Dr. Zander’s Victorian-Era Exercise Machines

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Swedish physician Dr. Gustav Zander  helped pioneer mechanotherapy, or the promotion of health and healing through exercise apparatus. Incorporating machinery allowed for less exertion, opening up therapeutic movement to those with injuries, deformities, and those just not in good enough shape. Zander constructed several devices which enabled constant and regular movement of individual parts of the human body, as well as certain devices that replaced the manual massage. He started his first institute in Stockholm in 1865 and gained international fame by exhibiting his devices at the International Exhibitions in Brussels and Philadelphia in 1876. By the time he released his book, Dr. G. Zander’s medico-mechanische Gymnastik in 1892, the Zander Institutes had gone worldwide and his machines were available in health spas across the globe.

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Crown Shyness – A Phenomenon Where Trees Avoid Touching

Photo: Imgur

Crown shyness (also canopy disengagement) is a phenomenon observed in some tree species, in which the crowns of fully stocked trees do not touch each other, forming a canopy with channel-like gaps. The phenomenon is most prevalent among trees of the same species, but also occurs between trees of different species. There exist many hypotheses as to why crown shyness is an adaptive behavior, and the most prominent theory, is that the gaps prevent the proliferation of invasive insects.

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A fascinating golden bait trap

Russian artist Roman Booteen has created this Hobo nickel, which he titled “THE TRAP with GOLDEN BAIT.” A carved Morgan dollar, featuring a 1945 gold 2-peso coin from Mexico serving as “bait” in the middle. The coin also features a mouth of teeth that act as a trap jaw. The trap jaws are triggered when the gold coin is pressed.

Booteen sells his work on eBay. See more on Instagram.

Power-drill becomes a surprising stop-motion tool

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Los Angeles-based artist Federico Tobon attached a reel of 24  hand-drawn pages depicting an abstract animal to the chuck of a drill, generating an endlessly spinning sequence of frames. As Tobon engaged the drill’s trigger, the bit rotated the pages 360° and animated the cycle of otherwise static drawings. (via)
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The Cook Pines that lean towards the equator

Araucaria columnaris, known as Cook pine, is  a tree endemic to New Caledonia in the Melanesia region of the southwestern Pacific Ocean. Cook pines have been known to grow at peculiar angles and scientists have discovered why – it is because they always tilt towards the equator. The further the trees are from the equator the more they tilt. Many plants are able to lean towards a source of light when it is not directly above – a characteristic known as phototropism. On average Cook pines tilt by 8.55 degrees,  which is twice as much as the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

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Waw an Namus – An Oasis in a Volcanic Crater

Waw an Namus, Oasis of Mosquitoes, is a volcanic field, cone and caldera in southern Libya, deep in the Sahara Desert. The inside of the caldera houses an oasis of rich foliage and three small salt lakes of variable color which are the reason for the volcano’s name. A volcanic field of dark basaltic tephra flow extends 10–20 kilometres (6.2–12.4 mi) around the caldera. The dark field’s vast size allows it to be easily seen from space. Due to the fresh water at the volcano, Waw An-Namus was always an important watering point for the caravans.
info: wikipedia

By NASA’s Earth Observatory – The Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 (http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=86054), CC BY 2.0, Link

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Spotted Lake in Canada

Jack Borno [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Spotted Lake is a saline alkali lake located northwest of Osoyoos in the eastern Similkameen Valley of British Columbia, Canada. The lake is richly concentrated with various minerals. Most of the water in the lake evaporates over the summer, revealing colorful mineral deposits. Large “spots” on the lake appear and are colored according to the mineral composition and seasonal amount of precipitation. Magnesium sulfate, which crystallizes in the summer, is a major contributor to spot color. In the summer, remaining minerals in the lake harden to form natural “walkways” around and between the spots.
info wikipedia

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