February 07, 2014

Science of the Olympic Winter Games

Another Olympics games means a new installment of the National Science Foundation's "Science of Sports" series: Science and Engineering of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games! Each of the ten episodes presents Olympic athletes and the science and engineering concepts that underlie their performance. It's a great way to learn more about top NSF-supported research and the real-life applications.

Check out the quadrocopter robotic flyer (describing how control systems engineering is laying the groundwork for the design of more "athletic" robots) in this first video of the series. (Plus see U of M's own Meryl Davis and Charlie White!)

Posted by sgarrett at 02:51 PM | Comments (0)

June 24, 2013

NASA Image of the Day: Supermoon

Supermoon in Washington, Sunday, June 23, 2013
Image Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

Source: NASA, Image of the Day Gallery

NASA's Multimedia page is a fabulous source for still images, videos, 3D models and images, podcasts and more. Their scope is the same as their mission: the entire universe!

Posted by sgarrett at 10:52 AM | Comments (0)

February 08, 2013

Storm over New England

NOAA's GOES-13 satellite image from 9:01 a.m. EST, February 8, 2013
Image credit: NASA

Weather is always a topic of conversation, and more so when there's a dramatic storm imminent. The talk lately is of a western front meeting up with a low-pressure system over the Atlantic to create a classic nor'easter. This satellite image from NASA is a graphic display of the weather pattern. Check out NASA's multimedia page for a wealth of images and video about the earth and space!

Posted by sgarrett at 12:43 PM | Comments (0)

November 30, 2012

Green Side-Wall

Green and"living" walls are a trending feature in urban environments. Whether free-standing or part of a building, they are valued for cooling capacity, potential to reduce water, air and noise pollution, and aesthetic qualities. Innovations in construction are constant, and the "Green Side-Wall" in Barcelona caught our eye.

Created by Capella Garcia Arquitectura in March 2012, the free-standing steel structure hides an unsightly wall remaining from demolition. Essentially a stack of platform gardens, the green wall "represents the birth of a novel type of construction in the field of 'vegitecture'".

all images via domus

Posted by verdiyan at 10:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 01, 2012

Wellcome Image Awards 2012

Caffeine crystals: False-colored scanning elctron micrograph
Credit: Annie Cavanagh, Wellcome Images

Wellcome Images database is a great source for medical and science images, with a particular strength in modern imaging techniques and historical images from the Wellcome Library collection.

In addition to the standard "search" and "advanced search" options, the site offers Galleries, Explore [themes] and Favourites to browse. A fascinating gallery to browse is the Wellcome Image Awards 2012, from which the photos illustrating this post are drawn.

All Wellcome images are available for download for personal, or academic use, under the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial version 2.0 license or Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial No-Derivatives version 2.0 license.

Connective tissue: False-coloured scanning electron micrograph of collagen/connective tissue removed from a human knee during arthroscopic surgery
Credit: Anne Weston, LRI, CRUK, Wellcome Images

Lavender leaf: False-colored scanning electron micrograph
Credit: Annie Cavanagh, Wellcome Images

All Wellcome images are available for download for personal, or academic use, under the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial version 2.0 license or Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial No-Derivatives version 2.0 license.

Posted by sgarrett at 10:17 AM | Comments (0)

April 03, 2012

Google maps: The Amazon

Ever wanted to explore the Amazon? Well now you can from the comfort of your own home, with Google maps. In an effort to raise awareness of the precious and endangered ecosystem of the Amazon River and its tropical rainforests, Google launched a campaign to create “street views” of the river and its magnificent jungle surroundings. Check out films for how Google created this innovative project, or just sit back and enjoy the stunning sights along the river.

Posted by rmassare at 10:00 AM | Comments (0)

May 10, 2011


Cumulonimbus Cloud Over Africa
"High above the African continent, tall, dense cumulonimbus clouds, meaning 'column rain' in Latin, are the result of atmospheric instability. The clouds can form alone, in clusters, or along a cold front in a squall line. The high energy of these storms is associated with heavy precipitation, lightning, high wind speeds and tornadoes."
Image credit: NASA

Warmer temperatures incline more of us to gaze at the clouds in the sky. How do we find what those clouds mean, and what they are called? As ever, NASA is a great resource for clouds. Search their image gallery for more photos.

