Overview Effect & Earth Gazing
On the 40th anniversary of the famous ‘Blue Marble’ photograph taken of Earth from space, Planetary Collective presents a short film documenting astronauts’ life-changing stories of seeing the Earth from the outside – a perspective-altering experience often described as the Overview Effect.
The Overview Effect, first described by author Frank White in 1987, is an experience that transforms astronauts’ perspective of the planet and mankind’s place upon it. Common features of the experience are a feeling of awe for the planet, a profound understanding of the interconnection of all life, and a renewed sense of responsibility for taking care of the environment. ‘Overview’ is a short film that explores this phenomenon through interviews with five astronauts who have experienced the Overview Effect. The film also features insights from commentators and thinkers on the wider implications and importance of this understanding for society, and our relationship to the environment.
(by Planetary Collective)
I have a friend whos an artist and has sometimes taken a view which I dont agree with very well. Hell hold up a flower and say look how beautiful it is, and Ill agree. Then he says I as an artist can see how beautiful this is but you as a scientist take this all apart and it becomes a dull thing, and I think that hes kind of nutty. First of all, the beauty that he sees is available to other people and to me too, I believe
I can appreciate the beauty of a flower. At the same time, I see much more about the flower than he sees. I could imagine the cells in there, the complicated actions inside, which also have a beauty. I mean its not just beauty at this dimension, at one centimeter; theres also beauty at smaller dimensions, the inner structure, also the processes. The fact that the colors in the flower evolved in order to attract insects to pollinate it is interesting; it means that insects can see the color. It adds a question: does this aesthetic sense also exist in the lower forms? Why is it aesthetic? All kinds of interesting questions which the science knowledge only adds to the excitement, the mystery and the awe of a flower. It only adds. I don’t understand how it subtracts.
The full length aDiatomea video as exhibited at Haeckel’s Phyletic Museum in Jena, Germany
aDiatomea is an artificial life system that uses various methods and notions of a-life research. The basic principle of aDiatomea is that every aspect of it is entirely mathematically generated and thus it is not created purposefully as an art piece but as a complex system that takes a life of its own. These artificial organisms are based on actual unicellular organisms known as Diatoms. These beautiful microscopic creatures are constructed using the superformula, an equation that can reproduce organic forms. Granular sound is injected in these organisms, acting as their life-force, while they interact with each other and their environment. This film shows a recording of 36 seconds of evolution in 5 different colonies of artificial diatoms, pushing the boundaries of complex computer calculations.
more information at mrkism.com/diatomea
more pictures and prints at flickr.com/photos/mrkism/sets/72157623215953644/
Delete stuff, delete lots of stuff!
[Here in the body was also stuff I deleted]
Ingenious performance about design… or maybe music… science… or life in general?
Reggie Watts, the final performer on the PopTech 2011 stage, sends the audience off in style with his characteristic blend of wry improvisational humor and unpredictable musical riffs. Using only his microphone and a looping machine, Watts creates a brilliant pastiche of the conference and brings the conference attendees to their feet to dance.