Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Rave at the Beehive

Rave at the Beehive

Rave at the Beehive (2001)

From "Bee Behavior" -- taken from Beekeeping in the United States by Stephen Tabor III:

There are other methods of bee communication besides the one involving chemical pheromones. The best known is the "dance" of the returned forager bee so well elucidated by von Frisch and his many students, particularly M. Lindauer.

This dance is so precise that it tells other bees not only in which direction to go but also how far to fly in search of food. This was the first nonhuman language to be interpreted. The experiments on bee communication by dances were done with dishes of sugar water and not under true foraging conditions of bees collecting nectar from plants. When a returning forager comes back to the hive after finding a highly attractive 100-acre field of sweetclover, does she direct bees to the spot she was working or to the whole field? The last word in dance communication 0£ bees certainly has not yet been written.


According to von Frisch, when a bee returns from a foraging trip and dances, she also communicates the kind of "plant" or "flower" on which she was foraging by releasing the perfume of the flower through nectar regurgitation or from nectar aroma on body hairs. Again, most of these experiments were done with dishes of sugar water impregnated with essential oils or plant extracts. These experiments have prompted other experiments that were designed to train bees to work desired crops for pollination. These experiments were unsuccessful. The reason for the failures may well be that the bee language code has not been completely translated. We are still unable to "talk" effectively to the bees and "tell" them what we want done.

To bee or not to bee...

Everybody goes to parties
They dance this mess around

From CNN: "Honey, Comb -- Beehive Hairdo Is Back":

"It really was the last great hairdo we've seen in 30 years," said Jackie Summers of Modern Salon magazine. "It really was sort of the peak of hairdressing."

Part of its draw may have been the "heightening" factor.

"I always wanted to be like 5 (foot) 6 (inches), so it was probably at least four inches (above) my head," said Irene Bridges of the hive's allure.

Once out, women literally swarmed to the beauty parlor.

"Everybody wanted the beehive, even women with real, real short hair," [Margaret Vinci] Heldt said. "They looked more like anthills than a beehive then they got bigger and bigger and became hornet's nests."

And, on the "Resistance Is Futile" front, from Independent Media TV: "US Report Foretells of Brave New World ('Hive Mind')":

A draft government report says we will alter human evolution within 20 years by combining what we know of nanotechnology, biotechnology, IT and cognitive sciences. The 405-page report sponsored by the US National Science Foundation and Commerce Department, Converging Technologies for Improving Human Performance, calls for a broad-based research program to improve human performance leading to telepathy, machine-to-human communication, amplified personal sensory devices and enhanced intellectual capacity.

People may download their consciousnesses into computers or other bodies even on the other side of the solar system, or participate in a giant "hive mind", a network of intelligences connected through ultra-fast communications networks. "With knowledge no longer encapsulated in individuals, the distinction between individuals and the entirety of humanity would blur," the report says. "Think Vulcan mind-meld. We would perhaps become more of a hive mind - an enormous, single, intelligent entity."

And, in a final party out of bounds, from "Riding the Raves":

I think, “Wow, we're officially part of the American lexicon,” while my parents ask, “What exactly is a rave?” The dictionary goes on to define a rave as “an all-night dance party, where electronically-synthesized music is played.”


The collective unity persists. When one attends a rave, the overall “vibe” is one of peace, one of consideration, where people are allowed to be individuals, yet are still part of the group. It is like watching a hive of bees, each buzzing in their own frenzied dance, but still comprising a cohesive swarm, a humming community.

All I really have to add to today's image and annotation is an insightful remark made by Shakespeare's Hamlet when informed of the arrival of actors: Buzz, buzz! -- preferably intoned with Kenneth Branagh's superb wry inflection.

1 comment:

The Heretik said...

Love your images and attitude, cruel viewer. Been a little walloped with all the Downing Street stuff, but coming by here is always a nice relief. I haven't forgotten all the work you have done. Stay strong.

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