Light makes a comeback.
“New technologies — more sophisticated imaging techniques, fluorescent molecules that act as beacons of light in the cell, and the computing power to gather and stitch together multiple images and create videos from high-powered microscopes — make it possible to harness one of light’s key advantages: gentleness. Unlike higher-resolution techniques, light microscopes can image biological structures without killing them or chemically fixing them. At Harvard, the resurgence of light microscopy is making it possible to see structures and events that have never before been seen in the context of living cells and organisms.” Also don't miss the video samples
of “in vivo” imagining.
posted by Frankieist
on Apr 19, 2008 -
Apparently, the new black is... really, really black. "Researchers in New York reported this month that they have created a paper-thin material that absorbs 99.955 percent of the light that hits it, making it by far the darkest substance ever made -- about 30 times as dark as the government's current standard for blackest black."
But what possible benefit to society could come from this blacker than black substance? Why, invisibility cloaks
, of course! [more inside]
posted by willie11
on Feb 20, 2008 -
John Lennon’s lighthouse. He said, ‘Well, actually, I invited you because I wanted to know if you can build the lighthouse in my garden,’ and I said: ‘Oh, dear, no, no. It’s just a conceptual idea. I don’t know how to build anything.’
makes a dream of John's come true in Iceland. It’s geothermal
. Amy Goodman's take
on the subject. And, of course, video
posted by LeLiLo
on Oct 17, 2007 -
"The trick to education is to teach people in such a way that they don't realize they're learning until it's too late."
Fluorescein-dyed water appears suspended in midair, only to "flow" upwards moments later. The careful dance of a splashing drop is frozen and taken for granted, painstakingly analyzed in a brilliant defiance of how water should behave. Such is the wonder of what modder Nate True calls his Time Fountain
(YouTube embedded & worth it)—a well-documented, DIY version of classic science center favorite, the Water Piddler
. MIT's own Strobe Alley
is lined with photos created using the same technology, pioneered by Harold Eugene Edgerton
, a professor whose work you're almost certainly familiar with
. Naturally, some beautiful pieces have followed under the same ideal, courtesy Martin Waugh
posted by disillusioned
on Aug 8, 2006 -
Little visual miracles.
For more than forty years that most American of photographers, Chevalier in the Order of Arts and Letters Lee Friedlander
, has recorded modern American
urban life -- with its jumble
, and cars
, and television sets
. He likes to turn a common blunder of amateurs
-- photographing something nearby with one's back to the sun
-- into a leitmotif
. His shadow plays the role of alter ego
, sticking to the back of a woman's fur collar, clinging to a lamppost as a parade of drum majorettes passes by, reclining like a stuffed doll on a chair. Clever jigsaw puzzles, his pictures frequently reveal themselves to be laconic, austere poems
to what Friedlander
has termed "the American social landscape
',' meaning mostly ordinary places and affairs. "Friedlander," an exhibition of more than 480 photographs and 25 books
covering decades of work, runs at MoMA through Aug. 29, before traveling to Europe until 2007. More inside.
posted by matteo
on Jun 14, 2005 -
Modular Sensor Surface. Make sure to check out the Quicktime movie. You can turn your entire home into the Michael Jackson "Billie Jean" video!
posted by ColdChef
on May 30, 2005 -
, Roden Crater I've always wanted to make light something that you treasure. Not just light reflected in glass, or in a scrim, or on the surface of some object. But light objectified. We generally use it to illuminate other things. But I wanted to force people to pay attention to the thingness and revelation of light. This is a place that will do that.James Turrell
posted by y2karl
on Apr 10, 2003 -
High Tec Shadow Play
'In Rotterdam, Canadian artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer used two 7000 watt lamps to create 1200 square metres of projected images which were overlayed by the shadows of passer-by's. A computer based tracking system monitored the shadows. Once the shadows matched the projected image, a new image (or "scene") was triggered. ' An impressive (if extravagant) bit of public art (QuickTime)
posted by rolo
on Jan 31, 2003 -
glowing wires, cool to the touch. uses very little power, and usable for...anything you need to light. really beautiful light sculptures waiting to be created.
posted by patricking
on Dec 9, 2001 -
THAT'S a speeding ticket...
Scientists push light up to 300 times the SPEED OF LIGHT.
I just got a floaty-glowy feeling. Some interesting interesting stuff is happening in our world.
My favorite quote from the article: "That is so fast that, under these peculiar circumstances, the main part of the pulse exits the far side of the chamber even before it enters at the near side. "
[Note: link is for NYT, free registration req'd]
posted by cCranium
on May 30, 2000 -
I'm a gadget freak and I've got lights in my house controlled by my computer
. But the folks at misterhouse.net
have taken it 10 steps further. There's a web interface to all sorts of things, inlcluding the lighting system, the vcr, and reminders of new mail. That's some pretty nifty geek stuff they have going on there.
posted by mathowie
on Nov 16, 1999 -