quarta-feira, 30 de setembro de 2009

Uma viagem por toda a História da Botânica - Exposição Order From Chaos: Linnaeus Disposes

The from which Linnaeus brought order can be seen not only as the previous and contemporary literature in which plants and animals were named and described in as many styles as there were authors but also as the explosion in new species found during European voyages of discovery that had to be accounted for in the overall knowledge of the plant world.

To bring order from chaos, Linnaeus did two things:
1. He synthesized the previous literature about all plants and animals known to the western world, determining which descriptions in one work correlated to which descriptions in another work.
2. He developed a comprehensive system for grouping, naming and describing species, and he added references from previous authors to his own text, correlating his names and descriptions to those of earlier and current writers.

His new plant classification system was artificial and thus undesirable from the point of view of those working to achieve a natural system of classification. However, what it lacked in naturalness it made up for in ease of application, usability, and expansibility. A problem with many earlier systems was that an inexperienced person with an unknown plant in hand could not easily find its place within the system and could not ascertain whether it was already recorded somewhere else.

The essence of Linnaeus’ achievement is that he succeeded in regularizing the way plants and animals were studied. He made systematics systematic, through a system of uniform description, classification and nomenclature, which in turn simplified and facilitated identification. Others had done one or more of these things before but in a more limited and less coherent way. His precise terminology, use of an international language, consistently-applied system and global scope ensured widespread usability of his system. The magnitude, utility and comprehensiveness of his system made it unique and influenced the way that his colleagues and successors would approach their work. Modern systematic biology began with his mid-18th-century publications.

Visita merecida até Hunt Institute

terça-feira, 29 de setembro de 2009

Página oficial da Associação Árvores de Portugal

Caros amigos e amigas das árvores,
Vimos por este meio comunicar que a nossa página oficial está finalmente disponível: http://www.arvoresdeportugal.net/
Por motivos de funcionamento interno da própria Árvores de Portugal, ainda não estamos em condições de aceitar inscrições para sócios. Esta é uma questão que contamos ter resolvida brevemente e da qual iremos dando conta na nossa página oficial.

Até lá, agradecemos o envio de notícias sobre árvores para posterior divulgação na nossa página no Twitter: twitter.com/arvoresportugal

Por outro lado, a colaboração pode ser feita através da partilha de fotografias de árvores notáveis, utilizando o nosso grupo no Flickr: flickr.com/groups/arvoresdeportugal/

Por último, mas não menos importante, aguardamos a sua colaboração com o nosso blogue. Assim sendo, caso o lei­tor pos­sua uma his­tó­ria sobre a temá­tica das árvo­res, não hesite e partilhe-a com todos os que ama­mos os gigan­tes dos nos­sos jar­dins e flo­res­tas. As suas con­tri­bui­ções serão apre­ci­a­das e pode­rão ser envi­a­das para a nossa página de contacto.

Um abraço.

Foto: Murtosa

segunda-feira, 28 de setembro de 2009

Investigador em astrobiologia e endosimbiose inauguram uma hipótese muito provável acerca da evolução da vida na Terra

Published By Matt

Humans might not be walking on Earth today if not for the ancient fusing of two microscopic, single-celled organisms called prokaryotes, NASA-funded research has found.

By comparing proteins present in more than 3000 different prokaryotes – a type of single-celled organism without a nucleus – molecular biologist James A. Lake from the University of California at Los Angeles’ Center for Astrobiology showed that two major classes of relatively simple microbes fused together more than 2.5 billion years ago. Lake’s research reveals a new pathway for the evolution of life on Earth. These insights are published in the Aug. 20 online edition of the journal Nature.

A schematic diagram illustrating the prokaryotic ring of life. The actinobacterial genome donor, at the left (blue), and the clostridial genome donor, at the right (yellow), transfer their genomes to form the doublemembrane prokaryotes at the top of the ring (green). The protein family data identify the Actinobacteria and the Clostridia as donors, and the doublemembrane prokaryotes as the fusion organism.

A schematic diagram illustrating the prokaryotic ring of life. The actinobacterial genome donor, at the left (blue), and the clostridial genome donor, at the right (yellow), transfer their genomes to form the doublemembrane prokaryotes at the top of the ring (green). The protein family data identify the Actinobacteria and the Clostridia as donors, and the doublemembrane prokaryotes as the fusion organism.

This endosymbiosis, or merging of two cells, enabled the evolution of a highly stable and successful organism with the capacity to use energy from sunlight via photosynthesis. Further evolution led to photosynthetic organisms producing oxygen as a byproduct. The resulting oxygenation of Earth’s atmosphere profoundly affected the evolution of life, leading to more complex organisms that consumed oxygen, which were the ancestors of modern oxygen-breathing creatures including humans.

“Higher life would not have happened without this event,” Lake said. “These are very important organisms. At the time these two early prokaryotes were evolving, there was no oxygen in the Earth’s atmosphere. Humans could not live. No oxygen-breathing organisms could live.”

The genetic machinery and structural organization of these two organisms merged to produce a new class of prokaryotes, called double membrane prokaryotes. As they evolved, members of this double membrane class, called cyanobacteria, became the primary oxygen-producers on the planet, generating enough oxygen to alter the chemical composition of the atmosphere and set the stage for the evolution of more complex organisms such as animals and plants.

“This work is a major advance in our understanding of how a group of organisms came to be that learned to harness the sun and then effected the greatest environmental change Earth has ever seen, in this case with beneficial results,” said Carl Pilcher, director of the NASA Astrobiology Institute at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., which co-funded the study with the National
Science Foundation in Arlington, Va.

