everybody loves cephalopods

by Maggie Koerth-Baker

Everybody loves cephalopods—that class of animals containing octopuses, squid, and cuttlefish. But why? What makes these non-fluffy, non-mammals so appealing?

Last August, I attempted to answer that question in a presentation for a University of New Mexico IGERT symposium. "Those Fabulous Octopus Brains" is a 30-minute speech linking cephalopod neurobiology to cephalopod behavior, and asking what it really means to call a species "intelligent". It'll get you caught up on what we do, and don't, know about cephalopod smarts—and what studying these amazing creatures means for the future of human technology, and our understanding of the human brain.

Don't have time to watch the entire thing? Never fear. Our intrepid editors at Boing Boing Video have put together a highlights reel that will enlighten you in 1/3 of the time.

VIDEO LINKS: Uncut version (30 minutes) / Short version (10 minutes)

(Special thanks to Boing Boing Video editor Eric Mittleman)