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08 NOVEMBER 2012

Dara Ó Briain's Science Club: The Story of Inheritance

"This first episode in a new six–part science series presented by Dara Ó Briain takes a look at the weird and wonderful world of reproduction and inheritance.

Dara chats to leading biologist Professor Steve Jones and finds out how the bicycle did more to improve the human immune system than any other invention, comedian Ed Byrne discovers just how closely related he is to a Neanderthal and materials scientist and engineer Mark Miodownik creates a DNA cocktail with the help of some strong Polish vodka.

Dara is also joined by neuroscientist Tali Sharot, who explores the cutting–edge science of epigenetics and reveals how exercise can change your DNA. Science journalist Alok Jha asks if the human genome project was oversold and the studio audience are put to the test in the elusive search for attraction.

Combining lively and in–depth studio discussion with exploratory films and on–the–spot reports, Dara Ó Briain's Science Club takes a single subject each week and examines it from lots of different and unexpected angles, from sex to extinction, Einstein to space exploration and brain chemistry to music. It brings some of the world's foremost thinkers together to share their ideas on everything, from how to avoid asteroid impact to whether or not we are still evolving."

(BBC Two, UK)

Fig.1 this animation is from Episode 1 or 6 of Dara Ó Briain's Science Club, Tuesday 6 November at 9pm on BBC Two, animated by 12Foot6, Published on YouTube on 5 Nov 2012 by BBC.

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12Foot619532D2D animationAlok Jhaanimated information graphicsanimation • Antonie van Leeuwenhoek • AristotleBBC TwobloodcellchromosomeDara O BriainDNA • double helix • Ed Byrne • egg • epigenetics • female testicles • fly • Francis Crick • Francis Galton • genes • Gregor Mendel • history of ideashuman genome projectillustration to visually communicate informationinheritance • James Watson • Mark Miodownik • materials scientist • miniature • Niels Stensen • ovaries • ovary • peas • preformationism • reproduction • Robert Bakewell • scienceScience Club (tv) • science series • sequential artsexsperm • Steve Jones • story of sciencestudio audience • studio discussion • Tali Sharottree of lifevisual representations of scientific concepts

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
12 FEBRUARY 2012

Powers of Ten: a dramatic representation of our place in the universe

"Powers of Ten takes us on an adventure in magnitudes. Starting at a picnic by the lakeside in Chicago, this famous film transports us to the outer edges of the universe. Every ten seconds we view the starting point from ten times farther out until our own galaxy is visible only a s a speck of light among many others. Returning to Earth with breathtaking speed, we move inward– into the hand of the sleeping picnicker– with ten times more magnification every ten seconds. Our journey ends inside a proton of a carbon atom within a DNA molecule in a white blood cell."

(Powers of Ten © 1977 Eames Office LLC)

Fig.1 Original video of the "Powers of Ten". 1977, uploaded by EamesOffice on 26 Aug 2010, YouTube.

Fig.2 Interactive presentation of the "Powers of Ten". 2010 Based on the film by Charles and Ray Eames. An Eames Office Website.

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19772010animated presentationatomblood • blood cell • bringing into relation • carbon atom • cellcell divisionCharles EameschartChicagocomposed of partscosmosDNA • Eames Office LLC • Earthfilmgalaxygraphic representationIBMin perspectiveinformation aestheticsinteractive information visualisationinteractive presentationjourney • lakeside • magnificationmagnitudesmicroscopic worldminuscule detailmolecule • outer edges • perspective • picnic • Powers of Ten • proton • Ray Eamesrelational viewrepresentationscalesciencespace • speck of light • subdivisionsuniverseviewvisual communicationvisual depictionvisual dramavisual representations of mathematical conceptsvisual scientific representationsvisual spectaclevisualisation • white blood cell • zooming

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
23 JANUARY 2011

Theory building through DNA visualisation

Drew "Berry's animations function as a tool for representing activities occurring within our bodies that could otherwise only be seen at a magnification of 100 million times. What distinguishes these works in the context of the moving image art form is the creation of a visual landscape that is extraordinary, strange and other–worldly, even though viewers are armed with the knowledge that they are scientifically exact. To follow the virtual camera through this strange world reminds them of the constant energetic presence of their own seething, pulsing, cellular functions. Watching these works, viewers become strangers in their own skin, inhabitants of a foreign landscape. Berry uses this synthesis of scientific and digital technology to create a holistic sense of the world beneath people's skin, sending a ripple across the viewers' bodies as they interact with the work, enlivened with the knowledge of their organic relation to the alien world on screen."

