Calling All Geek Girls! Apply for the Huffington Post's STEM Mentorship Program

It’s well-established that women face social pressures that push them away from pursuing science as a life passion. It’s also well-established that women who do stay in science face discrimination all the way up the ladder. Women are 50 percent of the population but hold less than a quarter of STEM jobs.

Young ladies, HuffPo has your back. Check it out:

Dear Geek Girls,

We were there once – making a decision about which career path to choose can be a source of great anxiety, especially in tough economic times like these. But having someone on your side to coach you through, and give you practical advice without judgement can make all the difference in the world.

HuffPo Science is offering young ladies 14-21 the chance to be mentored by a female scientist, to show you the ropes and keep you motivated to achieve your goals. Applications are due Jan 31st, so apply here today!

Big round of applause to them for this effort.


Chinese Artist Exhibits Gorgeous ‘Sculptures’ Built By Bees

The Huffington Post  | By Mallika Rao The Beijing-based artist and beekeeper Ren Ri is a focused man. His new three-part series – titled “Yuansu” in reference to the Chinese word for “element” – turns bees into his collaborators. Yuansu II features sculptures made by bees, of beeswax.

In an interview with CoolHunting, Ren explains the “special” properties that make beeswax such an interesting material:

“It’s unstable and can change shape with temperature. The structure of wax cells is orthohexagonal, which is an inconceivable feature in the natural world and it’s a peculiarity of honeybees.“

The sculptures are housed in transparent plastic polyhedrons. At the center of each is the queen bee, positioned thusly so as to enable the worker bees to build around her. They build symmetrically, due to the even planes of the polyhedrons. Every seventh day, Ren changes the gravity of the structure by rotating the box onto a different side. The act is in reference to the biblical concept of creation, but introduces a random element. Ren determines how to shift the box by the roll of a dice. Each time, there’s no telling how the bees will react to their new environment.
Parenting, Climate Change And Solutions

One thing most people will become after joining the ranks of parenthood is “resourceful.” There’s all sorts of new information we need to pack in our brains, from raising healthy eaters, to assembling Lego sets a thousand times more complicated than the ones we grew up with, to helping our kids navigate their highs and lows. We learn ways to keep our kids safe from harm. We teach them how to swim, how to safely cross the street and how to stand up to bullying. And, maybe somewhat solemnly, many of us are beginning to come to grips with the need to add “fighting climate change” to our bag of tricks.


Dream-Like Song Created From Birds Perched On Electric Wires Proves Nature Is Perfect

The Huffington Post  | by  Sarah Barness “Reading the newspaper one morning, I saw this picture of birds on the electric wires,” says video creator Jarbas Agnelli.“I cut out the photo and decided to make a song, using the exact location of the birds as notes. I was just curious to hear what melody the birds were creating.”

Interpreting the position of birds as musical notes resulted in the beautiful piece you hear above. The work was made over an original photo shot by Paulo Pinto and published in 2009 in a Brazilian newspaper “O Estado de São Paulo.”

The video description ends with this: “I just erased the birds for effect at the end, but didn’t change their positions at all. What would be the point?”

Greg Dunn: Neurons Painted As Japanese Scrolls

Greg Dunn paints neurons. He uses brushless methods that allow the ink to roll spontaneously across the paper, recreating the ordered randomness of neural projections. He also uses smooth brush strokes that he says “…capture the natural molecular unfolding of nature.”

Here’s what he has to say about what artists can learn from science (and maybe vice versa):

Fundamentally art and science are ruled by the same principal. You must start any project with a clear idea of what your question is. You start with a clear idea and you follow it up with a clear hypothesis. You are trying to get to the root of this question. And when you start painting you are trying to get to the resolution of this question. If you don’t have a clear foundation you will never produce something that is great. 

(via Huffington Post)

Misogyny is not something created out of thin air, to be caught much like a cold, that drives those infected to commit horrendous acts of violence. It is an ideology produced and disseminated by social and cultural institutions that work seamlessly together to create a social reality that normalises, legitimises and glorifies violence against women.

Wheelock College American Studies Professor Gail Dines.

Huffington Post UK, 6/2/14, “UCSB, Feminism, and Porn.”
QUIZ: Which Feminist Icon Are You?
Our favorite feminist pioneers are women we all aspire to be like. So which one are you most similar to? From Ruth Bader Ginsburg to Audre Lorde, the women who paved the way for feminism and gender

“Ruth Bader Ginsburg: You’re passionate about politics and your pen packs a punch.”
Global Warming: The Psychology of Ignoring a Superthreat

Planning for the future is not in our nature. (Sneering at you, Baby Boomers…)

…the first major problem with global warming: its precise consequences aren’t vivid enough. Humans are better at focusing on the moderate, specific, localized devastation of a major earthquake than on the great but murky devastation that global warming will bring in the middle part of the 21st century.

One of the best illustrations of this difficulty comes from research in a different domain: on our willingness to contribute to charitable causes. In one experiment, people were asked to donate money to save either one sick child – accompanied by a photo – or eight sick children accompanied by a similar group shot. All else being equal, eight children clearly deserve more help than a single child, but the single child tugged more insistently at the would-be-givers’ heartstrings, eliciting an average donation that was 77 percent higher than the average donation given to the group of eight. The pain of a single child – a Baby Jessica down the well, for example – has the emotional resonance of an erupting volcano or a hurtling asteroid, while the deaths of literally millions of malnourished children in Africa and Asia inspires the same muted response that we allocate to global warming.

The second problem with global warming is that it progresses too slowly. The globe continues to warm while we’re responding to fast-arriving Hurricane Sandy, tending to our wounds after devastating earthquakes in Haiti, Japan and Chile, and cleaning up after tornadoes in Joplin, Mo., and Greensburg, Kan. There will always be more pressing issues on the table, so politicians prefer to focus their time on disaster relief, fiscal cliffs and health insurance.

People just aren’t engineered to take slow-moving threats seriously.