Gleanings of the Week Ending August 10, 2019

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week: Green – National Geographic Society Newsroom – Starting off the gleanings list with birds this week – green ones.

Indigenous Maize: Who Owns the Rights to Mexico’s ‘Wonder’ Plant? - Yale E360 – The nitrogen fixing maize --- farmed in Mexico – but who will profit if the trait is replicated in corn to feed the rest of the world.

Vast majority of dietary supplements don't improve heart health or put off death, study finds -- ScienceDaily – Massive analysis…277 clinical trials. The supplement industry is large and advertises; how do studies like this counteract that even if the supplement in many cases is having only a placebo effect.

Brothers Use Drone to Reveal Beauty of Ordinary Objects – Art of objects seen from above.

Making HVAC heat exchangers five times better -- ScienceDaily – We’re going to need all the innovation we can muster to get air conditioning more efficient…and power it with renewable energy.

BBC - Future - Do we need to walk 10,000 steps a day? – Hint – 10,000 is not a magic number at all. I’ve had my goal set at 12,000 steps for quite some time. I make it when I am home but am usually challenged when traveling.

Toyota plans to launch its first full EVs, in a deal with China’s BYD - MIT Technology Review – I hope by the time I get ready to replace my Prius Prime there are a lot of EVs to choose from!

What it Means to Design with Nature in 2019 - News | Planetizen – Is this the thinking of all design going forward?

A Fungus Is Now Infecting Humans & Global Warming May Be to Blame | CleanTechnica – Candida auris started showing up in humans in 2009 and it is multiple drug resistant already. New research is indicating that the fungus might have adapted to warmer temperatures until it can now multiply in the human body…which it couldn’t before.

Water Cycle is Speeding Up Over Much of the U.S. – Lots of changes in the time period between 1945 and 2014.The article includes a color-coded map. It will be interesting to see if the trends continue over the next decade

Gleanings of the Week Ending June 29, 2019

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

Porcupines | National Geographic – I was disappointed that they didn’t include more pictures of the North American Porcupine. I’ve never seen one in the wild.

BBC - Future - How to build something that lasts 10,000 years – Specifically – this post is about building a clock that will last for 10,000 years…in West Texas!

Researchers uncover indoor pollution hazards -- ScienceDaily – Some surprises: pollutants change with temperature inside the house….and time of day makes a difference. Formaldehyde seems to be particularly prevalent. These studies are scary for existing homes. We need work on mitigations that homeowners can implement…and new construction that reduces the source of pollutants.

Infographic: Immunity Isn't the Body's Only Defense System | The Scientist Magazine® - Symbiotic bacteria, metabolism and pathogen mutation examples overlay the immunity strategy. As we learn more, we realize that the human body is more complex that we realized.

Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week: Blue – National Geographic Society Newsroom – So many blue birds!

Tortoises rule on Aldabra Atoll – Tortoises making their way through the huts where people bunked! The tortoises sleep with head and legs stretched out…no predators to fear on the inhospitable atoll.

Past climate change pushed birds from the northern hemisphere to the tropics -- ScienceDaily – Thought provoking. I wondered if some of the birds that now migrate from North America to Central or South America for the winter….will not go as far or will shift their range northward.  I suppose it would work if their food sources shifted and the birds followed the food. The synchrony of plants blooming and seeds ripening….of horseshoe crabs laying eggs…all while birds are migrating or getting ready to produce young; it’s not a simple system.

Making STEM Education More Welcoming to Underrepresented Minorities | The Scientist Magazine® - Education doesn’t happen in a vacuum that has well defined boundaries. We must do more than just academic support…I’m glad there is more research and conversation on how to move forward in tangible ways to make STEM education and careers more open to everyone.

An Ancient Asteroid Crater May Be Hiding Off Scotland’s Coast | Smart News | Smithsonian – Some recent work that points to a crater of a asteroid from 1.2 billion years ago.

Three Studies Track People's Microbiomes Through Health and Disease | The Scientist Magazine® - Interesting…but they could just be expensive association studies (a quote from the end of the paper). At some point, maybe the findings will lead to something that benefits the patient.

Zooming – April 2019

The accelerating change of the seasons in Maryland and Texas…so much to see and do. I’ve picked a few of my favorite images captured with the zoom on my camera. There are insects in at least two of the flower images (maybe a third)….the little critters enjoying the spring bounty. Enjoy the April slideshow!