You could also check out one of the Corel CDs in Imageworks' collection: Clouds. Each Corel CD has 100 high-resolution, royalty-free (but not copyright-free) images, covering a myriad of subjects. A few images from Clouds:

Nimbus clouds
Copyright © 2011 Imageworks and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Chinook clouds (stratus)
Copyright © 2011 Imageworks and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Posted by sgarrett at 11:30 AM | Comments (0)

April 26, 2011

John James Audubon's "Birds of America"

White-headed Eagle
Birds of America, Plate XXXI
image courtesy University of Pittsburgh, University Library System

Today is the 226th anniversary of the birth of John James Audubon, the American ornithologist and artist who created "Birds of America". This eight-volume set of hand-colored prints was the first book purchased by the University of Michigan Library.

Images from this very book can be seen via the Library's own PictureIt Rare Book Reader. Or, go to "Audubon's Birds of America at the University of Pittsburgh" to browse their plate images, along with Audubon's text Ornithological Biography.

Posted by sgarrett at 10:27 AM | Comments (0)

April 19, 2011


Lagoons of New Caledonia
Courtesy NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

For superb aerial images of the earth, incorporating high spatial resolution data in 14 bands, from the visible to the thermal infared wavelengths, check out ASTER! A joint venture of NASA and Japan's Minstry of Economy Trade and INdustry, the "Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer" captures images ranging from the Oresund Bridge to the Bay of Fundy, Mt. St. Helens to Salt Glaciers in Iran. Land use, natural formations, cities and hydrology are among the subjects covered in the Gallery; images can also be searched for by location. A few more images:

Palm Islands, Dubai, UAE, 2008
Courtesy NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

Berlin, Germany
Berlin Wall marked with yellow line

Courtesy NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

Posted by sgarrett at 10:00 AM | Comments (0)

April 12, 2011

50th Anniversary of the First Human Spaceflight

Yuri Gagarin
Source: NASA

On April 12, 1961, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first human in space, making a 108-minute orbital flight in his Vostok 1 spacecraft. The rocket carrying Gagarin's Vostok 1 spacecraft blasted off from Baikonur Cosmodrome in the Soviet Union, reaching unprecedented speeds for human travel at the time before it broke free of the Earth's gravitational pull and entered orbit around the planet, circling once before re-entering the atmosphere and landing back on Soviet soil.

Vostok rocket on its launcher
© AP Photo/File
Source: AP Images

YouTube is celebrating 50 years of human spaceflight with the premiere of an hour-and-a-half long video, First orbit, that recreates, in real-time, Yuri Gagarin's flight. It was shot entirely in space from on board the International Space Station. The film combines this new footage with Gagarin's original mission audio and a new musical score by composer Philip Sheppard.

Posted by verdiyan at 12:00 PM | Comments (0)

December 14, 2010

Mapping Science

Visual Elements Periodic Table
© Murray Robertson and John Emsley

"Places & Spaces: Mapping Science is meant to inspire cross-disciplinary discussion on how to best track and communicate human activity and scientific progress on a global scale. It has two components: the physical part supports the close inspection of high quality reproductions of maps for display at conferences and education centers; the online counterpart provides links to a selected series of maps and their makers along with detailed explanations of how these maps work. The exhibit is a 10-year effort."

License Plate Map of USA
© Kevin Hutchinson

Posted by verdiyan at 10:00 AM | Comments (0)

December 01, 2010

Snow Crystals

© Kenneth Libbrecht, Caltech

Source: www.snowcrystals.com

Kenneth Libbrecht, a professor of physics at California Institute of Technology runs a website devoted entirely to Snow Crystals which is also visually impressive.