(Australian Centre for the Moving Image, Australia)

Fig.1 Drew Berry (2003). 'Body Code' 3D computer animation displayed as single–channel DVD projection; stereo audio. 8:34 mins; colour. Sound design: Franc Tétaz. Collection: Australian Centre for the Moving Image. Courtesy: Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research (WEHI) and the artist.

[These animations demonstrate the potential of design practice for revealing insight that might not otherwise be revealed. In this way preoccupations with visual fidelity and scientific accuracy must recognised as being only peripherally important.]

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2003ACMIanimationAustralia • Australian Centre for the Moving Image • body • Body Code • cellconceptualisationdatadesign practicedigital technologydiscoverydiscovery through designDNA • Drew Berry • extraordinaryfidelitygraphic representationillustrationinsightmagnificationrepresentation • scientific accuracy • scientific methodscientific visualisationskintheory buildingVictoria (Australia)visual depictionvisual fidelityvisual representationvisualisation • Walter and Eliza Hall Institute • WEHI

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
20 MAY 2010

Scientists create first synthetic living cell

"Scientists in the US have succeeded in developing the first synthetic living cell. The researchers constructed a bacterium's 'genetic software' and transplanted it into a host cell. The resulting microbe then looked and behaved like the species 'dictated' by the synthetic DNA. ... The researchers constructed a bacterium's 'genetic software' and transplanted it into a host cell. The resulting microbe then looked and behaved like the species 'dictated' by the synthetic DNA. ... Dr [Craig] Venter likened the advance to making new software for the cell. The researchers copied an existing bacterial genome. They sequenced its genetic code and then used 'synthesis machines' to chemically construct a copy. Dr Venter told BBC News: 'We've now been able to take our synthetic chromosome and transplant it into a recipient cell – a different organism. 'As soon as this new software goes into the cell, the cell reads [it] and converts into the species specified in that genetic code.' The new bacteria replicated over a billion times, producing copies that contained and were controlled by the constructed, synthetic DNA. 'This is the first time any synthetic DNA has been in complete control of a cell,' said Dr Venter."

(Victoria Gill, BBC News)

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2010artificial life • bacteria • bacterial genome • bio-ethicsbiologybreakthroughcelldiscoveryDNAethics • genetic code • genetic engineering • genetic software • microbeorganismspeciessynthesis machinessyntheticsynthetic biology • synthetic living cell • Synthia

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
20 JUNE 2005

Genetic Engineering: self-reproductive manifestations of excess

"The child–mannequin–type figures of the sculpture 'Zygotic acceleration, biogenetic, de–sublimated libidinal model (enlarged x 1000),' 1995, are also removed from biological reality, and yet the body with its multiple girl heads, legs, and arms conveys the impression of a living creature. They are mutated organisms – fused together at their torsi; anus, vulva or penis replace nose, ears, or mouth – who seem to offer themselves sexually to the viewer. The theme of the work is, if one sticks to the title, cell reproduction and sexuality. A work that captures the self–reproductive manifestations of excessive, errant libido and reveals the obsessions of genetic engineering."

(The Kunsthaus Bregenz)

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1995anatomy • anus • biological • biological reality • bodyBritish artistcell • cell reproduction • Chapman • creaturedeliberately offensive • Dinos Chapman • errant libido • excessgenetic engineeringgrotesque • Jake Chapman • libidinallibidomannequinmouthmutate • mutated organism • nose • organismpenisposthumanreproduction • self-reproductive • sexualityshock arttorsitorsovulva • Zygotic Acceleration (1995)
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