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Being your own Guinea Pig

Science is a methodical approach to gathering knowledge. It is systematic and controlled, but don’t for a moment imagine that this means that basic curiosity is lost. Scientists are a very inquisitive lot. Throughout history there are examples of when they have turned to themselves for experimentation. Sometimes this has been through frustration, sometimes through impatience, sometimes to make a point. In any case there are some great (and at times disturbing) stories to tell. Here are 10 of my favourites.   More . . .



Secretions and Excretions

We take much from nature and manipulate it to best meet our needs. The most obvious examples are, harvested and developed from the structural tissues of plants and animals whether this is trunks of trees for building houses or the muscles of animals. Of course there are many other products we take from the biosphere. We have a voracious appetite for embryonic plant tissue, for example, whether it be wheat, rice, corn or quinoa. Another familiar example is milk, whether this is bovine, ovine, caprine, bubaline or hominine. The list goes on and some of the entries are rather unexpected. More . . .

Wee Small Hours

Sweet dreams. Image by KaratanyaInsomnia can be devastating (in some cases fatal) and there is a special place in the irritating file for waking up a few minutes before one’s alarm goes off. Being torn from slumber by a terrifying nightmare is less than pleasant and if the house is being burgled or the neighbours are engaged in a particularly noisy dispute it can make for a disagreeable evening. Then there’s snoring, noisy parties and various natural disasters. So being awake in the wee small hours has a poor reputation, but – the above circumstances aside - there is something very special about waking in the middle of the night.

More . . .


New Haiku

Here’s another batch of haiku – enjoy!


Tasting with your feet

Compound eyes and clever flight

You still eat poo though

(a Fly-ku)


Atmosphere plus light

Clouds, colours, stars and the blue

Spectra that emote

(a sky-ku)


Familiar, unknown 

Introduced, but forgotten 

Faces but not names

(a who-ku)


Feel, know, imagine

Consider what considers

Your brain, your mind, you

(a psych-u)

Hold a status update in your hand

Image by Flughafen3D printing is well in its way to becoming commonplace, perhaps even ubiquitous. It is becoming cheaper and more accessible and it's inspiring great creativity. As people discover/develop more applications for 3D printing, it will soon join smart phones, flat screen TVs and antibiotics as a technology that is taken for granted – at least in the western world. In fact it will not be long before we start to depend upon 3D printing, so now is as good a time as any to take a quick look at where things are heading. From lamps to livers to lunch, it’s already amazing. More . . .