© Kenneth Libbrecht, Caltech

It contains all you need to know about snowflakes including the physics of snowflakes, a guide to the different types of snowflake crystals. You can see how scientists grow snowflakes in the lab, find projects you can do with ice and snow, and much more.

Posted by verdiyan at 10:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 12, 2010

Planet Quest's New Worlds Atlas

Image credit: NASA

Explore the extrasolar planets discovered to date with New Worlds Atlas. Search by planet, system type or name to find concept images and information on each planet as well as comparisons to our planet and solar system's conditions. Charts relaying orbit, temperature, mass, and other statistics on the planet are also provided along with the date it was found and location. Develop a sense of the vastness of space and the uncharted territory waiting for discovery.

Posted by rmassare at 01:00 PM | Comments (0)

October 04, 2010

Anniversary of Sputnik I

From NASA's "Image of the Day Gallery":

Image credit: NASA

Birth of the Space Age

History changed on Oct. 4, 1957, when the Soviet Union successfully launched Sputnik I, the world's first artificial satellite. About the size of a beach ball and weighing about 184 pounds, it took about 98 minutes to orbit the Earth on its elliptical path. That launch ushered in new political, military, technological and scientific developments. While the Sputnik launch was a single event, it marked the start of the space age and the U.S.-U.S.S.R space race."

Check out NASA's rich multimedia offerings here.

Posted by sgarrett at 10:43 AM | Comments (0)

September 14, 2010

Creative Commons License for UMHS ImageBank

Dr. Paul Park using the O-Arm precision surgical imaging unit in OR, June 4, 2008
Photo by Martin Vloet

The University of Michigan Health System has a terrific image database of the architecture, campus and urban setting, and work of the hospital and medical school system.

And, in consultation with the University Library Copyright Office, the University of Michigan Medical School Public Relations and Marketing Communications has adopted a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial license for all of the images in their Health System ImageBank!

What does this mean? You can use any image posted to their imagebank provided your use of the image is noncommercial and provided you give appropriate attribution: cite the image!*

Michigan Stadium, May 18, 2009
Photo by Martin Vloet

Biomedical Science Research Building

*Courtesy University of Michigan, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 license

Posted by rpw at 11:11 AM | Comments (0)

October 14, 2009

Image of the Day: Andromeda in Ultraviolet

A delightful way to expand your image horizons is to subscribe to some of the many institutional "images of the day". NASA has a particularly rich image site, and most of their resources are not under copyright.

Other "images of the day" can be found at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Wikimedia Commons, National Geographic, and The Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.

The following is NASA's description of the image illustrated above:

"In a break from its usual task of searching for distant cosmic explosions, NASA's Swift satellite acquired the highest-resolution view of a neighboring spiral galaxy ever attained in the ultraviolet. The galaxy, known as M31 in the constellation Andromeda, is the largest and closest spiral galaxy to our own. This mosaic of M31 merges 330 individual images taken by Swift's Ultraviolet/Optical Telescope. The image shows a region 200,000 light-years wide and 100,000 light-years high (100 arcminutes by 50 arcminutes)."

Image Credit: NASA/Swift/Stefan Immler (GSFC) and Erin Grand (UMCP)

Posted by sgarrett at 10:25 AM | Comments (0)

September 29, 2009


Scientists at the U-M Center for Organogenesis create beautiful images in the course of their research in organ growth, function, and disease. These photomicrographs of tissues, usually stained to highlight various elements and changes, are a fascinating combination of science and art. A selection of BioArtography is now on display at the Digital Media Commons Gallery in the Duderstadt Center, September 29-October 19.
A reception with the scientists/artists will be held Wednesday, September 30, from 4-6 pm.

Curious, by Maria Morrell, Ph.D. Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Cell and Developmental Biology (Click on the image for a description of the image on the BioArtography site)

Posted by sgarrett at 11:07 AM | Comments (0)

July 20, 2009

40 years ago today

From the NASA Images site: the bootprint of Buzz Aldrin, second man on the moon, July 20, 1969.

