Category Energy

Rod at Dawn

In 1994 popstar Rod Stewart gave a concert on Copacabana beach in Rio di Janeiro. And it turned out to be a legendary concert as it attracted the largest crowd of people in history for a musical event. 4 to 5 million people came to listen to Rod. And that’s an interesting number, because it […]

Trade-Off Dialectics

A trade-off is a situation that involves exchanging one desirable quality or aspect of something in return for another quality or aspect. In an evolutionary sense it is often presumed that every advantageous alteration of a phenotype comes with a disadvantage since energy invested in one feature cannot be invested in another. The Incredible Shrinking Man […]

One Bean Coffee

According to the Water Footprint Network the fresh water involved in the production of a single cup of coffee (125ml) is 140 liters. One part of coffee consumes 1100 water parts. To make an average cup of coffee requires around 40 coffeebeans. To produce one bean requires 3,5 liters of water. In total the global […]

Global Human Biomass

A new REPORT published on BioMed Central rightfully warns us of the need to consider the ecological effects of increasing human weight. Obese and overweight people globally consume an extra amount of food that could feed 300 million people. From data collected in 2005 researchers calculated the total human biomass of the planet’s adult population at  287 […]

Brown Fat Thermogenesis

If we shrink to 50 centimeters controlling body temperature becomes a real challenge. Large mass bodies can much easier deal with differences in outside temperature. But perhaps a simple evolutionary adaptation, observed in small mammals and human infants, points towards a possible solution. Biologist Per-Ivar Kloen informed us that small mammals and newborns, especially those […]

Kerosine Billions

Dr. Andrew Dannenberg investigated that if the weight of every US citizens increases with 10 pounds, airtravel in the USA alone will use well over 1.3 billion liters of extra kerosine. That’s a lot of fuel and extra CO2,  and that’s just in America. If we get taller, we get heavier. Every 20% increase in […]

Shrink Rays

A shrink ray is any device which uses energy to reduce the physical size of matter. Although the laws of quantum physics don’t allow the miniaturizing of atoms and shrink rays do not exist (perhaps with the exception of electromagnetic forming) they feature quite prominently in popular fantasy and science fiction. For The Incredible Shrinking Man any shrink based desire […]

The Penny Shrinkers (or Electromagnetic Forming)

Even if shrinking the human body is the focus of The Incredible Shrinking Man we do have a keen interest in other theories and practices of shrinking. We came across electromagnetic forming through the curious tech subculture of penny shrinking. By running a very high magnetic current through quarters and pre-1982 pennies, the penny shrinkers […]

Sixty Calories

Smaller people require less nutrients, water and energy to live under the same conditions and life style of taller people. The energy requirements of a 50 centimeter person might be approximately 60 calories per day. That’s the number of calories in a small apple, and 2% of the caloric needs of an average person of […]