I can’t decide if this gif from I created sneltopia video of a snail eating lettuce is cool or gross. Either way, it’s fascinating. To process food before it enters the esophagus, snails use a radula to crush it. This is a ribbon of flesh with very fine teeth which grinds the food like a very fine cheese grater.
Jessica Harrison takes old ceramic statues of fancily-dressed women and disembowels them. These found porcelain figures, that are typically seen occupying a special place your grandmother’s credenza, are reimagined in the most gory of ways. The juxtaposition of the prim statuettes displaying their decapitated heads and freshly opened throats without changing their demure expressions is striking. Despite having appeared to have been subjected to an awful violence (perhaps their own), the Georgian and Victorian-era figures remain decorous figures. The results are gory and macabre while also being kitsch and playful.
The 18-year-old, Florence Colgate, @flo245 on twitter, has been blessed with what has been deemed the most naturally beautiful face in England. She’s the winner of a contest – beating out 8,000 other contestants – for having a near perfectly symmetrical face based on ratio figures that were collected by researchers.
(photo from Daily Mail)
A woman’s face is said to be most attractive when the space between her pupils is just under half the width of her face from ear to ear. Florence scores a 44 per cent ratio. Experts also believe the relative distance between eyes and mouth should be just over a third of the measurement from hairline to chin. Florence’s ratio is 32.8 per cent.
The answer lies not in fancy geometry but in two basic relationships: whether the left side matches the right (symmetry), and whether the proportions match those with which we are most familiar (normality or ‘averageness’). That beauty should lie in averageness is paradoxical, because we tend to think of ‘average’ as mundane. Sure, the most beautiful faces do not have average proportions, but nonetheless learning what is ‘normal’ for the faces around us is a powerful force in defining what for us is beautiful.
Some birds can literally see magnetic fields. The ability to visualize the Earth’s magnetic field is believed to be linked to the availability of light and it is thought that specialized molecules in the birds’ retinas allow them to literally see the magnetic fields, which appear as patterns of light and shade superimposed over the regular image from light. A new study shows that the internal compass also depends on the birds having clear vision in their right eyes.
Some birds can sense the Earth’s magnetic field and orientate themselves with the ease of a compass needle. This ability is a massive boon for migrating birds, keeping frequent flyers on the straight and narrow. But this incredible sense is closely tied to a more mundane one – vision. Thanks to special molecules in their retinas, birds like the European robins can literally see magnetic fields. The fields appear as patterns of light and shade, or even colour, superimposed onto what they normally see.
Below is what is suspected it would look like to be a robin flying over Frankfurt, Germany at a flight altitude of 200 m above the ground.
Image via Theoretical and Computational Physics Group