3 Free eBooks – March 2019

In some months it’s hard to pick just three books to feature for the monthly eBooks post. March 2019 was one of those. I cheated a little and picked a periodical…with lots of issues available online…for the first one.

Baer, Casimir Hermann. Moderne Bauformen. Stuttgart: J. Hoffman. 1902-1923. Hathi Trust has volumes for each year here. A German periodical about architecture and interior design with many illustrations – some in color. It’s a slice of history of the period. Many of the interiors look modern…others dated. I realized again how appealing I find glass bricks, window seats, alcoves with benches and sometimes a table or a wall of windows and comfy chairs for reading, and curtains to divide a large room into segments. There were quite a few ideas I’ll use in Zentangle tiles as well.

Trouvelot, Etienne Leopold. The Trouvelot Astronomical Drawings. 1882. A slide show of 15 drawings is available from Internet Archive here. Trouvelot was well-known for his astronomical drawings made from observations at the Harvard College Observatory and the US Naval Observatory. Unfortunately, he also is the person that introduced the European Gypsy Moth into North America.

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Day, Lewis Foreman. Nature in Ornament. New York: Charles Scribner’s sons. 1892. Available from Internet Archive here. Lots of ideas for Zentangle patterns in this book. I particularly liked the different stylized peacock feathers.

Gleanings of the Week Ending December 1, 2018

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

How to feed a cat: Consensus statement to the veterinary community: Reducing stress-related eating problems -- ScienceDaily – Puzzle feeders and putting food in different places….make meal time more interesting!

Examining Grad Student Mental Health | The Scientist Magazine® - There are a lot of stressors during graduate school….and many students become depressed or develop other mental health issues. Students, faculty and university administrators are noticing that more needs to be done to help grad students through the challenges of this phase of their education.

Why Fall Color Has Been So Meh in Parts of the U.S. This Year | Smart News | Smithsonian – This article came out a few weeks ago….just getting around to putting in the gleanings. The explanation of why our area had such a lack luster fall is interesting and it might become the norm as the area gets wetter and warmer.

BBC - Earth News - Legless frogs mystery solved – Predatory dragonfly nymphs eat legs of tadpoles! This is an article from 2009…but it was news to me. We find dragonfly nymphs in almost all the streams and rivers around where I live…but I haven’t seen any legless frogs.

2 Solar Ovens Reviewed | CleanTechnica – I wonder how many people living in their RV or travel trailer make use of this type of oven to minimize propane and/or electricity usage.

Large-Scale Tar Production May Have Fueled Viking Expansion - Archaeology Magazine – Tar to waterproof ships. I was reminded of the ‘Connections’ series that often showed how a key technologic advance enabled something historically significant.

Yellowstone streams recovering thanks to wolf reintroduction -- ScienceDaily – The willows are growing taller along the banks of streams, making the banks more stable…since the wolfs are back and impacting elk browsing.

Gaudí's El Capricho, an Early Gem Located in North Spain – It’s hard to see it as a place that people would really live!

How invasive earthworm feces is altering US soils -- ScienceDaily – Asian jumping worms are changing the soils of the Midwest and East Coast of the US….and not for the better.

Why did Tutankhamun have a dagger made from a meteorite? – When Tutankhamun died, iron was rarer than gold. The Egyptians did not know how to process iron from ores…but they did know that iron meteorites came from the sky which might have made the material symbolic for them. Objects made from it would have been reserved for high-status people.

3 Free eBooks – September 2018

All three of the selections this month are multiple items. The first is a series of books from the late 1700s about insects; the second and third are magazines that are within the past few years.

Panzer, Georg Wolfgasng Franz; Sturm, Jakob. Favnae insectorvm Germanicae initia, oder, Deutschlands Insecten. Nürnberg:In den Felseckerschen Buchhandlung. 1796. A series of books available from Internet Archive here. They are in German but the plates (my Jakob Sturm) are the draw. Lots and lots of insects!

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Morfield, Angie Daly (editor). Missouri Conservationist. Missouri Department of Conservation.  Available from the department website here. The monthly magazine about conservation in the state. If you are a resident of Missouri a subscription to the printed magazine is free! I am looking at it online at this point…learning about the plants and animals of Missouri prior to my daughter moving there. Lots of great pictures of various parts of the state.

