Skip

What happens when you magnify grains of sand 250 times?
January 4, 2014 9:19 PM   Subscribe


 
They totally should make that into a calendar. I will look the heck out of each month.
posted by of strange foe at 9:33 PM on January 4 [8 favorites]


What happens when you magnify grains of sand 250 times?

that sounds time-consuming
posted by threeants at 9:42 PM on January 4 [11 favorites]


A new island beach magnification for a given month. I would buy that.
posted by oceanjesse at 9:44 PM on January 4 [3 favorites]


I'd love to see the individual grain types placed on a map of the corresponding beaches around the world.
posted by C'est la D.C. at 9:51 PM on January 4 [6 favorites]


What planet am I living on? Because I'm not sure anymore...
posted by mazola at 9:54 PM on January 4 [2 favorites]


Basically you end up with Candy Crush.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 10:04 PM on January 4 [6 favorites]




But have you ever really looked at sand? I mean really looked at it?
posted by Artw at 10:12 PM on January 4 [16 favorites]


To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour.
posted by decathexis at 10:20 PM on January 4 [20 favorites]


Um, so, is it bad that I thought that some of these pictures were of tiiiiiinnnnnyyyyy little glass dildos....?

Come on, the top middle two in this picture totally look like dildos, right??
posted by These Birds of a Feather at 10:23 PM on January 4 [4 favorites]


Fucking sand, how does it work?
posted by jph at 10:25 PM on January 4 [8 favorites]


So that is why it hurts so much when you get sand in your eyes.
posted by JujuB at 10:43 PM on January 4 [3 favorites]


They sorta look like those snacks you can get in the store by the same area as the trail mix.
posted by gucci mane at 10:53 PM on January 4 [4 favorites]


"To see these incredible images, Dr. Gary Greenberg goes through a painstakingly lengthy process. First he takes many photos from different points of focus. Then, he combines them using software to produce one spectacular image."

As impressive as these are, I am curious to know what random pinches of sand from specific places would look like, and how many samples are actually represented here.
Not trying to diminish this - I imagine it would be just as thrilling to see the same shape over and over and then suddenly say whoa how the hell did this get here.
posted by hypersloth at 11:08 PM on January 4 [11 favorites]


Love these photos.

I'm remembering when I was little, being taken to a small beach somewhere near Forest Ontario, (but maybe not Lake Huron?) where the sand was made up entirely of tiny, tiny little donuts. Crinoid stems I suppose. Love to know where that was exactly.
posted by bonobothegreat at 11:12 PM on January 4 [4 favorites]


Um, so, is it bad that I thought that some of these pictures were of tiiiiiinnnnnyyyyy little glass dildos....?

Since one of the ads I can see (why can I see ads?) is selling vibrators, I agree: I see glass dildos.
posted by Mezentian at 12:41 AM on January 5


Another great magnified sand pic, from Yanping Wang of Beijing Planetarium. (Also her photo of crystallized soy sauce is like whoah)
posted by taz at 1:26 AM on January 5 [6 favorites]


I know it's hilarious to make glass dildo jokes, but Taz's image is... dildos.
It's uncanny.

When I look at sand, with my naked eye (like a chump) I largely see cubic objects, so where are all these totaly tubular tubes coming from?

But, if I liked abstract art, I would want a print of that Soy Sauce on my wall.

(And, have we found Ralph Hinkley's book yet? He kinda needs it).
posted by Mezentian at 2:01 AM on January 5 [2 favorites]


Previously on MeFi: sandgrains.com. See also Sand Collection.

Unfortunately, most sand when magnified just looks like, well, sand. These are particularly beautiful specimens.
posted by Nelson at 2:32 AM on January 5 [7 favorites]


Mr Sandman
posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:47 AM on January 5


This gave me the same feeling of slight nausea the Hubble deep field images did.
posted by chisel at 3:20 AM on January 5


Everyone here is saying "dildos" and now the Google ads on that article are advertising dildos to me. Wow.
posted by sixohsix at 3:41 AM on January 5 [5 favorites]


It turns out that even an AI system will start sending dick pics at the least sign of encouragement. Use this knowledge wisely.
posted by taz at 4:41 AM on January 5 [4 favorites]


Have you ever really looked at sand? I mean, REALLY looked at sand?

(I would like to point out that my major art project - 365 Beaches - where I will visit one significant beach for each day of the year, take pharmaceutically pure LSD and produce a single, important image - is still available for sponsorship. Due to travel, set-up, post-processing and the pharmacology of indole group hallucinogens, this will actually be a ten-year project. However, a few last remaining funding slots may possibly still exist.)
posted by Devonian at 5:07 AM on January 5 [4 favorites]


hypersloth: I read that differently.

With a greater magnification you get a shallower depth of field, so to get everything in focus when there are so many complex bumpy shapes one needs to record a huge number of focal lengths and combine the parts that are in focus from each.
posted by idiopath at 5:31 AM on January 5 [6 favorites]


Some of these appear to be collections of interesting grains of sand. Which is fine, so long as we don't think it's all this good.
posted by Segundus at 6:23 AM on January 5 [4 favorites]


These look like lots of diatoms and tiny shells to me - beautiful! Having done some photomicroscopy I'm particularly impressed with the lighting and brilliant colors. It's picky work to get photos that good of things this tiny!
posted by leslies at 6:28 AM on January 5 [1 favorite]


A double.
posted by nathancaswell at 8:24 AM on January 5


Everyone here is saying "dildos" and now the Google ads on that article are advertising dildos to me. Wow.
posted by sixohsix


I'm assuming that this is connected, did anyone who clicked on the link before the dildo comment see the dildo ad?
In the past, I've googled (in another tab) terms from a very recent mefi comment, and gotten that comment as a result, so, metafilter must be realtime indexed by google.
posted by 445supermag at 8:31 AM on January 5


...one needs to record a huge number of focal lengths and combine the parts that are in focus from each.