Apollo 11 bootprint, 7/20/1969 © NASA please click on the image to be taken to the original site

Posted by sgarrett at 01:45 PM | Comments (0)

May 29, 2009


A new website may make getting all kinds of information a whole lot easier. Data.gov promises to host data sets from geospatial information to census data thanks to the Open Government Initiative. You can search by types of data, search for widgets, and find source pages for most of the material.

Posted by hthrlowe at 05:40 PM | Comments (0)

February 12, 2009

Happy 200th, Darwin!

In honor of the 200th anniversary of Darwin's birth, we thought we'd list some interesting resources relating to the man or the theories he introduced. A good starting point might be The eSkeletons Project where you can look at the anatomies of primates. One feature allows you to compare different species' bones side by side for comparative analysis.

Visit the Darwin Day Celebration page to hear interviews with scholars and even special songs about the man who observed natural selection.

Or go over to the National Museum of Natural History to see about the current exhibtion, Orchids Through Darwin's Eyes. While there, you can search the Natural History Collections by clicking on the "Research and Collections" link.

After taking in all of that, you might just want to sit back and enjoy the Natural History YouTube playlist hosted by the BBC.

image above: Portrait of Charles Robert Darwin, founder of the theory for the evolution of life. Born February 12, 1809 and died April 19, 1882. Photo was made shortly before his death. © AP Photo/Str (birthday hat added by the VRC 2/12/09)

Posted by hthrlowe at 01:09 PM | Comments (0)

January 02, 2009

Historical Anatomies on the Web

Whether looking for anatomical illustrations to bolster your medical and biological studies or in preparation for your figure drawing class, the National Library of Medicine provides the Historical Anatomies on the Web. The collection while relatively small still offers many historical highlights such as Andreas Vesalius and Albrecht Dürer.

From the Historical Anatomies site, you can also access the National Library of Medicine site, History of Medicine, and National Institutes of Health sites from the header bar.

Posted by hthrlowe at 03:18 PM | Comments (0)

December 10, 2008

iTunes U

In several of the entries, we've mentioned how particular institutions offer podcasts or streaming audio or video. However, there's also a great source of broader strictly educational material available on iTunes U. Many students and faculty may already be using the University of Michigan materials located on iTunes U, whether public lectures or private course offerings.

The Penny W. Stamps Lectures as well as TCAUP lectures are frequently posted to iTunes U, but access to audio and video podcasts through iTunes U is not limited only to University of Michigan programs. Many museums and other Universities also post lectures or instructional videos. In the Fine Arts category, for example, you can find everything from lectures on Rembrandt to demonstrations of how to use Final Cut Pro or Dreamweaver.

If you want to find lectures or performances from a museum, click the "Beyond Campus" button on the left of the screen, this will bring you to a list that includes institutions such as the Brooklyn Museum, the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the New York Public Library, and the National Science Digital Library. So, whether you're a mac or pc person, art student, chemistry major or engineering grad, there's something on iTunes U for you.

If you're a faculty member and are interested in offering extra items or recordings of your lectures on iTunes U contact: UMiTunesinfo@umich.edu. Make sure to check out the contribute page on Michigan's iTunes U for copyright policies and other instructions.

Posted by hthrlowe at 01:37 PM | Comments (0)

November 13, 2008

NASA Exploring the Universe

When looking for images of the celestial bodies, it might be a no-brainer that NASA would be one of your go-to websites. However, you might be surprised just how much the website has to offer. Since NASA is such an enormous organization, it might be daunting at first to think about finding what best suits your image and informational needs. Two great places to start are NASA images and the Exploring the Universe section .

NASA Images is actually a service of the Internet Archive, and the site offers several great features. The home page allows you to search for images, choose images relating to five main categories or use an interactive timeline to narrow your browsing. Once in the image sections, you can narrow or broaden your search using the keywords menu boxes to the left of the screen. If you register with the site, you then are allowed a workspace and media groups. Use the media groups to save images and videos of interest and the workspace to create presentations. These presentations can be embedded in or linked to from your website, or you can download them into Power Point or Key Note. The presentations are limited only to titles on the top of the screen and images, but once exported to either Power Point or Key Note, the images will be on separate slides making the editing process fairly easy.