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Carey, Victoria (editor). Country Style: Australia Coast to Coast. Several issues of the magazine (2015 and 2016 vintage) are available from Internet Archive here. I liked the photographs of gardens and houses….and animals. They have a large ad for Fancy Feast cat food in every issue!

4 Free eBooks – July 2018

Last month I have 4 eBooks to highlight and the same is true for this months – so I gave up and changed the title from 3 to 4. I had a lot of books to choose from…went for a bit of variety.

Yōfu gajō (v. 1). Kyōto-shi: Yamada Unsōdō. Published originally in the Meiji period, 1868-1912. Available from Smithsonian Libraries here.  I liked the scenery in this volume – muted colors except for the red that pops. In the image below – do you think it is a Japanese maple? This was one of the last books in the collection of Japanese books available from this site; if you want to take a look at the whole collection – do so from the Japanese Illustrated Books from the Edo And Meiji Period page.

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Andō, Hiroshige. Tokaido gojusantsugi. Published originally in the Edo Period, 1600-1868. Available from Smithsonian Libraries here. I couldn’t resist two images from this book – rain and snow. I think the snow is my favorite because of the pink….maybe sunrise?

Catlow, Agnes. Drops of water : their marvelous and beautiful inhabitants displayed by the microscope. London: Reeve and Benham. 1851. Available from Internet Archive here. The book was published just before or early in the Victorian surge in microscopy and became one of her most successful books. She was also one of the early science writers that wrote science books for young students.

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The Craftsman. New York: United Crafts. A magazine founded and edited by the American furniture designer Gustav Stickley and published from October 1901 to December 1916. All issues are available from the University of Wisconsin Library’s Digital Library for the Decorative Arts and Material Culture here. I am working my way through the issues a year at a time. I’m up to 1907 as of yesterday.

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There are lots of ideas that would work in modern situations….like hanging curtains far enough away from a window to allow chairs to be in front of the windows without having any curtains at all in the way of the light. I can imagine sitting in the chairs on a sunny winter day with sun streaming in…closing the curtains so that the area gets cozy warm…reading or writing on my laptop or creating a Zentangle.

Free eBooks – April 2018

It is so easy to find historical books that are available online – scanned with care and ‘free.’ I can remember a time when I went to libraries (often not finding the book I was looking for) and how expensive it could be to buy books. Now I find myself rarely spending money on books. There are such riches of books these day. The world of books has changed in my lifetime almost as monumentally as the advent of the printing press! Here are three picks from the books I found this month.

Ogata, Kori; Aikawa,Minwa. Korin gashiki. Kikuya Kihē, Kyōto, Bunka 15. 1818. Available from Smithsonian Libraries here. In the image I chose to clip from the book – I like the simplicity of the drawing of the cranes (and chicks). I also like the way water is drawn; it is easily used as a Zentangle pattern.

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Mars, Gerhardt C. (editor). Brickwork of Italy: a brief review from ancient to modern times. Chicago: American Face Brick Association. 1925. Available from Internet Archive here. Somehow the mellow color of brick and the architecture in the illustrations in this book were very appealing.

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Merian, Maria Sibylla. Metamorphosis insectorum surinamensium. Amsterdam: 1705. Available on Internet Archive here. An early book about butterflies…and their caterpillars. Merian was a leading entomologist in the early 1700s…and was one of the first to publish color images of insects…particularly documenting metamorphosis of butterflies.

Gleanings of the Week Ending March 31, 2018

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

 4 Psychology Lessons That Can Teach Us About Inspiring Climate Action | CleanTechnica – Good ideas – particularly if anticipating a lot of disagreement or people being too depressed about the prospect of the future for Earth to take action.

Top 25 Wild Raptors – National Geographic – From around the world…no bald eagle in this group of photos.

After 250 Years of Dams, Rhode Island River Restored for Migratory Fish – Cool Green Science – Maryland is also removing dams. Bloede’s Dam (see blog post about it here)

Hummingbirds Make an Incredible Journey North – Cool Green Science – This little birds make a very long journey. Hope our recent cold weather has not made is a problematic year for them.

Saving Terrapins From Drowning in Crab Traps – Cool Green Science – Hopefully this can be a success story for terrapins around Long Island…time will tell.

