Ever notice that the word “penguin” is already translated into baby talk? It’s like a toddler named them or something. Today’s comic was definitely a cute-delivery-device and an excuse to paint some Antarctic wildlife. Oh, and also to share some of the ingenious ways that technology can work across fields. Satellite technology is another example of science being used for good (counting wildlife) and not so good (spying). The BBC article that inspired today’s comic has some great shots of what I can only describe as “vast tracts of poo.” I imagine this technique would also work great for recording the attendance of large scale events such as Burning Man or any Washington D.C. rally.
Update: Want to do your own penguin searching? Check them out on Google Maps. Most of Antarctica is too low-res to see anything, but there are a few areas clear enough to go searching, and Google even went ahead and took some street view shots to make it easy for you
I’ve also had animals on the brain as Nadir and I are working among a slew of other artists on a special edition deck of the Phylo card game. The deck will feature the coral reef ecosystem, and is the result of a partnership between Phylo and the World Science Festival. The Phylo card game is the brainchild of David Ng, director of the AMBL at the University of British Columbia, who started the project after reading “Why Conservationists Should Heed Pokémon.” In it, Andrew Balmford points out that if children can memorize hundreds of pokemon, why shouldn’t they be able to learn all about real-life flora and fauna? So Ng set out to make a card game that would teach kids about the wonderful world around us. It’s pretty robust, with varying levels of complexity depending on which rules you play by (for example, there are simpler “War” style rules for younger players). The game basically plays by each player building food chains, when the cards run out, each side tallies their points.
While I haven’t become a hooked player, I’ve enjoyed geeking out over deck strategies such as building a deck entirely out of parasites and invasive species, winning the game by being a complete asshole. We’ll have more updates on our involvement with Phylo soon.
This post was brought to you by Penguins and David (Ng), whose last name he shares with the element Norwegium—now known as Halfnium (Hf).
Holy crap, NECSS is this weekend, and I am wholly unprepared.