Friday, February 27, 2009

Would you eat it?

Scientists at the University of Western Australia have coined the term “disembodied cuisine” to refer to a new tissue-engineering technique that makes it possible to grow edible meat in a laboratory from sample cells. In vitro–cultured meat production may have many advantages, but it raises practical questions, as well as some complex philosophical and ethical issues. What should this meat look like? What flavor should it have? How should it be served? King answers the first question: “A mobile magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) unit scours the countryside looking for the most beautiful examples of livestock. The selected specimen is scanned from head to toe, and accurate cross-sectional images of its inner organs are generated . . . to create molds for the in vitro meat. We . . . might still want to re-create a familiar shape to better remind us where the ‘artificial’ meat came from.”

my new favorite thing

I can't get over how much I love the little interactive animation on this student's website:

It's beautifully simple little thing that hides in the top right edge of the page. When I scrolled over it to leave the website, it came out, like I brushed it with my hand. I had to stay and play with it a little longer.