Elusive Deep-Sea Anglerfish Seen Mating for the First Time | Smart News | Smithsonian – I’d only see pictures of dead specimens or drawings. The 2.5 minute video shows a living fish moving slowly through the water with filaments that glow surrounding it. Still very fierce looking but also a slow moving graceful beauty.

Drug-related mortality rates are not randomly distributed across the US -- ScienceDaily – The map says it all. The hotspots for drug-related deaths in the US are not necessarily where historically high drug use happened.

The 20 most beautiful libraries in the U.S. - Curbed – I’ve only been in one of these: the reading room of the Legal Research Library at the University of Michigan; it was part of the campus tour when my daughter visited the university before she added it to her short list that she would apply to for her undergraduate studies. I remember it being very quiet even though people were walking around – cork floors are quiet floors!

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch Is Much Larger and Chunkier Than We Thought | Smart News | Smithsonian – Ugh! It was bad even before the more precise measurements came in. There has to be a way to start cleaning it up and keeping more garbage from getting into the ocean.

Landscape Photography Series Tells “Winter’s Tale” of Snowy Forests – Hopefully we’ve had our last bought with snowy weather here in Maryland. I do enjoy the snowy forests…for a little while.

Gleanings of the Week Ending March 10, 2018

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

Look at What the Coastal Storms Have Done to the Chesapeake Bay - AGU Blogosphere – We had high winds in our area a week ago and it was worse (even higher winds and more precipitation) north of us. Trees feel, power outages prevalent, and some rail cars fell from a bridge as they crossed the Susquehanna River. The suspended matter in the rivers around the Chesapeake Bay were dramatically high…and it moved fast (lots of difference between March 4 and March 5). Wow!

New Perspectives on Bogotá’s Architecture Thanks to Drone Photography – I liked the first picture the best: the building footprint and the rooftop gardens…the trees below.

Forecasting diseases one image at a time – National Geographic Blog – Los Alamos working on predictive models of disease outbreaks in populations suplementing traditional data sources (with lag times in data availability) with non-traditional sources that are available more quickly to enable more timely response to disease outbreaks.

Are flamingos returning to Florida? -- ScienceDaily – Florida had flamingos in the 1800s but by 1900 they had been eliminated (killed for their plumage). Since 1950 they have been increasing in numbers and this study indicates that they are not just escapees from captive flocks. Most are birds from the Caribbean or Mexico that have repopulated Florida.

Can You Ever Have Too Many Turkeys? – Cool Green Science – Turkeys in Oregon – not native to the area but thriving – and an experience with the citizen science project to count them.

The Pileated Woodpecker in Winter – Cool Green Science – We have some pileated woodpeckers that make their rounds in the forest behind our house. They are indeed easier to see in the winter time than any other time of the year.

Welcome to the Age of Climate Migration - Rolling Stone – People are already moving from areas that are flooding more frequently. This appears to be an early indicator of economic consequences for climate change denial.

The Strange and Magnificent Nudibranchs of the Cape – National Geographic Blog – Marine slugs look so different from life we are used to seeing…they could be from another planet…but they are here on earth. Enjoy the pictures in this blog post.

Low magnesium levels make vitamin D ineffective: Up to 50 percent of US population is magnesium deficient -- ScienceDaily – Yet another reason to eat those leafy greens…or take a magnesium supplement.

Recovery: Evicting Rabbits – Cool Green Science – Ridding some islands of non-native rabbits so native flora and fauna can recover (penguins, birds, lots of plants)…with the help of a Labrador retriever wearing rubber booties!

Gleanings of the Week Ending March 3, 2018

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

BBC - Future - Spice: Why some of us like it hot – A little interesting history…not sure it really gets to the question about why some of us like it hot though.

Life-Size Camel Carvings Found in the Saudi Desert | Smart News | Smithsonian – I saw this story in several of my feeds…this one had the best pictures.

As Ice Sheets Melt Faster, Sea Level Rise Is Accelerating Every Year - Yale E360 – It’s hard to translate stories like this into what will happen to specific areas and it seems like that is what is critical for coastal areas that need to plan for rising sea level. Planners in Annapolis MD are using the flood they had from Hurricane Isabel in 2003 to help people realize what the situation will be like in 2050 (the projection is that the flooding will be about like that 2003 flood very frequently because of sea level rise, enough that the city will be forever changed).

