor their getting closer while their electromagnetic repulsion will try to drive them apart. Which is stronger? There is no contest: The electromagnetic repulsion is about a million billion billion billion billion (10 to the 42th) times stronger! If your right bicep represents the s...
  1  notes

In comparison to the other forces holding the Universe together.

05 JAN 2012

 Mathematical Proof that an Arm's Length of DNA is in Ever...

We know from X-ray diffraction studies that a strand of DNA is 1.5 nanometers (1.5 x 10 to the -9 meters) in radius. Assume a cylinder 1 meter long (the arm's length) with a radius of 1.5 nanometers and work out the volume (length x pi r-squared). A typical animal cell is about 8 micrometers (8 x 10 to the -6 meters) in radius. Assume a spherical cell and calculate the volume (4/3 pi r-cubed). Do it yourself. You will see that the DNA fits easily inside the cell, with plenty of room for all o...
Folksonomies: mathematics dna
Folksonomies: mathematics dna
  1  notes

Chet Raymo does the math to demonstrate this seemingly impossible scientific facts.

01 JAN 2012

 How a Rainbow Works

If you want to see a rainbow you ' have to have the sun behind you when you look at a rainstorm. Each raindrop is more like a little ball than a prism, and light behaves differently when it Sits a ball from how it behaves when it hits a prism. The difference is that the far side of I raindrop acts as a tiny mirror. And that is /hy you need the sun behind you if you want 0 see a rainbow. The light from the sun turns somersault inside every raindrop and is reflected backwards and downwards, wh...
  1  notes

A fantastic explanation of how sunlight reflects off of raindrops to form a rainbow, which would be a rain-circle if the ground didn't get in the way.

16 DEC 2011

 The Rhythms of Nature

Nature vibrates with rhythms, climatic and diastrophic, those finding stratigraphic expression ranging in period from the rapid oscillation of surface waters, recorded in ripple-mark, to those long-deferred stirrings of the deep imprisoned titans which have divided earth history into periods and eras. The flight of time is measured by the weaving of composite rhythms- day and night, calm and storm, summer and winter, birth and death such as these are sensed in the brief life of man. But the c...
 3  3  notes

We experience oscillations of all sorts in our lifetime, but the Universe has much larger waves hidden in geologic time.

13 DEC 2011

 The Creation of Carbon in Stars

The first step occurs when older stars start to accumulate helium, which is produced when two hydrogen nuclei collide and fuse with each other. This fusion is how stars create the energy that warms us. Two helium atoms can in turn collide to form beryllium, an atom whose nucleus contains four protons. Once beryllium is formed, it could in principle fuse with a third helium nucleus to form carbon. But that doesn't happen, because the isotope of beryllium that is formed decays almost immediatel...
  1  notes

Requires a very delicate balance of natural laws. If the strong nuclear force were to change by as little as 0.5 percent, there would be no carbon or oxygen in the Universe.

13 DEC 2011

 The Precarious Laws of Nature

By examining the model universes we generate when the theories of physics are altered in certain ways, one can study the effect of changes to physical law in a methodical manner. It turns out that it is not only the strengths of the strong nuclear force and the electromagnetic force that are made to order for our existence. Most of the fundamental constants in our theories appear fine tuned in the sense that if they were altered by only modest amounts, the universe would be qualitatively diff...
  2  notes

If the laws of nature were different by a very small amount, the Universe would not work in such a way as to produce life.

14 SEP 2011

 Twenty Thousand Devils Playing Upon the Point of a Needle

It was a standing joke of [Dr. Chapman] to quote old Leuwenhoeck as having discovered 'twenty thousand devils playing upon the point of a needle' thus foreshadowing some of the most remarkable discoveries of the present day, especially disease germs.
Folksonomies: metaphor pathology germs
Folksonomies: metaphor pathology germs
  1  notes

A quote from Leuwenhoeck taken as foreshadowing disease germs.

20 MAY 2011

 The Heat of Our Bodies is Sunbeams

Breathe upon your hand, and feel how hot your breath is; well, that heat which you feel, was once in a sunbeam, and has travelled from it through the food you have eaten, and has now been at work keeping up the heat of your body.
  1  notes

Taken in through the food we eat and working to keep us warm.

