Nongenetic Evolution refers to evolutionary processes that are not based on changes in genes. For instance, when products or ideas evolve like organisms, such as the development of Gillette razor blades or the Shell corporate logo. Is evolution evolving out of gene-based life forms onto a next level?
French photographer Stéphane Couturier provides us with an intimate peek inside the womb of a Toyota car factory north of Paris, France. The highly abstract photos of car parts, workers and machines capture the complexity, vitality, serene precision and harmony involved in the car production process.…
Our peculiar image of the week presents us the lustrous uncannyness of a Beetle car in its embryonic stage. Rest assure: this is fiction, however, metaphorically the sculpture by artist Olav Mooij represents a profound truth we are only gradually getting attuned to: how mankind is co-evolving with its technology…
It’s no secret that Mickey Mouse has evolved in response to consumer pressures. Once a violent river-rat, he became the boy scout of rodents with good looks to match. Steven Jay Gould famously charted Mickey’s pedomorphosis over the years. The mouse reverted to a baby’s bigger skull, bigger eyes, and…
Nearly every adult in the Western world owns a personalized pet, sometimes more than one. It is treated with great care, fed when necessary and fitted to the owner’s wishes and needs. The car. For decades this car is held close to the humans, since the car was not able…
Copy, paste, mix, breed, delete, evolve!
Razorius Gilletus – On the Origin of a Next Species
Is the evolution of the single bladed razor into an exorbitant five–bladed vibrating gizmo the outcome of human needs, or is there another force in play? Say hello to Razorius Gillettus, one of the new species emerging from our technoeconomic ecology. Proof that evolution should be understood as a universal principle rather than a DNA-specific process.…Read more
'There is no reason why evolutionary processes could not transfer themselves to other media'
Koert Van Mensvoort
The Order Electrus
The Order Electrus is a fictional documentary which shows Floris Kaayk’s imaginary world of industrialised nature.
Darwinian Selection of the Cowboy Hat
The standard story of the cowboy hat goes something like this: In 1865, J.B. Stetson went out west during the California gold rush. He observed that bowlers, raccoon hats, and sombreros weren’t cutting it for men who spent their lives in the harsh conditions of the American West.…Read more
Shell Logo Evolution
Corporate logos constantly have to adapt in order to survive. In the case of the Shell oil company this results in an image that ironically resembles the ones we know from the biology classes.
Still one wonders how the biomimicmarketing of the seashell came into existence.…Read more
The Evolutionary History of Office Chairs
On the shortlist for the year’s strangest book title, Jonathan Olivares’ A Taxonomy of Office Chairs charts the “evolution” of chairs from the 1840s to the present day. The author explicitly uses the language of biological classification, opening with a quote from Baudrillard that describes consumer objects as reproducing species.…Read more