The Most Amazing Science Images Of 2010

Not to miss. Pop­Sci has pulled togeth­er a gallery of “The Most Amaz­ing Sci­ence Images of 2010.” It fea­tures 72 pho­tos in total, includ­ing the image above – an E. Coli Sculp­ture that fig­ures into artist Luke Jer­ram’s “Glass Micro­bi­ol­o­gy” series of por­traits. Find a short video his Malar­ia sculp­ture right here.

Five Free Philosophy Courses from Notre Dame

Last week, we added three phi­los­o­phy cours­es by John Sear­le to our big list of Free Online Cours­es (now 300+ cours­es). This week, we’re bring­ing you five phi­los­o­phy cours­es from Amer­i­ca’s elite Catholic uni­ver­si­ty, Notre Dame. You can access two cours­es in audio, and three in video via iTunes and the web. Here you go:

Relat­ed Con­tent:

What’s the Right Thing to Do? Pop­u­lar Har­vard Course (by Michael Sandel) Now Online

Water Drop Filmed in 10,000 Frames Per Second

The folks at MIT show you a drop of water like you’ve nev­er seen it before. A great lit­tle out­take from the Dis­cov­ery Chan­nel pro­gram “Invis­i­ble Worlds In The Water.” This video appears in our col­lec­tion of 125 Great Sci­ence Videos.

via All­top

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Visionaries Imagine 2011 in 1931

Back in 1931, dur­ing anoth­er peri­od of eco­nom­ic malaise, The New York Times asked some big thinkers what the world will look in anoth­er 80 years. (That is, in 2011.) Some proved to be fair­ly pre­scient. Take, for exam­ple, William James Mayo (a founder of the Mayo Clin­ic) who said:

Con­ta­gious and infec­tious dis­eases have been large­ly over­come, and the aver­age length of life of man has increased to fifty-eight years. The great caus­es of death in mid­dle and lat­er life are dis­eases of heart, blood ves­sels and kid­neys, dis­eases of the ner­vous sys­tem, and can­cer. The progress that is being made would sug­gest that with­in the mea­sure of time for this fore­cast the aver­age life time of civ­i­lized man would be raised to the bib­li­cal term of three-score and ten [read: 70 years of age].

That’s not a bad guess, see­ing that most West­ern­ers now have a life expectan­cy some­where in the high 70s. But then, writ­ing in the midst of the Great Depres­sion, the indus­tri­al­ist Hen­ry Ford made this pre­dic­tion:

We shall go over our eco­nom­ic machine and redesign it, not for the pur­pose of mak­ing some­thing dif­fer­ent than what we have, but to make the present machine do what we have said it could do. After all, the only prof­it of life is life itself, and I believe that the com­ing eighty years will see us more suc­cess­ful in pass­ing around the real prof­it of life. The newest thing in the world is the human being. And the great­est changes are to be looked for in him.

Has our eco­nom­ic machine real­ly been redesigned? And has our eco­nom­ic sys­tem “passed around the real prof­it of life?” It’s hard to say an emphat­ic yes as we stum­ble into 2011. And I would­n’t be sur­prised if Ford’s vision seems even more remote in 2012.

For more prophe­cies from 1931, please vis­it the Abnor­mal Use blog that unearthed this fine trea­sure…

via @eugenephoto

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The Bill of Rights: Birthday Webcast Today

To com­mem­o­rate the 219th birth­day of the Bill of Rights, the Nation­al Con­sti­tu­tion Cen­ter will host today (Wednes­day) a free web­cast explor­ing the his­to­ry of the U.S. Constitution’s first ten amend­ments. It will start with James Madison’s ini­tial work on this list of essen­tial free­doms, then cov­er the years when these pro­vi­sions were sel­dom applied, and final­ly explore their rebirth in the 20th cen­tu­ry and some con­tem­po­rary debates. The 20 minute pro­gram will be viewed by six mil­lion stu­dents across the Unit­ed States, and you can tune in as well for free. To take part, sim­ply vis­it this site between 7:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. EST. And please note that the web­cast will be sup­ple­ment­ed with a live blog host­ed by con­sti­tu­tion­al experts. (Pho­to by G. Wid­man for GPTMC)

Famous Authors Read Other Famous Authors

Through Decem­ber 22, the Guardian’s new Short Sto­ries pod­cast (iTunesRSSWeb Site) will present 12 well-known authors read­ing sto­ries by oth­er famous writ­ers. So far, we have Philip Pull­man read­ing Chekhov, Anne Enright pre­sent­ing Ray­mond Carver’s sto­ry “Fat,” and William Boyd read­ing JG Bal­lard’s “My Dream of Fly­ing to Wake Island.” The sched­ule for the nine remain­ing sto­ries is right here.

If this pod­cast feels vague­ly famil­iar, it’s per­haps because you have already encoun­tered The New York­er Fic­tion pod­cast (iTunes — FeedWeb Site). Here again, lead­ing authors read short works by oth­er great writ­ers – Paul Ther­oux reads “The Gospel Accord­ing to Mark” by Jorge Luis Borges, Joyce Car­ol Oates reads Eudo­ra Wel­ty’s “Where Is the Voice Com­ing From?,” Orhan Pamuk reads Vladimir Nabokov’s “My Russ­ian Edu­ca­tion,” the parade of great read­ings goes on.

All of these read­ings, plus many more, are cat­a­logued in our col­lec­tion of Free Audio Books. And there they will remain. Thanks to Stephen for the heads up on the new Guardian pod­cast…

Relat­ed Con­tent:

20 Great Authors (and Actors) Read Famous Lit­er­a­ture Out Loud

Google Teaches Your Parents Tech

Yes­ter­day, Google launched, a lit­tle spin-off web site that fea­tures 50 how-to videos, all designed to answer your par­ents’ basic tech ques­tions. Your father wants to know how to share a big file? Your moth­er is try­ing to fig­ure out how to book­mark a web page? Sim­ply head to, find the appro­pri­ate how-to video, send it via email, then free up time to teach your­self more heavy-duty tech.

Many of these videos show­case Google soft­ware. A coin­ci­dence? Hard­ly. Think of this as soft Google mar­ket­ing to the Boomers.

via The Offi­cial Google Blog

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Multiplication: The Vedic Way

What would 873 x 982 look like? Lots of lines. But still intrigu­ing. Thanks Alli­son for send­ing this our way. Feel free to sug­gest a good link here

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.