Octopus Dreaming // Nature on PBS

“She’s asleep; she sees a crab and her color starts to change a little bit. Then she turns all dark. Octopuses will do that when they leave the bottom.

This is a camouflage, like she’s just subdued a crab and now she’s going to sit there and eat it and she doesn’t want anyone to notice her. It’s a very unusual behavior, to see the color come and go on her mantle like that. I mean, just to be able to see all the different color patterns just flashing one after another — you don’t usually see that when an animal’s sleeping. This really is fascinating.”

David Scheel


“Octopuses are smart animals that can use toolsrecognize individual people, and even solve puzzles. But perhaps the most mesmerizing example of octopus intelligence occurs when they are sleeping—and, potentially, dreaming.

This week, PBS released new footage of an octopus named Heidi shifting through flashy camouflage displays in her sleep. Much like human behaviors such as sleep-talking or sleep-walking, Heidi’s multi-hued transformations may be an expression of her dreams.”

Please Relax to This Video of an Octopus Changing Colors As It Naps // Vice

Is Moral Disgust Just Bad Evolution? | Robert Sapolsky via Big Think

“Hey, insular cortex, that does disgusting food… ‘Moral disgust’? I don’t know, that vaguely sounds sort of like that. Hey, somebody give me some duct tape. I’m going to strap moral disgust onto gustatory disgust.”

We mistake feeling disgusted by something as being a good litmus test for deciding what’s right and wrong. And what we know is somebody’s “disgusting, this is simply wrong” is somebody else’s “perfectly normal loving lifestyle”. And it’s tempting if your stomach is in a total uproar, you know, “if it makes you puke you must rebuke”.

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There is something I ‘know,’ which is that spatial dimensions beyond the Big 3 exist. I can even construct a tesseract or hypercube out of cardboard. A weird sort of cube-within-a-cube, a tesseract is a 3D projection of a 4D object in the same way that icons8-orthogonal-view-50 is a 2D projection of a 3D object. The trick is imagining the tesseract’s relevant lines and planes at 90 degrees to each other (it’s the same with icons8-orthogonal-view-50 and a real cube) because the 4th spatial dimension is one that somehow exists at perfect right angle to the length, width, and depth of our regular visual field. I ‘know’ all this just as you probably do…but now try to really picture it. Concretely. You can feel, almost immediately, a strain at the very root of yourself, the first popped threads of a mind starting to give at the seams.”

— David Foster Wallace, Everything and More