Design a site like this with
Get started

Exercise your science brain, describe something science tells us is going on in this picture that most people…

Exercise your science brain, describe something science tells us is going on in this picture that most people wouldn’t see.

Originally shared by Mark Crowley

I See the World with Science! Image Competition


Here’s a photo of a monkey. Isn’t it adorable? Normally you’d just see an adorable monkey, some ruins and maybe wonder why he’s trying to get past the photographer. Maybe he’s trying grab some food or chase another monkey**. 

But how much more can we see with science?

If you see something more, add a one sentence description in the comments. It should be short, clear and very sciency. (See some suggestions below)  

The more creative, surprising or unexpected the better. But it needs to be something based on actual science. Don’t just say the trees are green, explain why they’re green.

The winner will be mostly determined by the +1’s on your description by others. The winning description will be added to the image and posted separately on our page. You have 48 hours to submit a description or to vote.

**(Actually he wanted the bananas being handed out behind us, I’m not kidding.)

Some Suggestions to Get You Going

I see lichen clinging to the walls. I see photosynthesis going on in the trees behind him, a process which may rely fundamentally on quantum effects. Those look like limestone rocks dug from the ground and carved centuries ago as a temple to worship local deities; limestone forms through decay of organisms millions of years ago. I see a tropical climate influenced by the tilt of the Earth’s axis and it’s position in it’s orbit around the sun. I wonder about the processes going on in this monkey’s brain; sculpted by millions of years of evolution as he looks intently past me and waits to spring into action. Not to mention the Van der Waals forces, oh the Van der Waal forces.

See where I’m going with this?

I’m sure you can do better with all that Science in your head.

#ISeeTheWorldWithScience ! 


Join the Conversation


  1. The pattern of mold growth on the stone column can indicate approximate latitude by both determining type of mold and from calculating the angle of incidence of the suns rays. 


  2. There is nothing quantum about photosynthesis, its a straitforward photochemical reaction.

    And while we are on the subject, limestone is not formed by the decay of organisms, its formed from broken skeletal fragments.

    For my science thats “there but not there, I’ll look at electromagnetic fields. Electrons in the monkey’s oh so stylish hair are held in orbit around the nucleus by the electromagnetic force. Also light reflected off the leaves is electromagnetic radiaton with a frequency of roughly 530-600 terahertz. There are usually more ozone particles in tropical regions, ozone can be ionized (positively or negatively charged) depending on the number of protons that were sheared off during the thunderstorm in which it was made–another electromagnetic event.


  3. I see a collective of unique biological organisms that have evolved for no reason. As part of this continuous change, which is the whole universe, they continue trying to dynamically adapt to the surrounding reality. The information carried on the time, follows the change that is existence.

    I see entangled energy fields, acting on each other for eons – they give the illusion of permanence. Change is the world, and the world is changing – nobody will come twice into the same river. I understand that for no reason and without any purpose – only for the sheer joy of existence – the world is transforming. I’m glad the same joy… Although I need a reason, the world does not need it at all. In fact, he does not even need me. I’m glad I could be here to see!


  4. Amazing descriptions everyone! And thank you Robert Faist for the corrections, not my area of expertise, but that’s the great thing about science, it’s self-correcting!

    The winner for this first competition is Chad Haney who had a comment on the main thread. Thanks for playing! They’ll be another #ISeeTheWorldWithScience image tomorrow morning.


  5. Brady Robert Faist I’m a bit late to the discussion here, and definitely don’t mean to be an ass, but…

    I’d claim that any process that involves light absorption (including by proteins, as in photosynthesis) involves quantum mechanics. 

    Beyond that, I’d also claim that all chemistry is technically quantum mechanics glossed over, but that’s a classic physicists point of view…


Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: