Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Return of the Link List!

I don't actually promise this will be weekly. Sometimes I run into lots of really awesome stuff I just have to share; sometimes--I don't.

But anyway, the Link List is back!

1) Feeelings..., or at least, a sense of touch, may be coming soon to a robot near you! It uses electrical conduction to detect how much pressure was placed on the sensor. It can also detect humidity and temperature. Ultimately--with adaptation and careful integration--it might be useful for artificial limbs.

2) News on an Underwater Museum put up to protect reef life. The article is interesting, but it's missing pictures, so take a look over at Jason Taylor's website, which has pictures and slideshows galore. Actually, I'm pretty sure I've already linked to it at least once, but it's worth looking at more than once, and I'm pretty sure some of those images are new since the last time I looked.

3) In Saturn's Rings. This is old, but still good: A beautiful montage of solar-system images,to be a film in 2014. You really have to watch it; it's gorgeous. If you've watched it already, watch it again. It's that good!

4) The spider-tailed viper. Exists. Don't watch the video if you aren't a fan of spiders and snakes both. Otherwise, watch it and be happy. The original National Geographic post disappeared, but I did see it there and there are several massive lists of link corrections, so I'm thinking something happened to the site, not the snake--also, I found other references while searching, but the Io9 page has the video!

5) Alex Wild Photography my new go-to site for macro photography of insects & spiders & other such crawlers and fliers.

You know, I used to just say "bugs" when I meant creepy-crawly, multi-legged, generally neat, creatures, but now I've read too many books that solemnly assure me that "bug" is it's own category and cannot just be generally used to mean all multi-legged, chitinous critters, so I don't know what to call them (and I still want the brontosaurus back. I'm cantankerous).

6) The Mary Sue had an article on Catherine Roselle's beautifully creepy embroidery--complete with spiders and (shudder) centipedes. It's amazing. 

Also check here to see her blog and more pics (I've linked to the Insectomanie gallery). The blog is in French, but the pictures will work in any language.

7) Stories like this one about mockingbirds attacking people in Brooklyn Park make me wonder: What sort of thing triggers bird attacks on people? The article mentions defending the nests, which makes sense, but surely that is only part of the story. There are scads of mockingbirds in this neighborhood, and it's definitely a bad time to be a crow or a cat around here just now, but they don't seem to dive bomb people. So what sets them off? Population density? Noise? Certain colors? Shorter breeding seasons? Or maybe people in New York are more obsessive about cleaning out birds' nests, so humans-in-general get marked as "Evil predators" while people around here leave them be and are marked "mostly harmless"?

8) Sunbathing birds. Lots and lots of wonderful pictures of birds enjoying the sun.

Interesting upcoming stuff

1) Quirk Books, publisher of William Shakespeare's Star Wars, Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, and Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is at it again! Hollow City, the sequel to Miss Peregrine's Home, is coming out in January of 2014. Hurray!

Yes--this is more than "interesting" upcoming stuff. I think it's more in the "jumping up and down and squealing" category of news.


  1. I am a fan of snakes but not of spiders, so I have elected not to click on the snake-spider picture. It sounds potentially much too frightening for me.

    I did click on the embroidery centipedes link, and it made me skin crawl. Oh dear I am not being tough enough! If only there were more snake stuff. I am totally tough about snakes. I have had snakes chilling in my hair before.

    1. I'm no real fan of centipedes, either, but it's hard to ignore such elegant creations.

      The spider-tailed viper video mostly shows the spider-tail end, so you were wise not to go there. I do want to find more information about the creature. I'm hoping National Geographic will at least get their link fixed!