Sunday, September 12, 2010

Woods Hole MBL

The South African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) can regenerate the lens of its eye.
The Marine Biological Lab in Woods Hole is the oldest private marine laboratory in the western hemisphere. Almost as long as biology has been an experimental science, the laboratory in Woods Hole has been a gathering place for biologists. 

Founded in 1888 as an independent institution for teaching and research MBL was mainly known as a summer laboratory. 

Today it retains its renowned summer program while simultaneously serving as the year round home for a cadre of world-class biologists and ecologists.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Butterfly Effect

The butterfly effect essentially sums up Lorenz's realization that long-term weather forecasting was doomed.  Through his simple model he witnessed the phenomenon known as "sensitive dependence on initial conditions" or the butterfly effect. According to the idea of the butterfly effect, in meteorology the flapping of a butterfly's wing will create a disturbance that in the chaotic motion of the atmosphere will become amplified eventually to change the large scale atmospheric motion, so that the long term behavior becomes impossible to forecast.

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