Today’s shoot involves a sword. #scienceiscoming
Rachel Sussman’s photographs of the oldest living things in the world – a masterpiece at the intersection of art, science, and philosophy.
With an artist’s gift for “aesthetic force” and a scientist’s rigorous respect for truth, Sussman straddles a multitude of worlds as she travels across space and time to unearth Earth’s greatest stories of resilience, stories of tragedy and triumph, past and future, but above all stories that humble our human lives, which seem like the blink of a cosmic eye against the timescales of these ancient organisms — organisms that have unflinchingly witnessed all of our own tragedies and triumphs, our wars and our revolutions, our holocausts and our renaissances, and have remained anchored to existence more firmly than we can ever hope to be.
Above all, however, the project raises questions that aren’t so much scientific or artistic as profoundly human: What is the meaning of human life if it comes and goes before a patch of moss has reached the end of infancy? How do our petty daily stresses measure up against a struggle for survival stretching back millennia? Who would we be if we relinquished our arrogant conviction that we are Earth’s biological crown jewel?
See more here.
I guarantee you that Rachel Sussman’s ten-year quest to chronicle the oldest living things on Earth will be the best thing you read about today. It will change the way you look at your life, and the life around you. It will change your perspective regarding your time on Earth, that everything, from fleeting mayflies to ancient mosses struggles for existence daily, and no matter how many sunrises we see, we should relish in each of them for their impermanence.
(Emphasis mine. Seriously… go to Brain Pickings and check out the rest. You can buy Sussman’s book here.)
Today I stepped inside the target bay of one the world’s most powerful lasers, capable of creating the conditions inside a white dwarf in an area the size of the period at the end of this sentence. (This is exactly how it looked through my super-stylish laser glasses)
I suppose there are worse problems to have.
What if I let you guys vote on them?
Also, what do you want to know about?
Yuichi Takasaka’s lunar eclipse photo is better than your lunar eclipse photo.
Taken over Waterton Lakes National Park in Alberta. See those other specks chasing the Moon? Those aren’t lens flares, they’re fellow celestial bodies including Mars, Jupiter, and the star Spica.
Time for spring cleaning! Dust yourself off and sci again while learning the science behind dust:
Oh, PBSDS, you are so punny.
I forgot to mention that I think this might be the prettiest video thumbnail I’ve ever made.
The truth of art keeps science from becoming inhuman, and the truth of science keeps art from becoming ridiculous. — Raymond Chandler