Focus Stacking in Macro Photography is a time-consuming process that gives striking results, especially with insects.
posted by cenoxo at 8:43 AM on January 5 [2 favorites]


I'd love to see some "naked eye" pictures of the same sand for comparison.
posted by straight at 8:47 AM on January 5


Wow, hot babe in the bikini! But, wait.... Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance. Zoom. Enhance.

COOL!
posted by IAmBroom at 8:55 AM on January 5 [6 favorites]


World Atlas of SandsSand and Collections.
posted by cenoxo at 9:05 AM on January 5 [3 favorites]


hypersloth: "As impressive as these are, I am curious to know what random pinches of sand from specific places would look like, and how many samples are actually represented here."

I guarantee you that somewhere there is a geologist who has taken literally thousands of microscope photos of sand from all over the world, all meticulously catalogued and sampled according to a proper randomized study design to ensure that each sample is as representative of its beach as possible. (The lighting probably isn't as good though.)

Unfortunately, he/she probably hasn't put it online because, after all, who would want to look at it? And anyway she/he is really only interested with it as data – or at least that's what he/she has to tell people, because nobody would take a geologist seriously who just wanted to take pretty pictures of sand.
posted by Scientist at 10:11 AM on January 5 [1 favorite]


Have you ever really looked at sand? I mean, REALLY looked at sand?

This is amazing, like we all took the same "trip" -- or is it a quote from somewhere?
posted by Rash at 10:34 AM on January 5


I find it mind - boggling and utterly stunning that we live in a world where seamless digital image stacking reveals worlds within worlds and yet there are still adult persons allowed access to powerful computer resources who have never in their lives heard of AD BLOCKER fercryingoutloud :(
posted by sexyrobot at 11:04 AM on January 5 [2 favorites]


This explains to me how sand gets and sticks everywhere. It's every shape imaginable.
When I see sand with my naked eyes it's always cubes.
posted by QueerAngel28 at 12:25 PM on January 5 [1 favorite]


Well, sometimes it's cubes or other simple geometric solids. The pictures in the linked post all seem to be from coral islands or other beaches where the sand is made of the skeletons of sea creatures - diatoms, tiny starfish, ground-up mollusk shells, bits of coral and the like. Many other beaches are made of ground-up local rock - basalt, granite, etc. - and that sand will be tiny mineral crystals that will generally take the shape of whatever the underlying crystalline structure of their mineral dictates. It depends on the sand.
posted by Scientist at 12:41 PM on January 5 [1 favorite]


Wait, so crystallized soy sauce looks just like Chinese New Year? Mind blown.
posted by Wordwoman at 12:53 PM on January 5 [1 favorite]


I actually have looked at sand under a microscope, and it generally looks more like this. I suspect some highly selective picks here.
posted by tavella at 1:23 PM on January 5 [3 favorites]


Reminds me of this old parable (told in some way in many spiritual traditions):

The rabbi, a very old man, had experienced a lot in his life and was very wise. "My son," he said, "that is not the way it is at all. You cannot see the face of God because there are so few who can stoop that low. How sad this is, but it is the truth. Learn to bend, to bow, to kneel and stoop and you will be able to see God face-to-face."
posted by Twang at 2:41 PM on January 5 [1 favorite]


God having sand in his arsecrack all the time would explain quite a bit.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 3:17 PM on January 5 [2 favorites]


Life is a beach — Meiofauna of Sandy Beaches.
The surface of sandy beaches is permanently moving under the action of the tides, wind and currents. It is a reason why a sandy shoreline provides no place for attachment of surface-growing seaweeds and no inviting crevices, but it can hold water between small grains. Beneath the water surface, the environment is unaffected by the weather. Sandy beaches appear dead and inhospitable, like a desert. However, a wide variety of organisms inhabit the space between the sediment particles, in damp sand, on sandy shore, among them most abundant – meiofauna communities.
How long would our coastal shorelines be if you were small enough to walk along every grain of sand?
posted by cenoxo at 3:19 PM on January 5


My Canon point and shoot has a (3 exposure) HDR mode but in-camera focus-stacking would be a bajillion times more useful. Even if it could only expand the macro depth of field by about 50%, it would be great.
posted by bonobothegreat at 8:25 PM on January 5 [1 favorite]


tavella: I think even that would be much more engaging to look at if it had some crispness from focus stacking. I wonder if it is more a question of picking sand from the most interesting beaches, or picking the most intersting stuff out of the sand?
posted by idiopath at 8:43 PM on January 5


How long would our coastal shorelines be if you were small enough to walk along every grain of sand?

The same length, it would just take longer to get from place to place.

Sorry.
posted by Scientist at 11:49 PM on January 5 [3 favorites]


I think that sand was hand picked.
posted by waving at 12:41 PM on January 7 [1 favorite]


« Older The Selfie Olympics   |   Adeus, Pantera Negra. Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post