Visualizations and Connectivity

Scanning some random images of pollen electron microscopy recently I was thinking I should fix the overall tone of my writing to reflect how I really feel about the world: two parts frustrated consternation to one part head-scratching awe.

Birch Pollen Courtesy the Telegraph Uk

I see stuff all the time that just makes me marvel and laugh to myself. Like twenty dollar memory sticks that have ten times the memory of my family’s 1995, $500 ‘all-in-one’ model Compaq Presario (windows 3.1 anyone?). Or the collection of nearly one hundred (ten boxes, five different brands, all HD ready) 3.5” floppy disks I found in the supply cabinet at work today, as opposed to a recent Discover magazine article on nanowiring bacteria.

Ernst Haeckel’s Discomedusae: Courtesy Marine Biology Laboratory

And it seems like only yesterday we were passing buckeyballs around and stressing over the emergence of VRSA. Yes it’s been a long couple of decades indeed, and there is plenty to stress over. The world can get you down some times, but from CBC Ideas podcasts (get them while they’re hot, they don’t leave them posted for long) to the nearly ubiquitous TED Talks, there is still light the end of the tunnel. Or maybe it’s just single electron rolling down a carbon nanotube.

Some people read the gospel for consolation. Me, I just check out Michael Shermer, though I definitely don’t take anything he says on faith.


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