Waltzing Volvox, from the Goldstein Lab at the University of Cambridge

Volvox is a colonial green algae (more info at Wikipedia)

Check out more movies on their YouTube channel and lab website

(And someone else has uploaded a more colorful video of dancing volvox here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pjW1cMfTz8)

Volvox, a colonial green algae (more info at Wikipedia)

From the Goldstein Lab, Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, University of Cambridge:
http://www.damtp.cam.ac.uk/user/gold/movies.html

They do really, really cool research, as described by this awesome statement: 

When asked whether I am a theorist or an experimentalist, my reply is that I am a scientist. Our group seeks to understand fundamental principles that govern the behavior of nonequilibrium systems in physics and biology, using a combination of experiment and theory. This research is not easily described by a single, conventional academic label; rather, it involves the domains of condensed matter physics, physical chemistry, biological physics, fluid dynamics, applied mathematics, and geophysics.  I subscribe to Poincaré’s motivation: 


The scientist does not study nature because it is useful;

he studies it because he delights in it, and he delights in it because
it is beautiful. If nature were not beautiful, it would not be worth knowing, and if nature were not worth knowing, life would not be worth living.

I also believe that some of the best science is close to art, and that Glenn Gould captured this spirit when he said 

The purpose of art is not the release of a momentary ejection of adrenaline but rather the gradual,
 lifelong construction of a state of wonder and serenity.”

http://www.damtp.cam.ac.uk/user/gold/research.html

UMMM and they have a YouTube channel!

http://www.youtube.com/user/GoldsteinLab

Volvox globator, a colonial green algae (more info at Wikipedia)

The vast majority of these illustration plates are from a plant systematics wall chart series – the Dodel-Port Atlas – released between 1878 & 1883”

via: http://bibliodyssey.blogspot.com/2012/12/plant-anatomy-charts.html

Volvox, a colonial green algae

From Wikipedia

“Volvox is the most developed in a series of genera that form spherical colonies.[1] Each mature Volvox colony is composed of numerous flagellate cells similar to Chlamydomonas, up to 50,000 in total,[2] and embedded in the surface of a hollow sphere or coenobium containing an extracellular matrix[2] made of a gelatinous glycoprotein.[3] The cells swim in a coordinated fashion, with distinct anterior and posterior poles. The cells have eyespots, more developed near the anterior, which enable the colony to swim towards light. The individual algae in some species are interconnected by thin strands of cytoplasm, called protoplasmates.[4] They are known to demonstrate some individuality and working for the good of their colony, acting like one multicellular organism.”

Image 1Volvox aureus, by Dennis Kunkel (2002): http://www.denniskunkel.com/index.php?module=search&pId=100&keyword=volvox&phrase=1

Image 2: From Wikipedia, by Frank Fox (www.mikro-foto.de); cc-by-sa

Image 3: From Wikipedia, cc-by-sa

Image 4: Life cycle of Volvox carteri: http://www.metamicrobe.com/volvox/

Buckminster Fuller, Laminar Geodesic Dome, United States Patent Office no. 3,203,144, from the portfolio Inventions: Twelve Around One, 1981; screen print in white ink on clear polyester film; 76.2 cm x 101.6 cm; Collection SFMOMA, gift of Chuck and Elizabeth Byrne; © The Estate of R. Buckminster Fuller, All Rights reserved; image courtesy SFMOMA.

via: http://arttattler.com/architecturebuckminsterfuller.html