18 MAY 2011

 Richard Feynman Describes the Waves Running Through Our E...

Try to imagine what the electric and magnetic fields look like at present in the space of this lecture room. First of all, there is a steady magnetic field; it comes from the currents in the interior of the earth - that is, the earth's steady magnetic field. Then there are some irregular, nearly static electric fields produced perhaps by electric charges generated by friction as various people move about in their chairs and rub their coat sleeves against the chair arms. Then there are other m...
Folksonomies: todo science wonder
Folksonomies: todo science wonder
 3   notes

Need to find the source of this quote.

03 MAR 2011

 By the Toll of a Billion Deaths Have Humans Earned our Ri...

These germs of disease have taken toll of humanity since the beginning of things–taken toll of our prehuman ancestors since life began here. But by virtue of this natural selection of our kind we have developed resisting power; to no germs do we succumb without a struggle, and to many–those that cause putrefaction in dead matter, for instance–our living frames are altogether immune… By the toll of a billion deaths man has bought his birthright of the earth, and it is his against all c...
  1  notes

In H.G. Wells "War of the Worlds" the Martians are killed by bacteria on Earth, we are immune to these bacteria from billions of years of evolution. We own the Earth having spent the blood of billions of lives to evolve into it.

03 JAN 2011

 The Beauty of a Flower

I have a friend who's an artist and he's sometimes taken a view which I don't agree with very well. He'll hold up a flower and say, "Look how beautiful it is," and I'll agree, I think. And he says--"you see, I as an artist can see how beautiful this is, but you as a scientist, oh, take this all apart and it becomes a dull thing." And I think that he's kind of nutty. First of all, the beauty that he sees is available to other people and to me, too, I believe, although I might not be quite as r...
Folksonomies: science beauty insight
Folksonomies: science beauty insight
  1  notes

Why science makes the world more beautiful by providing insights into its beauty. This doesn't just apply to something commonly considered beautiful, like a flower, but to all of the world, natural and technological, to simple rocks, sand, wind, stars, planets, the sun. We scientists are a keenly aware of the molecular organization, epic history, thermodynamics, universal scale, wave phenomena, and everything else that goes into even the most mundane details of our existence.



References

20 MAR 2018

 Why do women have periods? What is the evolutionary benef...

Electronic/World Wide Web>Internet Article:  Sadedin, Suzanne (Nov 7, 2016), Why do women have periods? What is the evolutionary benefit or purpose of having periods? Why can’t women just get pregnant without the menstrual cycle?, Retrieved on 2018-03-20
  • Source Material [www.quora.com]
  •  2  
    20 MAR 2018

     DNA seen through the eyes of a coder

    Electronic/World Wide Web>Internet Article:  Hubert, Bert (2016), DNA seen through the eyes of a coder, Retrieved on 2018-03-20
  • Source Material [ds9a.nl]
  • Folksonomies: science metaphor dna analogy
    Folksonomies: science metaphor dna analogy
     1  
    21 JUN 2014

     Assessing Technology Transfer

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Lesher, Richard L. and Howick, George J. (1966), Assessing Technology Transfer, NASA, Retrieved on 2014-06-21
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  •  1  
    19 DEC 2013

     This Will Make You Smarter

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Brockman , John (2012-02-14), This Will Make You Smarter, HarperCollins, Retrieved on 2013-12-19
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  • Folksonomies: science
    Folksonomies: science
     52  
    10 DEC 2013

     Vitamins’ Old, Old Edge

    Electronic/World Wide Web>Internet Article:  Zimmer, Carl (December 9, 2013), Vitamins’ Old, Old Edge, New York Times, Retrieved on 2013-12-10
  • Source Material [www.nytimes.com]
  • Folksonomies: biology vitamins
    Folksonomies: biology vitamins
     1  
    25 MAY 2013

     2312

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Robinson, Kim Stanley (2012-05-22), 2312, Orbit, Retrieved on 2013-05-25
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  •  14  
    16 MAR 2013

