TEDMED – One more reason to get a good night’s sleep


Research paper: Sleep Drives Metabolite Clearance from the Adult Brain, DOI: 10.1126/science.1241224

Important points:

  • Brain has no lymphatic system to clean it
  • During sleep brain cells seem to shrink
  • Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) acts as a detoxing agent removing toxins built up while the brain is conscious.
  • CSF influx only happens during sleep. It is inhibited during wakefulness.

and we discovered that at the same time when the brain goes to sleep, the brain cells themselves seem to shrink, opening up spaces in between them, allowing [cerebrospinal fluid – CSF] fluid to rush through and allowing waste to be cleared out.

But our most surprising finding was that all of this, everything I just told you about, with all this fluid rushing through the brain, it’s only happening in the sleeping brain.


Visualized statistical history of the world (BBC Four & TED)


Today I share two videos with you. The first is an episode of BBC Four’s “The Joy of Stats”. The other is a TED talk.
Both are presented by Hans Rosling.

In these videos Hans Rosling visually demonstrates statistical data on the world’s wealth, health, family size, & daily income among several others by continent and country. The demonstrations are amazing. Enjoy

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Wireless data transmitted through light bulbs [TED]


Below is a very interesting TED talk by Harald Haas from July 2011 on the use of light (and light detectors) to transmit digital data. I watched this video in August 2011 and just watched it again from my downloaded archive. This is really interesting.

It is worth noting, as Harald mentions, that data is transmitted as electromagnetic waves. And to those who are not aware light is an electromagnetic wave.


[Video] A 50-cent microscope that folds like origami


This work is very interesting and will definitely help in the detection of widespread diseases like Tuberculosis (TB) in developing countries. The only primary obstacle that needs a real solution is countering the monopoly by vaccine manufacturers.

link: http://on.ted.com/c045D

Foldscope: Microscopy for everyone: http://www.foldscope.com/
Manu Prakash’s lab page: http://stanford.edu/~manup/

[Video] Greg Asner: Ecology from the air