Meaning of Beauty Explained in Beautiful New Illustra Film
September 26, 2019
Why is there beauty in the living world? We all recognize it. The implications take center stage in the design-vs-Darwin debate.
Nature: 3.8 Billion Years of R&D
October 2, 2012
Scientists continue mining the biomimicry bonanza, but some still give all the credit to time and evolution.
Beethoven Rolls Under Darwin
June 18, 2012
Beethoven may indeed be rolling in his grave, but not for the reasons some Darwin-loving reporters think.
Plant Patterns Prolong Perplexity
July 11, 2011
Plants perform a wonder that has attracted the admiration of scholars from ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome to modern times: the ability to reproduce mathematically perfect patterns. This ability, called phyllotaxis, can be described mathematically with the Fibonacci Series and the Golden Angle. The beautiful spirals in sunflowers, artichokes, cacti, dandelion heads and other plants continue to fascinate children and adults today, but those are not the only examples. Leaves on a stem can emerge in phyllotactic patterns like a spiral staircase, and depending on the environment, plants can switch patterns at different stages in development. Scientists have learned a lot about the players in the phyllotaxis game, but still do not understand the script. The details of how genes and proteins produce the patterns remain elusive.