SCI-ART LAB

Science, Art, Litt, Science based Art & Science Communication

Look at this wonderful car some Engineering students 'created':
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/mumbai/Students-wonder-car-...
Students' wonder car gives petrol a run for its money
Wonders never cease. Students of KJ Somaiya College of Engineering, Mumbai on Tuesday unveiled an energy-efficient car which they say is capable of achieving 300km per litre of fuel under test conditions. That would make petrol cheaper than water.

The wonder car named 'Jugaad' is a single-seater weighing a mere 60kg, 10kg lesser than the weight of its creator Kunal Jain. Yet it maintains a good balance and does not swerve as you drive. They have tested this vehicle on the roads near their college and have found it has the potential to reach 300km per litre. The vehicle runs on petrol.

That is what we call creative technology that is development oriented. We need more of these and if artist -scientist collaborations can bring some of these, then only we can say the collaborations are succeeding! We are looking for such creative technologies when we think about art-science collaborations.

I will give another example of how the results of sci-art collaborations should be.

 

I don't think art is weak but these collaborations should be able to channelize things in an effective way. An example of 'effectiveness':
Avatars help treat Schozophrenia

An Avatar system that can help schizophrenics- identified by symptoms such as delusions and auditory hallucinations - control the voices in their heads is being developed by a team of researchers. As part of therapy, patients crate an avatar by choosing a face and a voice for the person they believe is inside their head. Therapists can then encourage the patients to oppose the avatar and force it away, which boosts their confidence in dealing with their hallucinations.

The researchers from University college London said that the computer based therapy could provide quick and effective help for managing the disorder and is far more successful than medical treatments currently available. The system could also help reduce the frequency and severity of episodes of schizophrenia in future cases.

During initial tests, 16 patients were given up to seven 30-minutesessions of therapy.

The team of researchers discovered that all of the patients reported an improvement in the frequency and severity of voices that they heard.

Isn't art ( creating avatars by the digital way) helping medicine in the right way here? But sadly these experiments were done by scientists only and the results were not a product of artist-scientist collaborative group!

Here is another one: http://news.wustl.edu/news/Pages/25633.aspx

Art, science and bumblebees

Florissant sculpture installation part of international effort to promote pollination because
Bee populations are down — way down, as much as 50 to 70 percent.

It’s a disturbing trend and, over the last several years, beekeepers from around the world have begun sounding alarms. Yet causes remain unclear. Pesticides? Climate change? Lost habitat? Irregular food supplies? All of the above?

But one thing is certain - the bees need help.And art-science is trying to help. Here is how:

“When people think about bees, they mostly think about honey. But plants rely heavily on bees for pollination, which makes them crucial to both food production and biodiversity.”

PAUSE, or Pollinators/Art/Urban Agriculture/Society/and the Environment project.

The one-year, $200,000 project represents a partnership between the St. Louis Zoo WildCare Institute, the National Museums of Kenya and Tohono Chul Park in Tucson, Ariz. Working in teams of eight to 10, art participants met with gardeners, scientists and other experts to create pollinator habitats in St. Louis, Tucson and Nairobi.

“With this kind of project, the challenge is getting people from different backgrounds and different disciplines into the same room.”

A central “pollinator garden” anchored by an original sculpture crafted from tree trunks, bicycle wheels, wire hangers and other recycled materials.

“It’s just things they found in the trash. The wood is a mix of maple, cedar and oak. They drilled holes into them at different sizes, because different bees have different preferences.”

We need projects like these more.

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