This Beautiful Infographic Shows How the Sun Controls Everything

As fall begins and we soak up the last of summer’s sunshine, let’s reflect on everything the sun does for us. Here's a nifty infographic to help. 


As fall begins and we soak up the last of summer’s sunshine, let’s take a moment to think about all the good the Sun does for us. It gives us light, heat, and energy. Without that energy, “life on Earth wouldn’t exist” NASA points out. Our planet’s temperature would be so cold that the ground would be frozen and no life would be able to survive.

The sun also helps our bodies produce vitamin D. Vitamin D regulates calcium and phosphorus within the body and helps maintain proper bone structure, according to WebMD. 80-90% of the vitamin D we absorb comes from the sun, because it’s a reliable, easy resource. The body stores vitamin D in fat cells. “Just 6 days of casual sunlight exposure without sunscreen can make up for 49 days of no sunlight exposure,” WebMD explains.  

Helpful as the sun is to us, it’s even more helpful to the whole planet. From plants and animals to survival strategies and evolution, the Sun shapes the course of life on Earth. This infographic from Solar Centre offers a beautiful visual summary:

You can click on the Solar Centre link above to see a high-resolution version of the graphic. If you want more information about how the sun does all these things, check out Bill Nye’s explanation below.

So get out there and soak up that sunshine!

Antimicrobial resistance is a growing threat to good health and well-being

Antimicrobial resistance is growing worldwide, rendering many "work horse" medicines ineffective. Without intervention, drug-resistant pathogens could lead to millions of deaths by 2050. Thankfully, companies like Pfizer are taking action.

Image courtesy of Pfizer.
  • Antimicrobial-resistant pathogens are one of the largest threats to global health today.
  • As we get older, our immune systems age, increasing our risk of life threatening infections. Without reliable antibiotics, life expectancy could decline for the first time in modern history.
  • If antibiotics become ineffective, common infections could result in hospitalization or even death. Life-saving interventions like cancer treatments and organ transplantation would become more difficult, more often resulting in death. Routine procedures would become hard to perform.
  • Without intervention, resistant pathogens could result in 10 million annual deaths by 2050.
  • By taking a multi-faceted approach—inclusive of adherence to good stewardship, surveillance and responsible manufacturing practices, as well as an emphasis on prevention and treatment—companies like Pfizer are fighting to help curb the spread.
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Fairness is a universal value. So why all this inequity?

Are we trying to solve too many problem with technological solutions?

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  • Technology has given humanity the amazing ability to fix almost any problem, conditioning us to search for technological remedies to what might be social problems.
  • Alleviating social inequity is a problem that technology must necessarily attempt to solve, but technology alone cannot shape how humans assemble their societies.
  • Only by emphasizing the primary place of individual identity, human dignity, and universal values like empathy and emotion, can we hope to solve global issues that, so far, technology has been unable to conquer.

Radical Transformational Leadership: Strategic Action for Change Agents

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Radical Transformational Leadership: Strategic Action for Change Agents [Monica Sharma] on Amazon.com. *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Monica Sharma describes how we can source our inner capacities and wisdom to manifest change that embodies universal values such as dignity

How to split the USA into two countries: Red and Blue

Progressive America would be half as big, but twice as populated as its conservative twin.

Image: Dicken Schrader
Strange Maps
  • America's two political tribes have consolidated into 'red' and 'blue' nations, with seemingly irreconcilable differences.
  • Perhaps the best way to stop the infighting is to go for a divorce and give the two nations a country each
  • Based on the UN's partition plan for Israel/Palestine, this proposal provides territorial contiguity and sea access to both 'red' and 'blue' America
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An ancient structure visible from space isn’t man-made

Long hidden under trees, it's utterly massive

(Roy Funch)
Surprising Science
  • This 4,000-year-old structure can be seen from space and wasn't built by humans
  • It's made up of 200 million mounds of earth
  • It's still under construction today
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