The NASA Exploring the Universe page is an excellent place to check up on recent discoveries, missions, and new images. Exploring the Universe has links to images in its collection, audio and video podcasts, NASA TV, and interactive features. While the access to images isn't a deep as compared to NASA Images Online, you might find Exploring the Universe to be a little more useful when doing a general search on a broad topic.

top image: Spiral Galaxy Messier 81, bottom image: Astronaut John Glenn Undergoes Simulated Orbital Flight Training (11/29/1969), both images © NASA please click on the images to be taken to the original NASA posting

Posted by hthrlowe at 01:15 PM | Comments (0)

November 06, 2008

BBC Audio Interviews

As one of the largest broadcasting companies in the world, the BBC has a wide range and depth of information to offer. A subsection of the company, BBC Four, is one of the many BBC channels and focuses on programs of cultural interest. On their website is a small archives of historical audio interviews. The interviewees include such figures as Mies van der Rohe, Bob Marley, the Dalai Lama, and Salvador Dali. Many of the sound clips are brief but might be ideal for using in a presentation or lecture for class. The site uses Real Player or Windows Media Player, so you'll need to download one of those here if you don't already have it on your computer.

Read further for links to interviews in specific subjects.

Above image: Ted Husing and Dink Templeton listen to BBC broadcast in the Laguardia Airport, 1948 © AP


Posted by hthrlowe at 01:00 PM | Comments (0)

September 29, 2008

Cary Fowler

Cary Fowler, who heads the Global Crop Diversity Trust, will be the Penny Stamps Lecturer for Thursday, October 2nd. The above video is a sneak peak of his work on the Svalbard Global Seed Bank in the Arctic from the CBS show, 60 minutes.

Dr. Fowler will be speaking to the importance of genetic diversity among crops in light of global climate change as well as his organization's fight to preserve the seed sources of genetic diversity. Find out more by following the links below:

Global Crop Diversity Trust

Svalbard Global Seed Bank Images

Pop! Tech Lecture given by Dr. Fowler

The London Guardian. "Svalbard's Giant Cold Store"

Posted by hthrlowe at 08:03 AM | Comments (0)

September 19, 2008

Use M-Tagger for Images!

Try the new M-Tagger tool to tag images in the AAEL VRC Online Image Collection. You can then search for your tags and find the images you've tagged. You can tag with words that describe the image or you might tag with a course name or number for which that image is relevant.

Simply go to the collection, conduct your search, click on a thumbnail and then click on Tag This Page!

To search tags (your own or all tags), simply go to the MTagger Search Page or to any image and click on the Search Tags link in the MTagger window.

Posted by rpw at 09:30 AM | Comments (0)

September 15, 2008

Online Sources for Science & Medical Images

Heliocereus speciosus (New York Botanical Garden; artist: M.E. Eaton, 1913, watercolor)
Catalog of Botanical Illustrations; The Cactaceae, vol. 2, pl. 17, fig. 2, Dept. of Botany, Smithsonian Institution

Visit our list of Science and Medical Digital Image Collections list to find images that will enrich your science paper or presentation. Remember to cite the source of your image, just as you would cite an article or book.

Posted by rpw at 09:25 AM | Comments (0)

September 11, 2008

Looking for images that don't fit in neat subject categories?

Try AP Images. AP Images provides 100's of 1,000s of images from newspapers, magazines, and online news sources. You can search in several news categories (national, international, sports, etc.). You might want to browse through some of their historical image groups (i.e., Man on the Moon, Jazz Greats, Early Computers, etc.).

When searching for images in AP Images, remember that you're searching through captions, so choose words that you might expect to find describing the image you're hoping to find. For example, if you don't find what you need with "tornado," try "funnel cloud." Remember to search common abbreviations in addition to words. For instance, searching for WTC New York will find different and additional images from a search for World Trade Center New York.

Posted by rpw at 09:10 AM | Comments (0)