This lovely orange Cirrate octopus appears to be the long-lost love child of a sock puppet and a dance recital costume. Filmed in the Taney Seamounts, west of San Francisco, it's part of a branch of the octopus family that is very elusive—preferring deep, dark waters far from the coastline—very rare—they only make up about 15% of all octopus species—and very, very old. In fact, what is thought to be the oldest octopus fossil yet found is a cirrate, dating around 296 million years old.
Cirrate octopuses are also very weird. We don't know a whole lot about their anatomy and physiology, but we do know that they lack "typical" octopus features, like ink sacs and the ability to move around by jet propulsion. Instead, cirrates swim using those fins on the sides of their heads. As for the eponymous "cirra", those are little filaments, similar to the cilia that line your nose, which are paired up with every sucker on a Cirrate octopus' arm. Nobody knows exactly what they do, but they may be involved, somehow, in trapping and handling of food.
In the late 1960s and 1970s, the mind-expanding modus operandi of the counterculture spread into the realm of science, and shit got wonderfully weird. Neurophysiologist John Lilly tried to talk with dolphins. Physicist Peter Phillips launched a parapsychology lab at Washington University. Princeton physicist Gerard O’Neill became an evangelist for space colonies. Groovy Science: Knowledge, […]
In a lead editorial in the current Nature, John Wilbanks (formerly head of Science Commons, now “Chief Commons Officer” for Sage Bionetworks) and Eric Topol (professor of genomics at the Scripps Institute) decry the mass privatization of health data by tech startups, who’re using a combination of side-deals with health authorities/insurers and technological lockups to […]
The Wall Street Journal reports that storytellers—people with a natural inclination to craft concise yet compelling narratives without rambling—were found to be hot by science. Feels good to be a writa. The results were the same across all three studies: Women rated men who were good storytellers as more attractive and desirable as potential long-term […]
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Home audio has taken some big leaps forward in recent years–not just in terms of sound quality, but also in the style department. The FRESHeBAR Leather Soundbar, now 56% off in the Boing Boing Store, is proof.The FRESHeBAR comes packing almost all the options you’d ever need for a home sound system, including Bluetooth streaming capabilities.The unit’s 90 […]
Much of what goes into creating an amazing photo happens in the digital darkroom. Here’s your chance to master all things photo editing: the Ultimate Adobe Photo Editing Bundle, now available in the Boing Boing Store for just $29.99.Across 8 courses and over 41 hours of intensive instruction, you’ll learn the fundamentals of Adobe’s suite of photo […]