Thursday, January 28, 2010

The Black Terror in "The Serpent Lady Returns" by Jerry Robinson & Mort Meskin (1948)


The Black Terror #24 (Sept. 1948) published by Standard
© the current copyright holders
Story: Jerry Robinson; Art: Mort Meskin

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Origin of Aqualad!

© DC Comics


Story: Robert Bernstein; Art: Ramona Fradon
Taken from Showcase #76 (1968), reprinted from Adventure #269 (1960)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Coevolution of Bat & Dolphin Echolocation

Echolocation in dolphins and bats evolved separately, but through the same genetic changes.

Click to enlarge
Dolphins and bats have both evolved the same specialized form of inner-ear hair cells that allow them to use sophisticated echolocation: detecting unseen obstacles or tracking down prey by making a high frequency noise and listening for the echo that bounces back.

"The natural world is full of examples of species that have evolved similar characteristics independently" said Stephen Rossiter. "However, it is generally assumed that most of these so-called 'convergent traits' have arisen by different changes in the animal's DNA. Our study shows that this very complex ability - echolocation - has in fact evolved by identical genetic changes in bats and dolphins."

Kamandi © DC Comics
According to Rossiter, the discovery represents an "unprecedented" example of convergence between two very different animals, and suggests that further studies might unearth more genetic similarities between species than scientists would have suspected. link
Ref.: Convergent sequence evolution between echolocating bats and dolphins. 2010. Y. Liu, et al. Current Biology 20: R53-R54, 26.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Appointment in Paris [Danger Trail #1] by Alex Toth


Danger Trail #1 (July-August 1950)
© DC Comics
Story by France Herron; Art by Alex Toth

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Thing From The Sea! by Wally Wood (1954)


Art by Wally Wood
From Eerie #16 (1954), © Avon

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Life on Other Worlds (1946) by Murphy Anderson

From Planet Comics #46 (1947);
Art by Ruth Atkinson(?). © Fiction House


From Planet Comics #43 (1946);
Art by Murphy Anderson. © Fiction House

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Flying Fool (1947) by Kirby and Simon


© the current copyright holders
Link Thorne, The Flying Fool by Jack Kirby & Joe Simon
from Airboy #11, 1947

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Born This Day: Karel Capek

Doom Patrol © DC Comics
Karel Čapek (Jan. 9, 1890 – Dec. 25, 1938) was one of the most influential Czech writers of the 20th century. He introduced and made popular the frequently used international word robot, which first appeared in his play R.U.R. (Rossum's Universal Robots) in 1921.

The word robot comes from the word robota meaning literally serf labor, and, figuratively, "drudgery" or "hard work" in Czech, Slovak and Polish. The origin of the word is the Old Church Slavonic rabota "servitude" ("work" in contemporary Russian), which in turn comes from the Indo-European root *orbh-.

While it is frequently thought that Karel Čapek was the originator of the word, he wrote a short letter in reference to an article in the Oxford English Dictionary etymology in which he named his brother, Josef Čapek, as its actual inventor. From Wiki