Ron Eglash: The Fractals at the Heart of African Designs

You’ve probably heard of fractals, the fascinating repeating mathematical pattern of shape and form that creates beautiful designs which theoretically continue in scale to infinity. The natural world is not the only place where we have discovered fractals, but there are villages in Africa that are laid out in fractal patterns.

"I am a mathematician, and I would like to stand on your roof." That is how Ron Eglash greeted many African families he met while researching the fractal patterns he’d noticed in villages across the continent.

How Quantum Biology Might Explain Life’s Biggest Questions

How does a robin know to fly south? The answer might be weirder than you think: Quantum physics may be involved. Jim Al-Khalili rounds up the extremely new, extremely strange world of quantum biology, where something Einstein once called “spooky action at a distance” helps birds navigate, and quantum effects might explain the origin of life itself.

This is very much worth watching! Dr. Jim Al-Khalili is a noted quantum physicist, and has been recipient of several prestigious science awards. He is an important contributor to public discourse within the emerging scientific field of “quantum biology.” His work is helping to open new frontiers around the role of quantum phenomena in our understanding of the question “What is life?” This 16-minute TED talk is beautiful and profound.