Book-Text-Read-Zines · Earthly/Geo/Astro · Photographics

The Writing of Stones by Roger Caillois

Surrealist and Sociologist Roger Caillois was known for his writings on biomimicry, especially within the insect world, pareidolia and lithic scrying. His latter interest provided us with The Writing of Stones, a book in which he unravels the ‘unfathomable graphic madness’ etched onto the rocks contained within the ‘archives of geology’. Each chapter of the book is dedicated to a species of rock – in each he channels ever increasingly dense, extravagant, and at times morbid tales from the authorless inscriptions each stone contains.

“Life appears: a complex dampness, destined to an intricate future and charged with secret virtues, capable of challenge and creation. A kind of precarious slime, of surface mildew, in which a ferment is already working. A turbulent, spasmodic sap, a presage and expectation of a new way of being, breaking with mineral perpetuity and boldly exchanging it for the doubtful privilege of being able to tremble, decay, and multiply.”

About the book, from the flaps:

The Writing of Stones is a fascinating meditation on the human imagination contemplating the interior of stones. Caillois examines patterns that are revealed by polishing sections of minerals such as agate, jasper, and onyx. He considers the impact these configurations have had upon the human imagination throughout history and he reviews man’s attempt to categorize and explain them.

Marguerite Yourcenar [in her introduction] points out that “there had taken place in [his] intellect the equivalent of the Copernican revolution: man was no longer the center of the universe, except in the sense that the center is everywhere; man, like all the rest, was a cog in the whole system of turning wheels. Quite early on, having entered ‘the forbidden laboratories,’ Caillois applied himself to the study of diagonals which link the species, of the recurrent phenomena that act, so to speak as a matrix of forms.” Caillois found the presence throughout the universe of a sensibility and a consciousness analogous to our own. One way which this consciousness expresses itself is in a “natural fantasy” that is evident in the pictures found in stones. Man’s own aesthetic may then be no more than one of many manifestations of an all-pervasive aesthetic that reveals itself in the natural world.

The Writing of Stones PDF

Bio · Technology · Videos · Vital-Edible-Health

Self healing materials – Watch plastic break, bleed, and heal itself.

From ByteSizeScience – “Our latest episode explores materials that mimic the human skin’s ability to heal scratches and cuts. For a first-hand look at self-healing plastics, we visited the lab of Nancy Sottos, Ph.D., professor of engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Inspired by human skin, the plastics repair themselves by “bleeding” healing agents when they are cut or scratched. This research offers the promise of cell phones, laptops, cars, and other products with self-repairing, longer-lasting surfaces.”

Animalia · Architectonic · Design · Earthly/Geo/Astro · Eco/Adaptable · Science · Technology

Camel nostril inspires an audacious Sahara Forest plan to plant man-made oasis in the desert

Scientists inspired by a camel’s nostrils are set to achieve the impossible and grow a man-made forest in the desert.

The £3.3 million giant open-air greenhouse in Qatar will bring plant life to one of the most inhospitable spots on earth and it is all thanks to the humped mammal’s nose.

Using a trick of nature the Sahara Forest Project will use surface water and cold water pumped up from 200 metres below the sand to feed trees, vegetables and algae.

Written by Martin Robinson, Daily Mail. Read article HERE

Animalia · Performativity · Technology · Videos

Monolithic Bee (Mobee), a tiny millimeter-scale flapping wing robotic insect

The Harvard Monolithic Bee is a millimeter-scale flapping wing robotic insect produced using Printed Circuit MEMS (PC-MEMS) techniques. This video describes the manufacturing process, including pop-up book inspired assembly. This work was funded by the NSF, the Wyss Institute, and the ASEE. Music: D-Song by Bonobo.

prototype of “RoboBee”, a project funded by the National Science Foundation to build a fully-functional, insect-sized robotic bee capable of autonomous flight. This video shows a series of early, uncontrolled takeoff tests proving that the vehicle can generate enough lift to overcome its own weight; however no stability control is implemented.