The Tree of Life
February 17, 2023 7:24 PM   Subscribe

Zoomable Tree of Life All known species in one zoomable fractal.
posted by blue_beetle (13 comments total) 57 users marked this as a favorite
I probably just killed my neighbor's weekend by forwarding this along.
posted by Nerd of the North at 7:43 PM on February 17 [2 favorites]

posted by tiny frying pan at 8:16 PM on February 17 [2 favorites]

TIL a new otter species! Thank you, addictive zoom tree.
posted by The otter lady at 9:29 PM on February 17 [5 favorites]

Ooooooooooh! I like it.
posted by biogeo at 9:45 PM on February 17 [1 favorite]

Plunged in, quickly left the familiar confines of Euarchontoglires and came up hot and wet among the Asgardarchaeota at Loki's castle.
". . . from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved." Chas. R. Darwin
posted by BobTheScientist at 12:05 AM on February 18 [1 favorite]

Cute data visualization, but (computational biologist hat on) it doesn't look like branch length corresponds to evolutionary distance. Would be much neater if it did!
posted by They sucked his brains out! at 12:08 AM on February 18 [2 favorites]

Sure, but isn't there research suggesting that evolution is more complex than a "tree"?
posted by Hobgoblin at 5:42 AM on February 18

All known species in one zoomable fractal

Yup, that's all of them.
posted by mittens at 7:33 AM on February 18 [2 favorites]

Ha. I saw this linked in a comment on Reddit yesterday. I wondered how long it would take to get here.

Another comment suggested searching for "Human" first, and then "E. Coli" just to see the tree zooooom.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 12:50 PM on February 18 [5 favorites]

Are extinct species represented in some way? Maybe just on the branches, not the leaves?
posted by TreeRooster at 6:30 AM on February 19

Another comment suggested searching for "Human" first, and then "E. Coli" just to see the tree zooooom.

That was really unexpectedly thought-provoking.
posted by mittens at 1:04 PM on February 19 [3 favorites]

Some recently extinct species are shown: the ones with Extinct status on the IUCN list. They show up as black leaves.

The dinosaurs aren't on the tree, though.
posted by automatronic at 3:20 AM on February 23

I tried following the main branch for as far as possible to see where it ended up, and the answer was: moths. Lots and lots of moths. An endless fractal tree of moths. Which reminded me of that time someone tried to find the least-viewed Wikipedia pages and most of those were also obscure moths.

So anyway if you want to really see the tree zoom, jump between Eilema Cereola and Escherichia coli O145 NM str. 2012C-4480. It takes several minutes.
posted by automatronic at 3:44 AM on February 23 [1 favorite]

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