Posts in category: Video/Talk

A Clown Fish receiving massage by a sea anemone. Photo: Nick Hobgood.

TED Talk. Paul Greenberg: The four fish we are overeating

7.03.2024

“Grinding Nemo”

Overfishing is only half of the story, says Paul Greenberg in his talk. The other half is about the boom in fish farming and aquaculture, which – over the past few years – has started to exceed the amount of wild fish produced. In America and a great part of the Western World, shrimp is by far the most consumed seafood. 5, 10, 15 pounds of wild fish – deemed trash fish by the fishing industry – are killed to bring one pound of shrimp to the market. Filmmaker Mark Benjamin called the phenomenon “Grinding Nemo“: Shrimp dredgers vacuum up a huge amount of by-catch that is then minced and turned into shrimp feed. An „ecosystem literally eating itself and spitting out shrimp“. A recent study has found that dredging for shrimp represents one of the most carbon-intensive ways of fishing there is.

Read article

Workers burning harmful waste at the Agobogbloshie dump in Ghana.

Electronic Waste: Intoxicating Agbogbloshie

24.12.2023

At breathtaking speed, our world is being inundated with ever more sophisticated electronic equipment. Devices hardly a year or two old, are replaced at increasing frequency, to be cashed in or be thoughtlessly dumped for the next much fancier gadget. Most “outdated” models are added to a recycling bubble already straining at the seams. Considering that resources are scarce and thus valuable, this rotation system is still unrivaled. Yet, have you ever wondered how – and above all – where, your discarded cell phone, laptop or PC may have ended up eventually? More than half of the electronic waste from, for e.g., the United States, is shipped to countries fairly ignorant of environmental issues – like for instance to China, India or Ghana in West Africa. A Boston-based company is shining a light for sensible recycling worth copying.

Read article

Cows up-side down. Camera tricks reveal what the human eye cannot see.

TED Talk. In Slow-mo or Time Lapse: Awesome Wonders of Nature

12.11.2023

A Treasure Trove for Science

Surely you have seen dragonflies hover. But did you know that they were also capable of flying backwards? Or even up-side down like a vintage double-decker during a daring air show? And that they could activate each one of their four wings separately – working at varying speed and propelling in different directions, all at the same time? Today it is possible to shoot images that are thousands of times faster than our own vision. Or slower. We can see how nature’s devices work – and imitate them. Helicopters or mechanical drones pretty much simulate the congenial dragonfly’s techniques. We live in a world of invisible beauty, too subtle to be perceptible to the human eye. Louie Schwartzberg shows breathtaking images during his fascinating TED talk.

Read article

Scotland: Is the Wild Haggis fact or fiction?

3.11.2023

Bringing down the rare Haggis scotticus – the Wild Haggis – to secure the next traditional Haggis meal – requires utmost agility and perseverance by human persecutors equipped with equally-measured lower extremities. One must know that Wild Haggii vary in characteristics and that it is two different genera who roam steep and rough highlandish terrain. In both cases the legs on their left are different in length from the ones on their right – and vice versa. Either way, their unusual physique allows them to swiftly climb and scuttle around their regular habitat unperturbed by topographical challenges, albeit in one single direction only: Wild Haggii featuring longer legs on the left, move around clockwise, whereas the ones relying on extended limbs on their right, will logically proceed counter-clockwise. A refined GPS system usually prevents painful head-on collisions and all Haggii, limbed in whichever fashion, are said to lead a fairly peaceful coexistence.

Read article

Beethoven's Ode to Joy

The Sound of Friendship: Beethoven’s „Ode to Joy“

8.10.2023

Whenever there is reason to celebrate on a festive scale, a dramatic sound scape must not be missing. Worldwide, solemn ceremonies are carried by Beethoven’s „Ode to Joy“ (Ode an die Freude), being played by enthusiastic orchestras and sung by effervescent choirs in front of a mesmerised audience. Since its debut in Vienna in 1824, the compassionate tune and emotional lyrics manifested themselves as the epitome of the brotherhood of man.

Read article