The biggest obstacles a human would encounter living on the moon is cosmic radiation. Unlike the Earth, the moon has no atmosphere and no magnetic field. A person on its surface could receive over 400 times the maximum safe dosage of heavy ion radiation, enough to be fatal within ten hours, even in a spacesuit.
Since the time of Homer, ancient stories told of fierce warriors dwelling beyond the Mediterranean world, striking fear into the mightiest empires of antiquity. Their exploits were recounted by many epic poets. They fought in the legendary Trojan War and their grand army invaded Athens. Jason and the Argonauts passed by their shores, barely avoiding their deadly arrows. These formidable fighters faced off against the greatest champions of myth: Heracles, Theseus, and Achilles.
And every single one of these warriors was a woman.
The war-loving Amazons, “the equals of men” in courage and skill, were familiar to everyone in ancient Greece. But were Amazons merely figures of myth, or something more?
Can plants talk to each other? It certainly doesn’t seem that way: They don’t have complex sensory or nervous systems, like animals do, and they look pretty passive. But odd as it sounds, plants can communicate with each other — especially when they’re under attack.
One of the most amazing things about poetry is its seemingly infinite capacity for interpretation. To illustrate that fact, TED-Ed launched a great poetic experiment. We gave one Walt Whitman poem to three of our in-house animators, and asked them to interpret it using three different styles of animation. They were each given a recording of the text to work from, which was supplied by three local poets who also interpreted the text using their voices. The result? A stunning video that breathes three very different lives into Walt Whitman’s timeless poem, “A Noiseless Patient Spider.”
While it may seem counterproductive for members of the same species to eat each other, cannibalism can promote the survival of the species as a whole by reducing competition, culling the weak, and bolstering the strong.
Sand tiger shark eggs develop and hatch inside their mother’s oviducts at different times. When the hatchlings run out of yolk from their own eggs, they eat the other eggs and hatchlings until one baby shark from each oviduct remains. When they emerge, the young sharks are well-nourished, experienced predators who stand a better chance of surviving.
In honor of Henri Rousseau’s birthday (today!), we wanted to share how his work influenced the animation for one of our very own lessons.
When designing the rainforest scenes in our lesson on Biodiversity, we couldn’t help but thinking of Henri Rousseau’s The Dream. Our color palette was inspired by the richness and depth of greens in his forest scenes. And we love the way the blue & ivory flowers pop out against the many shades of green.
The Dream, by Henri Rousseau (1910)
Rousseau’s color choice for the Sun in many of his paintings is fairly difficult to replicate digitally. It took a lot of layers of brushstrokes and color washes to try to mimic his skies – which offer a perfectly soft contrast to the detailed leaves and fronds in the foreground foliage.
Three apes in The Orange Grove, by Henri Rousseau (1907)
We love the placement of wildlife in Rousseau’s paintings – as if the leaves parted momentarily to allow us to peer in on the secret lives of the lions and monkeys going about their business. While designing the Biodiversity lesson, we wanted to similarly highlight the variety of species in the rainforest, while also allowing the audience to imagine that much, much more lurks behind the leaves.