Founded in 1998, the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) is a partnership between NASA, 14 U.S. teams, and six international consortia. NAI’s goals are to promote, conduct, and lead interdisciplinary astrobiology research, train a new generation of astrobiology researchers, and share the excitement of astrobiology with learners of all ages. The Astrobiology Institute is part of NASA’s Astrobiology Program. The Astrobiology Program supports research into the origin, evolution, distribution and future of life on Earth and the potential for life elsewhere.

domingo, 27 de setembro de 2009

No Dia Mundial do Turismo (hoje), sugiro o turismo digital

Turismo digital- uma (nova) forma de mitigar a recessão e de práticas mais amigas do ambiente (?)

porto from se cathedral. porto

360 cidades já aderiram e muitas mais numa rede crescente de serviços panorâmicos e experiências imersivas em paisagens e outros espaços, tudo confortavelmente no ecrã do teu computador!
Em Portugal temos o excelente Portugal a 360º

Porquê um Dia Mundial do Turismo?
O Dia Mundial do Turismo celebra-se anualmente a 27 de Setembro.
Este dia visa mostrar a importância do turismo e do seu valor cultural, económico, político e social, através de iniciativas realizadas em vários países do mundo.

Origem da data
A data começou a ser celebrada no ano de 1980, após decisão da Organização Mundial de Turismo.

Importância do turismo
Considerado um dos maiores setores económicos do mundo, o turismo assume-se de importância vital para a economia de muitos países, que têm neste setor um elemento essencial para o crescimento e desenvolvimento económico.
Sendo um setor que regista elevados índices de crescimento, o turismo não só apresenta benefícios económicos, como assume importância fulcral na promoção da cultura, língua e costumes de um país, povo ou população.

sábado, 26 de setembro de 2009

Sessão de Cinema Bioterra- Koyaanisqatsi: Life out of Balance

Disclose.tv - Koyaanisqatsi: Life out of Balance-Full Length Documentary

An unconventional work in every way, Godfrey Reggio’s Koyaanisqatsi was nevertheless a sensation when it was released in 1983. This first work of The Qatsi Trilogy wordlessly surveys the rapidly changing environments of the Northern Hemisphere, in an astonishing collage created by the director, cinematographer Ron Fricke, and composer Philip Glass. It shuttles viewers from one jaw-dropping vision to the next, moving from images of untouched nature to others depicting human beings’ increasing dependence on technology Koyaanisqatsi’s heterodox methods (including hypnotic time-lapse photography) make it a look at our world from a truly unique angle.

Mais informações

sexta-feira, 25 de setembro de 2009

Dez descobertas científicas de 2009 com selo Português

Investigadores Portugueses, dentro ou fora de portas, marcaram pontos em 2009. Alguns estiveram mesmo na base de descobertas de grande impacto internacional. A detecção de ADN com uma vulgar impressora, a descodificação do genoma do cancro da mama, o baptismo de uma nova espécie de dinossauro, a descoberta de novos planetas ou a descoberta de uma nova espécie de búzio, são alguns dos avanços envolvendo cientistas nacionais que marcaram o ano que terminou.

Ler o resto da notícia.
(retirado do DN, 2 de Janeiro de 2010)
via Patrícia Raposo, com mais algumas hiperligações feitas por mim.

quinta-feira, 24 de setembro de 2009

Google's Search Engine Pinpoints Extinction

By Julia Whitty | Fri September 4, 2009 4:32 PM PST
Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Thanks to the BBC for a link to this paper describing how Google's algorithm for ranking web pages could determine what species are most critical for sustaining ecosystems.

The authors write in PLoS Computational Biology that their version of PageRank could ascertain which extinction would likely lead to ecosystem collapse.

Species are embedded in complex networks of relationships. Some more so than others. In those cases, a single extinction can cascade into the loss of many other species.Figuring this out in advance is supremely difficult. The number of links in even simple ecosystems exceeds the number of atoms in the universe. We can't sort out that kind of complexity without quantum computers.

But maybe Google can. Researchers Stefano Allesina and Mercedes Pascual reversed the definition of the PageRank algorithm that ranks a webpage as important if important pages point to it. In the conservation biology context, even humble species are important if they point to important species.

The researchers also designed a cyclical element into the foodweb system by including the detritus pool (you know, that to which all returns and that from which all arises).

Allesina and Pascual then tested their method against published foodwebs to rank species according to the damage caused if they were removed from the ecosystem. They also tested algorithms already in use in computational biology to find a solution to the same problem.The results: PageRank gave them exactly the same solution as the more complicated algorithms.In the real world, this research will likely make it easier to quickly target conservation efforts for maximum benefit.

Hope evolves in that muddy puddle where technology meets environmentalism.

terça-feira, 22 de setembro de 2009

Odetta- All the Pretty Little Horses (intangível)

[7ª história: na voz magistral e sentida de Odetta] This lullaby is also a great protest song. It originated in the days of slavery and deals with a typical situation where a female slave would have to nurse her master's children, while being forced to neglect her own baby, the poor little lambie at the mercy of the bees and the butterflies.

segunda-feira, 21 de setembro de 2009

Alguns dos cartazes mais criativos da WWF

Óptimos recursos educativos (apresentações, e-correio, blogues escolares, inspiração para trabalhos,etc).

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Compilação original em Zuza Fun