Tag Archives: bees

Your Cell Phone is Killing Bees

The article title may make you shrug your shoulders and not much care if a few bees are dying because you are using your cellular device more than ever. However, if you enjoy eating then you might want to pay attention. Swiss researcher Daniel Favre has concluded a study, and has noted that the worldwide bee population decline is directly related to our phone usage.

Remember that whole eating thing? Bees are responsible for pollinating approximately 70% of the crops grown here on Earth – which provide about 90% of the food we consume. That’s one heck of a lot of food, y’all. If bee populations decline enough, we could face very real food shortages. Back in 2008, a study showed that bees will not return to their hives if there is a cell phone placed nearby. This is only one hint that your handset is disrupting the bee’s orientation and lifestyle. According to Favre, the phone signals may confuse the bees so much that they not only become disoriented – they also drop dead. Favre and his team of researchers performed a total of 83 experiments which recorded the reaction of the bees to phones near them.

The phones in question were tested in three different modes: standby, off and call-making. The result is that honeybee noise increased more than ten times when a phone call was made or received. An increase in noise out of the little insects is used as a signal for bees to leave their hives usually. But in this case, it just confuses them. Favre noted that “The induction of honeybee worker piping by the electromagnetic fields of mobile phones might have dramatic consequences in terms of colony losses due to unexpected swarming.”

Your phone isn’t the only thing killing the bees, though. A pesticide made by Bayer and used to pre-treat corn seeds is also thought to be responsible as are several other factors. The UN believes that things such as air pollution, fungal pathogens and climate change are all playing a role in this population decrease.

Therefore, we can easily conclude that it’s quite possible we are killing off our food source simply by living life. We’re not going to throw away all of our phones or stop using pesticides so we need to figure out a new type of pollination solution – and fast.

LED Chandelier Controlled by an iPhone

Feast your eyes on the “Swarm Light.” This is a series of tiny LED lights which are hung together in a special sequence on three separate grid clusters. They light up in order via a computer to show a simulated collective movement… such as with a swarm of bees.

This is seriously cool, fellow geeks. The entire display cost about $180,000.00 and is the perfect example of a programmed algorithm. My favorite part of this project is that it is run completely via an iPhone. rAndom International created their own internal app for the phone to run their various projects and installations. This app can dim the lights on the Swarm Light, adjust them to ambient lighting conditions and even flip through various modes.

What other awesome and unique things have you seen around the web that stem from a gadget such as the iPhone?