1.21.2006

Phylotaxis

This has got to be the coolest news aggregator around. From the "about" page:

Phylotaxis is an exploration of the space where science meets culture. Its structure, derived from the Fibonacci Sequence and closely related to the Golden Ratio, is one of nature's most elegant. The Fibonacci Sequence is the set of numbers where each number is the sum of the previous two numbers. This simple sequence governs phenomena as diverse as the petal arrangement of roses, the breeding patterns of rabbits, and the shape of our galaxy. It is also evident in the design of the Great Pyramids, the composition of the Mona Lisa, and the construction of Stradivarius violins. Related to the Fibonacci Sequence, Phylotaxis (Phyllos - leaf, Taxis - order) is the study of the ordered position of leaves on a plant stem, and also applies to the shape of pinecones, and the dispersion of seeds on the flat head of a sunflower. Seed has chosen this shape to represent the perfect synthesis of science and culture.

I ran across it at Seed magazine's new meta blog, ScienceBlogs. You should check that out too. I am still not sure how I feel about Seed. Great idea--"science as culture"--but perhaps a bit too stylish. And for such a progressive group, they sound a lot like any other evil corporation. From the NYTimes:

The blog network is a sign of the growing interest among media companies and advertisers in using new media for an old purpose: selling. . . . "It's an opportunity to surround our consumers whether at home, on the subway or at the office." . . . The research has identified about 20 million Americans, 7 percent of the population, who are labeled in the study as "Leonardos," named after da Vinci for their avid, Renaissance-style interest in science as well as subjects like art and politics. Leonardos are mostly male, in their 30's and middle to upper class. . .

Surround our consumers? Did he really say that to the Times? Perhaps those comments should be saved for internal marketing strategy sessions.

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