The Living Rock, with Two Genders

June 28, 2012


Behold, the Pyura Chilensis, otherwise known as the Living Rock: It’s a rock-like animal with two genders, both sexual and asexual reproduction, and a body that stores up a rare metal that humans use for strengthening steel. For more about this strange animal, visit:      

Regarding China, and the Social Justice Impact of 3D Printing on Factory Workers

April 24, 2012


FROM MY CONVERSATION WITH A FRIEND ON FACEBOOK: Badri, you criticized the enthusiasm of the Economist article ( for hailing a “new industrial revolution” due to 3D printing because of social justice concerns, and the costs that would be incurred on the “toiling people.” I agree with your concern, at least in the short run, […]

MIT discovers the location of memories: Individual neurons | ExtremeTech

April 24, 2012


Check this out: much like in the Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, new research on genetically engineered, optically-sensitive neurons in mice demonstrates that we can now decisively conclude that MEMORIES are in fact PHYSICAL, not CONCEPTUAL – and, that specific memories may be erased by destroying or intercepting specific neurons. I think it’s cool how the […]

Baboon “Culture” and Give Peace a Chance (or Tuberculosis)

December 13, 2010


Here is a very well-known and oft-repeated tale in the primatology world – Robert Sapolsky, the Stanford neurobiologist and primatologist, discovered a funny fact about baboons, stress levels, and social hierarchy that may reveal a lot about our own human society: Through measuring adrenaline and cortisol levels in the blood of various male baboons of […]

Ecological Interpretation of Buddhist Reincarnation

October 16, 2010


How can we understand the notion of spiritual rebirth in a scientific sense? In purely material terms, we can say that reincarnation is the process by which our body degrades back into the soil to reappear again in the bodies of other life forms. Thus we descend to the Earth to become fodder for the […]

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Nomi Network: Hypocrisy of Fair Trade rescue of third world sex slaves?

October 3, 2010


    Interesting use of Fair Trade, with some assumptions in their platform that irritate me – Nomi Network seeks to empower former sex workers by giving them jobs as crafts workers (creating handmaid fashion items such as purses and scarves), and selling their products with socially conscious branding in the developed world. This social […]

Crops for Girls: my free haircut that freed my gender identity

July 31, 2010


Gender is a social construction, and my haircut was free. My anthro professor, Maxine Weisgrau, was lecturing on Judith Butler the other day. I asked her how much of gender is nature, and how much is culture, whether or not there might a fine line between the two, with each embodying the other, and she […]

The New Cartographers of Human Experience: how neuroscience is colonizing all other academic fields, implications on race/gender/nature v. culture debate

July 26, 2010


Brain is the new Black. Neuro is the new New. It seems like every academic field is trying to stick the prefix neuro- onto what they do these days. From neuroanthropologists who study the interaction between neural physiology and culture, to neurotheologists who search for the neurobiological basis of religious feelings and spiritual phenomena, to comparative literature scholars […]