BBC - Future - Five myths about loneliness – Some ideas about loneliness. If you time and interest…do the survey (link is toward the bottom of the page) to participate in the BBC Loneliness experiment.

Photography in the National Parks: Don't Forget About Those Little Things -  I like the closer up shots of little things --- and there are good ones in almost every natural area, not just National Parks.

This Map Shows What Climate Change Could Mean for Your Region – There is an article around the map…but the map is the graphic to look at. There are more areas with economic costs than benefits in the US.

Transforming patient health care and well-being through lighting -- ScienceDaily – I’ve always wondered about the fluorescent lights often used in hospital settings…wondering how the sleep cycles of patients could be normal at all. I’m glad lighting is finally getting more attention.

Wild Birds with a Splash of Colour – National Geographic Blog – Eye candy for this week. Somehow bird pictures are always a favorite for me.

Thousands of Photographs Created These Hyper-Real Portraits of Historic Buildings | Smart News | Smithsonian – If you are in New York City before April 7 you can see the gallery show…if not – get a glimpse of Brunetti’s work looking at the 4 images with this blog post from the Smithsonian.

New Study Shows Flood Risks Across the U.S. are Underestimated (in a Big Way) – Cool Green Science – I wonder how long it will be before the FEMA maps are updated. It seems like people purchasing houses would like to be aware of the flood risk before they made their purchase.

Gleanings of the Week Ending January 20, 2018

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

Water-based, eco-friendly and energy-saving air-conditioner: All-weather friendly cooling technology works without mechanical compressors or chemical refrigerants, and generates drinking water -- ScienceDaily – This is one of those technologies I hear about…and hope it lives up to the potential talked about.

New Website Explores the Women in Architecture Your History Books Didn’t Teach You About | Smart News | Smithsonian – A little history.

The Ultimate Winter Wildlife Guide: Enjoy and Understand Creatures in the Cold – Cool Green Science and How Does Extreme Winter Weather Affect Wildlife? – Cool Green Science – It has been a cold January for us. The second article mentions that Carolina Wrens often don’t handle very cold temperatures; I did notice that I didn’t see or hear any on the extremely cold days and have only seen one since it has warmed up a little.

If Birds Left Tracks in the Sky, They’d Look Like This – Another instance where photography allows us to see our world in a way that we can’t do with our eyes.

Archaeologist debunking myth that most people died young prior to modern medicine - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) – Looking at teeth of 300 people buried in Anglo Saxon English cemeteries between 375 and 625 AD…and finding some that were older than 75! It is probably true that average life expectancy was short…but there were some that lived to reach old age.

Frozen Bubble Photos Capture the Amazing Beauty of Ice Crystals – I don’t think I am patient enough for this type of photography – but I can enjoy someone else’s work!

Revelations in the Way Poison Frogs Care for Their Young – National Geographic – There is a video of a parent frog getting tadpoles on its back…taking them to a new pool of water!

Face of Ancient South American Queen Reconstructed – Pictures and short video of the facial reconstruction from the woman’s skull. She was at least 60 years old when she died….and died some 1,200 years ago.

Bones of the victims at Roman Herculaneum - HeritageDaily - Heritage & Archaeology News – Skeletons were found in ‘boat houses’ where they were buried under thin mud….preserving the bones. There are enough of them to understand more about the population of the town…like the frequency of pleural inflammation causing rib lesions, skull depressions from excess irritation and scratching attributed to head lice and age demographics.

DNA confirms the Two Brothers’ relationship | Egypt at the Manchester Museum – I remember the Two Brothers from a course on Ancient Egypt and was interested in the DNA analysis that showed they were half-brothers (same mother, different fathers).

3 Free eBooks – August 2017

I’ve been enjoying colorful magazines on various topics that are from 2016 and available on Internet Archive. It’s like browsing through a stack of periodicals in the dentist’s office!

House Beautiful (from US and UK) from 2015 and 2016. Available from Internet Archive here. Lots of food for thought if you are redecorating, renovating, or moving to another house and wanting to add something to make it ‘home.’

World of Animals from 2014 and 2017 available from Internet Archive here. Great pictures of animals – many in action – from all over the world.

Canadian Architecture and Design 2009 available from Internet Archive here. Again – great photography…beautiful places. I hope pocket doors become popular again!