Is that… is that even healthy?
There are sea organisms and fungi which glow in the dark and there’s fireflies and jellyfish which glow in the dark. It doesn’t do them any harm nor does it do the people around them any harm. I would say its pretty healthy, as well as it would mean more photosynthesis happening in cities which mean cleaner air.
I was just curious about how they were doing it and for some reason I didn’t think to click the link. But thanks! It makes more sense now. I was afraid it was some kind of chemical thing.
nah just genetic modification using existing bioluminescent genes. Genetics is really cool, and so is bioluminescence. I mean they’ve already made pigs glow using jellyfish genes and pigs are waaay more complicated than trees iirc. So they’re actually (i think) less likely to muck it up with trees.
In which case
(I like glowy things)
means more trees which is good
uses less electricity which is good (for both tax reasons and also just because reasons)
pretties everything up
just generally all good stuff
glowy trees 2k15 plz
*puts on science hat* This is basically an art project. Before anything like this could go live, there would have to be massive serious assessment of the ecological impact, and substantial harm reduction measures implemented. For instance, light pollution affects the behaviours of organisms in urban environments; obvious examples being diurnal birds singing well into the night, deciduous trees retaining leaves into winter, and so forth. Glowing trees can’t be switched off if needed, so the possible consequences of that must be measured. The effects of light pollution are thus far fairly mild but they are real. The thing about streetlamps is that they can’t reproduce and invade wild habitats. Glowing trees could potentially throw seeds into unlit areas such as forests, introducing light pollution where it hasn’t previously existed and affecting the ecosystems dramatically. GMO crops have already caused what could be termed genetic pollution; Glowing trees could cross-fertilise with unaltered rootstock and cause unexpected mutations, which may or may not negatively impact the survivability of the rootstock species, and in turn the other species that depend on the rootstock. Are glowing trees less or more appetising to insects and animals, would there be additional requirements of pesticides or further engineering, would glowing trees affect the reproductive behaviours of insect and animal species, and how would all this interact with the local and global ecosystems? Is there a more containable (thus safer) option, such as tanks/globes of functionally inert biolumiscent algae with a biological “deadman switch” that would prevent it from surviving unassisted if accidentally released? Genetic engineering is unfortunately a can of worms, and though it may provide solutions to many ecological threats, it may also create even more.
*takes off science hat* SO COOL WANT GIMME NOW
What I want from Tinder isn’t dates or casual sex or romance, it’s the same thing I want from Twitter, Facebook, and quite possibly this article you’re reading right now: affirmation—some signal from the outside world that I exist, and that I might be worthy.
Still, whenever I stop to think about it, there’s something a bit iffy about sitting on my bed in the dull blue glow of my phone, consuming images of women. If digital technology can be an archive of the evocative, then in the right hands it can also make a game of emotion. In much the same way that I can dive into the web to wallow in loss or revel in the memory of joy, so too can I use it to fill in the puncture wounds I’ve accumulated over time and don’t know how to properly heal.
It would be easy then to parrot the incessant cries that technology leads us away from reality—that it substitutes a kind of virtual catharsis for the satisfaction borne of real action. That feels too simplistic, though. This past weekend, my phone kept on chiming as photos and messages from a cousin’s wedding in India streamed in. To say that this space within which my family virtually gathered to celebrate was unreal would be, well, false.
Yet, I’m only left to wonder at the ease with which one can slip into a limitless library of affect. It’s not so much that I worry about the lure of screens, or even digital itself, as much as the logic of the contemporary web and app world. Facebook, Tinder, Twitter, Instagram—all these Silicon Valley things can be used to great effect, but to great exploitation, too. And like the evanescent, invisible nature of a smell, sometimes I wonder if the California Ideology—that sentiment, thought, people, can all be reduced to a flickering signifier—isn’t slipping in unnoticed under the door, creeping into our minds.
Rhone Glacier Covered in Blankets to Slow Melting via Amusing Planet
The Rhone Glacier in the Swiss Alps is one of the oldest know glaciers in the Alps, and an important one ‘cause it gives rise to the Rhone River – a major river of Europe –, and is also one of the primary contributors to Lake Geneva. Because of climate change and rising global temperatures, the glacier has retreated dramatically over the last 120 years, shrinking by more than 1300 meters and leaving back a track of naked stone.
Every summer, environmentalists in Switzerland take up the task of covering the Rhone Glacier with miles of white blankets to try and minimize the melting. The innovative method of protecting the ice draws hordes of visitors who come to witness the ancient ice from an entirely unique perspective.
SoP - Scale of Environments
Sophie Morgan walks with the aid of “Rex”, a Robotic Exoskeleton at the Welcome Trust on September 19, 2012 in London, England. The system allows wheelchair users including fully paralyzed people, to stand upright and walk independently. Sophie was paralyzed from the breast bone down in 2003 following a car accident. (Dan Kitwood/Getty Images