Dad shares time-lapse of his daughter from birth to age 18

A Dutch filmmaker made a touching time-lapse video that journeys through his daughter Lotte's entire childhood, from birth to age 18.

Frans Hofmeester shared his "Portrait of Lotte, 0 to 18 years" on YouTube Friday in celebration of her birthday. The video's description reads:

To better understand the psychological phenomena of memory and time, Hofmeester sought for a concept that could be supported through the mediums of film and photography.

The time-lapses confront us with our mortality. In a montage of less than 6 minutes, the viewer can observe one of the most mysterious and profound processes in human life - to grow up and age.

Hofmeester attempts to create and preserve a sense of reality. Thus, the portraits are created without the use of extra make-up or filters - bare, honest, unpolished and uncensored.

Lotte's brother Vince's life is also being documented in this way, though he's still got four more years of portraits to go.

Both videos remind me of that saying, "The days are long, but the years are short." Though, in this case, the years seem really short.

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How being 12 years old is like being a toddler again

New York Public Radio WNYC has launched a new series, Being 12: The Year Everything Changes. The website features broadcasts and videos around the thesis that age 12 is our most difficult age--the last year of childhood, when peoples' brains, bodies, circumstances, and relationship to language is changing at speeds as dramatic and tumultuous as when they were toddlers. Read the rest

Book Preview: The Boy Who Played with Fusion

This June, Harcourt releases The Boy Who Played with Fusion: Extreme Science, Extreme Parenting, and How to Make a Star. Written by journalist Tom Clynes, the book got its start as a 2012 Popular Science story of the same name. I've been reading an early galley and love the way Clynes weaves tales of a precocious youngster, his wise parents, and his baffled teachers. It’s an inside look at raising a typical, angsty teen, except one who gives Ted talks on the weekends and hangs with world-class physicists.

Taylor hadn’t realized that his biggest challenge, by far, would be to create a workable vacuum. He needed enough negative pressure to create an almost empty space for his subatomic particles to travel. If any gas or air molecules were left inside the tube, the high-energy particles would collide with them and lose energy. “Imagine a freeway in Los Angeles and you want to go 100 miles an hour,” Taylor explains. “If you try that at rush hour you’re going to hit other cars. But in the middle of the night it’s wide open and you can go fast.”

To pump out the tube, Taylor used a refrigerator compressor and wired it to run backward. Then, Taylor loaded the deuterium gas he’d generated. “I was so excited,” he says. “Me and Tom got the Van de Graaff up to 200,000 volts, and with the Model-T arc we tried to get plasma going.”

But even though they used higher-tech fasteners than Lawrence did in the 1930s, they had trouble creating enough vacuum to get a sustained plasma field, and a clear enough path to accelerate particles to any measurable degree.

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Mr. Wizard dickery

Okay, honestly, some of the scenes in this video of out-of-context clips from Nickelodeon's 1980s reboot of Mr. Wizard hardly count as dickery. In fact, some bits just look like what happens when a good teacher tells kids they aren't quite understanding the science yet. But, then, I have a Mr. Wizard bias. And a bias toward not coddling children.

Nonetheless, there are parts of this video that are downright hilarious—"See these two pins, Stacy? Today I'm going to stick them in you!" And, of course, you must watch through to the end, where Mr. Wizard abandons a poorly dressed 1980s child by the side of the road.

Via the SF Signal and the wonderful Joanne Manaster.

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