This Mother’s Day, Week in Geek celebrates the mother of all mothers: Mother Nature. One her craziest projects is the 17-year cicada life cycle about to kick-off anew on the East Coast any day now. Watch the video for an excellent summary of these insects by one of nature’s favorite narrators, Sir David Attenborough. My favorite part is when he teases a male cicada in search of a mate by imitating the female cicada response (around min 3:09). I’m not sure how obvious the cicada invasion will be where I livem in New York City, but I vividly remember when they took over my neighborhood as a child. It was gruesome and fascinating at the same time. A conservative estimate has 30 billion cicadas emerging from the ground over the next few weeks. That’s 600 cicadas for every human! For more on this insanity check out Carl Zimmer’s recent post over at The New York Times.
Your weekly geek smorgasbord:
- Kick-ass teen girl wins hackathon with code for blocking television show spoilers on Twitter.
- Glow-in-the-dark plants on the International Space Station are helping us learn how planets adapt to new situations. [VIDEO]
- Greater wax moth has “super sonic” hearing up to 300 kilohertz, higher than scientists believe any other insect or animal emits.
- You’ll never think of tongues the same way after watching this bat drink nectar. [VIDEO]
- Language geeks: some modern words may have been around since the last Ice Age.
- The only known photograph of Einstein in action deriving E = mc2.
- Top 10 reasons why bone-eating worms beat out giant squid for scariest monster of the deep.
- How did dinosaurs know if other dinosaurs were of the opposite sex? Scientists are still working on that one.
- DARPA’s new PETMAN robot will scare the crap out of you. [VIDEO]
- Get to know a few of the thousands of people willing to take a one-way trip to Mars as part of the Mars One Mission.
- Early Earth smelled like rotten eggs. Yummy.
Happy Mother’s Day! @Summer_Ash