     Critical Path

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Fuller , R. Buckminster (1981), Critical Path, St. Martin's Griffin, Retrieved on 2013-03-16
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  •  23  
    08 JAN 2013

     Anarchy Evolution

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Graffin , Greg and Olson , Steve (2011-10-18), Anarchy Evolution, Harper Perennial, Retrieved on 2013-01-08
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  •  12  
    11 JUN 2012

     The pleasures of life

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Lubbock , Sir John (1893), The pleasures of life, Retrieved on 2012-06-11
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  •  2  
    11 JUN 2012

     The Periodic Table

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Levi , Primo (2010-06-28), The Periodic Table, Retrieved on 2012-06-11
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  •  1  
    07 MAY 2012

     Space Chronicles

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Tyson, Neil deGrasse (2012-02-27), Space Chronicles, W. W. Norton & Company, Retrieved on 2012-05-07
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  • Folksonomies: science
    Folksonomies: science
     7  
    23 APR 2012

     The blind watchmaker

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Dawkins, Richard (1986), The blind watchmaker, W. W. Norton & Company, Retrieved on 2012-04-23
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  • Folksonomies: science
    Folksonomies: science
     2  
    14 APR 2012

     Natural prayers

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Raymo , Chet (1999-07-15), Natural prayers, Ruminator Books, Retrieved on 2012-04-14
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  • Folksonomies: nature
    Folksonomies: nature
     9  
    29 MAR 2012

     The Elegant Universe

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Greene , Brian (2011-05-31), The Elegant Universe, Vintage Digital, Retrieved on 2012-03-29
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  • Folksonomies: science physics
    Folksonomies: science physics
     7  
    05 JAN 2012

     Imagine that

    Electronic/World Wide Web>Blog:  Raymo , Chet (SEPTEMBER 21, 2011), Imagine that, Science Musings Blog, Retrieved on 2012-01-05
  • Source Material [blog.sciencemusings.com]
  • Folksonomies: mathematics dna
    Folksonomies: mathematics dna
     1  
    01 JAN 2012

     The Magic of Reality

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Dawkins, Richard (2011-10-04), The Magic of Reality, Simon and Schuster, Retrieved on 2012-01-01
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  • Folksonomies: science wonder adolescent
    Folksonomies: science wonder adolescent
     15  
    16 DEC 2011

     Rhythm and the Measurement of Geologic Time

    Periodicals>Journal Article:  Barrell, Joseph (1917), Rhythm and the Measurement of Geologic Time, Bulletin of the Geological Society of America, Retrieved on 2011-12-16
    Folksonomies: geology
    Folksonomies: geology
     1  
    12 DEC 2011

     The Grand Design

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Hawking , Stephen W. and Mlodinow , Leonard (2011-09-01), The Grand Design, Bantam, Retrieved on 2011-12-12
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  •  17  
    14 SEP 2011

     Opening address to American Medical Association, Clevelan...

    Proceedings of Meetings and Symposia>Speech:  Atlee, John Light (5 Jun 1883), Opening address to American Medical Association, Cleveland, Ohio, The Chicago Medical Journal and Examiner, Retrieved on 2011-09-14
  • Source Material []
  • Folksonomies: pathology germs
    Folksonomies: pathology germs
     1  
    20 MAY 2011

     The Fairy-Land of Science

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Buckley , Arabella B. (2009-12-31), The Fairy-Land of Science, Book Jungle, Retrieved on 2011-05-20
  • Source Material [www.mainlesson.com]
  • Folksonomies: nature wonder natural law
    Folksonomies: nature wonder natural law
     8  
    03 MAR 2011

     The War of the Worlds

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Wells , HG (2010-06-14), The War of the Worlds, SmartBookWorms, Retrieved on 2011-03-03
  • Source Material [www.gutenberg.org]
  •  1  
    03 JAN 2011

     Horizon: The Pleasure of Finding Things Out

    Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book Chapter:  Feynman, Richard (1981), Horizon: The Pleasure of Finding Things Out, BBC2, Retrieved on 2010-11-07
    Folksonomies: science
    Folksonomies: science
     5