A film of turpentine subjected to soundwaves. Taken by Hans Jenny using Schlieren photography.
Hans Jenny was the kind of Renaissance man I love: physician, fine artist, pianist, philosopher, historian, and empirical researcher. He is nicknamed the "father of cymatics," the study of wave phenomena. Between 1958 and his death in 1972, Jenny conducted a wide range of experiments documenting the effects of sound and energy on various media. This work is collected in the remarkable historical document Cymatics . He places his work in the context of the Greek philosophers who proposed systems of thought based on mathematical order and the relationship of sounds, musical tones, and words. What I love best about his work is that you can feel his wonderment in every chapter and every image (like this soap bubble that became a polyhedron when subjected to sound) . Originally two volumes (the second was published posthumously), Jenny's work on periodicity is now collected in a coffee table book-sized tome full of his photos and essays. His work has captured the imagination of physicists, musicians, New Agers, and anyone who enjoys reading the works of visionary polymaths. Check it out!
Cymatics: A Study of Wave Phenomena & Vibration
Writing for the New York Times, Heather Murphy has a fascinating story about the unexpected results of a bone marrow transplant. When a patient receives a bone marrow transplant, the patient’s own cells are destroyed and replaced with cells from a donor. Thereafter, the patient is a “chimera,” with two sets of DNA. It’s believed […]
I’m not an engineer, but I can’t stop watching this hypnotic and oddly satisfying video of tying rebar.
The Australian Acoustic Observatory project, described by its creators as a kind of “Google Street View of sound,” is a new acoustic sensor network of hundreds of microphones and digital audio recorders distributed across multiple remote ecosystems on the continent. The solar-powered system will record animal and natural sounds continuously for 5 years. According to […]
For some folks, writing notes by hand is just plain easier, but having to re-type them later can be a huge bore, not to mention time-sink. The guys from Rocketbook successfully merged the best parts of analog and digital note-taking with their Everlast notebook awhile back. And now, that tech just got a lot more […]
There are fast-paced card games, and some of them even require enough dexterity for a mini-workout (like Skip-Bo or Snap). But there’s nothing quite like the Mokuru® Card Game, which uses an already addictive fidget toy as the centerpiece for a cutthroat game of tabletop challenges. The game is named for the toy that gets […]
People who ask themselves why they need a dashcam usually have one thing in common: They’ve never been a serious collision. Even in fender benders, these gadgets can save you an immense amount of time and hassle, stopping headaches before they even start. If you’re looking for a reliable starter cam, the myGEKOgear Orbit 110 […]