10 April 2009


Consider the Mantis shrimp, or Stomatopod, which has the most complex eyes in the animal kingdom, with hyperspectral colour vision allowing up to 12 colour (or perhaps 16) channels extending into ultraviolet, advanced depth perception, and an extensive ability to see polarized light. Intriguingly, these animals have little in the way of brains as we think of them.

Consider, too, a kind of seeing known only by Man: the Earth from space. James Lovelock, the man who imagined Gaia, writes:
The icon is undergoing a subtle change as the white ice fades away, the green of forests and grasslands fades into the dun of desert, and oceans loose their blue-green hue and turn a purer, swimming-pool shade of blue as they too become desert. [1]


[1] The Vanishing Face of Gaia (2009). But surely the book is mis-titled; the face of Gaia is changing, not vanishing.

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