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Spiraling Out of Control?

When I create a new set of planes for my show, it’s always part work and part wonder. The paper fibers break in an organized way, if my folding technique is good. I’m aware that folding is the final insult to the cellulose walls that survived being shredded, cooked, pressed and baked into paper. Yes, my mind drifts a bit through eight hours of folding.

Sometimes the little things are a big deal.

The similarity of genomes across life forms, from the very simple to the most complex, is to be expected, even predicted, by evolution theory. It’s still amazing to see. It’s wonderous to ponder. Gene sequences remain, even when they’re obsolete.

Consider the spiral helix. The DNA helical design pops up in life everywhere we look; even in the vast of space. Billions upon billions of planets are orbiting suns. Galaxies spin. What’s not obvious is that solar systems don’t sit still. They move. In doing so, the path a planet traces around its sun becomes a spiral helix. Look at the top of a slinky toy. It looks like a circle. Stretch it out and you get a spiral of coils. If you think of the stretched slinky as a path through space, you have the rough idea. The movement of circling the sun, combines with the drift through space to create a spiral path. Check out the animation in the link below.

Is the DNA spiral caused by or related in some way to the celestial spirals around us? Great question. The great physicist Richard Feynman famously said that figuring out how the universe works is like trying to figure out the rules of chess by watching just four squares on the board during a game. Every once in a while, we get a glimpse of a rule. Usually, we can’t see enough of the board to really understand. We keep observing, recording, and guessing.

And then I realize I’ve just folded three Super Canards more than I need. No wonder this always takes eight hours.


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